Smithfield Meat Market

A Culinary Journey through London's Historic Smithfield Meat Market


Welcome to the bustling and vibrant world of Smithfield Meat Market, the largest and oldest wholesale meat market in London. Nestled in the heart of the historic Smithfield area, this renowned market has been supplying top-quality meat to the city's residents, restaurants, and businesses since the 10th century. With its rich history, mouth-watering aromas, and bustling atmosphere, a visit to Smithfield Meat Market is an unforgettable experience for any food lover.

Chapter 1: The Rich History of Smithfield Meat Market

In this chapter, we delve into the storied past of the market, from its humble beginnings in medieval times to its status today as a beloved culinary institution in London. Discover the market's role in the city's history, how it has evolved over the centuries, and the interesting tales surrounding its colorful past.

Chapter 2: Navigating the Market

Smithfield Meat Market is a labyrinth of sights, sounds, and scents, with hundreds of vendors selling a wide array of meats, from traditional beef, pork, and poultry to more exotic fare. This chapter provides a detailed map and practical tips to help you navigate the market with ease and confidence.

Chapter 3: Meat Selection and Quality

Quality is paramount at Smithfield, where each vendor adheres to strict regulations and standards. Learn about the different cuts, grades, and types of meat available, as well as how to select the finest quality produce for your specific needs.

Chapter 4: Beyond Meat: The Wider Smithfield Area

While the market itself is an essential destination for food lovers, the surrounding area also boasts a wealth of history, culture, and gastronomic delights. From the nearby St. Bartholomew-the-Great Church to the famous 'Ye Olde Watling' pub, we'll guide you through the best spots to visit around Smithfield.

Chapter 5: Culinary Experiences at the Market

In this chapter, we highlight the best ways to experience the Smithfield Meat Market, whether you're a passionate home cook or just an enthusiastic foodie. Attend a butchery masterclass, sample fresh produce from the vendors, or dine at one of the market's acclaimed eateries for a truly immersive gastronomic experience.

Chapter 6: Market Opening Hours and Practical Information

Smithfield Meat Market is primarily a wholesale market, so it's essential to be aware of its unique opening hours and other practical information before you visit. This chapter covers all the necessary details, from transport options to the market's opening times, ensuring you make the most of your visit.


A trip to London would be incomplete without a visit to the legendary Smithfield Meat Market. Whether you're a curious traveler, a history buff, or a culinary enthusiast, the market offers a unique and thrilling experience that you'll cherish for a lifetime. With this guide in hand, you'll be well-prepared to embark on an unforgettable journey through this historical and culinary landmark.

1947 Smithfield Meat Market

In 1947, London's Smithfield Market bustled with activity. Rows of meat hung on display, while workers moved about, carrying the various cuts. Close-up shots revealed workers unhooking the meat and transporting it to other locations. In some areas, disorganized stacks of empty wooden crates accumulated, as more men added to the piles. Turkeys were prominently displayed atop wooden boxes, with one crate indicating their Argentinian origin. From the exterior, Smithfield Market was a lively scene, with lorries lined up outside the entrance.