Posts Tagged ‘stucco’

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.


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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.


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Back to Kensington – 1987

Thursday, March 18th, 2021

Iverna Court, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987 87-11e-32-positive_2400
Iverna Court, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987

I returned to Kensington and took a few more pictures in November 1987. In my project on London I liked to go back to walk around areas a second time, often walking along the same streets in the opposite direction or on the opposite side of the streets to perhaps see things I had not noticed on my walk. There were some areas too that I found of more interest that I’d return to every few years, and others that I visited regularly for reasons other than photography, perhaps to visit friends or go to particular shops etc.

Scarsdale Place, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987 87-11e-34-positive_2400
Scarsdale Place, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987

I can’t at this remove remember what took me back to Kensington only a short time after I’d previously walked there. It may have been that there were some pictures I’d taken that I wasn’t entirely happy with, though there were probably plenty I thought that about. Perhaps I had some business not far away, or an exhibition I went to see, and it’s an area not far from where a friend had a studio. But what impresses me now is the variety of the architecture I found there.

Cheniston Lodge, Cheniston Gardens, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987  87-11e-35-positive_2400
Cheniston Lodge, Cheniston Gardens, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987

Cheniston Gardens was given its name by its developers and derives from the spelling of Kensington in the Domesday Book when ‘Chenesitone’ had18 villagers, 7 slaves and one priest. Chenistone Lodge, the single red brick and terracotta Queen Anne building in a sea of stucco was the last building to be completed on the street in 1885. It was on the site of Abingdon House, where in 1874 Archbishop Manning set up a Catholic University College run by Thomas Capel, which was a failure as wealthy Catholics preferred to continue to get special dispensation to send their sons to Oxbridge, and because of Capel’s poor finanacial management, which led to his bankruptcy in 1878. More problems were to follow for him, and the following year Monsignor Capel was found guilty of having sex with three women (one a servant of one of the others); on his appeal to Rome there was no verdict on his guilt or innocence but he was sentenced to continue his career in the Catholic Church in the United States. Abingdon House was sold to the developers in 1879.

Cheniston Lodge was let to a number of tenants in the years up to the First World War and later had two longer term residents, probably as private owners. In October 1940 Kensington Council purchased the freehold for £2000 to use it as an air raid materials store, and after the war it became Kensington Registry Office. It was Grade II listed shortly before they sold it to a developer in 1981 for £250,000 to be converted into offices. In around 2012 it was converted back into a single residence.

St. Sarkis, Armenian Church, Iverna Gardens, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987 87-11e-46-positive_2400
St. Sarkis, Armenian Church, Iverna Gardens, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987

Not far from Cheniston Lodge is the Grade II* listed St. Sarkis Armenian Church in Iverna Gardens which is the only church in the country in the traditional Armenian style, inspired by a 13th century monastery which looks remarkably similar but rather squatter, but it was designed by English architect Arthur Joseph Davis. The building was a gift of the oil baron Calouste Gulbenkian in 1922–23, and conveniently his father had been named after the Armenian St Sarkis the Warrior and it was built as a memorial for his parents, and apparently contains sculptures of his family members inside. Like Cheniston Lodge it was also listed in 1981, possibly as a part of the comprehensive review after developers Trafalgar House demolished the art deco Firestone Tyres building on the Great West Road during the August Bank Holiday in 1980 to prempt its listing the following day.

Baptist Church, Kensington Place, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987  87-11e-61-positive_2400
Baptist Church, Kensington Place, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987

Rather plainer than St Sarkis is Bethesda Baptist Chapel in Kensington Place, suitably austere for ‘strict bapists’.

It was The Chapels Society ‘Chapel of the Month in May 2017, where Dr Jennifer Freeman writes:

The Church in Kensington Place was built in 1866 for baptised believers who subscribe to ‘Restricted Communion’ ( i.e. with communion being exclusively available to professing, baptised Christians), to ‘Particular Redemption’ and to the teachings of the Authorised Version of the Bible, under the oversight of a Pastor.

Apparently the facade is now illuminated: “in the evening delicate floodlighting pinpoints the building“, though when I photographed it there was only a broken light fitting over the door – and I think it had once been for a gas lamp. Inside Dr Freeman describes it as “dignified modest and reverent, in spirit with Baptist thinking.”

Kensington Church St area, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987  87-11e-63-positive_2400
Kensington Church St area, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987

Although at first sight these long Victorian stucco terraces look the same, closer inspection shows significant differences, enough for me to decide that this is not any of the Kensington streets I’ve looked at. But it is number 15 on a street in Kensington – and if you can be sure which street please click on the image to go into it in my Flikr album and write a comment to let me know.

HyperHyper, Kensington High St, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987 87-11e-66-positive_2400
HyperHyper, Kensington High St, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987

I don’t think I had any real reason to revisit Hyper Hyper and photography these leftover caryatids from its previous incarnation as an antiques supermarket as my previous image was I think satisfactory. But when you are in the area and walk past something like this it isn’t easy or even necessary not to indulge in another photograph.

These images are all from page 8 of my Flickr album 1987 London Photos.


All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.


Architectural Icing

Tuesday, November 24th, 2020

Brunswick Gardens, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea 87-10d-35-positive_2400

I suppose my photography is always a catalogue of obsessions, but at times and in particular places this shows more strongly.

Palace Garden Terrace,  Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea 87-10d-43-positive_2400

Most of these pictures were taken in Kensington, with just a couple in Primrose Hill.

Brunswick Gardens, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea 87-10d-32-positive_2400

Photographically there is a certain interest in rendering these essentially white surfaces – as some photographers have found with subjects like white eggs on a white plate.

Inverness Gardens, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea 87-10d-26-positive_2400

But I suppose that there might be more Freudian interpretations of at least some of these pictures.

Inverness Gardens, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea 87-10d-24-positive_2400

London developed hugely in the nineteenth century with stock brick for the workers and stucco for the middle classes, and I still feel something of an outsider in these wealthy areas, although some had become pretty down-at-heel by the 70s and 80s when I was making these pictures.

Inverness Gardens, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea 87-10d-22-positive_2400

Since then, most of them have been tidied up and refurbished, and more divided into flats now often worth rather my than my own outer suburban house.

St Mark's Square, Primrose Hill, Camden, 1987 87-10c-53-positive_2400

There are times I find myself rather despising what appears to be overdone icing on the architectural cake, and looking for something with a little more depth and variation.

Park Village East, Regent's Park Camden, 1987 87-10c-31-positive_2400


Kensington Church St, Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea 87-10c-15-positive_2400

There is something of the fairly tale about these houses and the pictures, and although I had committed myself to photographing all of London I felt a longing to get away from Kensington and back to the real world.



Clicking on any of the pictures above will take you to my Flickr Album 1987 London Photos where you can view larger versions.


All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.