Poynters – definition

Should you be wandering the Barbican you may come across a walkway called “Poynters Lane”.

The word, though unusual, appears to have a dual meaning.

Wikipedia suggests that it referred to somebody who made cord for fastening clothing, particularly doublets and hose – though it is not explained how these might be joined together.

Another meaning has been suggested.

In the 18th/19th centuries, touts frequented the streets of London. They would try, with varying degrees of politeness or persuasion, to direct customers to particular shops – in exchange, if successful, for a small commission from the shopkeeper.

They were dubbed Poynters simply because they’d point out the shop or market stall in question.