Mayfair in London - A Brief History
Mayfair has been a buzzing and constantly popular location in London, due to it's Central Location, and particularly due to it's proximity to the adjacent Hyde Park. The name Mayfair (May Fayre) has it's roots in the annual fair that was held in May, that moved from busy Haymarket and Piccadilly to these quiet streets especially around Curzon Street and Shepherd Market.
Mayfair has been a buzzing and constantly popular location in London, due to it's Central Location, and particularly due to it's proximity to the adjacent Hyde Park.
The name Mayfair (May Fayre) has it's roots in the annual fair that was held in May, that moved from busy Haymarket and Piccadilly to these quiet streets especially around Curzon Street and Shepherd Market.
The fair took place for two weeks every May, until 1708 when it was stopped by the intervention of the local residents.
They were unhappy with the behaviour of the revellers. Their complaints included Drunken Behaviour, Prostitution & Fornication, Gambling and of course Lewdness was rife.
Other attractions included Fire-Eaters, Prize Fighting, Jugglers and Trinkets for sale.
In 1738 Edward Shepherd who had built a cattle market (and many houses) in Mayfair' Shepherd Market area, reinstated the May Fayre.
His efforts only lasted 12 years however, as regrettably in 1750 the Fayre was shut down again as too many things went wrong, and the public scandal had it's rapid effect.
Well, you know all about Newton's Law of Motion, every action has an equal and opposite reaction !
A little of the May Spirit (two kinds !) lingers in Mayfair today - as May Day Celebrations on the first Sunday in May still take place in Shepherd Market.
Most of the Mayfair area was built from around 1660 to 1760 consisting of six great estates. Only the Grosvenor Estate still exists today - owned privately by the Duke of Westminster, the richest man in the UK, who is of course a blood relative of Her Royal Majesty The Queen.
Queen Elizabeth II herself still owns a large swathe of the West End of London in her varied Portfolio.
Thanks to Mayfair's expansion in the 18th Century, the Aristocracy moved there, away from the then very popular and fashionable areas of Covent Garden and Soho.
Mayfair remains extremely fashionable today and is mostly leased by foreign companies and wealthy Private Individuals from all countries on the globe.
A strong accent that you will often hear in Mayfair's Pubs today is the American drawl.
Now that we are talking about Pubs, a few kind old words are in order from The Temperance Association -
"Dare to say 'No' when you're tempted to drink,
Pause for a moment, my brave boy, and think ---
Think of the Wrecks upon life's ocean tossed
For answering 'Yes' without counting the cost"
Do you fancy a drink in one of Mayfair's many Old Public Houses ?
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