"He'd begun portering at Covent Garden"

 

Modern Covent Garden
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeModern Covent Garden - Credit: Diliff

 

For most of its history, Covent Garden in London was the site of a large flower, fruit and vegetable market; Martin's job as a porter would have been with the market traders. The market was active from the sixteenth century until 1974, when it was moved south of the river. The area is now a popular tourist and shopping destination, and the home of the Royal Opera House.