Fournier Street, running beside Christ Church, Spitalfields is a permanent reminder of the Huguenots – Protestant refugees who fled to England in the early 18th century to escape persecution in France.
The silk weaving skills of the French Huguenot community brought prosperty to the East End, and Fournier Street is lined with the Huguenot’s tall 18th century houses.
These have elaborate porches and distinctive shutters. The broad attic windows were designed to give maximum light to the silk-weavers.
The textile industry continues in Fournier Street, and in the nearby streets, but working conditions are improved and many of the workrooms have been converted into showrooms for companies with modern factories outside the centre of London.