Jacob's Island, Bermondsey, c. 1880

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Jacob's Island, the area of Bermondsey riverfront immediately east of St. Saviour's Dock, was one of South London's earliest and worst slums.

It is celebrated in fiction as Bill Sykes' lair in Charles Dicken's Oliver Twist.
Effectively an island , it was surrounded by foul ditches.

The area was developed by the early 18th century, but the worst of the housing was cleared in the 19th century to make way for warehouses.

See historic maps of Bermondsey