The first of our London Studies groups, despite being established 10 years ago, is still managing to find fascinating places to research and visit. In September the group visited the new Rooftop garden at 120 Fenchurch Street (which is open to the public) and the Guildhall, to see the excellent ĎArchitecture of Londoní exhibition (on to 1st December 2019). In October they visited The Salterís Company, one of Londonís Livery Companies, which is adjacent to part of the old London Wall, on Fore Street.
The Saltersí Company has its origins in the medieval salt trade and as this grew in importance in London, salt traders and merchants grouped together in order to look after their own interests. This grouping system was replicated across many industries and crafts and the ancient guilds survive now in the City of London as Livery Companies. Today all Livery Companies are charitable and philanthropic bodies, giving substantial funds to charities every year.
During the excellent tour of Saltersí Hall the group heard all about the long history of the Company, and itís modern day charitable and educational work. The tour also included a visit to their attractive garden and the ornate gates which use to grace an earlier hall. This area can be visited without entering the hall and is one of many small gardens open to the public, to be found in the City of London.
The Salters Company has occupied a number of buildings in London over its 700year life but the present Saltersí Hall is relatively new, only dating from 1976. It was designed by the architect Sir Basil Spence, who is best known for his work on Coventry Cathedral.
The Group found the visit and tour of Salters Hall well worthwhile and the guides were informative.
Tours are free but a donation is recommended. firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0207 826 4060.