Clerkenwell rooftops.


Though less regal than much of London, Clerkenwell has a sort of Victorian charm to it. What were once factories and warehouses have become shops and rather nice flats. The red brick buildings are a picturesque backdrop to the white steeple of St. James Church. The area is a mix of shops, offices, houses and pubs. With few hotels and tourists, it’s truly a locals’ only sort of place that can feel a little deserted on the weekends.

One village here, Smithfield, boasts the largest meat market in London, open from the pre-dawn hours til noon each day. The market sits on one side of the grassy square in large high-ceilinged Victorian warehouse; another side is occupied by St. Bartholomew’s Hospital (or Bart’s) and the medieval St. Bartholomew the Great Church sits nearby.

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