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St Clement Danes

Home > London > Churches | Historic Houses | Places of Worship | Tours
by Shikainah Champion-Samuel (subscribe)
A great believer in exploring the off beat, non-touristy things hidden inside every city.
Published September 6th 2014
The 'oranges and lemons' church
www.raf.mod.uk/stclementdanes
Having had to hand over a parcel to someone working in Holborn, I found I had some time to spare and decided to explore the area a bit.

When I saw St.Clements church within a 5 minute walking radius, I was quite sure it was the one alluded to in the old but popular nursery rhyme 'Oranges and Lemons' - and I was right !

As I walked in, I was also fortunate that I had reached just a few minutes before 3pm. At 3pm the bell ringers played a beautiful rendition of that very rhyme, making my visit all the more special.

The story goes that once upon a time, citrus fruits were brought by ship up the river and taken to the market place via this church to where now the Royal Courts of Justice stand (just an aside for the pedantic though-another church by the same name also claims to be the church in the rhyme but this is the one which has the bell rendition)

For those interested in the Armed Forces, this is also named as the central church of the Royal Air Force and sports the ensign of various Air Forces of the Commonwealth, complete with some regalia from each.

It was a quiet but pleasant afternoon spent in doing something not mentioned in the regular tourist guides.
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When: Open daily between 9am and 4pm ( Except Bank Holidays) Also subject to Special Services & Events.
Phone: 020 7242 8282
Where: Strand, London WC2R 1DH, United Kingdom
Cost: Free
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