Who were the tailors of Tooley Street?

While George Canning (1770-1827) was Prime Minister of England, several tailors met in a house on Tooley Street, London, for the purpose of redressing popular grievances. They drew up a petition to the House of Commons that began with the words, “We, the people of England.” There is a difference of opinion regarding the number of names on the petition, some authorities saying two, others three, and still others nine. At any rate, it transpired that they were all names of tailors living on Tooley Street. Thus the phrase tailors of Tooley Street came to be applied to any demogogic or pettifogging clique who have the notion that they represent the people. Tooley as the name of a street in London is a corruption of St. Olaf, which was first corrupted into T-oIaf, then Tolay, and finally Tooley.