The Huguenots possessed certain characteristics which helped them to fit in and be accepted when they arrived in England: they worked hard and uncomplainingly, showing initiative and determination in supporting themselves and their families, as well as setting up their own businesses; they were thrifty, quiet and sober; and they were clearly courageous people, having fled their homeland rather than deny their faith.

Spitalfields Gardens credit The Gentle Author
Spitalfields Gardens credit The Gentle Author

The Huguenots also translated their names into English or anglicised them and declared their loyalty to the British Monarchy, so were generally considered to be model citizens.

Norwich City Football Club also known as The Canaries
Norwich Football Club, also known as ‘The Canaries’

In addition to the skills which they brought with them (silk weaving, silver-work, ceramics, commerce, bookbinding, clock-making, etc.), their love of nature and the outdoors led to the creation of gardens, often in the tiny yards behind their houses, where they cultivated flowers and herbs.

They also introduced canaries in large numbers, keeping them in the weaving lofts where their song drowned the noise of the looms.

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