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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 P93/GEO
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1729-1901
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 9.08 linear metres
Name of creator(s): Parish of St George in the East, Stepney | Church of England


Administrative/Biographical history:

The church of Saint George in the East, Stepney, was one of three Stepney churches built under the 1711 "Act for the building of Fifty New Churches in the Cities of London and Westminster or the Suburbs thereof" to be paid for by a tax levied on coal entering the City of London. The church was designed by Nicholas Hawksmoor to serve the residents of Upper Wapping, however it was not consecrated until 1729 because of financial difficulties. It has a 160 foot tower. The east window was designed by Sir Joshua Reynolds.

The church was the centre of a controversy in the 1850s when the Presbyterian Bishop of London A C Tait replaced the high church rector with a low church preacher, causing demonstrations and unrest and the eventual temporary closure of the church.

The interior of the church was gutted during World War II, but the exterior was left intact. After the bombing, services continued in a shed at the rear. In 1963 a new church, by Arthur Baily, was built within the Hawksmoor shell. The original apse with its plasterwork and the font at the west end have been retained. There was space for an inner courtyard between the original west front and the new, which was built entirely of glass. On either side of the courtyard, the former galleries incorporate four flats which were given the Civic Trust Award in 1967.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of the parish of Saint George in the East, Cannon Street Road, including registers of baptisms, marriages, banns and burials; registers of church services; papers of the parish constable; papers of the St George in the East workhouse; records relating to poor relief; settlement examinations; papers of the incumbents; faculties; Vestry and Parochial Church Council minutes; parish magazines and historical notes.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

The records have been sorted into categories which reflect divisions between the different functions and operations of the parish and its administration. Order within these categories reflects chronology.

Conditions governing access:

These records are available for public inspection, although records containing personal information are subject to access restrictions under the UK Data Protection Act, 1998.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright to these records rests with the depositor.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Records P93/GEO/1-69 deposited in 1959. Records P93/GEO/70-85 deposited in 1961. Record P93/GEO/86 deposited in 1954.

Allied Materials

Related material:

See also ACC/3248.

Further records are available at Tower Hamlets Local History Library.

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
April to June 2010.

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