Bread on Wall Street

It’s not actually called Wall Street but Calle Roteros, and the bread is the kind you eat not the kind you make by selling sub prime loans to pension funds.


The Montaner bakery might look as though it needs a bit of reforming, but in fact a fourth of its wall space is a part of the 11th century city wall that used to surround Valencia, and was built between 1021 and 1061.


Although the Arabs arrived in Valencia in 711, it wasn’t until the fall of the Caliphate of Cordoba that internal strife among the Arab kingdoms made it necessary to protect the city.


The wall crops up all around the historic centre; in bars, restaurants, shops, museums, universities, waste ground and private homes, and is one of Valencia’s best kept secrets.


It had seven gates and various semi-circular towers and when the Christian wall was built around 1356, many parts of the Arab wall were incorporated into the new one.


The demolition of the wall began in 1865 by order of Mayor Cirilo Amoros, partly as a job creation scheme.


There is a project to open up an Arab wall route, which may or may not interfere with bread production in the Montaner bakery and a few private citizens being awoken in their beds by the clicking of cameras; but that is a price I am willing to pay, as I don’t live there.


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