The Red Lion was the first early modern London theatre (though unlike The Theatre, not purpose built).

It appears to have opened as a theatre at some point in or before 1567 and was located in Stepney south of Mile End Road, outside the City boundary. With one exception ('The Story of Samson', from 1567), nothing at all is known about the names or even the types of plays performed here, nor do we know anything abut the playwrights or theatre companies who would have worked here.

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Known owners

  • James Burbage and John Brayne 07/1567 - ?

A map of Elizabethan London before any of the theatres came into being (Courtesy of the V&A)

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Near Halcrow Street on south east corner of Stepney Way and Cavell Street, Stepney
E1 1DB



National Grid Reference

C. 534986 181690


The no. 25 Bus from Oxford Circus goes to Whitechapel Road – get off at Whitechapel Underground Station. From Whitechapel Underground Station (opposite the Royal London Hospital) go along Whitechapel Road, right turn to Cavell Street.

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