Hyde Park Corner, W1J

Road in/near Hyde Park Corner, existing between the 1750s and now

 HOME  ·  ARTICLE  MAP  STREETS  BLOG  CONTACT 
52.204.98.217 
MAPPING YEAR:1750180018301860190019302019Fullscreen map
Road · Hyde Park Corner · W1J ·
JANUARY
10
2018

Hyde Park Corner is a major road junction at the southeastern corner of Hyde Park.

Hyde Park Corner in 1842, looking east towards Piccadilly. The entrance to Hyde Park through Decimus Burton’s Ionic Screen is on the left, and behind it, in darker stone, is Apsley House.
Six streets converge at the junction: Park Lane (from the north), Piccadilly (northeast), Constitution Hill (southeast), Grosvenor Place (south), Grosvenor Crescent (southwest) and Knightsbridge (west).

Hyde Park Corner tube station, a London Underground station served by the Piccadilly line, is located at the junction, as are a number of notable monuments.

Immediately to the north of the junction is Apsley House, the home of the first Duke of Wellington; several monuments to the Duke were erected in the vicinity, both in his lifetime and subsequently.

In the mid-nineteenth century, the space that is now the Hyde Park Corner traffic island was not entirely surrounded by roadway. In its centre stands the Wellington Arch (or Constitution Arch), designed by Decimus Burton and planned as a northern gate to the grounds of Buckingham Palace. In execution it was laid out as a gate into the Green Park, and was originally sited directly opposite Burton’s Ionic Screen (also known as the Hyde Park Corner Screen), which still provides a gate into Hyde Park. Originally, the Arch was topped with an equestrian statue of the Duke by Matthew Cotes Wyatt.

The Arch was moved south because of traffic congestion, and realigned to the axis of Constitution Hill in 1883. The boundary of Buckingham Palace’s garden was moved south, and a new road named Duke of Wellington Place was created; this separated the space containing the Arch from the rest of the Green Park. At this time, the large equestrian statue was removed to Aldershot. It was subsequently replaced with another work, entitled The Angel of Peace descending on the Quadriga of Victory, dated 1912, by the sculptor Adrian Jones; this remains in place.

Following the passage of the Park Lane Improvement Act 1958, Park Lane was widened in the early 1960s. For most of its length this was achieved by converting the former East Carriage Drive of Hyde Park into the northbound lanes of a dual carriageway, but at Hyde Park Corner, all lanes of traffic came together on a line immediately to the east of Apsley House that required demolition of houses on Piccadilly. This left Apsley House on an island site. The InterContinental London hotel was subsequently built on the cleared site between the new route of Park Lane and Hamilton Place.

At part of the same scheme, a tunnel was constructed beneath the junction to allow traffic to flow freely between Knightsbridge and Piccadilly. As a result, the area around the Arch became a large traffic island, mostly laid to grass, and accessible only by pedestrian underpassess, and formally ceased to be part of the Green Park.

Subsequent changes to the road layout in the 1990s reinstated a route between Hyde Park and the Green Park for pedestrians, cyclists and horseriders using surface-level crossings.

"Hyde Park Corner" was used as a codeword to announce to the government the death of King George VI in 1952.

xxx

Hyde Park Corner in 1842, looking east towards Piccadilly. The entrance to Hyde Park through Decimus Burton’s Ionic Screen is on the left, and behind it, in darker stone, is Apsley House.
User unknown/public domain

Citations and sources

Gillian Bebbington's 1972 work on street name derivations

Links and further reading

Facebook Page
Facebook Page
Facebook Page
Facebook Page

VIEW THE HYDE PARK CORNER AREA IN THE 1750s
The 1750 Rocque map is bounded by Sudbury (NW), Snaresbrook (NE), Eltham (SE) and Hampton Court (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1750 map does not display.

VIEW THE HYDE PARK CORNER AREA IN THE 1800s
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.

VIEW THE HYDE PARK CORNER AREA IN THE 1830s
The 1830 mapping is bounded by West Hampstead (NW), Hackney (NE), Greenwich (SE) and Chelsea (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1830 map does not display.

VIEW THE HYDE PARK CORNER AREA IN THE 1860s
The 1860 mapping is bounded by Brent Cross (NW), Stratford (NE), Greenwich (SE) and Hammermith (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1860 map does not display.

VIEW THE HYDE PARK CORNER AREA IN THE 1900s
The 1900 mapping covers all of the London area.

 

Hyde Park Corner

At the other end of Park Lane from Marble Arch, Hyde Park Corner has struck terror into many a learner driver.

In the centre of the roundabout stands Constitution Arch (or Wellington Arch), designed by Decimus Burton as a memorial to the Duke of Wellington and originally providing a grand entrance to London. It was built as a northern gate to the grounds of Buckingham Palace. Originally the arch was topped with an equestrian statue of the Duke by Matthew Cotes Wyatt, but it was replaced with the current work, The Angel of Peace descending on the Quadriga of Victory (1912) by Adrian Jones.

Other monuments at Hyde Park Corner include Jones’s Monument to the Cavalry of the Empire (off the west side of Park Lane), Alexander Munro’s Boy and Dolphin statue (in a rose garden parallel to Rotten Row, going west from Hyde Park Corner), the Wellington Monument (off the west side of Park Lane) and a statue of Byron (on a traffic island opposite the Wellington Monument).

To the north of the roundabout is Apsley House, the home of the first Duke of Wellington. Such was Wellington’s ego, that he insisted that his letters were addressed to Number 1, London.

Hyde Park Corner was used as a code to announce to the Government the death of King George VI in 1952.

Hyde Park Corner tube station was opened by the Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway on 15 December 1906. It is one of the few stations which have no associated buildings above ground, the station being fully underground.

The original, Leslie Green-designed station building still remains to the south of the road junction, notable by its ox-blood coloured tiles; it was until June 2010 used as a pizza restaurant, and since January 2013 it is the Wellesley Hotel. The building was taken out of use in the early 1930s when the station was provided with escalators in place of lifts although an emergency stairway provides a connection to the platforms. The lift shafts are now used to provide ventilation.

After the station was rebuilt with escalators the adjacent little-used station at Down Street to the east (towards Green Park) was taken out of use.
Print-friendly version of this page

Maps


Central London, north west (1901) FREE DOWNLOAD
Central London, north west.
Stanford's Geographical Establishment. London : Edward Stanford, 26 & 27, Cockspur St., Charing Cross, S.W. (1901)

Central London, south west (1901) FREE DOWNLOAD
Central London, south west.
Stanford's Geographical Establishment. London : Edward Stanford, 26 & 27, Cockspur St., Charing Cross, S.W. (1901)

Cruchley's New Plan of London (1848) FREE DOWNLOAD
Cruchley's New Plan of London Shewing all the new and intended improvements to the Present Time. - Cruchley's Superior Map of London, with references to upwards of 500 Streets, Squares, Public Places & C. improved to 1848: with a compendium of all Place of Public Amusements also shewing the Railways & Stations.
G. F. Cruchley

Cary's New And Accurate Plan of London and Westminster (1818) FREE DOWNLOAD
Cary's map provides a detailed view of London. With print date of 1 January 1818, Cary's map has 27 panels arranged in 3 rows of 9 panels, each measuring approximately 6 1/2 by 10 5/8 inches. The complete map measures 32 1/8 by 59 1/2 inches. Digitising this map has involved aligning the panels into one contiguous map.
John Cary

John Rocque Map of London (1762) FREE DOWNLOAD
John Rocque (c. 1709–1762) was a surveyor, cartographer, engraver, map-seller and the son of Huguenot émigrés. Roque is now mainly remembered for his maps of London. This map dates from the second edition produced in 1762. London and his other maps brought him an appointment as cartographer to the Prince of Wales in 1751. His widow continued the business after his death. The map covers central London at a reduced level of detail compared with his 1745-6 map.
John Rocque, The Strand, London

Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge (1843) FREE DOWNLOAD
Engraved map. Hand coloured.
Chapman and Hall, London

Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge (1836) FREE DOWNLOAD
Engraved map. Hand coloured. Insets: A view of the Tower from London Bridge -- A view of London from Copenhagen Fields. Includes views of facades of 25 structures "A comparison of the principal buildings of London."
Chapman and Hall, London

Environs of London (1832) FREE DOWNLOAD
Engraved map. Hand coloured. Relief shown by hachures. A circle shows "Extent of the twopenny post delivery."
Chapman and Hall, London

London Underground Map (1921).  FREE DOWNLOAD
London Underground map from 1921.
London Transport

The Environs of London (1865).  FREE DOWNLOAD
Prime meridian replaced with "Miles from the General Post Office." Relief shown by hachures. Map printed in black and white.
Published By J. H. Colton. No. 172 William St. New York

London Underground Map (1908).  FREE DOWNLOAD
London Underground map from 1908.
London Transport

Ordnance Survey of the London region (1939) FREE DOWNLOAD
Ordnance Survey colour map of the environs of London 1:10,560 scale
Ordnance Survey. Crown Copyright 1939.

Outer London (1901) FREE DOWNLOAD
Outer London shown in red, City of London in yellow. Relief shown by hachures.
Stanford's Geographical Establishment. London : Edward Stanford, 26 & 27, Cockspur St., Charing Cross, S.W. (1901)
1 



COPYRIGHT TERMS:
Unless a source is explicitedly stated, text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. Articles may be a remixes of various Wikipedia articles plus work by the website authors - original Wikipedia source can generally be accessed under the same name as the main title. This does not affect its Creative Commons attribution.

Maps upon this website are in the public domain because they are mechanical scans of public domain originals, or - from the available evidence - are so similar to such a scan or photocopy that no copyright protection can be expected to arise. The originals themselves are in public domain for the following reason:
Public domain Maps used are in the public domain in the United States, and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 100 years or less.
This file has been identified as being free of known restrictions under copyright law, including all related and neighbouring rights.

This tag is designed for use where there may be a need to assert that any enhancements (eg brightness, contrast, colour-matching, sharpening) are in themselves insufficiently creative to generate a new copyright. It can be used where it is unknown whether any enhancements have been made, as well as when the enhancements are clear but insufficient. For usage, see Commons:When to use the PD-scan tag.