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Archives in London and the M25 area


Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 P69/BOT2
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1547-1984
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 36 linear metres (2163 production units).
Name of creator(s): Parish of St Botolph Aldgate, City of London | Church of England


Administrative/Biographical history:

History of the united parishes of St Botolph Aldgate and Holy Trinity Minories:

The first recorded mention of Saint Botolph Aldgate is in 1115, when the Knighten Guild gave the church to the Priory of Holy Trinity, Aldgate. Botolph was a 7th century Saxon Abbot and the patron saint of travellers, so his churches were usually situated at the city gates. The church became Crown property in 1532 when the priory was dissolved. The church was rebuilt in 1740-44 by George Dance. The interior was redesigned in 1887-91 by John Francis Bentley; and repairs were carried out in 1958-66. Author Daniel Defoe was married in this church; and philosopher Jeremy Bentham was christened here.

The parish of Holy Trinity Minories was united to the parish of St Botolph Aldgate in 1893 and the church building was closed in 1899. The parish of Saint Botolph Aldgate lies partly within the liberties of the City (this area is co-terminous with Portsoken Ward) and partly outside the City in Middlesex including East Smithfield, the precinct of Saint Katharine by the Tower and (from 1893) the parish of Holy Trinity Minories.

Information from The London Encyclopaedia, eds. Weinreb and Hibbert (LMA Library Reference 67.2 WEI).


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of the parish of Saint Botolph Aldgate date from the mid 16th century, but the archive also includes muniments of title from 1279. There are churchwardens accounts from 1547, vestry minutes from 1583, and poor rate assessments, tithe rate assessments and paving rate assessments from 1738. Parish registers include baptisms, marriages, banns, burials, preachers and church services. There are also papers relating to poor relief including the workhouse.

The series of rate books listed here are for the East Smithfield and/or City parts of the parish. East Smithfield was divided for rate collection purposes into Upper and Lower Precincts (UP & LP) and the extents of these precincts are given in the catalogue entries. The Upper Precinct included some of the Tower of London liberty until 1829 when separate rate books survive for the liberty (denoted as TL). St Katharine's Precinct appears not to have been included in any rate assessments for East Smithfield, apart from the paving rate books (Ms 2537) which include a small section of the Precinct. The City part of the parish is divided into five precincts, Houndsditch (H), High Street (HS), Tower Hill (TH), Barrs (B) and Covent Garden (CG). The extents of these precincts is given in the catalogue entries. The parish of Holy Trinity Minories does not appear in rate assessments for either the City or East Smithfield parts before its union with St Botolph.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:
English and Latin.

System of arrangement:

As the archive is large and complex, and to assist the user, the catalogue has been arranged in sections each with a code as follows: A Parish registers; B Vestry and parish officers; C Rate assessments and inhabitants lists; D Charities and estates.

Conditions governing access:

These records are available for public inspection, although records containing personal information may be subject to access restrictions.

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:

The records of St Botolph Aldgate were deposited by the parish in Guildhall Library Manuscripts Section at various dates between 1920 and 1994, and those of Holy Trinity Minories in 1955 and 1996 (also by St Botolph Aldgate). They have been catalogued by various members of staff over many years. The Guildhall Library Manuscripts Section merged with the London Metropolitan Archives in 2009.

Allied Materials

Related material:

P69/TRI2: Holy Trinity Minories, Tower Hamlets.

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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