So back to walking off brunch in Clerkenwell… From Exmouth Market it’s a short walk down St John Street to St John’s Square. No shortage of great places to eat and drink here. As well as being home to The Zetter and the Modern Pantry, up the road are Giant Robot and St Ali’s. The square is also home to 16th century St John’s Gate, a Tudor Gatehouse originally the entrance to a priory and now part of the Museum of the Order of St John – of St John’s Ambulance fame.
Across St John Street is picturesque Charterhouse Square, home to Charterhouse which was founded as a Carthusian monastery in the 1300s and now a private mansion.
A detour around (or through if it’s open) Smithfield Market and then St Bartholomew the Great church (film trivia fans – the 4th church in Four Weddings and a Funeral) and then over to Postman’s Park. It’s a peaceful escape from the city and is built on the site of a burial ground – you can still see the gravestones around the edge of the park. But the main reason for visiting should be to read the plaques on the Memorial to Heroic Self Sacrifice. It’s a memorial to people who died saving the lives of others – mostly in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Kind of depressing and life affirming at the same time and definitely worth a visit. Postman’s Park is one of the spots visited in the Hidden City walk which explores hidden corners and treasures in the City of London. There’s much more to the Square Mile than banks and expensive wine bars …