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Website · Russell Square · NW6 · Contributed by The Underground Map
MARCH
21
2019

The Underground Map is a project which is creating street histories for the areas of London and surrounding counties lying inside the M25.

Latest on The Underground Map...
Russell Square, WC1B
Russell Square was laid out from 1800 by James Burton following the demolition of Bedford House, which originally stood on the site surrounded by gardens and fields. Its name comes from the family name of the Dukes of Bedford.

The east side was the first to be built, between 1800 and 1817; the south side followed, then the gardens, and finally, the west and part of the north side were built.

Bolton House predated the development of the square; it was built in 1759 as Baltimore House and renamed after a later occupant, the Duke of Bolton and after the Square was developed, it became integrated into its numbering scheme

Towards the end of the nineteenth century, further houses were built on what had been the gardens to the north of Bolton House; these were nos 68–70 Russell Square

It was a prestige development of big houses in a very large square - larger than any residential square previously built in London.

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In a series of maps from the 1750s until the 1950s, you can see how London grew from a city which only reached as far as Park Lane into the post war megapolis we know today. There are now over 85 000 articles on all variety of locations including roads, houses, schools, pubs and palaces.

You can begin exploring by choosing a place from the dropdown list at the top left and then clicking Reset Location.

As maps are displayed, click on the markers to view location articles.

You can also view historical maps of London - click on the "pile of paper" control on the top right of a page's map to change to a particular decade.

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Featured articles

DECEMBER
21
2016

 

St John the Evangelist Friday Street
St John the Evangelist Friday Street was a church in Bread Street Ward of the City of London. The church stood on the south side of Bread Street, on the corner with Friday Street.

In the early 18th century, some years after the destruction of the church itself, the parish was described as covering "part of Watling Street", the number of houses being "24 and an half." The patronage of the church belonged to the prior and abbey of Christchurch, Canterbury until the dissolution, and then to the dean and chapter of Canterbury Cathedral.

In the early 1620s a debate was held between George Walker, the church’s puritan rector, and some Roman Catholics. The pastor argued that the Church of England was the "true church" and that the Church of Rome was "the whore of Babylon." The Catholic priests replied that "you Protestants in England, have no Church nor Faith." The debate, which was conducted mainly in a series of syllogisms, was published in a pamphlet.

The building was renovated at the cost of the parishioners in 1626, and in the same ...
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DECEMBER
18
2016

 

Little Guildford Street
Little Guildford Street was the middle part of what is now Herbrand Street, between Great Coram Street and Bernard Street, on the western edge of the Foundling estate. It appears in rough outline on Horwood’s map of 1799, and fully developed, together with Mews to both sides, on his map of 1807

This area was undeveloped fields until the early eighteenth century

It was presumably named for its location near Guilford Street

No numbers appear on Horwood’s maps

There was a pub, the Red Lion, there in the 1820s (The Times, 3 June 1824); there were also livery stables (The Times, 10 June 1825)

At the end of the century, the pub was still there, but had become the Old Red Lion (The Times, 11 June 1883); there was also now a school, Christ Church School (The Times, 26 November 1888), presumably associated with nearby Christ Church, Woburn Square

By the latter part of the century the street had become a slum; in 1897 the leases fell in and the street was sold, along with Little Coram Street, to the LCC in 1898 (Donald Olsen, Town Planning in London, 2nd edn, 1984)

It was incorporated into the new Herbrand Street development in 1901.
»read full article


DECEMBER
16
2016

 

Strawberry Vale, N2
Strawberry Vale is now simply a road - it was once an estate. The old name for the area was Brownswell. A well had been ’late re-edified’ for travellers on the Great North Road in 1593. A cottage stood there by 1623 and the Huntsman, by 1731 called the Green Man, by 1718. In 1754 there were some three buildings at Brownswell.

Meadow land fronting the common was advertised in 1796 as a delightful situation for building. By 1814 a few buildings stood on the west side of the Great North Road, north of the Green Man.

The enclosure of Finchley Common did not lead to a sudden spread of building. Some houses were built at Strawberry Vale east of the road near Brownswell by James Frost, who acquired an estate there in 1816.

In 1854, 87 acres allotted at enclosure to Bibbesworth were sold to the St. Pancras burial board, which sold 30 acres to that of St. Mary, Islington. In 1855 St. Marylebone opened a cemetery on 26 acres of farmland south of East End Road, between the demesne lands of Bibbeswort...
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DECEMBER
16
2016

 

Fitzroy Square, W1T
Fitzroy Square is one of the Georgian squares of London. The square, nearby Fitzroy Street, and the Fitzroy Tavern in Charlotte Street have the family name of Charles FitzRoy, 2nd Duke of Grafton, into whose ownership the land passed through his marriage. His descendant Charles FitzRoy, 1st Baron Southampton developed the area during the late 18th and early 19th century.

Fitzroy Square was a speculative development intended to provide London residences for aristocratic families, and was built in four stages. Leases for the eastern and southern sides, designed by Robert Adam, were granted in 1792; building began in 1794 and was completed in 1798 by Adam’s brothers James and William. These buildings are fronted in Portland stone brought by sea from Dorset.

The Napoleonic Wars and a slump in the London property market brought a temporary stop to construction of the square after the south and east sides were completed. According to the records of the Squares Frontagers’ Committee, 1815 residents looked ...
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DECEMBER
12
2016

 

Shipley's Drawing School
101 The Strand was an art school from 1750 until 1806. The drawing school was established by William Shipley and attended by such notable figures as William Blake, Richard Cosway and Francis Wheatley.
»read full article


DECEMBER
12
2016

 

Ackermann’s
Rudolph Ackermann (20 April 1764 in Stollberg, Saxony – 30 March 1834 in Finchley) was an Anglo-German bookseller, inventor, lithographer, publisher and businessman. Ackermann worked as a saddler and coach-builder in different German cities, then moved to Paris, working for famous Paris carriage maker Antoine Carassi before moving to London about 1784.

He continued to make designs for British coach-builders and probably in the process became interested in the making of prints (for the coach designs).

In 1795 he established a print-shop and drawing-school in the Strand. After a year, he took over a drawing school previously established by William Shipley (which lasted until 1806) at 101 Strand. Thus began the Ackermann print business which lasted over two hundred years.

In 1797, Ackermann moved his shop to the premises at 101 Strand, which he named as "The Repository of Arts" the following year. In 1827, Ackermann moved to 96 Strand, In this shop he sold not only prints and illustrated books, but also paper, art supplies (some manufactured by Ackermann himself), old master paintings, miniatures, and man...
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DECEMBER
12
2016

 

101 Strand, WC2R
This shop was one of the first in London to have gas lighting fitted. The print seller Rudolph Ackermann lived and worked here at No. 101 The Strand between 1797 and 1827.
»read full article


DECEMBER
10
2016

 

Northumberland House
Northumberland House was a large Jacobean townhouse in London, which was the London residence of the Percy family, who were the Dukes of Northumberland. It stood at the far western end of the Strand from around 1605 until demolished in 1874. In its later years it overlooked Trafalgar Square.

Northumberland House could not lay claim to much architectural beauty; and it had been so much altered and rebuilt at various times, that it had no very high pretensions to notice on account of its antiquity; yet few places were more familiar to the Londoner, few fronts gave more character to their neighbourhood. It was a dull, plain building, full of a certain dignity, indeed, but of the unloveliest fashion of a period when men built houses more for living in than being looked at. "The progress of wealth and of luxury," says a writer in the Standard, shortly before its demolition, "has long since dimmed the splendours of what was once the proudest of the London houses of the English nobility. The march of fashion westward had left it isolated amidst an uncongenial neighbourhood of small shops. Commerce had overtaken and overwhelmed...
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DECEMBER
8
2016

 

Kilburn Wells
Kilburn Wells. a medicinal spring, existed between 1714 and the 1860s. The fashion for taking ‘medicinal waters’ in the 18th century came to Kilburn when a well of water impregnated with iron was discovered near the Bell Inn in 1714. In an attempt to compete with the nearby Hampstead Well, gardens and a ‘great room’ were opened to promote the well, and its waters were promoted in journals of the day as cure for ‘stomach ailments’.

By the 1860s, the Wells had declined completely.
»read full article


DECEMBER
7
2016

 

Millfield Nursery
An article about "nurserymen" from Jim South written in March 1977. The Nursery industry grew out of the market gardening that supplied London via Covent Garden. The Lea Valley was "natural" for this development. Within easy reach by horse drawn vehicles travelling by night, with "chain" horses stationed at places like Stamford Hill.

The alluvial soil that served market gardens of fruit growers was also level and suited the constructors of early "Vine" type glass houses. Water was available, boring wells was like putting a pin into a plastic pipe and, for example, ballast pits filled up as soon as they were abandoned.

Transport was well served by rail, road and canal. The main road, following roughly the Roman Ermine St. was the only access to London from much of East Anglia. The railways were built during the 19th century and the Lea canal carried coal, coke and timber. When I left Goffs Oak some coke was still carried by barge up the Lea. Until 1940 a great deal of coke came over from Belgium via this route.

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DECEMBER
5
2016

 

10 Bangor Street, W11
This is an address in Bangor Street, London
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DECEMBER
3
2016

 

Eastcastle Street, W1T
The portion of Eastcastle Street to the east of Wells Street originally belonged to the Berners Estate. The Berners Estate section of the street was not developed until the 1760s though it was laid out in the late 1730s. Originally it was Castle Street East.
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