BRICK LANE & YE FRYING PAN
The building at the junction of Brick Lane and Thrawl Street is now an Indian restaurant and hotel, but it used to be a public house called Ye Frying Pan. It was here that Mary Nichols, the first victim of Jack the Ripper, drank shortly before she was brutally murdered.
What happened in Ye Frying Pan in relation to the Jack the Ripper crimes?
Mary Ann Nichols was drinking away her lodging money in the early hours of 31st August 1888 in the Ye Frying Pan pub. She allegedly left the pub at around 12.30am and this was one of the last times she was seen alive. Later that morning at around 3.40am, a man named Charles Cross was walking along a narrow, cobbled street called Buck’s Row when he noticed a dark bundle lying in a gateway on the left side of the street.
The street lighting in Buck’s Row was minimal so he could not make out what the object was. On closer inspection, he realised it was the body of a woman that he initially thought was simply drunk. He reached out to touch her face, which was still warm, but her hands were cold and limp.
He thought the woman was still breathing, but what he couldn’t see due to the darkness was a savage slash across the woman’s throat that had almost separated her head from her body. Although he didn’t know it at the time, Charles Cross had just stumbled across the first victim of Jack the Ripper.
Where is Ye Frying Pan?
13 Brick Lane
The Ye Frying Pan pub once stood on the corner of Brick Lane and Thrawl Street. Initially, it seems like trace of the old public house remains, but when you look above the Indian restaurant currently in its place, you can see a brick gable with two crossed frying pans that still adorn it.
The closest tube stations to Brick Lane are Aldgate East and Aldgate, which are just a 4-minute and 6-minute walk away respectively. As well as a mile of Indian restaurants, Brick Lane is also home to vintage clothing stores, a gloriously haphazard Sunday bric-a-brac market and Rough Trade East, which is the biggest record shop in town.
What is Ye Frying Pan in the present day?
Until recently, the site of Ye Frying Pan pub stood a balti restaurant called the ‘Sheraz’.
However, this establishment recently ceased trading. The building is now frequented by a new Indian restaurant called ‘Shaad’ with a hotel business running from the above floors.
How has Ye Frying Pan changed since 1888?
The current building on the corner of Brick Lane and Thrawl Street dates back to 1891, although records show the pub went back to at least 1811. Over the years there have been significant alterations to the interior of the building, with a modernisation project taking place in 1966. In 1991, the pub closed down and was swiftly converted to the balti restaurant which is still present to this day.