Full image caption
An illustration of Columbia market from 'London: a Pilgrimage' by Blanchard Jerrold and Gustave Doré, 1872. Columbia Market in Bethnal Green was built by the philanthropist, Angela Burdett-Coutts. Jerrold writes that it was intended to 'bring cheap and good food within the reach of those who could least afford to be cheated of a farthing's worth. And so in 1868, under liberal regulations unknown in the old markets, the spacious avenues of a fine architectural edifice were given up to the marketing of the ragged, the unfortunate, and the guilty'. The market was not a success as the locals continued to use 'the street shambles and road-side barrows as of old... In 1870 the general market was turned into a fish market; and in 1871 Lady Burdett-Coutts handed it over to the keeping of the City authorities'.
© Museum of London