Survey of London: Volume 40, the Grosvenor Estate in Mayfair, Part 2 (The Buildings). Originally published by London County Council, London, 1980.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying and sponsored by English Heritage. All rights reserved.
Nos. 30, 31 and 32
Nos. 30, 31 and 32 are all subsumed in the block of flats generally known as Nos. 105–108 Park Lane, for which see page 280. The original houses here, not built until the late 1750's, lasted well with few external alterations until their demolition in 1930. (fn. 2) They had enjoyed no attached stabling behind because of the presence of Dudley House, but they were good houses, straightforward in plan and uniform in elevation with the ground floors raised five steps above street level. There was a common cornice, and a bandcourse and stringcourse of stone between ground and first storeys (Plate 72a). No. 30, with a bay window and garden towards Hyde Park, was naturally the best of them (Plate 67a). In 1813 the first-floor balcony was extended, probably by P. F. Robinson. (fn. 3) An inventory of 1827 (when a new lease had just come into operation) valued the house at £5,953 with £704 for the furniture of the late Mrs. Earl(e). (fn. 4) In 1866 stucco dressings were applied to the windows on both fronts and extra height was added to the bay towards Park Lane. (fn. 5) No. 31 also received stucco dressings in the same year. It had a bay at the back. (fn. 6) Of the Georgian interior of No. 32 a little can be gleaned from an inventory of 1799, when one of the first-floor rooms boasted a marble chimneypiece 'after the french fashion'. (fn. 7) There were alterations in 1852 and again in 1857, when three small but unauthorized balconies erected along the front were ordered to be removed; it is likely, however, that they remained. (fn. 8)
Occupants include: No. 30, Lieut.-gen. Lord George Beauclerk, son of 1st Duke of St. Albans, 1764–8: his wid., formerly Margaret Bainbridge, 1768–92: her relative, Sarah Bainbridge, 1793–1812. Rev. William Henry Dawnay, latterly 6th Viscount Downe, 1828–46. Lord Edward Arthur Grosvenor, son of 1st Duke of Westminster, 1917–26. No. 31, Lieut.-col. Sir Henry Webster, kt., 1844–7: his wid., 1847–64. Samuel Jones Gee, physician, 1888–1908. No. 32, Sir Charles Hanbury Williams, K.B., M.P., satirical writer and diplomatist, 1758–9. James Johnson, Bishop of Worcester, 1760–8 (later at No. 28). 2nd Baron Bagot, 1800–14. Lady Juliana Dawkins, wid. of Henry Dawkins, M.P. and West Indian nabob, 1815–21. 5th Earl of Essex, 1822–4: his brother-in-law, Richard Ford, author, 1824–8. William Sturges-Bourne, politician, 1841–5. 3rd Earl of Clare, 1852. 2nd Baron Colchester, admiral, 1853–5. Edward W. T. Hamilton, M.P., 1858–68. Dow. Marchioness of Exeter, wid. of 2nd. Marquess, 1869–79. 3rd Marquess of Ormonde, 1881–1919: his wid., 1919–21. Col. Sir Edward Scott Worthington, K.C.V.O., 1935–41.
No. 33 remains, despite much alteration, one of the most important houses in Upper Brook Street (Plate 57, fig. 49: see also fig. 8b in vol. XXXIX). It was originally erected under a sub-lease of 1756 to the mason Edmund Rush (with John Spencer, carpenter, Alexander Rouchead, mason, and William Timbrell, esquire, as parties) and first occupied in 1757. (fn. 9) Little can be said about the house as first built except that it was probably similar to Nos. 30–32 in having the ground floor raised five steps above street level: there was also no stabling at the rear. Following the death of the first occupant the house was acquired in 1767 by John Boyd of Danson, Kent. (fn. 10) Boyd, a powerful City merchant and director of the East India Company, had already built the small country villa of Danson Park to designs by Robert Taylor, and was to enjoy an interest in later houses of Taylor's in Grafton Street. Here too, there can be little doubt that he called in Taylor (to whom the rate collector was referred for payment in 1768 (fn. 11) ) to remodel the house. The work was conceivably done as a small speculation, for in 1769 No. 33 was sold to Sir Henry Hoghton—a transaction witnessed by Taylor. (fn. 12)
In 1767–8, therefore, the house was characteristically transformed by Robert Taylor, with a front similar to that of his No. 35 Lincoln's Inn Fields (1754–5), and a plan exhibiting the generous public spaces and octagonal rooms peculiar to his work. The elevation is still in its lower parts entirely Taylor's. The ample storey heights to the main floors, the arched windows at ground level, the stone balustrading above and the dressings emphasizing the middle window on the first floor are features shared with the house in Lincoln's Inn Fields, but the central doorway and small ground-floor columns are unique to No. 33. Originally, however, the front was terminated above second-floor level with a strong, full-width pediment —a feature discernible on a view of 1807 by J. P. Malcolm. (fn. 13) Inside, Taylor's planning is still apparent despite changes. It was notable chiefly for its disregard of the limitations of space imposed by a plot little more than seventy feet deep. Two thirds of the front was occupied by a handsome entrance hall (Plate 57b), the ceiling carried on Sienna marbled timber columns and vaulted in plaster, with wallhung stone stairs ascending elegantly to one side. Behind on the ground floor was just a single octagonal room. The front room on the first floor is a perfect cube and retains vestiges of its original decoration, having a deep cove above the cornice; until recently there was also a marble fireplace in the French taste which may well have been Taylor's. (fn. c1) The back drawing-room, again octagonal, but now subdivided, shows up well in a sketch by John Buckler of May 1820 (Plate 57c) when it had a decorative ceiling, perhaps dating from Taylor's time and evidently based on the soffit of the Temple of the Sun at Palmyra which Robert Wood had published in 1753.
In 1813 Lady Charlotte Williams-Wynn employed Thomas Cundy I to add a balcony at the back. (fn. 14) At some point in the middle of the century, and certainly by 1876, when the house had assumed its present height, (fn. 15) Taylor's pediment was removed. In 1880, when it was beginning to suffer from neglect the house came into the hands of Holland and Sons, the Mount Street upholsterers. During the next few years they spent over £2,500, and further works were undertaken in 1893. (fn. 16) Yet in 1906 the house was still described as deficient in bedrooms. Further alterations are recorded in 1907, 1926 and 1930, some of them perhaps to remedy the problem of accommodation. (fn. 17) In 1948 the building was partly converted into flats by Richard Seifert, (fn. 18) but at the time of writing (1979) it is being converted back into an undivided house.
Occupants include: Lady Anne Jekyll, 1757–66. John Boyd, merchant, 1767–8. Sir Henry Hoghton, 6th bt., M.P., 1769–94. Lady (Charlotte) Williams-Wynn, wid. of Sir Watkin Williams-Wynn, 4th bt., 1795–1832: their da., Lady Delamere, 1832–52, and after her death, her husband 1st Baron Delamere, 1852–5. 11th Baron Ward, latterly 1st Earl of Dudley, 1856–c. 64. Roger Sinclair Aytoun, M.P., 1864–80. Sir Joseph Savory, bt., M.P., sometime Lord Mayor of London, 1895–1908.
No. 34, like No. 33, was erected under a lease of 1756 to the mason, Edmund Rush. (fn. 19) It is still essentially a Georgian house with a modest two-bay front, originally of brick but now wholly covered with channelled stucco. The ground storey was stuccoed before 1918—perhaps in the early nineteenth century—and the upper storeys after 1930—probably during 'works' in 1933–4. (fn. 20) There is a simple original doorcase of the type formerly also at Nos. 31 and 32, with a flat hood supported on a pair of brackets. Within, there is a confined central staircase, but much of the interior has been 'scraped'. A bay at the back was present from at least 1810, extending through only the first and second storeys. (fn. 21) Little is known of later alterations. The front was 'done up' in 1880–1, and in 1933–4 works to the value of £1,000 were carried out for the Estate by George Trollope and Sons. (fn. 22) A major renovation by Haslemere Estates Limited in 1973–4 led to the addition of accommodation on top and at the rear of the ground floor. (fn. 23)
Occupants include: Dow. Countess of Glasgow, wid. of 3rd Earl, 1776–83 (previously at No. 37). Thomas Brand, sometime M.P., 1791–4: his wid., Gertrude, suo jure Baroness Dacre, 1794–1801. Lady Carteret, wid. of 3rd Baron Carteret, 1852–5. (Sir) Hector William Gavin Mackenzie, physician, latterly kt., 1902–29.
Nos. 35 and 36
Nos. 35 and 36 are externally among the best preserved Georgian houses on the estate, and No. 36 can also boast the survival of many original features inside (Plate 54a, 54b, figs. 50–1: see also Plate 6b, fig. 2f in vol. XXXIX). They were both first sub-leased in 1737 (with Alexander Rouchead, mason, as a consenting party) to Anthony Cross, an obscure mason from West Ham. (fn. 24) Neither house was occupied until 1742, when Cross sold them both to John, sixth Baron Ward. (fn. 25) The Ward family had already in 1737 acquired an interest in other land hereabouts, and in c. 1757 Lord Ward himself was to build the first Dudley House immediately south of Nos. 30–36, on a site which from the first had restricted the depth of all these houses (see page 277). Until then, Ward lived in No. 36 and let No. 35, which was first occupied in about 1746 by the Duchess of Atholl. (fn. 26)
The quality and felicity of the elevations of the two houses hint that an architect may have been involved. They were clearly built as a pair, having entrances at opposite ends. Not much changed except for the later addition of full attic storeys (and possibly also the matching quoins), the fronts incorporate stone string-courses, vermiculated keystones over the windows, and Gibbs surrounds to the doors, before which stood pylons (preserved only at No. 35) to carry the ironwork of an overhead lamp (Plate 54a, 54b). The interior of No. 35 has now been changed, but originally had the early-Georgian arrangement of a front-compartment staircase with a smaller stair behind, and three rooms on each floor. (fn. 21) But No. 36 has not been so much changed, and its eccentricity of plan was perhaps due to Ward's personal desires. The staircase (though now altered to accommodate a lift) is in the same traditional forward position and runs only to the first floor. Yet because of the house's limited depth there is no secondary stair or rear extension, the back of the ground floor being occupied by one grand room extending the full width of the house. The upper floors are therefore served by a toplit stair which occupies part of the space over this room, and their back rooms are correspondingly curtailed. Many of the rooms retain fine original plasterwork to their ceilings, notably those on the first floor and the back room on the ground floor, where the combination of ceiling, doorcases with pediments and pilasters, wall decoration and fireplace, all intact, gives a rich and fine effect. In the compartment of the main staircase, the decorated plaster panels on the upper walls, two hanging reliefs on the wall below, and a portion of the ceiling all survive (figs. 50–1). There are also good fireplaces, some in marble, and much original woodwork in all the main rooms of the house.
Both houses had their first-floor windows lengthened and balconies added in the early nineteenth century. Later came proposals (deriving at No. 35 from the Grosvenor Board) to add a full attic storey to both houses. These were carried out with care and subtlety in 1846 so as to match with the original elevations, at No. 36 by the builder Reading Watts, at No. 35 by John Kelk, who also made enlargements at the back of this house. (fn. 27)
Thereafter the histories of the two houses diverged. In 1907 No. 35 was in a poor state and required modernization. (fn. 28) Little happened for the time being, and 'ghostly happenings' were reported during the occupation of the next tenant, Dr. Ettie Sayer. (fn. 29) On her departure, alterations were made by F. Foxley and Company in 1922 for her successors, Sir William and Lady Jowitt, who in due course installed a mosaic pavement by Boris Anrep. (fn. 26) At No. 36 the drawing-rooms were united in 1902, and the height of the house was further raised during works of 1917. (fn. 30) Apart from the installation of a lift and the colouring of the front, few more recent changes of permanent consequence have occurred.
Occupants include: No. 35, Duchess of Atholl, wife of 2nd Duke, 1746–8: her son-in-law, John Lindsay, 20th Earl of Crawford, 1749. Lieut.-gen. Sir Richard Jones, K.C.B., 1827–34. (Sir) William Jowitt, K.C., M.P., latterly kt., later Earl Jowitt and Lord Chancellor, 1922–42. No. 36, 6th Baron Ward, latterly 1st Viscount Dudley and Ward, 1742–57, 1769–74: his son, 2nd Viscount, 1774–80. Sir Edward Littleton, 4th bt., 1780–1812. 2nd Viscount Harberton, 1827–9: his brother, 3rd Viscount, 1829–31. Lord Douglas, later 12th Earl of Home, 1872. Thomas Ryburn Buchanan, M.P., 1887–9. Sir George Sutherland, kt., 1917–37.
No. 37 was the first house on this side of Upper Brook Street east of Park Lane unconstricted by the site of Dudley House behind, and therefore enjoying a full depth through to King Street Mews (now Culross Street). It is essentially all of 1907–8, though some negligible traces may remain of the original house, built under a lease of 1736 and first occupied in about 1742. (fn. 31) This house received the customary updating with porch and balcony in 1864, but little else is known of it. (fn. 32) In 1907 the contractors Matthews, Rogers and Company applied for a building lease, and a virtual reconstruction under their architect Maurice Hulbert then followed, with a garage in place of the old stables at the back. (fn. 33) The front elevation is an ornamented but dignified composition in Portland stone of five storeys above ground with good ironwork, and the plan shows the ability evidenced by Hulbert in other houses designed by him on the estate.
Occupants include: Lord Mark Kerr, general, son of 1st Marquess of Lothian, 1742–52. 8th Earl of Home, 1753–6. Lady Grosvenor, wid. of Sir Robert Grosvenor, 6th bt., 1757–62. Sir Henry Harpur, 6th bt., 1762–3. Sir William Lee, 4th bt., 1763–5. Lady Cust, wid. of Sir John Cust, 3rd bt., 1771–4. Countess of Glasgow, wid. of 3rd Earl, 1775–6 (later at No. 34). 4th Earl of Selkirk, 1776. (Sir) Lucas Pepys, latterly 1st bt., 1781–1817. Sir Richard Plumptre Glyn, 2nd bt., banker, 1836–63. Sir James Ronald Martin, kt., surgeon, inspector-general of army hospitals, 1865–74. Lady Bannerman, wid. of Sir Alexander Bannerman, 9th bt., 1880–5. William Miller Ord, physician, 1887–1900.
No. 38 is still essentially the house built here and subleased to Isaac Mansfield, plasterer, in 1736, (fn. 34) though the present front elevation is not the original. As a house of restricted frontage (twenty-five feet), it had a staircase between the front and back rooms, which were connected by a lobby (fn. 21) (fig. 3c in vol. XXXIX). Two fireplaces and various internal features (chiefly cornices, doors and skirting-boards) are basically of the 1730's.
Several alterations occurred in the early nineteenth century, perhaps beginning in 1800–1 when the house was empty. (fn. 11) By 1819 the front door had been enlarged and given a fanlight, and the staircase had received a metal balustrade, though for a while it was left in its original position. At the back a ballroom had been added over the stables at what is now No. 28 Culross Street. (fn. 35) Latterly the front had a stucco facing and Italianate window dressings, but these have all been removed (probably in 1931 (fn. 36) ) leaving the façade with its present rather rugged brick appearance. In 1916 the general condition of the house was described as first-rate. (fn. 37)
When the staircase was moved to its present side position does not appear, but it may have happened as late as 1925, when substantial works by W. Hazell and Sons included the rebuilding of the 'back addition'. (fn. 38) Whatever the date, the old staircase seems to have been moved to its new position almost in its entirety. The consequent replanning of rooms was done with respect for the old work, so that most of them, notably a large first-floor drawing-room, are Georgian in point of character if not of date.
Occupants include: Dow. Countess of Delorain, wid. of 3rd Earl, 1741–53, 1773–94. Thomas Barrett Lennard, M.P., 1828–33. Aeneas William Mackintosh, M.P., 1870–1. Marquess of Hamilton, M.P., later 2nd Duke of Abercorn, 1872–7. 6th Baron Plunket, 1927–32.
No. 39, a house of restricted frontage, was rebuilt by the architects Wimperis and Simpson in 1914–15. Its predecessor, first occupied in 1742 and planned with a stair between front and back rooms, was badly damaged by fire in 1861. (fn. 39) The tenant at this time was the well-known paper manufacturer John Dickinson, who frequently held literary parties here, always employing an outside caterer 'as his wife could not cope with any but the simplest housekeeping'. (fn. 40)
In 1913 rebuilding by A. C. F. Hill of F. Foxley and Company to designs supplied by Wimperis and Simpson was sanctioned. The mews premises facing Culross Street having been divided off, a house of some elegance was planned behind a plainish front in Portland stone. A curving staircase debouches at ground level into a spacious hall of full width; beyond comes a bowed room with passages on either flank leading to a single-storey room, bowed this time at both ends and decorated in an Adam taste. In front of the blank wall of the mews building is a small garden with treillage all round. Hill found difficulties in disposing of the house, but in 1919 it was taken by R. O. Hambro, who made minor additions. (fn. 41)
Occupants include: 2nd Viscount Vane, 1742–3. Dow. Countess of Buchan, wid. of 9th Earl, 1746–51. Lady Jane Scott, 1752–79. John Dickinson, paper manufacturer, 1855–69. Ronald Olaf Hambro, banker, 1919–26. 2nd Viscount Leverhulme, 1927–42.
No. 40, though never rebuilt from the foundations, retains almost nothing of the character of the house subleased to John Simmons, carpenter, in 1736. (fn. 42) Three later sets of alterations seem chiefly responsible for this transformation.
'Yesterday', wrote William Beckford in March 1819, 'the Calf ushered into my room, when I least expected it, Sweetness in person [Philip Wyatt, architect son of James Wyatt]—more hirsute, bearded and baboon-like than the fantastic faces one can see on coconuts; very amiable, very thin, pretty poor I don't doubt, but bursting with sublime plans. He has been in Paris and goes back there the day after tomorrow under the orders of a new Fortunate Youth worth £800,000, who bears the illustrious name of Ball, or something of the kind, the heir and bastard of a Lady Hughes, widow of an admiral (despoiler of the Indies) of that name.... He is making a pied-à-terre for the said Fortunate One (who'll be twenty-one in a month or two) in Brook Street for the modest price of £4,000'. (fn. 43) The full name of this child of fortune was Edward Hughes Ball (to which he soon added an extra Hughes), one of the greatest gamblers of his day. On the strength of his intentions he asked for an extended lease through the builder Alexander Robertson (with whom Philip Wyatt and Ball were associated at this time in an offer to rebuild on the north side of Berkeley Square), but the application was rejected. (fn. 44) However by 1823 'a very spacious saloon, intended for a ballroom' had been added 'in the garden'. (fn. 45) This may have been an independent structure or may have occupied the first floor of the stable building, of which the pleasant north elevation with a clock turret survives and doubtless dates from that time (fig. 58 on page 262). In 1825, when Ball-Hughes moved, the asking price was in the region of £12,000, and an auction notice remarked upon 'embellishments and fittings of the most costly description'. (fn. 46)
In 1862 the lease was renewed in exchange for the usual works by Thomas Cundy II, including new cornices, balconies, dressings and a porch. (fn. 47) But accretions at the back gradually earned the house a reputation for being dark and 'overbuilt'. In 1913 it was described as a 'rotten house' and an 'eyesore', despite substantial works over the previous decades for A. G. Schiff. (fn. 48) These works probably took place mainly in 1891–2, when George Trollope and Sons made additions seemingly under the direction of R. Selden Wornum. (fn. 49) In 1906 the Grosvenor Board failed to persuade Schiff to employ Wornum (who was then rebuilding No. 41) to refront the house in stone; all that was then undertaken was the conversion of the stables. (fn. 50) Schiff died shortly after this, and the house seems to have stood empty for about a decade. His executors undertook to spend largely on the house to make it saleable, but found their problems exacerbated by the rebuilding of No. 39. Plans were prepared by Ernest George and Yeates in 1914, but the first firm evidence of alterations occurs only in 1917, when the builder Herman Diamant was engaged on works here. (fn. 51) After brief use by the Royal Air Force in 1918–19, the house reverted to private tenancy in 1921. (fn. 52)
The interior of the house today scarcely explains the gloomy history sketched above. To all intents it is a good Edwardian house, with a spacious central hall and staircase, and a large ballroom of full width at the back. To what extent its appearance is due to the work of Wornum or of George and Yeates is not clear.
Occupants include: Nicholas Herbert, M.P., son of 8th Earl of Pembroke, 1742–75. William Bromley Chester, M.P., 1775–80: his wid., 1780–98. Thomas Master, M.P., 1800–8. Walter Sneyd, M.P., 1809–14. Edward Hughes Ball (latterly Ball-Hughes), dandy, 1818–25. Viscount Barnard, latterly successively Earl of Darlington and 2nd Duke of Cleveland, 1827–42. Sir Robert Monsey Rolfe, latterly Baron Cranworth, Lord Chancellor, 1847–68. 3rd Earl Fortescue, 1870. Lady Ossington, wid. of Viscount Ossington, sometime Speaker of the House of Commons, 1875–89. Capt. Euan Wallace, M.P., 1921–6. Sir Strati Ralli, 2nd bt., Chairman of Orion Insurance Co. Ltd., 1932–7.
No. 41 is a handsome stone-fronted house, completely rebuilt in 1906–7 to designs by R. Selden Wornum. The previous house here, sub-leased in 1736 to John Brown, bricklayer, and Anthony Cross, mason, was substantial. (fn. 53) In 1776 it was the subject of alterations to the value of nearly £1,300, following its purchase by Sir William Bagot. The chief figure in these works, the nature of which is obscure, was the local carpenter and builder George Shakespear, but Kenton Couse valued some of the work and Richard Westmacott the elder carved one chimneypiece of statuary marble. (fn. 1) (fn. 54) One or two surviving chimneypieces may date from this campaign.
The Bagot family long retained the house, but no further changes by them are known. Then in 1851 as a condition for a new lease, Sir Henry Meux and his architect Samuel Beazley were obliged to improve and raise the front in accordance with a drawing by Thomas Cundy II. It was to have the same porch, Ionic pilasters on the upper storeys and arched ground-floor windows as James Ponsford had used a few years before in rebuilding No. 42, but with a stone balustrade, unlike the iron one on that house. Beazley and Meux failed in their objections to this variation, but when John Kelk carried out the works the porch was erected in Caen stone rather than in the more normal Portland. (fn. 55)
In 1906 the house had been empty for some years. Leonard Clow, a stockbroker, applied for terms to rebuild, using R. Selden Wornum as his architect. These were agreed, and Holland and Hannen quickly erected the present house, which has a confident front in a Palladian manner, with arched windows to the ground floor like those of its predecessor and Gibbs surrounds at drawing-room level (Plate 54c). Clow wished to re-use the ironwork of the old stair but this was apparently not done, as the present staircase is of seventeenth-century character. The house was conventionally planned, with double drawing-rooms on the first floor and a large room over the mews building. Clow sold the house without occupying it in 1909 when it fetched £22,000 which, it was calculated, meant a loss to him of £11,000. (fn. 56) Several later alterations are recorded. (fn. 57)
Occupants include: Lady Georgiana Spencer, wid. of Hon. John Spencer, 1747–50 and with her 2nd husband, 2nd Earl Cowper, 1750–61. Thomas Foster, M.P., West Indian nabob, 1762–5. Henry Dawkins, M.P., West Indian nabob, 1765–76. Sir William Bagot, 6th bt., latterly 1st Baron Bagot, 1776–98: his wid., 1798–1820. Marquess of Worcester, later 7th Duke of Beaufort, 1821. 2nd Earl of Clonmell, 1822–38. Sir Gore Ouseley, 1st bt., diplomatist and oriental scholar, 1839–44. Sir Henry Meux, 2nd bt., M.P., brewer, 1845–57. Dow. Countess of Harewood, wid. of 3rd Earl, 1859: her da., Lady Florence Lascelles, 1859–61. Sir Thomas Sebright, 8th bt., 1862. Octavius Edward Coope, M.P., brewer, 1863–86. 1st Baron Ebbisham, sometime Lord Mayor of London, 1939–51.
No. 42 is now a small but ingeniously planned block of flats, erected in 1928–9. The preceding house here, subleased in 1735, (fn. 58) was largely rebuilt in about 1843–4 after the builder James Ponsford had acquired an interest in it. (fn. 59) Ponsford gave the house an effective elevation in stucco with a portico and arched windows to the ground floor, an iron balustrade above and, more individually, Ionic pilasters running through the second and third storeys. In 1862, however, the iron balustrade was replaced by the inexorable Thomas Cundy II with one of Portland stone like that insisted upon at No. 41 (fn. 60) (Plate 54c).
In 1913–14 G. H. Trollope of the builders Trollope and Colls acquired the site for rebuilding and demolished the old house. The idea seems to have been to treat it in connexion with the whole corner block along Park Street (later occupied by Upper Brook Feilde), which Trollope was also to take. But war delayed the outcome and altered these plans. (fn. 61) A design for a very elaborate house planned for this site on its own on behalf of Trollope by Mewès and Davis was published in 1919 but may have been designed earlier (fig. 24c in vol. XXXIX). In 1921 Mewès and Davis revised their design with a more modest plan, but still nothing was done. (fn. 62) Not until 1928–9 when Upper Brook Feilde had been finished did reconstruction occur here, and then it was undertaken by Gee, Walker and Slater. Their architects, T. P. Bennett and Son, cleverly fitted on to a site less than thirty feet wide two sets of consulting rooms at ground level and seventeen service flats above, some facing Upper Brook Street and some Culross Street. Bennett's new front rose to five main storeys above the ground and two in the roof, but was carefully treated in stone (fn. 63) (Plate 49b in vol. XXXIX). Some of the flats met with smart interior treatment, notably one remodelled in about 1934 in an up-to-the-minute manner by Serge Chermayeff, and another undertaken a few years later in a more transient fashion for Mrs. F. J. Wolfe (fn. 64) (Plate 53c: see also Plate 53b in vol. XXXIX).
Occupants include: Anthony Chute, M.P., 1739–47. Lewis Bagot, successively Bishop of Bristol and Norwich, 1782–5. Montagu Burgoyne, politician, 1791–3. Frederick West, son of 2nd Earl De La Warr, 1800–10. Sir Edmund Charles Workman-Macnaghten, 2nd bt., 1845–59. John Neilson Gladstone, M.P., brother of W. E. Gladstone, 1860–2. 5th Lord Braybrooke, 1863–92. (Sir) Francis Henry Champneys, obstetrician, latterly 1st bt., 1894–1914.
Nos. 43–46, together with a group of houses latterly numbered 53–61 (odd) Park Street, have all been replaced with Upper Brook Feilde, a massive block of flats entered from Park Street (see page 258). The originals were all small houses built in about 1734–6. (fn. 65) Alone of the houses facing Upper Brook Street, No. 43 had a plot of full depth. It formed a pair in plan with No. 44 but was largely altered in about 1879–83 by the architect R. Fabian Russell of Osborn and Russell. (fn. 66) At the corner, No. 46 began life as a cheesemonger's shop, and the occupation of the houses in Park Street was also chiefly commercial.
Occupants include: No. 43, Lady Anne Cavendish, 1739–80. Charles Finch, M.P., son of 3rd Earl of Aylesford, 1796–1813. Lady Amelia Pelham, da. of 1st Earl of Chichester, 1814–47. Lady Neeld, ? Lady Caroline Mary Neeld, wife of Joseph Neeld, M.P., and da. of 6th Earl of Shaftesbury, 1852–6. No. 44, Lord George Beauclerk, M.P., son of 1st Duke of St. Albans, later Lieut.-gen., 1743–6, 1748–9. Adm. William Martin, 1747. 3rd Marquess of Lothian, 1750–5. Constantine Phipps, later 1st Baron Mulgrave, 1755–6. Sir Peter Parker, 2nd. bt., capt. R.N., 1813–14: his wid., 1815–37. Lady Wilmot-Horton, wid. of Robert Wilmot-Horton, Governor of Ceylon, 1841–8. 2nd Baron Templemore, 1854. Montagu Stephen Williams, barrister, 1874–8. Woolf Joel, head of Barnato Brothers, 1896–8: his wid., 1898–9 (later at No. 4). No. 45, Lady Mary Katherine Wallingford, wid. of William Knollys, styled Viscount Wallingford, and da. of John Law, the financier, 1757–77. Gen. Henry Wynyard, 1795–1820. Col. Richard Harvey Cooke, 1821–56. Lady Hartland, wid. of 2nd Baron Hartland, 1858–64. Sir Thomas Dick-Lauder, 9th bt., 1870–7.
No. 47, the only house to have survived at the corner of Upper Brook Street and Park Street, now bears little resemblance to its first appearance, external or internal. Built in about 1730–2 under a lease to John Barnes, bricklayer, it was despite its four windows towards Upper Brook Street quite a small house. (fn. 67) From at least 1818 the lessee was James Izzard, bookseller and warehouseman, who at first sub-let the house but then moved in himself. He made alterations in 1829 and for many years occupied the house jointly with No. 78 Park Street behind. (fn. 68) They were separated in about 1876–7, and after this No. 47 several times narrowly escaped being rebuilt. (fn. 69) The elevations are now simply stuccoed and have been so since at least 1895 (Plate 54d). It seems likely that the present featureless interior dates mainly from 1936, when Syrie Maugham carried out a scheme of decoration for a member of the Leveson-Gower family. (fn. 70)
Occupants include: Countess De Goutant, 1810–17. Charles De Blaquiere, ? son of 1st Baron De Blaquiere, 1818–20. Lieut.-col. (Sir) James Lindsay, M.P., son of 24th Earl of Crawford, later maj.-gen. and K.C.M.G., 1851–7. Lawrence Jones, surgeon, 1907–8. Charles Sculthorpe Morris, dental surgeon, 1908–14.
Like No. 47 this small, two-bay house, was built in 1730–2 under a lease to John Barnes, bricklayer. (fn. 71) It has had a stuccoed front since at least 1886. (fn. 72) Between 1733 and 1741 this was the home of Mrs. Mary Pendarves, better known by her later name of Mrs. Delany, whose unorthodox habit of dating her letters from 'Little Brook Street', 'L.B. St.' or just 'Brook Street' has puzzled and misled her later editors. She was the second occupant of No. 48, and lived close to her brother Bernard Granville who soon afterwards came to live at No. 70 Park Street. (fn. 11) Mrs. Pendarves evidently enjoyed the informality of this small house, its tiny but carefully cultivated garden, her two cats 'and a little hopping canary bird, that hangs up in my dressing-room'. The ease with which she could chat to a passer-by through her low-silled front parlour window one June morning in 1734 is still recognisable. Handel, who lived not far away at No. 25 Brook Street, was a friend and a guest at the celebrated party which Mrs. Pendarves held here in April 1734, when he played the harpsichord and accompanied the singers (both professional and amateur). 'I was never so well entertained at an opera' she wrote to her sister. (fn. 73)
Of the house's later history little is known. In 1824 the lease belonged to T. J. Burgoyne, a solicitor of Duke Street with substantial property interests on the estate. (fn. 74) Having escaped its destined rebuilding in 1914, it was modestly extended in 1922 and again in 1930, on the latter occasion over the passage leading to No. 48A, which had recently been built behind the street frontage (fn. 75) (Plate 54d). Most of the interior in its present condition dates from the remodelling in 1930, but the simple wooden staircase is of c. 1800 and the ground-floor front room has old linenfold panelling brought in from elsewhere.
Occupants include: Mrs. Mary Pendarves (later Mrs. Mary Delany), 1733–41. Harriet Myddleton, da. of Richard Myddleton of Chirk Castle, 1809–48: her nephew, Frederick Richard West, M.P., 1848–9.
No. 48A belongs more properly with Culross Street and its garden (see page 260), since it has no frontage to Upper Brook Street and is approached only from a passage between Nos. 48 and 49. It was built in 1926–7 by F. Foxley and Company to designs by Wimperis, Simpson and Guthrie on a site taken out of the original plot of No. 49, as part of the replanning of this district undertaken by the Estate in order to make a garden behind the north side of Culross Street. A small screen wall was erected over the passageway from Upper Brook Street as an afterthought, and extra accommodation was added by Foxleys as early as 1928. (fn. 76) The house is neo-Georgian, in red brick with two bows towards the Culross Street garden.
Nos. 49 and 50
Nos. 49 and 50 now make a handsome pair of stone-fronted Edwardian houses, built by the contractors Matthews, Rogers and Company to designs by their architect Maurice C. Hulbert in 1907–8 after the firm had acquired the leases of the old houses. At the Estate's recommendation, Hulbert consulted the Adam house at No. 20 St. James's Square as a model for his elevations. (fn. 77) In practice this can have served him only as a startingpoint, and apart from the fluted pilasters between the windows and some overall similarities in proportion, the fronts have little in common; some of the detailing, such as the iron balustrading to the area, is closer to designs produced by Hulbert elsewhere on the estate (Plate 54d). It is, however, possible that Hulbert did not work on the houses alone, as another capable firm of architects, Rolfe and Matthews, also had some say in the project. (fn. 78) The plans are spacious, able and conventional, and the interior detailing could be characterized similarly.
The previous No. 49, which had a slightly wider front, had been built in about 1730–1, (fn. 79) but was burnt to the ground in a fire of 1763 which killed several people including the main occupant, Lady Molesworth. The fire was graphically reported by Horace Walpole, who describes how many of the family, servants and guests jumped from the upper storeys for their lives. (fn. 80) Years afterwards, the fire was found to have been started by a servant. (fn. 81) As rebuilt, No. 49 had a central staircase and a small back extension. (fn. 21) Less is known of the old No. 50, also built in about 1730–1. (fn. 82) In 1836 it passed through the hands of the local surveyors and builders R. W. and C. Jearrad and C. S. Duncan, who may have altered it. (fn. 83)
Occupants include: No. 49, Duchess of Bolton, wife of 3rd Duke, 1731–49. 6th Earl of Galloway, 1758. Lady Mary Jenney Molesworth, wid. of 3rd Viscount, 1759–63. James Yorke, latterly successively Bishop of St. David's and of Gloucester, and later of Ely, 1765–82. Lady A. Polwarth, ? da. of 3rd Earl of Marchmont, 1782–96. Lady Heathcote, wid. of Sir Gilbert Heathcote, 3rd bt., 1800–13: their son, Sir Gilbert Heathcote, 4th bt., 1816–20. Lord Ashley, M.P., the philanthropist, later 7th Earl of Shaftesbury, 1835–51. Charles James B. Williams, physician, 1853–75. Sir Baldwyn Leighton, 8th bt., 1877–88. 3rd Baron Annaly, 1889–90. (Sir) George Makins, surgeon, latterly K.C.M.G., 1911–19. Sir James William Ronald Macleay, G.C.M.G., diplomat, 1935–43. No. 50, Dow. Countess of Shaftesbury, wid. of 3rd Earl, 1733–51. Lady Aston, 1753–9. John Robinson, M.P., 1784–6. Lady Head, 1788–1803. William Ralph Cartwright, M.P., 1804–5. Francis Eyre, who in 1814 assumed the title of 6th Earl of Newburgh, 1806–15, 1827. Philip Pusey, M.P., agriculturist, and his wife, Lady Emily Pusey, 1827–35. Joseph William Thrupp, solicitor, 1845–73 (also at No. 55). Maj. Montagu Curzon, son of 1st Earl Howe, 1889–98. (Sir) Arthur Stanley, M.P., son of 16th Earl of Derby, latterly G.B.E., 1909–15: his mother, Dow. Countess of Derby, 1915–22.
No. 51 was rebuilt a little earlier than its western neighbours, in 1905–6. It replaced a good house of about 1730–1 which was of four windows' width and had a frontcompartment staircase. (fn. 84) In 1782 Joseph Bonomi designed a fireplace and perhaps more for William Locke. (fn. 85)
In 1905 the old house was reported to have a poor basement and no bathroom or hot water. The builder John Garlick was therefore allowed to rebuild in 1905–6 to a design by R. G. Hammond, with a high front in stone and a bay window through the main storeys (fn. 86) (Plate 54d).
Occupants include: Arthur Stafford and/or Lady Stafford, 1732–5. John Trevor, later 3rd Baron Trevor, judge, 1735–9: his cousin, John Trevor, M.P., 1741–3. William Mitchell, M.P., 1743–5: his wid., 1745–50. Nathaniel Curzon, M.P., later successively 5th bt., and 1st Baron Scarsdale, 1751–3. Sir Thomas Clarges, 2nd bt., 1753: his da.-in-law, Mrs. Ann Clarges, 1755–80. Dow. Countess of Tankerville, wid. of 3rd Earl, 1785–91. Col. Henry Cartwright, later M.P., 1854–5. Lady Poltimore, wid. of 1st Baron, 1860–3. Sir William Frankland, 9th bt., 1879–82. 6th Marquess of Waterford, 1908–11: his wid., 1911/16. Brazilian Legation, 1917–20. Greek Legation/Embassy, 1921-present.
No. 52 is a small house which at first had only a somewhat shallow site. It was sub-leased to Edward Cock, carpenter, in 1730, (fn. 87) and in essence retains its original, conventional plan. In 1820 the stables behind were added to the house, (fn. 88) but this site is now occupied by No. 4 Blackburne's Mews. The front of the house is still of the original brick with the addition of an extra storey (Plate 54d), but much of the interior (which is modest in character) appears to date from a campaign of alterations carried out in 1901–2 for the speculator William Tebb to designs by Zephaniah King and Son. (fn. 89)
Occupants include: (Sir) George Farrant, latterly kt., 1800–31 (also at No. 53). Rear.-adm. Henry Stuart, 1835–40. Countess Ouronsoff, 1913–14. Brig. (later maj.)-gen. (Sir) Edward Northey, latterly K.C.M.G., 1916–19. Countess de Bosdari, 1935–6.
No. 53, built in about 1730 under a sub-lease granted to John Barnes, bricklayer, was for many years a public house and was first occupied by Daniel Fitzpatrick, victualler. (fn. 90) At first called the Cock and Bottle, it became known as the Cambridge Arms in its last years as a public house. By 1822 it was in the hands of (Sir) George Farrant of No. 52, who had already made alterations but probably did not convert it into a private residence until 1826–7, after which he seems briefly to have occupied the two houses together. (fn. 91) The appearance of No. 53 today (Plate 54d) suggests that Farrant's work amounted essentially to a rebuilding.
In the early twentieth century the local builders Jonathan Andrews and Sons acquired the house and made alterations in 1904. (fn. 92) They were thinking of rebuilding it in 1918 but this did not occur, and after further minor works the house was converted into flats by Richard Seifert in 1947. (fn. 93)
Occupants include: Sir George Farrant, kt., 1827–44 (also at No. 52). Sir Henry Lytton Earle Bulwer, G.C.B., M.P., diplomatist, later Baron Dalling and Bulwer, 1869–72. William Chappell, musical antiquary, 1888. Charles Singer, physician, 1911–12.
Nos. 54–56 no longer exist, having been demolished in c. 1957; their site is now covered by the flank of the United States Embassy. Two of the houses, however, were of considerable interest, No. 54 for its architectural quality, No. 56 for its association with the great political economist David Ricardo. But neither house formed part of the original development here.
No. 54, together with No. 55, was first leased in 1729. (fn. 94) They were shallow houses, interlocking in plan and backing on to the stables of No. 25 Grosvenor Square. By the time of its demolition in 1912 the old No. 54, which was the wider of the two with four windows on to the street, had acquired a largely Victorian external appearance. It was then replaced by a new and narrower but deeper house designed by Ernest George and Yeates for Sir Robert W. Burnet, physician. (fn. 95) Practically the last example of George's adventurous vein of individualistic town-house architecture, this restrained design still owed much to the Low Countries for inspiration. The front, unusual at its date in Upper Brook Street in eschewing stone in favour of two tones of brick, displayed tiers of transomed and leaded windows in wooden frames fixed flush with the brickwork. There was a thin stone porch, an iron first-floor balcony and a high-pitched pediment to the gable, enriched with large-scale egg-and-dart (Plate 55b: see also fig. 26b in vol. XXXIX). The return elevation to Blackburne's Mews was informal but carefully composed, while the corner was marked by stone quoins. The planning seems to have been quite conventional.
Occupants include: Lady Coghill, wid. of Sir John Coghill, 1st bt., 1811–15. Mrs. Whyte-Melville, wid. of George Whyte-Melville, novelist and poet, 1889–91. Sir Robert Burnet, kt., physician, 1913–18. Lady Knightley, wid. of Sir Charles Valentine Knightley, 5th bt., 1933–4.
No. 55, again originally of 1729, was a house of narrow frontage augmented when its neighbour was rebuilt in 1912 by the crude expedient of leaving a few feet of the front of the old No. 54 and adding it to the house (Plate 55b). Its elevation was not regularized until 1927, when internal and external alterations were made to designs by W. T. Curtis, and the front door was moved. (fn. 96) The depth of No. 55 had also previously been increased, probably in 1873–4, when the house acquired part of the stabling behind. (fn. 97) In 1897 some stained glass by Morris and Company was installed in the hall and stairs of this house. (fn. 98)
Occupants include: Joseph William Thrupp, solicitor, 1845–69 (also at No. 50). Dow. Countess of Limerick, wid. of 2nd Earl, 1875. William Talbot, son of 3rd Lord Talbot of Malahide, 1881: his wid., 1881–3. 2nd Baron Gerard, 1889. (Sir) Humphry Rolleston, physician, latterly bt., 1901–25. (Sir) Harold Graham Hodgson, radiologist, later K.C.V.O., 1930–42.
No. 56 was built on what was originally an independent plot some forty-one feet in frontage and thirty-three in depth, with a narrow passage at the back from Blackburne's Mews. This was leased to John Green, joiner, in 1729 (fn. 99) but the building he erected seems never to have been occupied independently, being absorbed into No. 25 Grosvenor Square (see page 142). However, major changes that occurred at that house led in c. 1804–6 to the separation of this plot together with other of its rear premises, and their sale for £3,750 to the tenant of No. 24 Grosvenor Square, Lord Henniker. (fn. 100) In 1810 Henniker disposed of most of this land, excepting the stabling towards Blackburne's Mews, to Charles Mayor, an up-and-coming builder involved in development on the Foundling Hospital estate in Bloomsbury. (fn. 101) Mayor planned to build a new and handsome independent house here facing Upper Brook Street. Whether, as seems probable, it was from the start designed by S. P. Cockerell, the Foundling Hospital estate's surveyor, does not emerge. But Cockerell was certainly involved at the end of 1811, by which time Mayor had sold the completed house to David Ricardo for £11,550, a sum characterized by the economist himself as 'enormous'. (fn. 102) In a letter to James Mill, Ricardo blamed this extravagance on his family: 'I soon found that my opposition abated in the same ratio as the wishes of those about me increased, and in a few days I was completely vanquished. In short the house is mine.' (fn. 103)
Ricardo moved in from his house at Mile End in spring 1812, but soon had further cause to regret the purchase. A year or two later Mayor sank into spectacular bankruptcy after over-extending himself on the Crown Estate in Park Crescent, and the new No. 56 began to give trouble. 'I hear strange tidings of your house in Brook Street tumbling about your ears', wrote a friend. (fn. 104) A large crack had appeared in the drawing-room ceiling; the structure turned out to be defective in many places, and Cockerell counselled extensive repairs. Early in 1816 Ricardo was wringing his hands over Mayor's knavery and his architect's incompetence: 'What must I think of Mr. Cockerell whom I paid to examine it? What compensation can he make me for his shameful neglect? The workmen have been in it ever since July, and it will cost me several thousand Pounds. We go into it on tuesday next but are obliged to be satisfied with the newly plaistered walls, unpapered and unpainted, or we must not have gone into it this season.' (fn. 105) Even then Ricardo's misfortunes with his town house were not yet over. In 1822 he employed the contractor David Jonathan of Regent Street to extend the separate stables which Mayor had acquired or made for the house in Lees Mews. In the course of the works, two children were killed by a pile of bricks. (fn. 106)
Despite these trials, Ricardo's house was a handsome example of the type of street architecture then fashionable on the Foundling Hospital estate, and at first possessed the highest rating of any house in Upper Brook Street. (fn. 11) It was broadly proportioned but plain in elevation, having a stuccoed and channelled ground floor, a Doric porch, and geometrical ironwork to the first-floor balcony (fig. 52). In plan there were just two rooms on each of the main floors; Ricardo's library, the source of much of his late writing, was an oblong room at the back on the ground floor, overlooking a small garden behind No. 25 Grosvenor Square. There were probably good fireplaces, some of which were stolen in 1934. (fn. 107) After Ricardo's death in 1823 his widow disposed of the house, and it was fashionably occupied until its restoration and conversion into flats in 1949, following bomb damage. (fn. 108) At some stage, perhaps in 1870 when certain alterations were made, dressings were added to the windows on the front and an extra window was inserted at second-floor level. (fn. 109)
Occupants include: David Ricardo, economist, 1812–23: his wid., 1823–4. 4th Earl of Wicklow, 1825–30. 1st Baron Manners, Lord Chancellor of Ireland, 1830–42: his son, 2nd Baron, 1842–64. David Robertson, M.P., latterly Baron Marjoribanks, 1865–73: his wid., 1873–89. Clarence Charles Hatry, financier, 1922–5. Sir Hugo Cunliffe-Owen, 1st bt., President of British-American Tobacco Co. Ltd., 1928–32.