Something fishy in the City


If you follow the Thames path in London, from Tower Bridge to London Bridge, you will pass Customs House – headquarters of the UK’s Customs and Excise service.

You’ll also pass the former Billingsgate market building (below), famous for its fish markets – and easily identified by the huge fish sculptures adorning the weathervanes on top of the building. There was a fish market on the site for nearly 700 years – from 1297 until 1982, when it moved to the Docklands area, further downstream.

One thing that visitors to this area will not experience these days is the all-encompassing smell that used to pervade this area. Historical descriptions suggest that fish juices, which seeped into the cobbled streets over many centuries, created a permanent stench right up until the market moved away a couple of decades back.

Find out more about Billingsgate on our City of London tour. Click here for more information.

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