Previously called Rosemary Lane from the 17thCentury and before that in the medieval period as Hachestrate and Heggestrete, probably in reference to a hatch gate referring to the Tower Postern or back door. The name changed sometime in the mid-19thCentury to mark the siting of the new Royal Mint that had moved out of the Tower of London from AD1810. The mint was operational until the mid-1970s, by which time the majority of the work had been transferred to Llantrisant in south Wales.
Rosemary Lane was the site of the old Rag Fair the old street market that specialised in grubby second clothes and cheap cloth. It was here that Eliza Ross first aroused suspicion that she had murdered her lodger, Caroline Walsh, at nearby Goodman’s Yard. Ross, who made her living trading cat skins, was spotted selling the woman’s clothes at her stall shortly after suffocating the 84-year-old.
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