Victorian London - Publications - History - The Queen's London : a Pictorial and Descriptive Record of the Streets, Buildings, Parks and Scenery of the Great Metropolis, 1896 - Newgate Prison

Newgate Prison - photograph


At the corner of Newgate Street and of the Old Bailey is the gloomy granite building which was once the chief prison in London, but is now, as has been mentioned before in these pages, used only for prisoners awaiting trial at the Central Criminal Court, and for those there condemned to death. The exterior of the gaol is little more than a hundred years old, the older gaol being burnt down in the Gordon riots of 1780, before the present building - the work of Dance, the architect of the Mansion House - was completed. It was out of old Newgate that Jack Sheppard broke. The name is derived from one of the City gates, the tower of which was the first of the prisons that have successively occupied this site. Our view is taken from Holborn Viaduct and the dome and towers of St. Paul's loom large against the sky.