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The Great Fire of London

by CORSINI Violaine and LUQUIAU Ségolène

In the 17th century, London was a busy medieval city. The houses were in timber and very close to each other. A domestic accident was very likely. The streets were narrow and dusty and it was very crowded. Inside their houses, people used candles or oil lamps to get some light and they cooked on open fires. A fire could easily get out of control because there were no firemen to stop it.
In the early morning of Sunday 2nd September 1666 in London, a fire started in the bakery of Thomas Farrinor, the King’s baker in Pudding Lane. Thomas forgot to put out the fire that allowed his oven to stay hot. Sparks fell from the oven to flour bags and they caught fire. The fire began to spread inside the bakery and because houses were in timber, it was quick. It wasn’t extinguished before the following Thursday. St Paul’s Cathedral, many businesses, 87 churches and between 13.000 and 14.000 houses burnt down.


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