St. Jamess Park

Westminster (SW1) Was originally no more than a small field attached to the Hospital of St. James for Lepers, afterwards converted into a royal palace. On May 8, 1539, the citizens of London, "all in bright harneis with coates of white silke or cloth, and cheines of golde, in three great battailes (the number was 15,000, beside wifflers and other awayters) in goodly order passed through London to Westminster, and through the Sanctuary, and rounde aboute the Parke of St. James, and returned home through Holbourne." Until Henry VIII resided in Whitehall it was a morass; and though in his time only improved into a shapeless field, partially dotted over with trees, Cromwell might be seen taking the air in a sedan, slowly borne along, with an anxious, fretful countenance, as though detecting the look of a conspirator in each passing face. (Reference: Walcott's Memorials of Westminster, p. 58)