The Lamb Tavern pub in Leadenhall Market in the City of London – on a Saturday afternoon there are very few people around, not even tourists..
’Late in the first century, a basilica (law courts) and forum (market place) built on where Leadenhall Market stands today. It is the largest such site North of the Alps and occupied an area bigger than that of Trafalgar Square.
In 1309 the Manor of Leadenhall is first listed as belonging to Sir
Hugh Neville. By 1321, the area around Leadenhall manor is a known meeting place for poulterers. They are joined, in 1397 by cheesemongers.
In 1411 the site is acquired by Richard Whittington, the mayor of London. The site grows in importance as a granary and a chapel are built to service those coming to the market.
In 1463, the beam for the tronage and weighing of wool is fixed at Leadenhall market, signigying its importance as a cntre for commerce. In 1488 it is decided that leather is sold only from Leadenhall Market.
In 1622, cutlery is made available only from Leadenhall Market.
The Great Fire of 1666 destroys much of the city of London, including parts of the market. When it is rebuilt not long after, it becomes a covered structure for the first time and is divided into the Beef Market, the Green Yard and the Herb Market.
The building is knocked down again in 1881 and redesigned by Sir Horace Jones (architect of Billingsgate and Smithfield Markets). Wrought iron and glass replace the previous stone structure.
In 1991, Leadenhall Market was extensively restored.
Hollywood notices the charms of Leadenhall in 2001 when it is used as Diagon Alley in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.’