Earls Court Gardens, SW5

Road in/near Earl's Court, existing between 1852 and now

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Road · Earl's Court · SW5 · Contributed by Colin Lawnsett

Earls Court Gardens runs from Earl’s Court station to Knaresborough Place.

No addresses have so far been added to Earls Court Gardens, SW5

The area, bounded on the south by what became the line of Earl’s Court Gardens, had formed Pound Field, which passed, as part of a larger property, to the Greene family who were owners of the Stag brewery in Westminster. It was sold by their representatives to John Hunter in 1793 and, after his death in that same year, by his representatives in 1797 to the crucial purchaser in the area’s building history.

The original development of Earl’s Court Gardens was on the south side only, from 1852 onwards, when Nos. 1–24 were built along a field-path made, perhaps in the 1790s, at the southern boundary of Pound Field. The site was a piece of walled ground, known in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries as the Pingle and held since the 1760s, as garden ground, with No. 2 The Terrace, adjacent westward facing Earl’s Court Road. In 1852 it belonged, with that house, to George Yates, an elderly man who described himself successively as merchant, gentleman, retired proprietor and retired picture dealer. In October he came to an agreement respecting the whole site with a builder, George Stevenson, who began two houses in March 1853.

In February 1855 the Land and Building News carried a feature about the new development. The fine alluvial flat on which the terrace stood and the 14-inch thickness of the walls were noticed, while the variety in the elevational treatment was carefully described. The views at front and back over ‘richly-cultivated fields’ were pleasing. The writer stressed by repetition that these and the ediversified elevations made it all ‘cheerful’.

Gas was supplied to street-lamps (three only) by the Western Gas Light Company in the autumn of 1856, but in the summer of 1857 the vestry refused to extend the main sewer down Earl’s Court Road as far as Earl’s Court Gardens, evidently obliging the estate to use cesspools or a sewer of their own draining into a ‘large tank’ near the junction with Earl’s Court Road. The occupants came in between 1856 and 1858, except at Nos. 17–20, which filled up a year or two later. The early residents were of a decent respectability and almost all the houses were in single family occupation. On average six people lived in each house, one being a servant.

Disturbance came in 1868–9 with the laying of the Metropolitan District railway in a cutting between Earl’s Court Gardens and the ‘village’ and then more emphatically in 1871–3, when the builder Matthew Scott erected a row of houses opposite (Nos. 25–35), on the north side of Earl’s Court Gardens (and the south side of what had been Pound Field), rather closely fitted-in between the railway line and the roadway.

Source: Search | British History Online

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The 1750 Rocque map is bounded by Sudbury (NW), Snaresbrook (NE), Eltham (SE) and Hampton Court (SW).
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The 1800 mapping is bounded by Stanmore (NW), Woodford (NE), Bromley (SE) and Hampton Court (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1800 map does not display.

The 1830 mapping is bounded by West Hampstead (NW), Hackney (NE), Greenwich (SE) and Chelsea (SW).
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The 1860 mapping is bounded by Brent Cross (NW), Stratford (NE), Greenwich (SE) and Hammermith (SW).
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The 1900 mapping covers all of the London area.


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Earl's Court

Earls Court is a district in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.

Earls Court was once a rural area, covered with green fields and market gardens. For over 500 years the land, part of the ancient manor of Kensington, was under the lordship of the Vere family, the Earls of Oxford and descendants of Aubrey de Vere, who held the manor of Geoffrey de Montbray, bishop of Coutances, in Domesday Book in 1086. The earls held their manorial court where Old Manor Yard is now, just by the London Underground station.

The construction of the Metropolitan District Railway (MDR) station in 1865–69 was a catalyst for development. On 12 April 1869, the MDR (now the District Line) opened tracks through Earl’s Court as part of a south-westward extension from its station at Gloucester Road to West Brompton where the MDR opened an interchange with the West London Extension Joint Railway. In the quarter century afterwards, Earls Court was transformed into a densely populated suburb with 1200 houses and two churches. Eardley Crescent and Kempsford Gardens were built between 1867 and 1873, building began in Earls Court Square and Longridge Road in 1873, in Nevern Place in 1874, in Trebovir Road and Philbeach Gardens in 1876, and Nevern Square in 1880.

Following WWII a number of Polish immigrants settled in the Earls Court area leading to Earls Court Road being dubbed ’The Danzig Corridor’. During the late 1960s a large transient population of Australia and New Zealand travellers began to use Earls Court as a UK hub and over time it gained the name ’Kangaroo Valley’. It was at the time one of the cheapest areas close to central London, and up until the 1990s remained a somewhat down-at-heel district compared to its more upmarket neighbours to the North and East.

Today, while there are still significant numbers of students or other people on temporary visas, many of the Australians and New Zealanders appear to have moved on to now-cheaper areas further North and West.

The change in the area’s population is largely owed to rocketing property prices during the first decade of the 2000s and the continued gentrification of the area. The scale of change is illustrated by the economic divide between the eastern and western areas of Earls Court.

Coleherne House:   Coleherne House once stood on the corner of Brompton Lane (later Brompton Road) and Walnut Tree Lane (now Redcliffe Gardens).
Earl's Court:   Earls Court is a district in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.
Earl's Court Farm:   Earl’s Court Farm is pictured here as it was in 1867, before the opening of the underground station two years later.
Earls Court Exhibition Centre:   Earls Court Exhibition Centre is an exhibition, conference and events venue in London that opened in 1937.
Nokes Estate:   Nokes Estate was an agricultural estate in the Earl’s Court area, formerly known as Wattsfield.
St Mary Abbot’s:   St Mary Abbot’s Hospital operated from 1871 to 1992. From 1846 to 1869 the site housed the Kensington Parish Workhouse.

Corner of Abingdon Road and Scarsdale Villas:   This view shows Tyler the chemists during the 1960s.

A3220, W11 · A3220, W12 · A4, W1J · Alma Studios, W8 · Ambassador’s Court, SW1A · Ashburn Gardens, SW7 · Astwood Mews, SW7 · Barkston Gardens, SW5 · Beatrice Place, W8 · Blithfield Street, W8 · Bolton Gardens, SW5 · Bramham Gardens, SW5 · Childs Place, SW5 · Coleherne Road, SW10 · Collingham Gardens, SW5 · Collingham Place, SW5 · Collingham Road, SW5 · Cornwall Gardens Walk, SW7 · Courtfield Gardens, SW5 · Cromwell Crescent, SW5 · Cromwell Road, SW5 · Eardley Crescent, SW5 · Eardley Cresent, SW5 · Earls Court Gardens, SW5 · Earls Court Road, SW5 · Earls Court Square, SW5 · Earl’s Court Road, SW5 · Farnell Mews, SW5 · Hesper Mews, SW5 · Hogarth Place, SW5 · Hogarth Road, SW5 · Kempsford Gardens, SW5 · Kenway Road, SW5 · Knaresborough Place, SW5 · Kramer Mews, SW5 · Langham Mansions, SW5 · Laverton Place, SW5 · Lexham Gardens, SW5 · Lexham Gardens, W8 · Lexham Mews, W8 · Longridge Road, SW5 · Marloes Road, SW5 · Marloes Road, W8 · Marlogs Road, W8 · Nevern Place, SW5 · Nevern Road, SW5 · Nevern Square, SW5 · Old Brompton Road, SW5 · Old Brompton Road, SW6 · Old Manor Yard, SW5 · Osten Mews, SW7 · Pennant Mews, W8 · Penywern Road, SW5 · Philbeach Gardens, SW5 · Philbeach Gardens, SW6 · Radley Mews, W8 · Redcliffe Close, SW5 · Redcliffe Square, SW5 · Redfield Lane, SW5 · Scarsdale Villas, W8 · Spear Mews, SW5 · St. Mary’s Gate, W8 · St. Mary’s Place, W8 · Stone Hall Gardens, W8 · Stratford Road, W8 · Sunningdale Gardens, W8 · Templeton Place, SW5 · The Mansions, SW5 · Trebouir Road, SW5 · Trebovir Road, SW5 · Warwick Road, SW5 · Weir Road, SW17 · Wetherby Mansions, SW5 · Wetherby Mews, SW5 ·


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