Survey of London: Volume 13, St Margaret, Westminster, Part II: Whitehall I. Originally published by London County Council, London, 1930.
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CHAPTER 13: LXX—NO. 6 WHITEHALL GARDENS
The property is the freehold of the Crown, and is used for the purposes of the Ministry of Transport.
The circumstances in which Alexander Cray Grant received the promise of a Crwon lease of the ground on which Nos. 5 and 6 Whitehall Gardens were afterwards built, have been narrated (see p. 184). On 27th November, 1824, Grant obtained a lease (fn. n1) of the northern portion of the ground, abutting east on the Thames, north on the premises of the Earl of Pembroke, and south on ground on part of which a house had been erected and leased "to the Rt Honble Sir Chas. Long, as the nominee of the said Sir Alexander Cray Grant." The measurements were: 48¾ feet at the west end, "thence running eastward along the south side thereof 57 feet … to a break there southward of 9 inches … and thence running further eastward 100 feet & 1 inch," 48 feet 8 inches at the east end, "thence running westward along the north side thereof 70 feet & 9 inches … to a break there southward of 6 feet & 2 inches … and thence running again westward on an irregular line 86 feet & 6 inches." A house had already been built "with the low offices covered with lead flats on the north side."
The plan here repro duced shows the premises as originally built in conjunction with No. 5.
They comprise three storeys over a basement and an attic in a mansard roof. The exterior to the two lower storeys has a stone face with brick above.
Alterations to the staircase and other internal arrangements have been carried out since the house was built. Certain decorations were also added by the latest occupant (Mr. Agnew), but these have not been improved by the utilisation of the premises for official purposes.
Plates Nos. 89, 91 and 92 show the house while still in private occupation.
Condition of Repair.
The occupiers of the house as given by directories until the time when it was utilised for official purposes were:
|1825–28||Sir Alexander Cray Grant|
|1861–1893||Sir Walter Charles James (Lord Northbourne)|
|1909–15||William Lockett Agnew|
Sir Alexander Cray Grant was born in 1782. In 1810–11 he was a member of the Colonial Assembly of Jamaica. In 1812 he entered Parliament as member for Tregony, and was for many years a prominent member of the House. He succeeded his father in the baronetcy in 1825. From 1826 to 1832 Grant was chairman of committees of the whole house, and in 1834–5 was a member of the Indian Board of Control. On resigning his seat in 1843, he was appointed a commissioner for auditing the public accounts, and held the position until his death in 1854.
On 15th July, 1828, Grant sold the house in Whitehall Gardens to Cuthbert Ellison, "of Hebburn Hall … Durham, Esq." (fn. n2) Ellison (M.P. for Newcastle in 1812, 1818, and 1820, High Sheriff of Northumberland 1808, and of Durham 1827), died at Whitehall Gardens, aged 76, on 13th June, 1860.
He was succeeded in the occupancy of the house by his son-in-law, Sir Walter Charles James (M.P. for Hull 1837–47, High Sheriff of Kent 1855), who was raised to the peerage in 1884 as Baron Northbourne. He died in 1893. His son, the 2nd Baron (d. 1923), also resided in the house for some years.
In the Council's Collection Are:—
(fn. n3) Plan of Mr. Grant's new building (copy of plan in possession of H.M. Commissioners
of Crown Lands).
(fn. n3) Ground and first-floor plans (copy of plan in possession of H.M. Office of Works).
(fn. n3) General exterior, west front (photograph).
(fn. n3) General exterior, east front (1912) (photograph).
General exterior, east front (1929) (photograph).
View of statuette in garden (photograph).
View of entrance hall (photograph).
Corridor on first floor (photograph).
Landing on first floor (photograph).
(fn. n3) Lantern light to staircase (photograph).
(fn. n3) Library, mantelpiece (photograph).
Library, general view (photograph).
(fn. n3) Dining room, general view (photograph).
Dining-room, another view (photograph).
Detail of plaster ceiling (photograph).
Drawing-room, general view (photograph).
(fn. n3) Drawing-room, chimney breast (photograph).
Drawing-room, bow window (photograph).
Boudoir (first-floor front-room) (photograph).
Boudoir, detail of decorative cove to ceiling (photograph).
View of mantelpiece, west bedroom (photograph).
View of mantelpiece, east bedroom (photograph).