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Public asked for views on plans to redevelop site next to graveyard for mediaeval sex workers

The public can have their say on plans to redevelop a site next to a graveyard for mediaeval sex workers in Borough.

Developer U+I says Crossbones Graveyard and Gardens will remain protected throughout the development of nearby Landmark Court in Redcross Way.

U+I has joined forces with Transport for London (TfL) to regenerate the site into new homes, including affordable housing, and employment space as well as retail and creative spaces.

Public meetings will be held at the Africa Centre, in Great Suffolk Street, SE1 0BL, to hear the community’s views on the proposed development.

The events will be held on Friday, July 6, from 12pm to 8pm, and on Saturday, July 7, from 10am to 3pm.

Rebecca Selby, senior development manager at U+I, said: “Although the proposal for a development on the Landmark Court site is in its early stages, we are keen to listen to the local community from the very beginning.

“We look forward to seeing as many people as possible and invite those who are unable to attend to get in touch with us using our contact phone number and email address.”

Following a 20-year campaign to protect the Crossbones graveyard site from development, owners TfL granted a lease to Bankside Open Spaces Trust (BOST) and agreed the burial ground would be protected as open space.

Friends of Crossbones have since worked with BOST to create a community garden of remembrance on the site of the old graveyard.

The story of Crossbones goes back to mediaeval times and the unconsecrated graveyard for ‘single women’ or ‘Winchester Geese’ – mediaeval sex workers licensed by the Bishop of Winchester to work within the Liberty of the Clink, which lay outside the law of the City.

Crossbones later became a paupers’ burial ground. It closed in 1853, when it was described as being ‘completely overcharged with dead’.

In the 1990s, London Underground dug up part of the site during the Jubilee Line extension, removing 148 skeletons from an estimated 15,000 burials.

Details of the proposals to redevelop Landmark Court will be published online at once finalised.


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