many heroes taylor amazing nonprofit

Los Angeles (CNN) — After being laid off from a corporate job, many people might use their severance money to pay bills or buy groceries.
Keren Taylor used hers to launch a nonprofit.
A lot of people were wondering what the hell I was doing, Taylor said.
The former sales executive dipped into her savings and began working 18-hour days to start a creative writing program for at-risk teenagers in Los Angeles.
Some of our girls face the greatest challenges teens could ever face: violence at home, violence in their community, huge schools with security guards in the parking lot and in the lunchroom, said Taylor, 50. They need to know that their voice is important. Their stories are important.

Keren Taylor says WriteGirl gives girls confidence to speak up in all areas of life, not just academics.

In the Los Angeles public schools, nearly one in five students drops out before high school graduation.
In the last 12 years, Taylors organization, WriteGirl, has helped around 500 girls graduate high school and go on to college.
The power of a girl — and her pen
This year, 350 girls from 60 area high schools are participating in Taylors program.
All the girls receive one-on-one mentoring to work on their writing, speaking skills and academics. This, Taylor says, gives them the confidence to speak up and reach out for help in school, in their relationships and at home.
There are so many girls with so many heart-wrenching stories, Taylor said. I often wake up in the night thinking about them.
About 150 girls take part in the groups Core Program. Some meet with a designated mentor every week; others attend monthly workshops for mentor support.
Do you know a hero? Nominations are open for 2014 CNN Heroes
Taylor expects all 60 of the seniors in the core program to enroll in college next year.

There are so many girls with so many heart-wrenching stories. I often wake up in the night thinking about them.
Keren Taylor

We are working feverishly to make sure they all go to college, even though this is the biggest number that weve ever had, she said.
The other participating students are critically at-risk: Many are pregnant, have children or are incarcerated.
(Our van) takes our volunteers to them, Taylor said. Thats been really exciting to bring the program to girls who otherwise wouldnt be able to come to us.
Finding their voice
Taylor says the program helps the girls improve their grades and their confidence.
They can walk into a WriteGirl workshop and theyre not going to get criticized, judged, graded, any of that, she said. They can just relax, let their ideas out and grow as individuals.
Anastasia said she was flunking classes until she was paired with a WriteGirl mentor who took the time to work with her every week.
My grammar improved, my sentences were beyond amazing, so it was amazing how I transformed, said the 14-year-old. I used to get Fs, and now I get As, Bs and Cs.
A lot of our girls have those ah-ha moments, like, Wow, I could be a journalist. Or I could go on to go to college outside of Los Angeles, Taylor said. They have these eye-opening experiences that really give them a lot more hope about their future.
The talent pool
WriteGirl mentors include journalists, screenwriters, authors, poets and executives from varied backgrounds and ethnicities. Each is asked to commit at least one hour a week to their mentee.
Some mentors say its the most rewarding thing theyve ever done, Taylor said. (They) tell us they get just as much as they give, if not more.
Mentors and mentees also participate in monthly programs that explore subjects such as poetry, journalism and screenwriting. The girls can also receive help with college applications.
Each girl has the opportunity to submit their writing for publication. Taylor has directed the production of more than two dozen collections of works by teenage girls and their mentors. WriteGirl publications have received numerous awards.
Taylor, who didnt take a salary for two years so the the program could get going, says she has no regrets about her decision to abandon the corporate world.
I wanted to do something that would be inspiring and something that would have meaning for others, she said. I wake up every morning and I think about how we can make a greater impact.
Want to get involved? Check out the WriteGirl website at www.writegirl.org and see how to help.

– case have francis

Editors note: James Martin, a Jesuit priest, is editor at large of America magazine and author of the new book Jesus: A Pilgrimage (HarperOne). Follow him on Twitter.
(CNN) — It was one year ago Thursday that Jorge Mario Bergoglio became Pope Francis. From that moment, Jesuits around the world asked the same question: Is he still a Jesuit? If someone becomes a pope, and therefore head of all Catholic religious orders — Franciscans, Dominicans, Benedictines, Jesuits and so on — is he still a member of his religious order?
Since then, that question been answered several times by Pope Francis, who in gatherings with his brother Jesuits has spoken of We Jesuits.
Jim Martin
Beyond the Jesuit parlor game of Is he or isnt he? the Popes Jesuit identity is a key way to understand this world phenomenon of a pontiff. In fact, many of the words and deeds that have so shocked the world flow naturally from his Jesuit background. Lets look at five:
Humility. Is there anyone who has not noticed Francis humility? His first public gesture as Pope was not to bless the vast crowd in St. Peters Square but to request the crowds blessing. A few days later, he turned down the traditional papal digs in the grand Apostolic Palace in favor of a modest suite at a Vatican guesthouse.
Just this week, a photo taken of members of the Vatican staff on their annual retreat showed the Pope seated in their midst, along with the other bishops and cardinals, as just another person on retreat.
Pope Francis sits among bishops and cardinals at their recent annual retreat, as one of many.
Humility of course is a Christian virtue, but it is also something that St. Ignatius Loyola, the 16th-century founder of the Jesuits, specifically asked Jesuit priests and brothers to embrace. There are three kinds of humility, St. Ignatius said. The first is exemplified by the person who does nothing immoral. The second is the one who, when faced with honor or dishonor, is indifferent. The third is the person who chooses the humbler path, to be more like Jesus. Pope Francis exemplifies this Third Degree of Humility.
How to really measure the Francis effect
Poverty. Francis is the first Jesuit Pope and the first from a religious order since 1831. That means he is the first Pope to have lived under a vow of poverty since the mid-19th century. All priests are supposed to live simply, but members of religious orders take a specific vow of poverty. Almighty and eternal God … begins the Jesuit vows: In other words, members of religious orders make a promise to God to live simply.
Thus, for most of his adult life — until he became a bishop and was released from that vow — Jorge Mario Bergoglio owned nothing of his own. As all members of religious orders, he had to live on a strict budget. He had to turn into his community anything he earned and any gifts. He had to ask for cash for large purchases, such as a suit. This accustomed Bergoglio to a simple life, which many find one of his most appealing aspects. It also heightened his compassion for people who live not in voluntary poverty, as he did, but involuntary poverty, as the poor and marginalized do.
Governance. Pope Francis had some longtime Vaticanologists scratching their heads when he appointed a group of eight cardinals to advise him and assist him in reforming the Vatican Curia, or central bureaucracy. The G8, as the cardinals have inevitably become known, have already implemented changes in such complex areas as the Vatican Bank. Many wondered why the Pope didnt rely more on the heads of the specific Vatican offices for this kind of close consultation. Why werent the G8 the prefects of the largest Vatican congregations?
Valentines Day advice from Pope Francis
Pope Benedict: Papacy rumors absurd
But to most Jesuits his way of proceeding, as St. Ignatius liked to say, was familiar. Before becoming archbishop of Buenos Aires, Bergoglio was the Jesuit provincial, or regional superior, of Argentina. As all Jesuit provincials do, he selected province consultors who advise the provincial on all manner of decisions. Because they usually do not work directly in province governance, the provincial can rely on them to speak openly and candidly. With the G8, the Pope is replicating the familiar Jesuit model of governance.
Prayer. Often you will hear Pope Francis say something similar to what he said in a homily recently to a parish in Rome when he asked parishioners to close their eyes and imagine themselves in a Gospel scene, in this case at the Jordan River at the Baptism of Jesus. Now speak to Jesus, he said.
Last Easter he asked listeners to picture themselves with the women disciples approaching Jesus tomb on Easter Sunday. This is a key characteristic of Jesuit prayer: asking the person to use their imagination and let God work through that.
In homilies, reflections and speeches, Francis most often does not tell his listeners what to think, he invites them to imagine and think for themselves. It is not the Popes Jesus whom you are invited to meet, but your own.
Openness. Jesuits are asked to Find God in all things. Again, this is not simply a Jesuit virtue but a Christian one. Yet that brief motto is the most commonly cited way of summing up Jesuit spirituality. And all things means all people.
This includes those people who have felt excluded, or unwelcome, in the church. So although his message is based on simple Christian mercy, the world has witnessed the Pope repeatedly inviting the church to experience God in places that some other Catholic leaders may have overlooked or even ignored. Atheists, divorced and remarried Catholics, and gay men and lesbians, have all seen the Pope reach out to them.
Francis is not so much trying to find God there — because he knows that God is already there — as he is reminding others to look for God in the lives of all these people.
Other Jesuit hallmarks could be added to the list, such as flexibility, freedom and an emphasis on social justice. But overall, when Jesuits watch the Pope, we often nod our heads and say, Thats very Jesuit.
Over the past year, Jesuits have been accused of being too proud of Pope Francis. Im guilty myself. So at the risk of pride, Ill say that I think hes a great Pope, a great priest and a great Jesuit. And Ill bet St. Ignatius would be proud — or as proud as he would allow himself to be.
Follow us on Twitter @CNNOpinion.
Join us on Facebook/CNNOpinion.
The opinions in this commentary are solely those of James Martin.

Founder degree to way

Editors note: James Martin, a Jesuit priest, is editor at large of America magazine and author of the new book Jesus: A Pilgrimage (HarperOne). Follow him on Twitter.
(CNN) — It was one year ago Thursday that Jorge Mario Bergoglio became Pope Francis. From that moment, Jesuits around the world asked the same question: Is he still a Jesuit? If someone becomes a pope, and therefore head of all Catholic religious orders — Franciscans, Dominicans, Benedictines, Jesuits and so on — is he still a member of his religious order?
Since then, that question been answered several times by Pope Francis, who in gatherings with his brother Jesuits has spoken of We Jesuits.
Jim Martin
Beyond the Jesuit parlor game of Is he or isnt he? the Popes Jesuit identity is a key way to understand this world phenomenon of a pontiff. In fact, many of the words and deeds that have so shocked the world flow naturally from his Jesuit background. Lets look at five:
Humility. Is there anyone who has not noticed Francis humility? His first public gesture as Pope was not to bless the vast crowd in St. Peters Square but to request the crowds blessing. A few days later, he turned down the traditional papal digs in the grand Apostolic Palace in favor of a modest suite at a Vatican guesthouse.
Just this week, a photo taken of members of the Vatican staff on their annual retreat showed the Pope seated in their midst, along with the other bishops and cardinals, as just another person on retreat.
Pope Francis sits among bishops and cardinals at their recent annual retreat, as one of many.
Humility of course is a Christian virtue, but it is also something that St. Ignatius Loyola, the 16th-century founder of the Jesuits, specifically asked Jesuit priests and brothers to embrace. There are three kinds of humility, St. Ignatius said. The first is exemplified by the person who does nothing immoral. The second is the one who, when faced with honor or dishonor, is indifferent. The third is the person who chooses the humbler path, to be more like Jesus. Pope Francis exemplifies this Third Degree of Humility.
How to really measure the Francis effect
Poverty. Francis is the first Jesuit Pope and the first from a religious order since 1831. That means he is the first Pope to have lived under a vow of poverty since the mid-19th century. All priests are supposed to live simply, but members of religious orders take a specific vow of poverty. Almighty and eternal God … begins the Jesuit vows: In other words, members of religious orders make a promise to God to live simply.
Thus, for most of his adult life — until he became a bishop and was released from that vow — Jorge Mario Bergoglio owned nothing of his own. As all members of religious orders, he had to live on a strict budget. He had to turn into his community anything he earned and any gifts. He had to ask for cash for large purchases, such as a suit. This accustomed Bergoglio to a simple life, which many find one of his most appealing aspects. It also heightened his compassion for people who live not in voluntary poverty, as he did, but involuntary poverty, as the poor and marginalized do.
Governance. Pope Francis had some longtime Vaticanologists scratching their heads when he appointed a group of eight cardinals to advise him and assist him in reforming the Vatican Curia, or central bureaucracy. The G8, as the cardinals have inevitably become known, have already implemented changes in such complex areas as the Vatican Bank. Many wondered why the Pope didnt rely more on the heads of the specific Vatican offices for this kind of close consultation. Why werent the G8 the prefects of the largest Vatican congregations?
Valentines Day advice from Pope Francis
Pope Benedict: Papacy rumors absurd
But to most Jesuits his way of proceeding, as St. Ignatius liked to say, was familiar. Before becoming archbishop of Buenos Aires, Bergoglio was the Jesuit provincial, or regional superior, of Argentina. As all Jesuit provincials do, he selected province consultors who advise the provincial on all manner of decisions. Because they usually do not work directly in province governance, the provincial can rely on them to speak openly and candidly. With the G8, the Pope is replicating the familiar Jesuit model of governance.
Prayer. Often you will hear Pope Francis say something similar to what he said in a homily recently to a parish in Rome when he asked parishioners to close their eyes and imagine themselves in a Gospel scene, in this case at the Jordan River at the Baptism of Jesus. Now speak to Jesus, he said.
Last Easter he asked listeners to picture themselves with the women disciples approaching Jesus tomb on Easter Sunday. This is a key characteristic of Jesuit prayer: asking the person to use their imagination and let God work through that.
In homilies, reflections and speeches, Francis most often does not tell his listeners what to think, he invites them to imagine and think for themselves. It is not the Popes Jesus whom you are invited to meet, but your own.
Openness. Jesuits are asked to Find God in all things. Again, this is not simply a Jesuit virtue but a Christian one. Yet that brief motto is the most commonly cited way of summing up Jesuit spirituality. And all things means all people.
This includes those people who have felt excluded, or unwelcome, in the church. So although his message is based on simple Christian mercy, the world has witnessed the Pope repeatedly inviting the church to experience God in places that some other Catholic leaders may have overlooked or even ignored. Atheists, divorced and remarried Catholics, and gay men and lesbians, have all seen the Pope reach out to them.
Francis is not so much trying to find God there — because he knows that God is already there — as he is reminding others to look for God in the lives of all these people.
Other Jesuit hallmarks could be added to the list, such as flexibility, freedom and an emphasis on social justice. But overall, when Jesuits watch the Pope, we often nod our heads and say, Thats very Jesuit.
Over the past year, Jesuits have been accused of being too proud of Pope Francis. Im guilty myself. So at the risk of pride, Ill say that I think hes a great Pope, a great priest and a great Jesuit. And Ill bet St. Ignatius would be proud — or as proud as he would allow himself to be.
Follow us on Twitter @CNNOpinion.
Join us on Facebook/CNNOpinion.
The opinions in this commentary are solely those of James Martin.

Single for she time

Toronto (CNN) — It was confirmation of her worst fears: The lump Audrey Guth found on her breast turned out to be cancer.
When you get the news that you have cancer, as a mom your life turns upside down, Guth said. The first thing you think about (is) your children.
Fortunately for Guth, her adult children could support themselves while she underwent treatment. But she quickly learned that not all mothers were as lucky.
I saw so many moms sitting there with their children on their laps, pulling their clothing, Guth said. I thought, This is not a place for children.

The Nanny Angel Network has helped over 300 mothers in and around Toronto since 2008.

With a background running a nanny agency, Guth knew she could help. In 2008, she started the Nanny Angel Network, a nonprofit that provides free in-home childcare for mothers who have cancer.
Mothers who are diagnosed with cancer are caregivers who suddenly find themselves in need of care, said Guth, 59. Our program allows mothers the freedom to take a rest, because thats what they need the most to get better.
Since 2008, her organization has helped more than 300 moms in and around Toronto.
Nanny Angels to the rescue
Guths program is staffed by a team of volunteers who have professional backgrounds in childcare. Many of them are cancer survivors.

Our program allows mothers the freedom to take a rest, because thats what they need the most to get better.
Audrey Guth

Nearly half of the moms they help are single parents. Its one of the many reasons she believes the organization is so important.
When youre a single mom, your income is decreased, and you often cant afford childcare, Guth said.
Its a challenge Shauna Barnett knows all too well. A single mother to a 4-year-old son, Barnett has battled stage 2 breast cancer since September. She underwent a double mastectomy and aggressive chemotherapy to treat her disease.
If Im having a bad day, sometimes I cant lift my head off the pillow, said Barnett, 38. As a mother, I feel so bad to have to say to my son, Please go play with your toys so mommy can rest. Hes only 4, he doesnt understand.
Do you know a hero? Nominations are open for 2014 CNN Heroes
Once a week, Barnett and her son, Deshaun, get a visit from someone who does understand: Deshauns nanny angel, Ruth Van Es.
We bake cookies and cakes. When its warm, we walk to the park. (We) play board games, read books, said Van Es, a cancer survivor. The main thing is to keep their minds off of the cancer and what is happening to mum. I feel like Mary Poppins.
Barnett recently underwent her last round of chemo and says doctors have given her a positive prognosis. She is grateful to Guths program for making her cancer journey easier.
The Nanny Angel Network is a Godsend, Barnett said. When Ruth comes to my home, its such a huge relief to have a chance to rest.
Cancer changes everything
Last year, Guth expanded her services to help families with end-of-life care.
When there is a death, we stick around to be there for the kids, Guth said. This is so essential for the child who just lost their mother and is trying to cope with that.
Ultimately, Guth hopes her efforts give families the peace of mind that their children will be cared for during a difficult time.
Cancer changes everything for you and for your entire family, she said. What we do wont take away their illness, but it will certainly make their journey a lot easier.
With her own cancer now in remission, Guth considers herself lucky, and she plans to keep paying her good fortune forward to more moms in need.
When we get the call that says, I finished my chemo or my nanny angel came today, and my child had the best time, thats when we say, Yes, were really making a difference.
Want to get involved? Check out the Nanny Angel Network website at www.nannyangelnetwork.com and see how to help.

A c ematic bullet-ridden well

Editors note: David Frum, a CNN contributor, is a contributing editor at The Daily Beast. He is the author of eight books, including a new novel, Patriots, and a post-election e-book, Why Romney Lost. Frum was a special assistant to President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2002. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.
(CNN) — The expensive casinos of Las Vegas look crowded. Tickets to the popular shows sell out. To the tourist, things look back to normal.
Yet as the states junior U.S. senator lamented in February, I can tell you right now Nevada is nowhere close to a normal economy. Nevadas unemployment remains the second-highest in the nation, nearly 9%. The housing market there still languishes. New Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen acknowledged to Nevada Republican Sen. Dean Heller that full recovery for Nevada glimmers years away.
Nevadas troubles are more than a local concern. They reveal something important about the condition of the whole U.S. economy.
David Frum
Nevada makes its living from tourism, the states most important industry, and the tourists come — or came — for the casinos. Before 1990, the state of Nevada and Atlantic City, New Jersey, enjoyed something close to a monopoly on the casino industry.
As more states legalized casinos, the Nevada casino industry — and especially the Las Vegas industry — responded by moving up-market. Dazzling theme hotels housed lavish theatrical shows and outstanding restaurants. Las Vegas, once a rather seedy place, repositioned itself as a center of glamorous entertainment.
Building the new hotels generated jobs. The people who worked in the hotels needed places to live, and building those homes generated more jobs. All that construction shaped an unusual local economy: Here was a state with low average educational attainments (only about 22% of Nevadans have a college degree, 45th in the nation), yet a median income higher than the national average.
The Barrymore is pure, old-school cinematic Vegas, with handmade wallpaper, blue-tufted booths, and a ceiling lined with antique movie reels.
The $42 million museum was created by the same team that designed the International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C. and has part of the bullet-ridden wall from the St. Valentines Day Massacre.
Inhale one of the Tomahawk Steaks, a 35-day aged, 35-ounce prime steak of Flintstones proportions, and youll realize this isnt just another Las Vegas steakhouse.
Nevada State Museums new $50 million building will feature a 43-foot-long ichthyosaur.
This $450 million performing arts center designed by David M. Schwarz will bring the likes of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and The Cleveland Orchestra to Las Vegas.
The Barrymore
The Mob Museum
35 Steaks Martinis
Nevada State Museum
The Smith Center for the Performing Arts
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Nevadas blue-collar prosperity was built on a faulty premise. All those glitzy Las Vegas hotels and resorts, containing typically up to 5,000 rooms each, depended on a huge influx of high-spending visitors.
So long as homeowners could pay for vacations with some of the proceeds of their home refinancings, all was well. But when the refi boom stopped, Las Vegas suddenly discovered it had built a destination too expensive for its customer base. Everything else going on in the city — the jobs in the hotels, the homes for the people who worked in the hotels, the malls where those people shopped, the homes for the people who worked in the malls — all that crashed around Las Vegas ears.
And now, six years after the crash, its hard to see a way forward from the disaster.
Nationwide, the casino industry has more or less recovered from the recession. Americans left behind $37.34 billion in casinos in 2012, only a shade below the 2007 peak of $37.52 billion. But they are spending that money in casinos closer to home. Gross revenues of Nevada casinos languish 20% below their 2007 peaks. Because of the higher cost of Las Vegas-style amenities, a 20% drop in revenues translates into a 50% drop in profitability.
So even as the industry nears recovery, the promise of a middle-class economy supported by gambling revenues has proven a mirage. Casino employment dropped in Nevada between 2012 and 2013. These were the best casino jobs in the country, which explains why total national casino wages lag 7% behind the 2007 peak even as industry revenues have nearly caught up to the 2007 level.
Nor is there much likelihood of any early return to the old ways. Americans have grown cautious about gambling. While only about 14% of Americans express a consistent moral disapproval of gambling, according to industry surveys, there has been a sharp increase in the proportion who reject gambling for themselves personally: 27% in 2004, 38% today. Unsurprisingly, 2008 was the year of the biggest change of national mind on this subject.
Meanwhile, those who do gamble are gambling in new ways that dont support the style of industry for which Las Vegas is famous. Younger gamblers are attracted to online forms of gambling, which create jobs only for computer programmers. Older gamblers increasingly prefer bare-bones casinos that offer free transportation and cheaper meals.
Las Vegas opulent palaces for the affluent gambler seem increasingly unsupportable in a country where more and more people have less and less disposable income. Thats a social trend that should concern us all, however we feel about this particular pastime.
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Tweeted the peace mdash –

(CNN) — LWren Scott, a noted fashion designer who has been Mick Jaggers companion for more than a decade, was found dead in her New York apartment Monday of an apparent suicide, according to a law enforcement official familiar with the investigation. She was 49.
Scotts assistant found the designer hanging from a door knob with a scarf around her neck, the official said.
There were no signs of forced entry, and police did not find a suicide note, the official said.

pic.twitter.com/6GrbmEroYv— Rachel Roy (@Rachel_Roy) March 17, 2014

Scott had been dating Jagger, 70, since at least 2003. The lanky former model designed clothes worn by a number of celebrities, including Madonna, Allison Williams and Christina Hendricks. She also created many of Jaggers looks for the Rolling Stones 50th anniversary tour, which began in 2012 and is currently in Australia.
The band called off Wednesday nights show in Perth, following the news.
Frontier Touring and Concerts West regret to announce that The Rolling Stones concert in Perth will not be going ahead as scheduled for Wednesday 19 March 2014, @lwrenscott … she was an amazing soul, talented artist and an unbelievably giving friend. RIP.— oliviamunn (@oliviamunn) March 17, 2014

Mick Jaggers first wife, Bianca Jagger, tweeted, Heartbroken to learn of the loss of the lovely and talented LWren Scott. My thoughts and prayers are with her family. May she rest in peace. Singer and actress Bette Midler tweeted, Just got news of the beautiful Lwren Scotts death perhaps by her own hand. I am devastated. A rare, wonderful, talented soul. Goodbye.

Heartbroken to learn of the loss of the lovely and talented L'Wren Scott. My thoughts and prayers are with her family. May she rest in peace— Bianca Jagger (@BiancaJagger) March 17, 2014

Just got news of the beautiful L'wren Scott's death perhaps by her own hand. I am devastated. A rare, wonderful, talented soul. Goodbye.— Bette Midler (@BetteMidler) March 17, 2014

Cosmetics maven Bobbi Brown released a statement saying Im devastated by the tragic news about LWren. She was an incredible designer who I considered my friend. My heartfelt condolences go out to her loved ones during this very sad time.
Scott was born Laura Luann Bambrough and raised in Utah. The statuesque beauty — she was 6-foot-4 — was first spotted by photographer Bruce Weber at a Calvin Klein hosiery shoot, according to Vogue.
After modeling for several years, she became a stylist and eventually designed costumes for films such as the 1996 remake of Diabolique and 2000s Mercy. She also received a credit on 2007s Oceans Thirteen as actress Ellen Barkins consultant.

CNNs Shimon Prokupecz and Elizabeth Landers contributed to this report.

Then London was able to attract much of the manufacture of this cloth

London was the largest trading centre in England with trade at that time being dominated by the sale of fine English wool (from Sheep) to Antwerp mainly where it was woven into cloth. Clothes were also made locally in Antwerp.

Then London was able to attract much of the manufacture of this cloth back into London because of the wars around Antwerp, (now in present day Belgium but then part of the Netherlands, which was split north/south through Antwerp between the Protestant north and the Spanish Roman Catholic south). This created a huge demand for labour and housing in London which was satisfied by the occupation of the previously religious buildings “acquired” by Henry 8th . This was coupled with a movement west into the Fleet street area by the wealthier peoples into the new green field areas. These included many wealthy traders who had fled from Antwerp to run their businesses from London.

500 years ago Henry the 8th saw to many improvements.

500 years ago Henry the 8th saw to many improvements. Initially he was a builder of fine Palaces (for himself) perhaps he needed some of them as both his Westminster Palace and his City Palace in the Tower of London suffered fire damage. He built:
Bridewell Palace just outside the city walls on the west bank of the river Fleet and the banks of the Thames and Baynard’s Castle (actually built by Henry 7th) just inside the city walls also on the banks of the Thames. The position of this castle is marked today by the street called “Castle Baynard Street” to the east of the Mermaid theatre.

Henry also distributed the many fine London properties previously owned by the Church at the time of the Dissolution. This had a considerable impact because probably some 60% of the properties in London were owned by the church and releasing these onto the property market eliminated any over crowding in London and of course filled up the financial coffers managed by King Henry 8th himself.

Also around this time many of the old gates in the original 1000 year old Roman city wall were rebuilt notably Ludgate, Aldgate and Aldersgate. The buildings attached to the city gates tended to be used as prisons as was customary across all Europe.
Economic growth and the expansion of London