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Christ's Lane south side circa 1890 looking towards St Andrew's Street (MoC 251/71)

Christ’s Lane / Rogues’ Lane

History of Christ's Lane

In medieval times this was known by a variety of names. Generally, ‘the Lane to Hinton’ or the ‘the lane leading from St Andrew’s Church towards Hintune’, it was also also know as ‘Rokislane (Rogues’ Lane) and Hangman’s Lane. It was also called St Nicholas Lane and (early in the 19th cent.) Emmanuel Back Lane and George Street.

14th century Cambridge map

1897: (CDN 29.11.1897) During the last two years it has been a veritable quagmire, I cam through last evening and the mud was several inches thick through the lane. When is Christ’s Lane to be paved in such a manner that it shall be as pleasant to walk through as it is walking across Christ’s Pieces?

See Grand Arcade excavation report p.380f:

The cellar of Building 2 is most likely to have been infilled in 1896. This is because 1–7 Christ’s Lane were demolished and replaced by five new shops and offices at this time; new structures that were erected ‘in lieu of the dilapidated buildings standing thereon’. Moreover, this event also appears to have heralded the end of the Thompson family’s residence at the site, as by 1898 70 St Andrew’s Street was occupied by antique dealer Owen Roe. Also occurring as part of the 1896 redevelopment, a substantial brick-lined cellar, which survived in use until 1959, was constructed at the rear of 70 St Andrew’s Street. This cellar – Building 13 – was entered via a flight of stairs in its northwest corner. Internally, it had a row of supporting columns as well as two light wells that faced out onto the yard of the property.

Christ’s Lane, c.1904 (photo Scott and Wilkinson) (Cambridgeshire Collection)

Christ’s Lane, 3.8.1957 (MoC 288/57)

Christ’s Lane 2.8.1957 (MoC 287/57)

Christ’s Lane, 1958 (MoC 127/58)


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