Pearly Kings and Queens

Pearly Kings and Queens or “Pearlies”, as they are also known, is a name of a tradition existing in London, England. The tradition first appeared in the 19th century when a street sweeper Henry Croft collected money for charity. He wore the clothes decorated with pearl buttons.

Pearlies
Pearlies

Important event for the tradition happened in 1911 when the first pearly society was formed in Finchley, north London. The tradition is still going on today. Its followers are organized in three societies – the Original London Pearly Kings and Queens Society, London Pearly Kings and Queens Society and the Pearly Guild. Together with local churches they all collect money for charities in London.