More About Jewels,
Jewellery & Julia

The jewellery article archive


More About
Jewels, Jewellery
& Julia

The jewellery article archive

The Hidden History of Hatton Garden

I’m proud to say that Hatton Garden is where Julia Pharo Jewellery calls home, nestled in a studio on the top floor of No. 22 – which, although an unassuming building, is one of significant historic importance in the area (more about this in a future article).

Affectionately known to all who work there simply as “The Garden”, Hatton Garden itself stretches from Holborn Circus at one end of the street to Clerkenwell Road at the other.

Hatton Garden and the streets that surround it are home to some of the UK’s finest master goldsmiths and the wider area around The Garden is known as the Hatton Garden Jewellery District.

If you have an opportunity to visit Hatton Garden, you are guaranteed a fascinating day out. There is so much beautiful jewellery see!

But hidden above (and often below) the retail shop fronts that stretch along Hatton Garden are a veritable rabbit warren of narrow corridors and steep stair wells that lead to workshops and studios where goldsmiths, mounters, setters, diamond cutters, polishers and platers ply their trade.

As visitors window-shop along the street, they barely glance at the unobtrusive doors and passageways that conceal the “real” Hatton Garden.

A parallel, secret world of full of larger-than-life characters with extraordinary skills and craftsmanship.

A complex world comprising the citizens of many nations.

A hidden world that has been in existence in Hatton Garden since the first jewellers settled there from Europe in 1822.

Now a fascinating video documentary “Lappings, Lemel and Sweeps” produced by Digital:Works gives you unprecedented access to that hidden world, exploring the rich and diverse history of Hatton Garden in a series of interviews with those who work there.

Whether or not you have plans to visit “The Garden”, I do hope you will enjoy this glimpse into my world – the secret world of Hatton Garden.


Before you email to ask me about the unusual title of this documentary…

Lappings are the precious metal shavings that are ground off the jewellery in the earliest polishing stages when making the piece.
Lemel is the name given to precious metal waste that is carefully collected so it may be refined and re-used in other jewellery (jewellers have been recycling for many centuries before it became popular!).
Sweeps refers to the collection of precious metal dust that is also carefully swept up (nowadays often vacuumed) and sent to be processed and refined.

And finally: Bonus points if you spot a cameo appearance of No.22 Hatton Garden in the documentary.