Saturday, 19 November 2011
The Saturday Street – Pall Mall
The Saturday Street is our weekly series in which we unlock the stories behind the names of London's famous thoroughfares. It's compiled by London Walks guide Karen – listed by Travel + Leisure magazine as The World's Greatest Tour Guide. You can find Karen on Saturdays guiding her Old Westminster and British Museum walks. If you've got a London street query or suggestion, email Karen at the usual address
Pall Mall SW1
Location: The City of Westminster
Said to arise from the game Pelle Melle, originating in Italy as the croquet-like pastime of Pallo a Maglio (literally ball to mallet). King James I & VI was a particular devotee of the game. It is from this route that we acquire the word “mall” as a walkway or promenade, later to morph into the North American phenomena of the shopping mall.