New Metropolitan Cattle Market, King's Cros, London, 1855.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Plate from the Illustrated London News. The Copenhagen Fields market, situated on the Caledonian Road in King's Cros, cost almost £500,000 to build and was opened in 1855 by Prince Albert (1819-1861). Charles Dickens (1812-1870) described it admiringly: 'The market is of immense size, but large as it is, it is insufficient to contain the animals sent up for the Christmas markets...The number of cattle and sheep sold here weekly is prodigious, and the arrangements are excellent both as regards regularity, and, as far as posible, the comfort of the animals.' The average weekly sale was around 25,000 sheep and 5000 oxen.