Wren 300, a city full of people

John Davenport of St Vedast

John Davenport

(d. 1683)



St Vedast

Researched by Mary Milne-Day

There is a memorial to John Davenport on the north wall of the nave at St Vedast. It is hard to read but the historian John Strype tells us that it commemorates John Davenport who died in 1683, a freeman of the Mercers. Although he died at Datchet, he said in his will that he wished to be buried beside his wife at St Vedast. They had lived for over 40 years in Blow Blather St in the parish of St Michael-le-Querne.

John owned other property, including a lease of land in Watling Street from the Drapers’ Company in part consideration of the expenses he incurred for building a new “messuage” there to replace one burned down in the Great Fire.

There is another memorial in the church to Mary, the wife of his eldest son, John. She died in childbirth in 1672. John the younger married again within the year and had a number of children, all of whom were baptised at St Vedast. He probably died before his father as only his sons are mentioned in John senior’s will.


Local churches were the focal point of sixteenth-century City life. Weekly worship and all the milestones of parishioners’ lives took place here: christenings, marriages and funerals. Many churches were lost in the Great Fire.

Read the stories of four that either survived or succumbed to the flames, and how they reemerged from the ruins.

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