Market Road, N7

Place name

One of a cluster of streets recalling the Metropolitan Cattle Market, later called the Caledonian cattle market, that once stood here. This had originally been a stopping off point for livestock before heading to the City’s main meat market at Smithfield. In the 1820s, two local farmers Richard Laycock and Samuel Rhodes, who held land and farmstock in Islington, built an extensive network of covered cattle lairs (pens) to hold several thousand bullocks and sheep. It became a popular place to overnight before the final stop – certainly it was well-known to the farmers having been one of the main routes since Medieval times when wool, as well as meat, was a highly prized commodity. In June 1855, the Metropolitan Cattle Market was built by the City of London Corporation supplementary to the meat market at Smithfield. The market closed in 1939.  This is part of the Shearing Estate built in 1979. Nearby are Drovers Way, Ewe Close, Fleece Walk, Lairs Close, Manger Road, Shearling Way, and Yoke Close. The south east entrance to the former Metropolitan Cattle Market was from the May 5, 1876 to be called Market Road. At each corner of the square forming the market was a large hotel for the use of drovers and visitors, the Lion Hotel, the Lamb Tavern, the White Horse Hotel, and the Black Bull.

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