Newgate prison

Another blog post in my current series on Newgate prison – demolished over a hundred years ago and replaced by the Old Bailey court building

Newgate prison

Under the flagstones lie the condemned

By the end of the nineteenth century, if you committed a murder north of the Thames – you would face the hangman at Newgate. If you committed it south of the river, then you breathed your last at Wandsworth.

The photo here is of the passage from the jail to the former Old Bailey court house, which was also a graveyard of sorts. Those hanged were placed under the flagstones! Lime was enclosed in the coffins to rot the bodies quicker. And their only marker was an initial carved into the walls, which you can see.

This passageway disappeared when Newgate was finally taken down.


Join the conversation! 3 Comments

  1. Greetings..! Enjoying your posts very much..! Wondering why you don’t elaborate a bit more..? Thank You..!!

    • Hi – I guess I was trying to keep the posts to a bite sized portion but I’ll expand on certain subjects as I have plenty of original source material. Glad you’re enjoying – it’s fun to write. Thanks, Tony

      • Hi Tony ! I get it.., Thank you for taking time to respond.., & I do genuinely enjoy your posts.. They are fascinating, & leave me wanting!! Thanks, & Take care..!
        -Peace, Rho

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About Tony McMahon

Broadcaster and award short-listed author. Appearances on the History Channel, UKTV and ITV talking about the Knights Templar and other popular history topics. Former BBC news producer.




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