Posts Tagged ‘Hampstead’

Belsize Park Hampstead 1988

Saturday, January 8th, 2022

Belsize Park, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-02-positive_2400
Belsize Park, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-02

Belsize Park Hampstead 1988
Belsize is a confusing area for the casual wanderer and many of the streets have ‘Belsize’ in their name, including Belsize Avenue, Belsize Court, Belsize Crescent, Belsize Gardens, Belsize Grove, Belsize Lane, Belsize Mews, Belsize Park, Belsize Park Gardens, Belsize Place, Belsize Square, and Belsize Terrace.

Belsize Park, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-04-positive_2400
Belsize Park, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-04

I’m not entirely sure whether my captions place all of the houses that are featured in exactly the correct Belsize street, though I’ve tried hard to get them correct. But many of these streets are lined with very similar houses by the same developer – or rather they fall into two groups, the stucco and the later red-brick.

Belsize Park, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-61-positive_2400
Belsize Park, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-61

As my previous post Hampstead & Belsize 1988 stated, the older houses in the area from the 1860s which feature in this post were stucco, built by Daniel Tidey who went bust in 1870, when development in the 1870s was largely in red brick by William Willett.

Belsize Square, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-63-positive_2400
Belsize Square, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-63

I liked the Ladies bicycle parked at the bottom of the stairs, its wheels contrasting with the rectangular columns at the gate and base of the steps. It seemed a suitably old-fashioned steed, with caliper brakes and a wicked basket, held by a rather flimsy looking lock to the rail at the bottom of the steps. It was also a tonal contrast, although actually a rather rusty red colour. I also took a colour picture from an almost identical viewpoint which works well, with the green of the vegetation and some attractive muted colours on some of the doors.

Belsize Square, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-65-positive_2400
Belsize Square, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-65

The backs of these houses have an unusual rounded bay extending from basement to roof.

Belsize Park, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-53-positive_2400
Belsize Park, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-53

A grand set of steps up to the front door, now with three bells – most of these large properties have now been converted to flats. The tiles here are breaking up and a small area at right is now filled with flowers. There are bootscrapers at both side, probably rather more necessary in the days of horse-drawn traffic than now.

Belsize Park Gdns, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-56
Belsize Park Gdns, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-56

Two different framings of the same profusely growing plant – I think a false castor oil plant – and I can’t decide which I prefer. The leaves were beautifully lustrous dark green.

Belsize Park Gdns, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-32-positive_2400
Belsize Park Gdns, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-32

It is a beautiful plant, and has flowers and produces black seeds, but unlike the true castor oil plant it vaguely resembles, the seeds of Fatsia japonica are I think not particularly toxic.

Belsize Grove, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-33-positive_2400
Belsize Grove, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7m-33

The iron-work on this house is perhaps a little too much for my taste, both over-intricate and somehow too fat looking. I think it may now be rather more hidden by vegetation than when I made this picture around 33 years ago.

This was the last picture I made on this walk, probably as I made my way to Belsize Park Underground station on my way home.


FlickrFacebookMy London DiaryHull PhotosLea ValleyParis

London’s Industrial HeritageLondon Photos

All photographs on this page are copyright © Peter Marshall. Contact me to buy prints or licence to reproduce.


Hampstead & Belsize 1988

Thursday, December 30th, 2021

Heath St, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-26-positive_2400
Heath St, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-26

Hampstead & Belsize 1988 These pictures are from the second part of a lengthy walk from Swiss Cottage. They start with a long section through Hampstead and on to Hampstead Heath, in which I took relatively few pictures.

Looking at my contact sheets I can trace my route down Hampstead High St and Rosslyn Hill along Pond St to South End Green and then north to Hampstead Ponds, where I probably sat to eat my sandwiches before taking a look at South Hill Park Gardens, going down Keats Grove past Keats House, then down past St John’s on Downshire Hill and across Rosslyn Hill and along Thurlow Rd to Lyndhurst Terrace and to Lyndhurst Rd.

But although there is nothing wrong with the pictures I took on that eaction of the walk, none of them excited my attention enough for me to mark them up for digitisation and putting them on-line – and the sequence of over 20 frames is one of the longest gaps in making my on-line albums. Perhaps I should add a few more to the album.

Lyndhurst Rd, Eldon Grove, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7l-44-positive_2400
Lyndhurst Rd, Eldon Grove, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7l-44

This unusual building on the corner of Lyndhurst Road and Eldon Grove has its own street name, Tower Close. There appear to be five properties here, each valued at between £2.4m and £3.69m. I think it was probably fairly recently built when I photographed it in 1988 and I found it both unusual and unusually ugly; my picture is far too kind.

Girl Guides, Girl Scouts, World Centre,  Lyndhurst Rd, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7l-46
Girl Guides, Girl Scouts, World Centre, Lyndhurst Rd, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7l-46

Olave House moved here in 1984. Previously the building had been Rosslyn Lodge, once home to the Earl of Rosslyn, and was converted into offices for the Girl Guides. The west wing of the house had been demolished and a new building at the west of the site was opened as a Guide hostel and conference centre, Pax Lodge, in 1991.

Rosslyn Lodge, a small villa, according to the Victoria County History, “was rebuilt, probably between 1799 and 1802, and was described in 1808 as new, with four bedrooms, a double coach house, and gardener’s house.” In the First World War was loaned by its owner to became the Rosslyn Lodge Auxiliary Military Hospital, which closed in 1919. Later it became a nurses home.

Hunters Lodge, Belsize Lane, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7l-33-positive_2400
Hunters Lodge, Belsize Lane, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7l-33

The Grade II listing text describes this tersely as “Detached cottage ornee. c1810. By Joseph Parkinson. For William Tate. Stucco.” though it goes on to give rather more detail.

It concludes with a historical note from the Camden History Society “William Tate, merchant, was a lessee of the Baltic merchant George Todd who acquired a large piece of Belsize Park in 1808. Parkinson exhibited the designs for Langwathby, as it was then known, at the Royal Academy in 1810.” Langwathby is a small village in Cumbria on the River Eden around 5 miles north east of Penrith, and was probably the birthplace of William Tate.

Belsize Crescent, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7l-22-positive_2400
Belsize Crescent, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7l-22

Belsize Crescent according again to the Victoria County History, was constructed as Prince Consort Road in 1865 and was sublet by Daniel Tidey to another builder, William Willett in 1869. Before Tidey went bust in 1870 he had built over 250 houses in Belsize Park. After 1870 Willett was the main builder in the area, building houses in Belsize Avenue, Lyndhurst Gardens and Wedderburn Road.

Belsize Crescent, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7l-23-positive_2400
Belsize Crescent, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7l-23

Tidey had built houses in Italianate stucco, but Willett’s were in red brick, and again according to the VCH “were solidly constructed and set a new artistic standard for speculative architecture… they were red-brick and varied in design, many of them by the Willetts’ own architects Harry B. Measures and, after 1891, Amos Faulkner.”

Belsize Lane, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7l-26-positive_2400
Belsize Lane, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7l-26

William Willett’s son, also William Willett and like his father a builder, is the man you have to thank or curse for ‘Summer Time’ introduced by the Summer Time Act 1916. It had been suggested by others many years before but it was thanks to his campaigning it became law the year following his death.

Probably he wanted to get more hours of work out his builders at a time when building work was reliant on daylight with little or no artificial lighting. Fortunately we got a simpler version than his earlier proposal which would have seen us moving the clocks on four Sundays in both April and October by 20 minute steps – giving a total of 80 minutes change and doubtless massive confusion.

My walk will continue in a later post.


Click on any of the images above and you will be taken to a larger version in my album 1988 London Pictures from where you can browse the album.


FlickrFacebookMy London DiaryHull PhotosLea ValleyParis

London’s Industrial HeritageLondon Photos

All photographs on this page are copyright © Peter Marshall. Contact me to buy prints or licence to reproduce.


Around Swiss Cottage 1988

Wednesday, December 29th, 2021

Sigmund Freud, sculpture, Oscar Nemon, Fitzjohn's Avenue, Belsize Lane, South Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7h-61-positive_2400
Sigmund Freud, sculpture, Oscar Nemon, Fitzjohn’s Avenue, Belsize Lane, South Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7h-61

Around Swiss Cottage 1988: Sigmund Freud (1856–1939) escaped from Austria after it was annexed by Nazi Germany and came to London, spending his final year until his death in the house in Maresfield Gardens which now houses the Freud Museum. Croatian sculptor Oscar Nemon made three busts of Freud for his 75th birthday in 1931 and visited him in London in 1938 to make a final bust on which the head of this sculpture was based. Funds were later raised for him to create this bronze sculpture which was unveiled in 1970 next to Swiss Cottage Library where I photographed it.

In 1998 it was moved to a more prominent position at the junction of Fitzjohn’s Avenue and Belsize Lane and it was Grade II listed in 2016.

Taplow, Winchester Rd, Swiss Cottage, Camden, 1988 88-7h-63-positive_2400
Taplow, Winchester Rd, Swiss Cottage, Camden, 1988 88-7h-63

The five tower blocks of the Chalcots Estate where built for the London Borough of Camden in 1967-8. Taplow, Burnham, Bray, and Dorney are 23 storeys while Blashford has 19. The land was owned by Eton College and the names come for the area around Eton.

Cladding was added to the towers in 2006 by the same companies that clad Grenfell Tower but using fire-resistant rock-wool. When a fire broke out in a flat in Taplow in 2012 the fire was contained and did not spread and there were no deaths.

Embassy Theatre, Eton Avenue, Swiss Cottage, Camden, London, 1988 88-7k-61-positive_2400
Embassy Theatre, Eton Avenue, Swiss Cottage, Camden, London, 1988 88-7k-61

Originally a stucco double-fronted Italianate Victorian villa, it was converted in 1890 into the Eton Avenue Hall for the Hampstead Conservatoire, a prestigious private music college; Cecil Sharp the great collector of English folk song was its principal from 1896-1905 and composer Arnold Bax one of his pupils.

The building was converted again after the college had closed and opened as the Embassy Theatre in 1928, with a school of acting from 1932. Damaged in the war it reopened in 1945, continuing as a theatre until 1956 when it was sold to the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, now a college of London University.

College Crescent, South Hamnpstead,  Camden, 1988 88-7k-63-positive_2400
College Crescent, South Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-63

College Crescent was built by the Eyre family who were (and are) major landowners in Swiss Cottage and parts of Hampstead, with the first houses built in the late 1840s. Initially it was named as three streets, College Villas Road, College Terrace and College Crescent.

40 College Crescent was not one of the original houses, but was built around 1880 on the site of Abbey Farm Lodge as the family home for Samuel Palmer or Huntley and Palmer’s biscuit firm in Reading. Following his death this area of open space with a drinking fountain and shelter – as its inscription states – “presented to the Borough of Hampstead for the public benefit in memory of the late Samuel Palmer of Northcourt, Hampstead by his widow and family. 1904”. It was Grade II listed in 1993.

St. Thomas More, Roman Catholic, Church, Maresfield Gardens, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-64-positive_2400
St. Thomas More, Roman Catholic, Church, Maresfield Gardens, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-64

In 1938 the Archbishop of Westminster bought Hyme House at 3 Fitzjohn’s Avenue, for some years the studio of successful society portrait painter Philip de László (1869-1937) as the first English home for the Swiss-based Sisters of Mercy of the Holy Cross. The Sisters converted the studio into a church and bought the next two houses on the street to set up a girls school which they ran until 1985, after which it became a hotel.

In 1950 the studio had become too small and a second church was built on the site, but further expansion made this inadequate. The current church, built a restricted site on tennis courts at the back of the house and fronting onto Maresfield Gardens was designed by Gerard Goalen following the Second Vatican Council to maximise participation of the laity in the Mass. It was Grade II listed in 2016.

Netherhall Gardnes, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-42-positive_2400
Netherhall Gardens, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-42

A very rectangular house with a gate made largely of circles, but with the ironwork on the top of the gate reflecting the only non-rectangular feature of the frontage, and carefully positioned on top of it.

The Tower, Fitzjohn's Ave, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-46-positive_2400
The Tower, Fitzjohn’s Ave, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-46

An irresistable Gothic fantasy. Development in this area had been prevented for years after the death of the estate owner Sir Thomas Maryon Wilson in 1821, whose will prevented his sons building on the land, and efforts by his son (confusingly of exactly the same name) to get the will amended came to nothing. When he died, his brother Sir John inherited and was able to make a deal making part of the estate a part of Hampstead Heath and making development possible in other areas.

The Tower, Fitzjohn's Ave, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-32-positive_2400
The Tower, Fitzjohn’s Ave, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-32

Sir John divided the estate in 1873 with his son Sir Spencer Maryon Wilson who developed Priory Road and Fitzjohn’s Avenue from 1875 on, as a wide road with wide pavements linking Swiss Cottage and Hampstead which was described by Harpers Magazine a few years later as “one of the noblest streets in the world”.

The Tower, Fitzjohn's Ave, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-33-positive_2400
The Tower, Fitzjohn’s Ave, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-33

A much quoted Camden History Society article describes the Tower at No 25 as an ornate mansion which is now “a fine example of ‘Disneyland Gothic'”. The building with 25 rooms dates from 1880-1, its architect JT Wimperis, a very prolific Victorian architect for Herbert Fleming Baxter (1839-1905), an extremely wealthy American merchant who was a part of a family with extensive estates in Shropshire. The house has been restored and is now divided into flats. Rather surprisingly it was not Grade II listed until 1999.

My walk will continue in a later post.


Click on any of the pictures to go to a larger version in the album 1988 London Photos, from where you can browse through the album.


FlickrFacebookMy London DiaryHull PhotosLea ValleyParis

London’s Industrial HeritageLondon Photos

All photographs on this page are copyright © Peter Marshall. Contact me to buy prints or licence to reproduce.