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12 May 2010

Relax in the St Dunstan-in-the-East public garden

St Dunstan-in-the-East was never a very lucky church. Originally built around 1100, it was severely damaged in the Great Fire of London. After being rebuilt by Sir Christopher Wren, it then fell into disrepair by the early 19th Century, and had to be rebuilt in 1817. After that, it was badly damaged by enemy action in 1941, and by the 1960s it still stood in the same state it had done after the Blitz.

In 1967, it was decided that the church would never be rebuilt and would instead be opened as a public garden. Whilst the tower and the north and south walls are the only bits left, occasional church services, under the parish of All Hallows by the Tower, are still held in the open air.

The ruins had already been designated Grade I listed, so the walls and Wren's tower and steeple are protected, and must remain. The result is an atmospheric garden with plenty of greenery, climbers and creepers and space to sit and have a nice think. When your author popped by on Monday an old chap was sat beside the small fountain happily puffing away on his pipe, as the pipe smoke drifted up towards a clear blue sky. It was easy to see why it is referred to as one of the most beautiful public gardens in the City of London.

For more on St Dunstan-in-the-East, see http://www.ahbtt.org.uk/history/st-dunstan-in-the-east/


  1. In the whole of London, this is my most favourite place to sit quietly and contemplate nothing at all.

  2. Good to hear it Bex, it's a fantastic spot.

  3. Tom I would love to see this lovely spot the next time I am in London, so serene.


    Art by Karena