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St Bartholomew's Hospital including St Bartholomew-the-Less Church (also known as Chapel of the Holy Cross, Christ's Hospital)9229

Brief Description

St Bartholomew's Hospital is the oldest hospital in London. The overall site boundaries have remained much the same since it was established in 1123 by Rahere, who also established a Priory centred on St Bartholomew-the-Great; Hospital and Priory became separate institutions by 1420. St Bartholomew-the-Less within the Hospital walls was originally one of four priory chapels, becoming the parish church in c.1547. Remains of its churchyard are to the north and east of the church, one of 4 burial grounds within the hospital site, the remainder since built over.


From the C18th the hospital developed as it became wealthier. A new north gate was erected in 1702 and in 1723 a new hospital was commissioned from James Gibbs, consisting of 4 blocks around a central square. In 1859 a fountain was erected in the centre of the square, and the lamp posts and shelters date from the 1890s. The churchyard north of the church was laid out as The Princess Alice Garden in 2001.

Access & Directions


Tube: Barbican/Farringdon (Circle, Metropolitan, Hammersmith & City); St Paul's (Central). Bus: 8, 25, 56, 100, 172, 242.


  • London Parks and Gardens Trust