TOWER of London. Later Buildings. 80

TOWER of London. Later Buildings.

the East is a great and strong Gate, commonly called the Iron Gate, but not usually opened.

Later Buildings, Enlargements, and Reparations.


For the Buildings and Enlargements of and about the Tower of later Times, take this (however imperfect) Account.

In Q. Elizabeth's Reign a Piece of a Wall was built near the Ward House. Some time after, Anno 1594, a Brick Wall was resolved to be gone in Hand with, to be made along the Tower Wharf, from the said Piece of the new Wall, to be continued thence to the Cross Wall, near the Iron Gate, near St. Katharines, containing in Length Eight Hundred Twenty two Foot: the same Wall to be Nine Foot high; with the repairing of the Decay of the Wharf under it throughout, containing Forty six Rods, at Eighteen Foot to the Rod, which in all manner of Stuff and Workmanship came to the Sum of 161 00 00

Buildings in Q. Elizabeth's Reign.

J. S.

Item, There was more to be made, viz. Three Stone Door Cases, with Doors, Locks, and Hinges to them, at 46s. the Piece. 06 18 00

Item, For Scaffolding, Stuffs, Trays, and Shovels, and Clerks Wages by Estimation, 08 16 00

Sum. Totalis 176 14 00

This was the Account brought in by the Undertakers to the Lord Treasurer; praying him also to direct his Warrant for the making of the Wall through the Houses encroached over the Ditch, thereby to satisfy the Inhabitants there.

Let it be added also, that there were many Tenements about the Middle of this Queen's Reign, built upon her wast Ground in the Liberty of the Tower. Viz.

Tenements within the Liberty set up.

Edward Hemmyng, built Fourteen Tenements, which stood at the Postern Gate.

Mr. Skinner builded eight Tenements, which stood at the Postern Gate.

Item, The said Mr. Skinner also let out certain Ground at the Postern to divers Persons, which builded Houses thereupon, and paid him Rent for them, albeit the Ground was the Queen's, and belonged to her Tower.

John Cox, Limeman, Built up a Wharf and certain Rooms, for the Selling of his Lime, standing by Petty Wales under the Tower Wall; and paid for the same 10l. Fine, and 6l. a Year.

George Waters built an House upon the Queen's Highway, being Paved; and none never before in that Place.

William Beare built an House in the Liberty.

One Fisher dwelt in an House next Will. Beare, built also about the same time.

Lambert Bowet also built his House within this Time, being before but as it were a Shed.

Henry Nayler built two Houses upon Tower Ditch, where none ever was before.

Drinkwater, the Smith, built a little Tenement, where never any one was before.

William Hammon having a Chamber over the Gate in the Bulwark, built it from a Chamber to a Dwelling House within six Years.

Francis Parton having a little House greatly enlarged it.

William Bunche built up a House in the Bulwark from a Shed.

Roger Eston, Glover, built up two Houses in the Bulwark; the one with a Chimney, the other without.

Robert Morebread built up a House from a Shed in the Bulwark.

James Thomas built up a Shop hard to the Bulwark Gate.

Besides divers Yards left unnamed. For that there was an Order from the Council for the pulling of them down. And as these Buildings did but cumber up and weaken the Tower, so the taking them away was but the Repairing and Improvement of it.]

But to come nearer our own Times, the whole Reign of K. James I. and the first fifteen Years of K. Charles I. were prosperous and peaceful. But in the Year 1640, the 3d of November the long Parliament began; and soon after this Royal Castle was made a Garrison; and as a Place of Custody, there were committed hitherto more Noblemen, Reverend Prelates, and Worthy Knights, and Gentlemen of good Quality, for the Defence of their Religion and Loyalty to their King, than were in the common Goal of Newgate for Murther and Felony. But after Ten Years of Civil Wars, and Thirteen Years Vacancy without a King in England, it pleased God to restore his Majesty K. Charles II. to his Royal Throne, being brought in with all the Acclamations of Joy; and in the First Year of his Reign after his Restauration he made that constant Royalist, Sir John Robinson, a Citizen of London, Lieutenant of this Royal Citadel. And now I shall proceed to the farther Reparations, Augmentations, and Fortifyings of the same.

Ditch cleansed, and Wharfing new built in K. Charles II. his Reign.

R. B.

Sir John Robinson, Lieutenant.

In the Year 1663, the Ditch was Cleansed, and all the Wharfing about it new Built of Brick and Stone, so that the Water of the Thames running into it is there kept in by Sluces, and to be let out as Occasion requires.

In the Year 1666, the Fire of London, ending at the East End of Tower Street, whose Extent came just to the Dock on the West Side of the Tower, there was nothing between the Tower Walls and it, but the Breadth of the Dock, and a great many old Timber Houses, which were built upon the Banks of the Dock, and in the outward Bulwark of the Tower and Tower Ditch, (which then was very foul) to the very Wall of the Tower it self. Which old Houses, if the Fire had taken hold of, the Tower it self, and all the Buildings within it, had in all Probability been destroyed. But such was this Lieutenant's Care of the great Charge committed to him, that to prevent future Danger, a few Weeks after, he caused all these old Houses which stood between the Tower Dock and the Tower Wall to be pulled down; and not only them, but also all those which were Built upon, or near the Tower Ditch, from the Bulwark Gate, along both the Tower Hills, and so to the Iron Gate; and caused strong Rails of Oak to be set upon the Wharf where those Houses stood, which were about 350 or 400; so that by this means, not only the White Tower, but the whole Outer Tower Wall, and the Ditch round about the same, are all of them visible to Passengers; and make a fine Prospect.]

The Fire of London endangered the Tower.

Old Buildings about the Tower pulled down.

The Tower Ditch being Cleansed, and the Wharfing about it thus Repaired, I will now come within the Walls, and take a view of the Reparations, and new Buildings, which (after the Cleansing of the Ditch) began to be made; which are so many, that the certain Year when they were began or finished cannot be determined; for several of them were in Hand at the same time; but take them all together, they do amount to more than all that hath been done in that kind to the Tower since the Reign of K. Edward the IVth. And so to mention only what the several Reparations and Buildings are, and how it is at this present. First, the Walls and Windows of the White Tower were very much decayed, two of the Turrets wholly taken down, and all of them Repaired; and new Funds set up, with the Kings Arms and Imperial Crowns over them, which were wholly new made, the old being defaced in the time of the Rebellion when this Tower was a Garrison.]

The Modern Reparations and Buildings. New Houses.

J. S.

To omit the rest, very lately on the North East of the White Tower, near the Armoury, are two