huguenots of spitalfields
huguenots of spitalfields
huguenots of spitalfields
huguenots of spitalfields
huguenots of spitalfields
huguenots of spitalfields

huguenot footsteps

Join us and retrace the footsteps of the Huguenots in Spitalfields, Soho, Greenwich, City of London and Wandsworth. No need to book just turn up and donate £10 to the educational fund on the day. Please click here to go to Huguenot Footsteps.

huguenot families

Are you descended from a Huguenot Family?  Add your name to our List

huguenot traces

Huguenot Traces - a list of Huguenot paintings, artwork, artefacts, buildings, street names etc. Please help us by adding your findings to the list.

c2a city walks

Designed for groups, organisations, companies and parties of ten people or more. The City of London Walking Tours can be booked throughout the year. Click here for programme.

Strangers' Newsletter

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Help Us Grow

Please support our efforts to highlight the contribution of the Huguenots in our educational and heritage programme. We are Gift Aid registered.

c2a society

c2a society

c2a museum

huguenot towns

Spitalfields Life Stories

Sir John Cass Primary Foundation School

Please email info@huguenotsofspitalfields.org if you wish to purchase postcards. Designs by the pupils of Sir John Cass Primary Foundation School. Cost £2.50 including postage.

Sir john Cass Primary SchoolSir john Cass Primary School

Morpeth School Mulberry TreeMulberry trees in the grounds of Morpeth School, c. 1960. Image courtesy of Tower Hamlets Local History Library and Archives.

Huguenot Walk around Spitalfields

For centuries Spitalfields was the first port of call for many different migrant groups.  It was here that the wealthy master silk merchants lived in elegant houses, ornately carved porches, houses with shutters, tall doors and wide windows in the attic for the journeyman weaver to toil at the loom.  If you walk the historic streets of Spitalfields you willl see traces of many migrant groups.  Huguenot chapels are now Jewish synagogues and the Brick Lane Mosque was once where several migrant groups worshipped at different times over the years. Look out for the coalholes and the spindles identifying a weaver's house.  Dominating over the area is Nicholas Hawksmoor's masterpiece Christ Church where many Huguenots were baptised, married and buried.  To arrange a walk around historic Spitalfields, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

How are Mulberry trees connected to the Huguenots?

Until recently, they stood in the playground of Morpeth School in Bethnal Green. They were planted by Huguenot weavers, who grew the trees for their Mulberry leaves. The silk worms needed to eat these leaves to make silk. The weavers then wove the silk into beautiful gowns and coats for wealthy people. These trees were pulled down in 1963 due to disease and storm damage.

There are traces of the Huguenots all over Britain. Below are some fact sheets and activities to get you started in your exploration of Huguenot Places and Traces!

Huguenots were remarkably talented in almost every sphere that you can think of. Medicine, Science, Engravers and Printsellers, Theatre, Furniture and Woodwork, Sculpture, Gunmaking, Goldsmiths, Textiles, Ceramics and City Commerce.  Many of them fled France by stealth and by night bringing nothing with them at all.  They were entrepreneurs and saw England as a new home where they could settle, worship and carry on working. They brought techniques, skills and the much wanted French style with them and many were outstanding craftsmen.  Their legacy remains today.

Huguenots were the first refugees. Unlike any other group of immigrants, they were forbidden from leaving France. Over 250,000 risked capture, prison, torture and even death for the sake of freedom.

Click here to read Judith Gilton's letter to her brother where she describes her harrowing journey from France to America (by kind permission of the Huguenot Society of South Carolina).  Another letter written by Louis Thibou and can be found at http://www.teachingushistory.org/lessons/Thibou.htm.