Clothworkers Almshouses

1- 8 Bishop Street, Islington, N1 8PH


In around 1855 new almshouses were built around the old Clothworkers Almshouses in Frog Lane at a cost of £3,359. The old 1770 building was then demolished and its site became the courtyard for the new dwellings. The main 2-storey block with 5 almshouses now faced Dean Street instead of Frog Lane. It was flanked by a north and a south block, each containing 3 almshouses, increasing the number of dwellings to eleven.

In 1858 the total expenditure by the Company on the almshouses, including the wages of a gardener and repairs to the buildings, came to about £715.

In 1872 Frog Lane was renamed Popham Road.

In 1873 the Company decided to close Lambe's Chapel and its associated almshouses in Cripplegate and to rebuild new facilities on its land in Islington. New Clothworkers Almshouses for men were built in Essex Road, while preparations were made to built a new church immediately south of the women's almshouses in Popham Road.

Building work began in 1873. The southern block and the southern part of the main block almshouses were taken for the new St James Church, reducing the number of almshouses. The northern block was extended by an extra house, making the total number of almshouses eight.

In 1938 Dean Street was renamed Bishop Street.

The Company sold the almshouses in 1964.


Current status

The Grade II listed buildings are now private residences, known as St James Close.

N.B. Photographs obtained in June 2017

Clothworkers Almshouses

The almshouses on Bishop Street. St James Church can just be seen on the left of the image, with the main block beside it. The northern block is seen on the right of the images.

Clothworkers Almshouses

The main block on Bishop Street is asymmetrical because of the missing almshouse on its southern side.

 Clothworkers Almshouses

The northern block.

Clothworkers Almshouses

The house on the right of the image was added to the northern block in the 1870s

Clothworkers Almshouses

Stone plaques of the Clothworkers Company arms are mounted in the central gables of both blocks.

Clothworkers Almshouses Clothworkers Almshouses

The rear elevations of the almshouses, as seen from Popham Road.

References (Accessed 18th November 2020)

Cromwell TK 1835 Walks Through Islington. London, Sherwood, Gilbert & Piper, 193-194.

Fry H 1881 The Royal Guide to the London Charities for 1881-1882. London, D. Bogue, 54.

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Last updated 18th November 2020

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