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Monday, July 15, 2019


Add to Technorati FavoritesUsually I like to spend two or three days in London. I love going on the London Walks which are so interesting. I've been on quite a few as well as exploring many parts of London.  But this year I will only have one day there and by the time my flight comes in from Athens it will be too late to join a London Walk. So, I have decided to explore another place that sounds very intriguing to me and probably worth a good travel story.

CROSSBONES GRAVEYARD located a short walk from Shakespeare's Globe is the site of an old burial ground with an extraordinary history. For centuries it was the burial place of outcasts, sex workers and paupers.  The idea of a "prostitute's graveyard" intrigued me. I wonder if some of Jack the Ripper's victims could be buried there?  (I've previously made the Jack the Ripper Walk in London and it was one of the most memorable walks.)

According to local lore, Crossbones was once the final resting place for Winchester Geese, medieval sex workers licensed by the Bishop of Winchester to work in the brothels of The Liberty of the Clink, which lay outside the law of the City of London. By the time it was closed in 1853 Crossbones held the mortal remains of an estimated 15,000 paupers.

Part of it was dug up in the 1990's during work on the tube extension line. In 1996 the writer John Constable had a vision which revealed the secret history of Crossbones, the inspiration for The Southwark Mysteries  a collection of poems, plays and esoteric lore performed in The Globe and the Cathedral. A shrine was created at the red iron gates in Redcross Way dedicated to 'the outcast deat'. It is now a garden of remembrance.


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