St Giles without Cripplegate is one of the few buildings from William Shakespeare’s time still standing in the City of London. The church survived the Great Fire of London in 1666, which damaged more than 30 other City churches which were never rebuilt, and also the Blitz which left the surrounding neighbourhood razed to the ground.
The church’s long and colourful history includes some connections to Shakespeare’s family. His brother Edmund, who was also an actor, lived in the parish and his two sons were baptised at St Giles. Tradition has it that William Shakespeare was chief witness at the baptisms of his nephews.