Facts about Finsbury
Building on Finsbury Fields began in the late 17th century. The parish church of St Luke’s was built in 1732–33, development was accelerated by the building of the City Road in 1765, and at the end of the 18th century, a residential suburb was built with its centre at Finsbury Square. Little and Lower Moorfields remained open until Finsbury Circus was developed after 1815.
Urbanisation was slow, despite the building of a new gate in the adjacent London Wall, Moorgate, in 1511. In 1665 the Bunhill Fields burial ground was opened in the area. In 1641 the Honourable Artillery Company moved to Finsbury, where it still remains. The City of London Yeomanry, founded at the time of the Second Boer War, made its headquarters in Finsbury Square.
Finsbury is a district of Central London, forming the south-eastern part of the London Borough of Islington. It borders the City of London. The Manor of Finsbury is first recorded as Vinisbir and means “manor of a man called Finn”. Finsbury lay just outside Cripplegate in London Wall. At that time, much of the manor was part of the “great fen which washed against the northern wall of the City”.
It gives its name to two larger administrative areas: the Finsbury Division of the Ossulstone Hundred of Middlesex, from the 17th century until 1900, and from 1900 to 1965 the Metropolitan Borough of Finsbury. The Metropolitan Borough included Finsbury and Clerkenwell.