Named after Richard Whittington (circa 1354 – 1423), perhaps the most famous Lord Mayor of London in its history. In 1408, Whittington – better known as Dick Whittington – had acquired the lease of the Manor of Leadenhall and gave the manor house, previously owned by Sir Hugh Neville, to the City Corporation. They in turn converted it into a granary and in 1445 knocked it down and established a market on the site. Whittington’s tale of rags to riches has lived down the ages. Born in Gloucestershire he came to London aged 13 to seek his fortune. After many years trying he gave up and was leaving the City when he heard the Bow Bells ring out telling him to return. He did and found riches and, as the bells had predicted, became Lord Mayor three times, giving generously to good causes.
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