The Horsemonger Lane Gaol (or jail) was built in 1791-9 in Southwark as a model prison.  The name came from it's location on Horsemonger Lane.  For many years, public executions took place outside the jail. In 1849, Charles Dickens (1812-70) attended the public hangings of Mr. and Mrs. Manning, who had killed a friend for his money and buried him under the kitchen floor.  Dickens wrote passionately and negatively to The Times about allowing spectators at such hangings.  

By 1859, the words Horsemonger Lane were dropped from the jail's name, following the change of Horsemonger Lane to Union Road.  At that time the facility was renamed Surrey County Gaol.  It was closed in 1878, and demolished in 1880.  The jail is southeast of Queen's Prison and is shown as County Jail in Davies' map of 1843,  Prison on the 1859 map, County Gaol in Cruchley's map of 1846, and Surrey County Gaol on both Stanford's map of 1862 and the detailed Old Ordnance Survey map of 1872.


(Quarter Mile Section - P 20)

Source: Weinreb B, Hibbert C (eds). The London Encyclopaedia, 1993.

Site in Davies' London Map of 1843

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Cruchley's Map of 1846

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Site in Stanford's Map of 1862

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Old Ordnance Survey Map of 1872

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