The City of London constituted most of London from its settlement by the Romans in the 1st century AD to the Middle Ages, but the conurbation has since grown far beyond its borders.
All Hallows Staining was a church located at the junction of Mark Lane
and Dunster Court
The first mention of the church was in the late 12th century - ’Staining’ in this context means ’stone’, distinguishing it from the other churches called All Hallows in the City of London, which were wooden.
The old church survived the Great Fire in 1666 but collapsed in 1671. The church was rebuilt in 1674.
The parishes of All Hallows Staining and nearby St Olave Hart Street
were combined in 1870. All Hallows Staining was demolished, leaving only the tower.
After St Olave Hart Street
was badly damaged in 1941, between 1948 and 1954, a prefabricated church stood on the site of All Hallows Staining known as St Olave Mark Lane
. The tower of All Hallows Staining was used as the chancel.
The tower is maintained by the Worshipful Company of Clothworkers, one of the livery companies of the City of London.
Etching of All Hallows Staining tower, drawn in 1922
As the City's boundaries have remained almost unchanged since the Middle Ages, it is now only a tiny part of the metropolis of Greater London, though it remains a notable part of central London. It holds city status in its own right and is also a separate ceremonial county.
It is widely referred to as 'The City' (often written on maps as City
and differentiated from the phrase 'the city of London') or 'the Square Mile' as it is 1.12 square miles in area. These terms are also often used as metonyms for the United Kingdom's financial services industry, which continues a notable history of being largely based in the City.
The local authority for the City, the City of London Corporation, is unique in the UK and has some unusual responsibilities for a local council, such as being the police authority. It also has responsibilities and ownerships beyond the City's boundaries. The Corporation is headed by the Lord Mayor of the City of London, an office separate from (and much older than) the Mayor of London.
The City is a major business and financial centre, ranking as the world's leading centre of global finance. Throughout the 19th century, the City was the world's primary business centre, and continues to be a major meeting point for businesses.
The City had a resident population of about 7000 in 2011 but over 300,000 people commute to it and work there, mainly in the financial services sector. The legal profession forms a major component of the northern and western sides of the City - especially in the Temple and Chancery Lane areas where the Inns of Court are located, of which two—Inner Temple and Middle Temple - fall within the City of London boundary.