The History of Stratford in London

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Stratford History

Historic Stratford

History and the past in Stratford
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The Church of St John the Evangelist has a unique tower, built over three stages, it was built in the 1830’s. The Old Town Hall is an impressive Grade II listed building, that was built in 1869, it was designed by John Giles and Lewis Angell, the building itself is reflective of the Italian Gothic style during Victorian times, it features a domed tower. All Saints’ Church dates all the way back in the region of one thousand years, it is thought Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII frequented the church in their lifetime.

History of Stratford

Originally mentioned in the Domesday Book and called ‘Straet Forda’, literally translating to the ford on the Roman Road. Stratford formed part of the road that linked Colchester to London. Stratford was originally farmland and like many other areas of London it was very rural. It was home to one of the biggest monastery sites in the UK; Henry VIII shut it down in the 1500’s alongside other monasteries.

Stratford was once best known for its agricultural produce, namely producing potatoes. Industry grew in the 1700’s and there was a move away from agricultural, porcelain was made in one of the first porcelain factories here. By the early 19th C there was a dock in the area, by 1839 the railway had arrived in the area. Victorian steam engines were also built here and the area relied heavily on industry during the 19th C. 

Modern Day Stratford

Like a phoenix rising Stratford has emerged from the ashes thanks to the Olympic games of 2012 and substantial investment in the area. There has been a shift in Stratford’s focus from industry and railways to more of a cultural and commercial hub. Today it is home to some of the country’s best sporting facilities, including London’s Aquatic Centre, the Velodrome and London’s biggest shopping centre.