A road in London
, the centre of the city's diamond
district. It is located between Clerkenwell
to the east, and Chancery Lane
to the south and west. The nearest Tube
stations are Farringdon
and Chancery Lane
Hatton Garden was originally called Ely Place, and owned by the Bishops of Ely. Toward the end of the 16th century, it was granted to Sir Christopher Hatton (1540-91), who was Lord Chancellor under Queen Elizabeth I from 1587 until his death, four years later.
Sir Christopher is noted for building Holdenby Palace (1583), in Northamptonshire in honour of his Queen. She is said never to have visited the palace, despite repeated invitations. The house was the biggest in England at the time, and the cost of the project bankrupted Hatton, who died penniless and childless.
As another point of interest, the Maxim gun, an early machine gun, was invented at No 57 Hatton Garden late in 1884 by Sir Hiram Maxim. (thanks).
If you want to buy jewellery or gemstones in London, this is the place to come. There are hundreds of shops on this road, and many of the adjoining ones. Unlike most shops in London, many of the prices in these shops are open to negotiation.
Many engaged couples come to Hatton Garden to buy their marriage rings. A typical technique by shopkeepers is to be outside the shop cleaning windows. Shoppers ignore window cleaners. After a time, the window cleaner/shop manager will start talking to the couple and invite them inside.
There is nothing sinister about this. The trade is very competitive, and half the battle is getting the customer inside the shop, but prospective buyers are warned.