Milman's Street

Page 45

Survey of London: Volume 4, Chelsea, Pt II. Originally published by London County Council, London, 1913.

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When Henry, the second Earl of Lincoln, bought the great house (Sir Thomas More's), afterwards Beaufort House, he settled the property on his son-in-law, Sir Arthur Gorges (fn. 1) and his daughter Elizabeth. But while Lincoln lived in the great house, he had another house built for Gorges and his wife close by, just north of Lindsey House. This was known as Gorges House, and is shown by Kip as a typical Elizabethan gabled mansion. The house seems subsequently to have been a school, which became famous under the management of Josias Priest, dancing master. It is called Priest's in Hamilton's map (plate 1). At the end of the 17th century it was bought by Sir William Milman, and in the year 1726 his four nieces leased the property for building "a new row of buildings intended to be called Milman's Row." (fn. 2) These buildings are upon the east side of Milman's Street, and at the north end there used to be a tablet bearing the inscription "Millman Row 1726." They have been much modernised, but the backs of Nos. 21 to 33 retain their old brickwork and no doubt much of the original structure remains.

At the south end of the street on the east side are three brick cottages of two storeys with sash windows in openings intended for casements, and dormer windows in the tiled roof. These cottages appear to date from the middle of the 17th century, and are shown on Hamilton's map, where Milman's Street is a narrow lane inscribed "Way to Little Chelsea." They are now numbered 55, 57 and 59.


  • 1. There is an interesting brass with a group of Sir Arthur Gorges' family in the old church.
  • 2. The above particulars are taken from the very detailed account given by Mr. Randall Davies (Chelsea Old Church, pp. 131–5).