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Memorials at Bunhill Fields

Heritage and conservation

The City of London's commitment to open space management dates back to the 1870s. The City campaigned to retain public open spaces and common land that were being threatened by the expansion of London and house-building.

The range of gardens, piazzas, disused churchyards and burial grounds that make up a large proportion of the open spaces within the Square mile today. These mostly result from two significant historical events that affected the townscape and Geography of the City: the Great Fire of London in 1666 and bomb damage caused during World War II.

Many City Gardens still hold evidence of the City's past, such as remnants of the original Roman Wall such as that seen in the Plaisterers Garden on Noble Street and in Barber Surgeons Garden. Some sites are listed because of the historical character which they preserve, such as St Pancras Church Garden which is an Scheduled Ancient Monument. 

Bunhill Fields has been afforded the highest level of recognition as a historic landscape with a Grade I entry on the National Register of Parks and Gardens. In addition, some 75 individual tombs were individually listed in February 2011 by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport on the advice of English Heritage.

Much of this heritage can be explored at your own leisure with the aid of our City Gardens Leaflets and Maps 

The City Guides

The best way to really discover the joys of the City gardens' histories and appreciate the wide range of planting, some of which is very unusual, is to join a walk with the City of London Guides, who are trained in the history and horticulture of the gardens.

City of London Guides complete a one year course before being awarded their official red, white and gold badge by the Lord Mayor of London. The Course is organised by the City of London Corporation, and accredited and examined by the Institute of Tourist Guiding.

City of London Guides can give you a unique insight into the history and customs of the City and entertain you with the stories that it has to tell, helping you to find out so much more than you would from any guide book.

Visit the City Guides website for more information or join a walk taking in some of the City gardens across the Square Mile.

The best way to really discover the joys of the City gardens' histories and appreciate the wide range of planting, some of which is very unusual, is to join a walk with the City of London Guides, who are trained in the history and horticulture of the gardens.

City of London Guides complete a one year course before being awarded their official red, white and gold badge by the Lord Mayor of London. The Course is organised by the City of London Corporation, and accredited and examined by the Institute of Tourist Guiding.

City of London Guides can give you a unique insight into the history and customs of the City and entertain you with the stories that it has to tell, helping you to find out so much more than you would from any guide book.

Visit the City Guides website for more information or join a walk taking in some of the City gardens across the Square Mile.

Published:
13 March 2012
Last Modified:
29 September 2017

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