Facts about Newington
Newington General Info
Newington is a district of South London, just south of the River Thames, and part of the London Borough of Southwark. It was an ancient parish and the site of the early administration of the county of Surrey. It was the location of the County of London Sessions House from 1917, in a building now occupied by the Inner London Crown Court.
The first mention of Newington occurs in the Testa de Nevill during the reign of Henry III, wherein it is stated that the queen’s goldsmith holds of the king one acre of land in Neweton, by the service of rendering a gallon of honey.
In William Shakespeare’s time, there was a theatre called Newington Butts and later there were further theatres. Newington gained in importance with the creation of the Westminster Bridge in 1750 and the associated improvements of London Bridge which required a series of new roads across St George’s Fields to interconnect the routes from them and allow traffic from the Georgian West End to travel south and to Southwark without transitting through the City.
These routes were Westminster Bridge Road and Borough Road for the West End and Southwark; for the route to the south London Road and St George’s Road supplemented and by-passed the Borough High Street and Newington Causeway. All of these roads converged at a junction where there were a blacksmith’s forge and inn called Elephant and Castle which then became a name to signify the area.