Survey of London: Volume 40, the Grosvenor Estate in Mayfair, Part 2 (The Buildings). Originally published by London County Council, London, 1980.
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This is the second and final part of the Survey of London's study of the Grosvenor Estate in Mayfair. Its predecessor, volume XXXIX, published in 1977, contained a general account of the history and architecture of the estate, and the present companion volume provides a detailed description of the individual buildings there.
Mayfair is no longer primarily residential but, with the exception of a few examples of modern development, a surprisingly large number of houses have been retained and the architectural character of the area has changed less in recent years than is the case in many other districts of London. Historically the most important change was perhaps the rebuilding of Grosvenor Square beginning in the late 1920s. Great houses like Grosvenor House and Derby House have gone, but a large number of important and interesting houses, such as 66 Brook Street, Bourdon House in Davies Street, 11 and 12 North Audley Street, Dudley House in Park Lane and 74 and 75 South Audley Street, to name but a few of the survivors, remain and usefully serve a variety of purposes. A rare and distinctive example of continuity of usage is provided by Goode's China Shop in South Audley Street, which has remained in the same ownership and retained its character for over a century.
The production of this volume, like its predecessor, has been made possible through the kindness of the Grosvenor Estate Trustees in allowing the Council's Survey of London staff access to their historical records at the Grosvenor Office. The Council is most grateful to them and to their staff, and in particular to Mr. Guy Acloque, for their indispensable assistance, which has extended over a number of years.
Since the completion of this volume the Trustees have deposited most of their records on permanent loan at Westminster City Library in Buckingham Palace Road, where they will be available for general use.
On behalf of the Council I would also like to thank all those people who have provided help in the preparation of this study. Many of their names are recorded in the List of Acknowledgments, and the work of the Survey depends to a very considerable extent upon their kind co-operation. It has also greatly benefited from the counsel given by my colleagues, the advisory members of the Historic Buildings Committee—Sir John Betjeman, Sir Hugh Casson, Sir Osbert Lancaster, Mr. Ian L. Phillips, Lord Reilly and Sir John Summerson—who despite many other commitments have given their invaluable time and knowledge at numerous meetings of the Committee. I also wish to express my gratitude to the elected members of the Committee for all their work in the maintenance and study of the historic fabric of London.
This volume has been prepared under the General Editorship of Dr. F. H. W. Sheppard. He and Mr. P. A. Bezodis, Deputy Editor, and Mr. J. Greenacombe and Mr. V. R. Belcher, Assistant Editors (all of the Director General's Department) wrote the greater part of the text, edited all the material and made the index. The typing was done by Mrs. B. Crawford, who also assisted with proof reading. All contributions made by the staff of the Historic Buildings Division of the Department of Architecture and Civic Design were produced under the aegis of Mr. Ashley Barker, Surveyor of Historic Buildings. These contributions include portions of the text written by Mr. Andrew Saint, the Architectural Editor, and latterly by Dr. J. M. Robinson, both of whom presided successively over the photographic and drawing programmes. The principal photographers, all of the Council's Photographic Unit, were Mr. Alan Turner (whose work, prior to his retirement in 1978, has also appeared in several previous volumes of the Survey), Mr. Leonard Cross, Mr. Ken Price and Mr. John Neligan. The drawings were made in the Historic Buildings Division under the general guidance of Mr. John Sambrook, and the authorship of each individual drawing is acknowledged in the List of Figures.
I warmly commend this volume which, with its predecessor, comprises a unique record covering an important private urban estate which has remained in the same family ownership for the last three hundred years.