St Gregory’s by St Paul

John Harington of Stepney died on 1 July 1582 and was buried beside his second wife in St Gregory’s by St Paul in London. source

St Gregory’s by St Paul’s was built against the walls of the Cathedral of St Paul. It was destroyed in the Great Fire of London in 1666 and not rebuilt.

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Granted in 1568 to John Harington based on the descent of his father Alexander Harington of Stepney from Sir John Harrington of Brierley, Yorkshire, brother to The Lord Harrington.

In 1635 his grandson, John Harington of Kelston was granted one fifth of the income of the manors held by Sir John Harrington of Brierley, Yorkshire with the remaining four fifths appointed for repairing the Cathedral of St Paul

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When Inigo Jones was remodelling the cathedral he wrote in a report, dated 11 June 1631:

“the church is in no way hurtful to the foundations or walls of St. Paul’s, nor will it take away the beauty of the aspect when it shall be repaired.”

Over the next few years the parishioners spent a considerable sum on the fabric of the church: Robert Seymour mentions a sum of more than £2000 being spent in 1631–2,  while in 1641 the Journal of the House of Commons recorded that more than £1500 had been spent on beautifying the building “four years since”.

By 1641, however, Jones had changed his mind, and decided that his renovation of the cathedral necessitated the removal of St Gregory’s. Once demolition had begun, Jones ordered the parishioners to take down the remainder.

The parishioners complained to the House of Commons of England, and the Commons passed their complaint on to the House of Lords, appending a declaration that the parishioners deserved redress, and that action should be taken against Jones for the destruction. The Lords decided against Jones and the church was rebuilt using stones intended for the cathedral.

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