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Wellclose Prison, also known as Neptune Street Prison, was located off Wellclose Square near the Tower of London. The square was previously known as Marine Square as many of its original residents were sea captains. The small prison was beneath a public house called the Cock and Neptune. The tavern was connected to a courthouse for which the pub's landlord acted as gaoler. Beer and spirits were sold freely in the prison which, like other prisons in this period, was run on a commercial basis. The court and prison lay outside the jurisdiction of the City of London in an area known as the Liberties of the Tower. The Liberties were divided into four precincts: the land Within and Without the Tower itself, Wellclose Square, the Minories and the Old Artillery Ground in Spitalfields.
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