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Featured articlesHeathwall Street, SW11
Heathwall Street follows the line of the Heathwall Ditch. The Heathwall Ditch was once an open ditch linking Nine Elms with the Falcon Brook, thereby making the ’island’ of north Battersea that gives the place its name (Old English Beadurices ege, ‘Badric’s island’).
In the fifteenth century, this became the Heathwall Sewer and the area surrounding it, which stretched as far as Nine Elms, was drained. The creation of the ditch paved the way for new development in the area and a number of new roads were established, including Kennington Lane, Black Prince Road and Lambeth Road.
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Stokesley Street, W12
Stokesley Street is named after John Stokesley who was Catholic Bishop of London during the reign of Henry VIII. John Stokesley (1475–1539) was an English church leader.
He became Bishop of London and Lord Almoner in 1530, and in September 1533 christened the future Queen Elizabeth. His later years were troubled by disputes with Archbishop Cranmer; Stokesley opposed all changes in the doctrines of the church, remaining hostile to the English Bible and clerical marriage. Stokesley was a staunch opponent of Lutheranism and very active in persecuting heretics.
In May 1538, the King’s attorney took out a writ of Praemunire against Stokesley and, as accessories with him, against the Abbess Agnes Jordan and the Confessor-General of Syon Abbey. Stokesley acknowledged his guilt, implored Thomas Cromwell’s intercession, and threw himself on the King’s mercy. He obtained the King’s pardon, for it was not the Bishop but Syon that Cromwell aimed at.
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Glengall Terrace, SE15
Glengall Terrace is a street in London SE5 The street is ultimately named after Glengall Wharf which was situated on the Grand Surrey Canal - all traces of the canal have passed into history.
Glengall Terrace was transformed after the Second World War as Burgess Park was extended. Many of the houses on the 1900 are now parkland.
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Historically an ancient parish in Essex, Barking’s economic history is characterised by a shift from fishing and farming to market gardening and industrial development.
In AD 735 the town was ’Berecingum’ and was known to mean "dwellers among the birch trees". By AD 1086, it had become ’Berchingae’ as evidenced by the town’s entry in the Domesday Book.
The manor of Barking was the site of Barking Abbey, a nunnery founded in 666 by Eorcenwald, Bishop of London, destroyed by the Danes and reconstructed in 970 by King Edgar. The celebrated writer Marie de France may have been abbess of the nunnery in the late 12th century. At the Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1536, Barking Abbey was demolished; the parish church of St Margaret, some walling and foundations are all that remain.
A charter issued between 1175 and 1179 confirms the ancient market right. The market declined in the 18th century but has since been revived.
Fishing was the most important industry from the 14th century until the mid-19th. Salt water fishing began before 1320, when too fine nets were seized by City authorities, but expa...
Allum Lane, WD6
Allum Lane links Borehamwood with Watling Street just north of Elstree village. Originally the road was much straighter but encroachment by landowners altered the course slightly. Allum Lane is mentioned as far back as 1437 and at that time was known as Alwynlane. Following the Enclosure Act of 1776, which divided up the Boreham Wood Common, roads such as this were improved from what originally would have been simple dirt tracks.
Along the road many grand houses were slowly built including Hillside (also known as Barham House and Clock House) build in 1789. The explorer (not the actor) Sir Richard Burton, explorer was there.
In the 1860s, the Midland railway reached the area and Elstree station was built at the Borehamwood end of the lane. Allum Lane then became more used as Elstree people used it to access their station. Lord Aldenham build a carriage drive from Aldenham House to meet Allum Lane at the Elstree end so that his estate could easier access the station.
Though many of the larger houses made way for housing...
Manor Way, WD6
Manor Way was one of the first new roads to be designed in the Boreham Wood Estate. Just before the Second World War, there were already plans for Borehamwood to expand, To the south of the newly-built Elstree Way, a upside down Y shape pattern of three new roads was laid out. Manor Way led from Elstree Way to a new roundabout where two other new roads met - Cranes Way and Ripon Way. Cranes Way led from the roundabout to Furzehill Road and Ripon Way from the same roundabout to the A1.
The roads, having been laid out, stayed largely as untarred chalk outlines during the 1940s as the war effort took the emphasis of planning away from house building. Manor Way had been designed to link proposed new housing with the industrial estates which had already sprung along Elstree Way to the new roundabout where a new community centre (later the Three Ways Community Centre) was to be surrounded by a small park.
But after the war, Borehamwood was earmarked out to be an overspill town. With bombed out families in London proper and still more in what w...
Beddington is a suburban settlement in the London Borough of Sutton on the boundary with the London Borough of Croydon. The settlement appears in the Domesday Book as Beddinton(e) held partly by Robert de Watevile from Richard de Tonebrige and by Miles Crispin. Its Domesday Assets were: 6 hides; 1 church, 14 ploughs, 4 mills worth £3 15s 0d, 44 acres of meadow, woodland worth 10 hogs per year. It rendered: £19 10s 0d per year to its feudal system overlords.
The village lay in Wallington hundred and until the 19th century was in secular and ecclesiastical terms a large parish in its own right. Wallington was for centuries a manor in Beddington parish and although known as a shorthand for the area stretching from Cheam to Addington and from Chaldon to Mitcham . The name ’Wallington’ superseded Beddington’s former area almost completely in the early 20th century.
The local name ’Hackbridge’ was in the 13th century shown on local maps as Hakebrug, and named after a bridge on the River Wandle.
The locality has a landscaped wooded park at Beddi...
Connaught Close, W2
Connaught Close is a cul-de-sac off Connaught Street. Connaught Close is part of the Church Commissioners’ Hyde Park Estate, and Westminster City Council’s Bayswater Conservation Area
Originally called Albion Mews North, it contains ten properties behind the larger houses in Albion Street and Hyde Park Street.
The Mews runs north-south, is fairly small and curves around to the right half way down, where the cobbled surface turns into concrete.
Booth’s London Poverty Maps record the area in the late nineteenth century as being fairly comfortable with good, ordinary earnings.
In World War II, a bomb fell directly onto Connaught Close and several properties had to be rebuilt as a result.
Connaught Close is a good example of an original/ surviving Mews, now predominantly used for residential purposes. Notable alterations include small changes to the doors and fenestration, a conservatory and basement excavations.
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St Georges Fields
St George’s Fields are a former burial ground of St George’s, Hanover Square, lying between Connaught Street and Bayswater Road. St George’s Fields was a burial ground from 1763, and later used for archery, games and as allotments. Nearby is Archery Close.
The land was owned by St George’s Church in Hanover Square, which sold it to developers in 1967 who left a few tombstones, adding character to the gardens. The Utopian Housing Association, the developers, were a housing trust.
The architects, Design 5, used a ziggurat style of building, retaining much of the open space whilst creating 300 dwellings. Parts of the double walls surrounding the burial ground - reputedly designed to frustrate grave robbers - have been preserved along with a number of tombstones.
The estate is now in private ownership although the grounds of St George’s Fields are opened to the public once a year under the London Garden Square Scheme and one of London’s oldest plane trees, with a girth of over 5 metres, may be seen set amongst the other trees.
Although the building...
Connaught Square, W2
Connaught Square was the first square of city houses to be built in the Bayswater area. It is named after the Earl of Connaught who had a house nearby. The current appearance of the square dates from the 1820s. The square is just north of Hyde Park, and to the west of Edgware Road. It is also within 300 m of Marble Arch, and the western end of Oxford Street.
Connaught Square’s architecture is primarily Georgian. Redevelopment was initially planned in the early 18th century and the first of its 45 brick houses was built in 1828 as part of the Hyde Park estate by Thomas Allason.
Residents of Connaught Square hold an exclusive summer party in the central communal garden every year. The garden square is maintained by the owners of the adjoining properties who contribute to its upkeep, and in return are issued keys to the garden. Such gated gardens are a particular feature of this area of London. The horses of the Royal Artillery regularly do their early morning rides down Connaught Street.
In October 2004, the then Prime Ministe...
Albert Place, W8
Albert Place runs west off Victoria Road.
The street is a cul-de-sac although there is a hidden footpath on the north side of the street leading to Cambridge Place.
Between the Vallotton Estate and Kensington Road to the north, was a house with grounds owned by William Hoof, a successful builder. He entered into a deal with Vallotton to construct Albert Place (at the time called Albert Road) partly on Vallotton Estate land and partly through his own back garden. He built the houses between 1841 and 1845.
There were fourteen houses. They are semi-detached and stucco fronted and the porches have square piers. Later a smaller cottage, numbered 8a, was crammed into the south west corner of Albert Place.
Carlotta Grisi (1819-99), the dancer for whom the role of Giselle was created, lived at no.9 in 1851.
George Robey, the comedian, lived at no.10 from 1926-1932
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Wilby Mews, W11
Wilby Mews was named after Benjamin Wilby, who was involved in several 19th century development schemes. This cobbled mews off Ladbroke Road beside the Ladbroke Arms public house has some of the oldest mews houses in the Ladbroke area, although they have been significantly altered in most cases. The Mews was originally called Weller Mews or Weller Street Mews after the old name for that part of Ladbroke Road (Weller was the surname of the nephew who inherited the Ladbroke Estate from Richard Ladbroke. the original owner). It seems to have changed its name around 1860, when Nos. 42-52 (evens) Ladbroke Road were built and named Wilby Terrace.
The 1863 Ordnance Survey map shows the mews to be already almost fully built up by then, and several residents are recorded in the 1851 census returns (four coachmen, a postmaster and a cow-keeper). It seems likely that the buildings on the west side of the mews at any rate were built in the 1840s (the houses which they served in Ladbroke Grove were built in the 1830s and 1840s). By 1861, Nos. 2-17 were all occupied, again mostly by co...
Albert Mews, SW7
Albert Mews is a small cobbled mews, built in 1865 Albert Mews has an attractive arched entrance leading onto Victoria Grove - the entrance is next to number 26 - and a gargoyle on the top of the arch.
The east side consists of ground floor garages with living accommodation on the first floor. The entrance doors are on the first floor and they are approached along a first floor balcony which runs the extent of the terrace, with steps from the ground floor at either end of the terrace.
At the rear of the mews there is a small enclave of mews houses with more garages and space for additional parking. The cobbles here must be particularly hard on stiletto shoes!
Albert Mews is part of the Inderwick Estate.
The Mews has an entrance next to 26 Victoria Grove. The properties were built in 1865 by the Kensington builder, Charles Alden.
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Trafalgar Avenue, SE15
This area of Peckham, close to the Old Kent Road, was developed from the 1840s onwards. In the 1850s, north Peckham was developing as a handsome, middle-class suburb. Leading south from the Old Kent Road, Trafalgar Road (later Trafalgar Avenue) was laid out including an earlier bridge (the Trafalgar Bridge) over the Grand Surrey Canal. The canal was filled in during 1970.
On the corner of Trafalgar Avenue and Waite Street, a pub was built: "The Victory".
After the Second World War and its war damage, much of the southern part of Trafalgar Avenue was demolished to make way for parkland.
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Palace Court, W2
Palace Court was built in the 1880s to connect the Bayswater Road to Moscow Road. Some houses were built in Palace Court in 1889 and flats called Palace Court Mansions were inhabited from 1890.
Many original Palace Court residents had ’aesthetic tastes’. They included Wilfrid Meynell and his wife Alice, the poet (1847-1922), the artist George William Joy (d. 1925), and the furniture expert Percy McQuoid (d. 1925).
Palace Court has been described as ’the most interesting place in the borough for late Victorian domestic architecture’.
At the south-east corner King’s Fund college occupies no. 2, in red brick and terracotta by William Flockhart, dated 1891. Similarly florid buildings stand next to it in Bayswater Road, although originally numbered with Palace Court, and include the yellow terracotta Westland hotel, formerly the Yellow House, no. 8, designed by George & Peto for Percy McQuoid.
Set back from the east side of Palace Court are nos. 10, 12, and 14, the first two forming a pair designed ...
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