Jack the Ripper’s Whitechapel Tour (Small group tour)

(100 customer reviews)

Whitechapel Underground Station (Whitechapel Road exit)

Guided by Richard Walker

Walk Times

Day Walk Type Start Time End Time
Friday Weekly 7 pm 9.15 pm Winter Summer Book Now
Thursday Weekly 7 pm 9.15 pm Winter Summer Book Now

Here, below, is guide Richard Walker talking about his small group Ripper walk.

There are plenty of Ripper walks and you will probably only go on one.

London Walks guide Richard Walker will lead you through the murder sites starting right where Jack began . . .in the infamous Buck’s Row, Whitechapel.

Practicals:

The small group Ripper walk takes place at 7 pm every Thursday and every Friday evening. But do check the calendar because there are a few exceptions that prove the rule.

Meeting point: The starting point of this walk is Whitechapel  Tube Station and the tour ends near Liverpool Street station.

Price: £25 per person

Maximum of 12 per tour so you must buy your ticket online. To ensure group size only ticket holders can join this tour.

 

Whitechapel in the ancient parish of Stepney.

Stepney* olde English – ‘the landing place’.

For centuries the world supplied the City of London with all it required and it all passed through the Whitechapel docks in the parish of Stepney.

And it wasn’t just goods that arrived.

Refugees from the Huguenots of France, to the starving masses of Ireland, to the persecuted Jews of Europe all made their way to the lanes and alleys of Whitechapel and Spitalfields.

And so did . . .

Jack the Ripper painting with a skull shadow

The monster we call – Jack the Ripper

And the Whitechapel of the 1880s was made for Jack the Ripper.

It was a world of foul tenements, starving children and bottomless despair.

This is Whitechapel and this is the world of Jack the Ripper. It is one heck of a story and I want to tell it to you.

Click here to listen to The World of Jack the Ripper, another short scene-setter podcast by Richard.

Itinerary

I have been guiding for London Walks for 15 years and Jack the Ripper walking tour was my first.

This is a new twist. I’m starting at Whitechapel Underground Station because this is where Jack the Ripper murders began. Right behind Whitechapel Underground Station in Buck’s Row – now called Durward Street. This is the only London tour to visit 4 of the 5 crime scenes.

Charles Cross and Robert Paul discovered the body of a 43 year-old mother of five children. Mary Ann Nichols known as Polly Nichols ended up walking the mean streets of Whitechapel in the early hours of the 31st of August 1888. A woman whose life was ended by a serial killer who killed at least 4 other vulnerable women on the streets of Victorian London.

Polly Nichols: a victim of a divided society; one of many who suffered in a black hole that festered in the richest city in the world.

We will head to 29 Hanbury Street where Annie Chapman became the second victim. We will get to Spitalfields Market and the Ten Bells Pub by way Brick Lane, Princelet Street and Puma Court. Back streets that still capture the feel of 18th and 19th century Whitechapel. We will see where the worst street in London once stood – Dorset Street. Miller’s Court where the brutal murder of Mary Kelly took place on November the 9th 1888. Goulston Street and the doorway where the cryptic message was chalked – “The Juwes are the men that will not be blamed for nothing”.

And this guided tour will end at Mitre Square where Catherine Eddowes was put to death. Murdered less than an hour after Liz Stride had her throat cut in Dutfield’s Yard, Berner Street. Two women who go down in history as ’the double event’. Just two of a teaming multitude that deserved a better life and a better end.

Christ Church Spitalfields

Nicholas Hawksmoor’s magnificent church built between 1714 and 1729. An impressive landmark for the 5 ripper victims and still impressing.

The Ten Bells Pub

The Ten Bells pub that stands across the road from Christ Church Spitalfields. And it is from the ten bells that hang in the church steeple that the pub gets its name. It’s believed that at least some of the victims would have drowned their sorrows there. And almost certainly ‘Jack’ would have been seen propping up the bar there.

Image caption: Yes we can still see the Whitechapel and Spitalfields of bygone days. Dark streets light by gaslight.

Bucks Row & The Board School

Buck’s Row has changed since 1888 it’s now called Durward Street. But the board school building where Polly’s body was found is still there.

This is the board school as it was when Polly was found against the gates where the arrow points. And it’s the first location that we will visit.

The People Of The Walk

 

The People of the Abyss

Jack London spent seven weeks trying to survive the “Abyss”. He said he’d seen poverty in the USA but nothing like the poverty he saw in the East-end of London.

Courtesans of the 19th century

 

The Victims

Mary Ann Nichols (known as Polly Nichols), Annie Chapman, Liz Stride, Catherine Eddowes and Mary Jane Kelly were dismissed as prostitutes by the police and journalists – though their judgement may have owed more to male attitudes to women than to hard evidence.

Four of them were over 40 and three of them had raised children before a combination of stress and alcohol left them sinking into the abyss.

Certainly Ripperologist Halle Rubenhold is reasonably certain that not all of these women sold sex. The Five is an excellent book which maybe should be compulsory reading for some tour guides who still like to dwell on the depths of depravity that they like to imagine these women sank.

It might be worth concentrating the spotlight onto what kind of society it was that left these women at the mercy of monsters.

From the Guide

I want to do justice to Jack the Ripper’s Whitechapel especially the victims.

And I want to share the diverse and vibrant world that Whitechapel is today and in order to do that I have decided to restrict numbers to just 10 on this special walk. Please book online to secure your place!

There is nothing better than sharing London with visitors from near and far. I hope that you will be one of them.

Reviews

 Thanks Richard that was so interesting and what a great end to the week! You have a fabulous way of narrating and giving context to the mysteries that remain to this day about jack the Ripper. I really appreciated you bringing me back to remembering and bringing focus back to the women who were victims of his horrendous crimes.  – Lucy

Really enjoyed it! Fascinating. Thank you from North Carolina,. USA. – Kendi

I will definitely join you again – very interesting thank you! – Claire

Hi Richard, Really enjoyed the virtual tour the other evening, especially the 10 minute chat post tour. Actually I remember you now. Years ago I did a tour about the history of the financial system in the City, you were my guide, it was from you that I learnt about the Remembrancer. I have ordered your book it is due to arrive on the 5th of October. I will look out for your virtual tours in the future hope to see you then. God bless and keep you during these difficult times – Michael

Dear Richard, Thank you very much for the Jack the Ripper tour this evening Milly and James said it was brilliant!! Milly said she learnt more tonight than she did in her history lessons. Please can you let me know your bank details as I only transferred funds for Milly and not James, which we’d like to do. I think they are going to join you on a Saturday at some point soon. Many thanks again. – Susie.

London Walks Private Tours

If you can’t make the regularly scheduled, Jack The Ripper Whitechapel tour why not think about booking it as a private walk?  If you go private you can have this walk– or any other London Walk – on a day and at a time that suits your convenience. We’ll tailor it to your requirements. Ring Fiona or Niamh or Peter on 020 7624 3978 or email us at [email protected] and we’ll set it up and make it happen for you.

100 reviews for Jack the Ripper’s Whitechapel Tour (Small group tour)

  1. Rachel Davies

    Richard was a fabulous guide – very knowledgeable and entertaining. Highly recommend booking this tour as a unique experience in London.

  2. Kelly Murphy

    Richard was a wealth of information- loved hearing all the different scenarios of possible
    suspects. He provided so much information we had never considered. If you’ve ever had
    interest in Jack the Ripper- Or like us just curious- his tour is a must. We had a great time

  3. Allison

    Wonderfully done, and leaving from Whitechapel makes so much more sense than Tower Hill. Thank you, Richard, for an excellent tour that helped focus not only on the victims, but also on the socio-economic conditions of the time. Thanks for bringing up “The Five”.

  4. Nellie

    Loved the tour – Richard is so knowledgeable and passionate. An evening well spent that takes you back in time and let’s you live in the story through Richard’s narration.

  5. Meghan

    This walking tour was absolutely wonderful! I only knew a bit about the Jack the Ripper murders before the tour, but I learned so much during it. Richard took us to different interesting spots relevant to the cases, and kept my attention the entire time of the tour. It was a good mix of a ton of known facts, and additional information based on research that Richard had done himself.

    The small group size was perfect – there were just under 10 of us, so it didn’t feel crowded at all. Everyone was able to hear everything, and ask any questions they had.

  6. Hal Elliott

    The walk through the time of “The Ripper” with Richard was an outstanding experience that brought to life this time in history. An educational tour with a small group that i would highly recommend.

  7. Vanda

    What a thought provoking and interesting tour. Richards passion for the subject was matched by his knowledge. His wonderful story telling had us enthralled from start to finish ..I would have quite happily listened for longer. We not only learned about the ripper cases (emphasis on the victims and giving them respect) but also about whitechapel and its occupants at the time. A thoroughly enjoyable evening. Thank you Richard

  8. Joanne Petersen

    Richard’s tour was very informative and entertaining! He certainly knows about Jack the Ripper’s history and walked us to the most interesting sites of the murders (most of which aren’t as they were back then, but the addresses are good). He pointed out places that still exist as they were back then (Ten Bells pub) and gave details of the murders. He also sent us a link for more information on the murders. All in all, a very worthwhile evening’s stroll! Highly recommended!

  9. Phil

    Ripper of a tour! Richard was very knowledgeable and enthusiastic in his recounting of the evil deeds of Jack the Ripper. It was great that we could still see buildings which were around at the time of the murders.

  10. Sophia

    Richard is extremely knowledgable about the history of the area, the victims, and the struggles of Victorian England. His passion for the subject was palpable and really helped set the stage and bring these women and their experiences to life. I appreciated the small interjections of humor, details, and emphasis on the victims instead of on “Jack the Ripper”. He did share some interesting theories from an evidence based perspective that allowed for the audience to speculate and draw their own conclusions from an informed place. Additionally, the small group format allowed for personalization and kept the experience feeling more intimate. It was easy to hear and interact with Richard and other people on the tour. Would recommend to anyone interested in the dark, but fascinating history of the neighborhood and this famous unsolved case.

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