A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 9, Hampstead, Paddington. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1989.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
Bayswater has come to be the name for the whole of the former Paddington metropolitan borough south of the railway. (fn. 1) The area described below, however, is the south-western part of Paddington, from the Kensington boundary eastward to Lancaster Gate Terrace and Eastbourne Terrace and from Bayswater Road northward to Bishop's Bridge Road and Westbourne Grove. It includes the two Lancaster Gate wards of 1901, besides a small part of Church ward along Eastbourne Terrace. (fn. 2) The districts to the east and north are treated separately, under Tyburnia and Westbourne green.
Bayard's Watering Place, recorded in 1380, (fn. 3) was where the stream later called the Bayswater rivulet or Westbourne passed under the Uxbridge road. The name presumably denoted a place where horses were refreshed, either from the stream itself or from a spring such as the one in Conduit field which from 1439 supplied the City with water. (fn. 4) There were several variations of the name, (fn. 5) Bayswatering being common in the 18th century, (fn. 6) although the form Bayswater occurred as early as 1659. (fn. 7)
Seventeenth-century Bayswater was a small hamlet, whose inhabitants were presumably assessed with those of Westbourne green. (fn. 8) Robert Hilliard had a dwelling house at Bayard's Watering by 1646, together with 6 a. in the common fields of Westbourne. (fn. 9) In 1710 Robert Pollard held two houses called Bayard's Watering Place, with outbuildings and 6 a. in Westbourne common fields, once occupied by Alexander Bond; he also held the new brick house called the Bell, formerly the King's Head and once occupied by Edward Hilliard, with its stable which had been converted into a little house near the road. (fn. 10) Nearby in 1730 there was at least one other inn, the Saracen's Head, perhaps at other times called the Swan. (fn. 11) To the west were the buildings of Upton farm, well back from the highway at the end of a tree-lined lane, which were bought in 1733 by Lord Craven. (fn. 12) In 1746 there were only two buildings near the road east of the Bayswater rivulet and three on the west side. The lane still led through fields, to Lord Craven's pest house, east of which were two more buildings, presumably barns, beside the rivulet. (fn. 13) The location in 1742 was 'intended to be called Craven Hill'. (fn. 14)
To the west the Oxford Arms stood alone by 1729 at the east corner of the lane leading from the Uxbridge road to Westbourne green. A gravel pit bordered the lane north of the inn, (fn. 15) which was called the Black Lion by 1751 and was then considered to be at Bayswater, as was the Crown farther east. (fn. 16)
Still farther west, a large settlement on both sides of the Uxbridge road was known from the 17th until the 19th century as Kensington Gravel Pits. It may have preceded the discovery of gravel and lay mostly in Kensington, along the stretch of road which came to be known as Netting Hill Gate. (fn. 17) Part lay in Paddington, however, including a new brick house held by Peter Warren, a London carpenter, in 1709. (fn. 18) Some half a dozen buildings in Paddington stood close to the boundary in 1746, by the Uxbridge road and at the entrance to a lane which cut north-eastward to meet Westbourne Green (later Black Lion) Lane. Between Westbourne Green Lane and Kensington Gravel Pits, Shaftesbury House stood alone by the main road. (fn. 19)
Bayswater was one of four new rating divisions of the parish in 1773, when, however, most of its 56 properties were probably at Westbourne green. (fn. 20) Speculative building along the Uxbridge road was started by John Elkins, a bricklayer or brickmaker of South Street, St. George's, Hanover Square, to whom Benjamin Crompton in 1776 granted 91-year leases of 5 a. and of the adjoining Black Lion. (fn. 21) Elkins, who also acquired land near Paddington green, (fn. 22) from 1779 subleased several parcels of Black Lion field with road frontages of 18 ft., for 'double brick' houses which came to be known as Elkins's Row. (fn. 23) It was only a short row in 1790, when a Bayswater coffee house also existed. There were apparently no other new buildings between Bayard's Watering Place and Kensington Gravel Pits. (fn. 24) Undeveloped plots were conveyed by Elkins's executors to William Philpot in 1792. (fn. 25) Bayswater was only a 'small hamlet' in 1807, when it was noted for its tea gardens and water supply, and for the lying-in hospital (soon known as Queen Charlotte's) farther east. (fn. 26)
Widespread speculative building was carried out by Edward Orme, a print seller of Bond Street, who in 1809 acquired the former Bell at Bayswater, called Elms House, with two houses behind it, formerly a single house, (fn. 27) and also Bayswater tea gardens. (fn. 28) Meanwhile dwellings had replaced the pest house at Craven Hill, where Orme bought the lease of a house in 1811. (fn. 29) Soon he also held much property farther west along the Uxbridge road, where he may first have made money from gravel. (fn. 30) He paid for Bayswater chapel in 1818, to serve houses which he had presumably erected in Petersburgh (later St. Petersburgh) Place, leading north from the Uxbridge road to a 'street or place called Moscow Cottages', itself linked to Black Lion Lane by a road soon called Moscow Road. (fn. 31) The two new roads were said to commemorate Orme's business dealings with Russia (fn. 32) but may have been named merely in honour of Tsar Alexander I's visit to England in 1814. Orme Square, whose south side was formed by the Uxbridge road, was built between 1823, when land was bought east of Petersburgh Place, and 1826. (fn. 33) Edward Orme (d. 1848) granted leases of two new houses in Moscow Road in 1826 and himself lived from c. 1829 in Fitzroy Square. (fn. 34) He was probably responsible for building at Orme's green in Harrow Road (fn. 35) and, with Francis Orme, had filled in some spaces in Moscow Road in 1839. (fn. 36) Edward in 1842 owned all the houses in Porchester Gardens and St. Petersburgh Place. (fn. 37) Many leases, both of older houses and of new ones, as in Lancaster Terrace, Lancaster Gate, and St. Leonard's Terrace, Blomfield Road, were later sold by Francis Orme. (fn. 38)
Another builder in the south-western corner of the parish was John Bark, described at first as a coal merchant, who in 1818 lived in Marylebone and by 1821 in Bayswater Hill, where new houses faced the Uxbridge road west of Shaftesbury House. In 1818 Bark took a 98-year building lease of the Paddington Estate's Six-Acre field, 'lately in part dug out for making bricks', stretching from the Uxbridge road to Moscow Road, where in 1821 he was granted leases on small houses in Caroline Place and Poplar Place. (fn. 39) Farther east, beyond Elkins's Row, which was also known as Bayswater Terrace, (fn. 40) Porchester Terrace had been planned to run northward to Westbourne green by 1823. Single or semi-detached villas in the new road were leased to individuals by the Paddington Estate from 1823, one of the first being to the landscape gardener John Claudius Loudon (1783-1843). (fn. 41) Building along the Uxbridge road continued with four pairs called St. Agnes Villas, first leased in 1824; nos. 1 to 4 were west of the corner with Porchester Terrace, next to Elkins's Row, and nos. 5 to 8 on the east corner. (fn. 42)
By 1828 the main road, facing Kensington Gardens, had been built up between Petersburgh Place and Porchester Terrace. Houses stretched north to Moscow Road, itself nearly completed, although there was open ground near the boundary and between Petersburgh Place and Bark Place. Along the west side of Black Lion Lane there were houses as far as the corner of Moscow Road and more spacious villas, at first called Westbourne Terrace, farther north almost reaching Pickering Place at the southern end of Westbourne green. The east side was still open, apart from a few large houses at the Uxbridge road end, and villas lined Porchester Terrace only as far as the corner of Craven Hill, which itself had cottages only on the north side. Fields survived along the Uxbridge road from St. Agnes Villas to Bayard's Watering Place, whence Elms or Elm Lane led northward, with some houses between it and the stream, along the line of the later Craven Terrace to the east end of Craven Hill. (fn. 43)
Building in the south-west part of the parish thus almost kept pace with the growth of Tyburnia. Although housing spread inwards from the two southern corners of the parish, eventually to meet at Bayard's Watering Place halfway along the Uxbridge road, the movements at first were unrelated. Only part of south-western Paddington belonged to the bishop of London, comprising in 1828 a block stretching from the Uxbridge road east of Bark Place, a larger block along Porchester Terrace to Hall field, and a stretch on the east side of Black Lion Lane. No overall plan was therefore drawn up. The larger houses were not stately terraces overlooking squares and served by mews alleys, as in Tyburnia, but villas with gardens. (fn. 44) The name Bayswater was not at first applied to the south-western corner: Black Lion Lane was described in 1803 as linking Westbourne green with Kensington Gravel Pits, (fn. 45) and Orme Square was 'a northward feeler of the Kensington Palace purlieus'. (fn. 46) By 1830, however, the area around Black Lion Lane was known as Bayswater. (fn. 47)
During the 1830s Victoria Grove (renamed Ossington Street in 1873) (fn. 48) was laid out from the Uxbridge road close to the boundary, on part of Gravel Pit field. A large house at the Moscow Road end was leased in 1831 to the architect Thomas Allason, (fn. 49) surveyor to the neighbouring Ladbroke estate; it was probably the villa, in 2½ a., on which Allason had worked since 1825 and which J. C. Loudon considered unequalled in the suburbs of London. (fn. 50) Seven terraced houses to the south were leased to William Ward, a Marylebone builder, in 1836 and six others in 1841. (fn. 51) Ward also filled a space along the Uxbridge road between Victoria Grove and the boundary with an inn and five shops, nos. 1 to 6 Wellington Terrace. (fn. 52) More villas were built along Porchester Terrace, as far as Hall field, but in 1840 Bayswater had still not been joined to neighbouring districts. There was open land south of Craven Hill, (fn. 53) including the parish's Bread and Cheese lands and land which Joseph Neeld held from the chapter of Westminster, partly in Westbourne common field and partly bordering the Uxbridge road. (fn. 54)
Artistic and literary figures were attracted to a district which was still semi-rural. (fn. 55) In 1834 the poet Sarah Flower Adams (1805-48) moved with her husband to no. 5 Craven Hill, where they were soon followed by the author and politician William Johnson Fox (1786-1864) and his housekeeper the composer Eliza Flower (1803-46), Sarah's sister. There, in her 'snug, out-of-the-world corner', Eliza entertained Thomas Carlyle and others in a literary circle familiar to the young Robert Browning. (fn. 56) The composer Vincent Novello (1781-1861) lived at no. 4, where from 1835 until 1856 the household included his son-in-law and daughter, Charles (1787-1877) and Mary Cowden Clarke (1809-98), the authors. At the Loudons' house in Porchester Terrace, Mary Cowden Clarke met the painters Charles (1799- 1879) and Edward Landseer (1802-73), and John Martin (1789-1854), and the sculptor Joseph Bonomi (1796-1878). At the corner of Black Lion Lane, Ivy Cottage was the home of the engraver Samuel Reynolds (1773-1835) and later of Augustus Egg (1816-63); Egg's guests included the fellow painter William Mulready (1786-1863), (fn. 57) who claimed to have been a lifelong Bayswater resident, and Charles Dickens. Farther west Sir Rowland Hill (1795-1879), inventor of the penny post, lived at no. 1 Orme Square from 1839 until 1842 (fn. 58) and the artist Frederic (later Lord) Leighton at no. 2 from 1860 to 1866. St. Petersburgh House, no. 8 Bayswater Hill, was the home of the conveyancer Lewis Duval (1774-1844) and then of his niece's husband the Vice-Chancellor Sir Charles Hall (1814-83).
By 1840 plans had been made to exploit more of the Paddington Estate as the eastern part of Bayswater, where the future Gloucester, Westbourne, and Eastbourne terraces were to lead to Bishop's Road. (fn. 59) The layout was presumably by George Gutch, whose long avenues contrasted with the interrelated squares and short streets of Cockerell's Tyburnia. Terraces were chosen, rather than villas, perhaps in order to mask the railway. (fn. 60) They were also used, however, in most of the rest of Bayswater: in further building along the former Black Lion Lane, renamed Queen's Road, in most of Inverness and Queensborough terraces, parallel avenues driven north between Queen's Road and Porchester Terrace, in Lancaster Gate, which filled the last gap along the Uxbridge road, around Cleveland Square north of Craven Hill, and around Prince's, Leinster, and Kensington Gardens squares north of Moscow Road. Detached villas were chosen only for the completion of Porchester Terrace as far as Bishop's Road and semi-detached ones only for the northern end of Inverness Terrace and, farther west, around Monmouth Road south of Westbourne Grove. (fn. 61)
During the 1840s and 1850s housing spread steadily. It was the work of several builders, many of them also active in Tyburnia, in the south part of Maida Vale, and in the east part of Westbourne green, where some of Bayswater's long avenues were continued north of Bishop's Road. The grandest street was Westbourne Terrace, begun from the south end c. 1840 and finished 1856-60, whose main builders were William King and William Kingdom. The blocks north of Craven Road were by Kingdom, (fn. 62) who also built most of Gloucester Terrace between 1843 and 1852. (fn. 63) Meanwhile farther west lines of building similarly proceeded northward along Queen's Road, Porchester Terrace, the newer Inverness and Queensborough terraces, and the cross street Porchester Gardens. Builders who took several plots in Queen's Road included Edward Capps, whose sublessees included James Capps, from 1841 and Richard Yeo of Westbourne Park Road from 1851. (fn. 64) They also had land in Inverness Terrace, whose stretch north of Porchester Gardens was called Inverness Road until 1876 and which was built up between 1844 and 1856, largely by Yeo. (fn. 65) John Scantlebury was building at the south end of Inverness Terrace in 1857. (fn. 66)
Between the two groups of long north-south avenues lay an area, on either side of Craven Hill, which was built over from the 1850s with grand town houses, many enjoying communal gardens as in the newer parts of Tyburnia. The most lavish use of space was in Cleveland Square, where the block forming the north side gave directly on the gardens. (fn. 67) Houses on the other sides were leased between 1852 and 1854 to Henry de Bruno Austin, a speculator active in Paddington and later in outer suburbs. (fn. 68) Grounds were also attached to the nearby terraces of Queen's Gardens and Craven Hill Gardens. (fn. 69) In 1853 Joseph Neeld and the chapter of Westminster leased their land south of Craven Hill, (fn. 70) which soon formed part of the site of an ambitious scheme around the new Christ Church, itself begun in 1854. (fn. 71) Terraces were built on the scale of Hyde Park Gardens and were similarly, although less generously, set back from the main road. (fn. 72) They were known as Upper Hyde Park Gardens until 1865 and thereafter as Lancaster Gate, a name previously reserved for the square around the church. (fn. 73) The terraced houses were said to be the most handsome in London in 1868. (fn. 74)
Farther west, Carlyle could still remark c. 1855 that only a thin belt of houses to the north and west separated Orme Square from open country. (fn. 75) The earliest quarter of Bayswater, however, was soon hemmed in by building to the north. Hereford, Monmouth, and Garway roads were pushed a short way south from Westbourne Grove for William Kinnaird Jenkins. (fn. 76) Leinster and Prince's squares were begun in 1856, with Kensington Gardens Square to the east and mews alleys to the south behind Moscow Road. Both Leinster and Prince's squares had private gardens and were largely the work of an obscure speculator, George Wyatt. Leinster Square had a few residents in 1858 and was the first to be finished, by 1864. (fn. 77)
Building covered the whole of Bayswater by 1865, when the only sites for infilling were south of Moscow Road, chiefly along the east side of Victoria Grove. (fn. 78) In 1862 a 'great and aristocratic town' had grown up, faster than all other suburbs, during the past ten years. Although the description embraced far flung Westbournia, the most desirable part stretched south from Bishop's Road and Westbourne Grove to the Uxbridge road, henceforth called Bayswater Road. Houses were said to be better built and sited than before and, being near Kensington Gardens, to have a decided edge over 'the solemn and obnubilated grandeur of the ill drained Belgravian flats'. (fn. 79)
Wealthy residents, who were quick to arrive, in 1862 ranged from East India merchants to people who had moved from formerly more fashionable quarters. (fn. 80) In Westbourne Terrace the first occupants included the statesman Richard Cobden (1804-65), at no. 103 from 1848 to 1856, and Sir Richard Bethell (1800-73), later Lord Chancellor as Lord Westbury, at no. 70; other occupants included Admiral Sir Baldwin Wake Walker, Bt. (1802-76), Sir Charles Trevelyan (1807-86), governor of Madras, and Charles Manby (1804-84), the civil engineer. (fn. 81) Upper Hyde Park Gardens or Lancaster Gate housed Lord Westbury, Lord Rollo, and two M.P.s in 1863. (fn. 82) Socially Tyburnia had spread westward, providing a 'carriage trade' which William Whiteley was to exploit. (fn. 83)
During the late 19th century Bayswater's social character grew more mixed. (fn. 84) In the south-west corner a few shops had been among the first buildings in the Uxbridge road (fn. 85) and in the 1840s shops lined both Queen's Road as far as the Moscow Road junction and Moscow Road itself. (fn. 86) Queen's Road had grown even more commercial by 1863. Shops replaced Ivy Cottage (fn. 87) and there were very few private residents by 1879, when Whiteley's, expanding southward from Westbourne Grove, had already acquired premises next to the municipal baths. (fn. 88) From the first there were tradesmen in Craven Terrace and in Conduit Street, which was renamed Craven Road in 1868, when many of its shops had been newly rebuilt. (fn. 89) Hotels, boarding or lodging houses, and apartments also multiplied, notably in Queen's Road and Kensington Gardens Square, perhaps partly due to the influence of Whiteley, who acquired staff dormitories in Queen's Road and dining rooms in the square. The most striking increase was in Eastbourne Terrace, the edge of the district, where railway travellers were responsible for the street's conversion into a row of apartments and hotels by 1902. The population, which by 1870 included many rich foreign born citizens, grew more cosmopolitan, with the consecration of a synagogue in St. Petersburgh Place in 1879 and of a Greek Orthodox cathedral in Moscow Road in 1882. (fn. 90)
Such changes tended to be limited to particular streets, leaving a preponderantly residential and prosperous suburb. At no. 23 Porchester Gardens the 'first instance of effective electric lighting of a private house' was provided in 1879 by the engineer Rookes Crompton (1845-1940), who lived there. (fn. 91) A few large houses were used by institutions, leading professional men, or tutors in polite accomplishments. (fn. 92) The Jewish householders were richer than those of Maida Vale; (fn. 93) they included the banker Samuel Montagu, later Lord Swaythling (1832- 1911), in Cleveland Square and from 1873 at the opulently decorated no. 96 Lancaster Gate. (fn. 94) In 1879 there were seven M.P.s in Lancaster Gate, (fn. 95) which had Paddington's 'largest and showiest cluster' of residences. (fn. 96) Householders in 1902 included the marquess of Ailsa, the philanthropist Reginald Brabazon, earl of Meath (1841-1929), to whom a memorial was later erected, and the engineer Lieut.Gen. Sir Richard Strachey (1817-1908). (fn. 97) Sir Richard's son Lytton Strachey was brought up from 1884 at no. 69 and always remembered it as a house of high, crammed rooms, 'afflicted with elephantiasis'. (fn. 98)
Nearly all the area from Westbourne Terrace to Inverness Terrace was wealthy c. 1890, although Leinster Place and Terrace and Craven Terrace were merely well-to-do, as were Eastbourne Terrace to the east and Queen's Road to the west. Prince's, Leinster, and Kensington Gardens squares were also wealthy. The only mixed areas were mews alleys, as in Tyburnia, and around Moscow Road. (fn. 99) In the smartest parts, the less affluent were mainly caretakers, policemen, and shopkeepers. Older property near Moscow Road was let for high rents to shopkeepers, artisans, and clerks, most of whom were 'pretty comfortable'. (fn. 100) Lancaster Gate East and West wards, created in 1901, had only 2.15 per cent and 2.58 of their inhabitants overcrowded, compared with 32.76 per cent in Church ward around Paddington green, and death rates were low at 7.67 and 9.08 per cent. (fn. 101)
Building activity in the late 19th century was limited mainly to the piecemeal replacement of houses whose leases had fallen in. The oldest houses were west of Lancaster Gate, along Bayswater Road and around Moscow Road. Part of Bayswater Hill was taken for the Red House of 1871, designed by J. J. Stevenson as a precursor of the 'Queen Anne' style, soon to be popular in Ealing's Bedford Park. The only new road was west of Orme Square, where Shaftesbury House disappeared and Palace Court was driven north to Moscow Road. (fn. 102) Some houses were built there in 1889 and flats called Palace Court Mansions were inhabited from 1890. (fn. 103) Many Palace Court residents had aesthetic tastes similar to those in Bedford Park; they included Wilfrid Meynell and his wife Alice, the poet (1847-1922), the artist George William Joy (d. 1925), and the furniture expert Percy McQuoid (d. 1925). (fn. 104) Nearby nos. 4 and 5 Bayswater Hill, which had been built on Bark's land and stood next to the Red House, were to make way for two or three expensive houses in 1894. (fn. 105) Houses at the Kensington end of Moscow Road had been replaced by flats called Prince Edward Mansions and Palace Court by 1890. A little to the east the flats of Pembridge Mansions were occupied from 1897 and those of Windsor and Moscow courts, filling a gap, from 1907. (fn. 106) The site of nos. 6 to 8 Bayswater Hill was advertised as suitable for high-class flats or a hotel in 1912. (fn. 107)
Elsewhere in Bayswater Road flats were built east of Queen's Road along Bayswater Terrace and east of Queensborough Terrace. (fn. 108) At the west corner of Queen's Road a range including shops and the Coburg hotel was put up, to include the new Queen's Road Underground station, in use from 1901. Changes had already taken place in Queen's Road with the provision of more modern shops, the building of Paddington's first public baths in 1874, and the opening of the forerunner of Bayswater Underground station in 1868. (fn. 109) Beaumanor Mansions, an imposing range of flats over shops north of the corner of Moscow Road, was occupied from 1904. (fn. 110) Urbanization culminated in the completion of most of Whiteley's new building, on the site of the baths, in 1911. (fn. 111)
In the period between the World Wars, most of the area remained expensive. (fn. 112) While Bayswater Road was gradually taken over for flats or hotels, including the former home of Field-Marshal Sir John French, earl of Ypres (1852-1925), at no. 94 Lancaster Gate, (fn. 113) the main north-south avenues still had distinguished residents. Samuel Montagu's nephew Sir Herbert (later Viscount) Samuel (1870- 1963), the Liberal politician, had three successive homes in Porchester Terrace, (fn. 114) whose many titled householders included the Lord Chancellor Viscount Buckmaster (1861-1934), and Field-Marshal Sir William Robertson (1860-1933) lived in Westbourne Terrace. (fn. 115) Lancaster Gate East and Lancaster Gate West wards, with respective densities of 61 and 78 persons to an acre, were less crowded even than Maida Vale in 1921 and 1931. Lancaster Gate East, with 69.5 persons to an acre, still had the borough's lowest density in 1951. (fn. 116) The Paddington Estate's cottages around Caroline Place, one of the oldest parts of Bayswater, which 'might be part of a country town', were being closed in 1937, although they had good tenants and did not constitute a slum. Poverty existed only in pockets: three derelict buildings had to be closed at the corner of Leinster Street and Porchester Mews, where a family with eight children lived in two rooms. (fn. 117)
Rebuilding and conversion continued, as leases fell in. In Porchester Terrace, with its unusually well spaced villas, nos. 6 and 8 in 1924 were to be turned into ten flats, whereas nos. 29 and 31 in 1934 were to be replaced by eight single houses. (fn. 118) Among piecemeal changes were demolitions to make way in 1935 for flats over an office at the corner of Bayswater Road and Lancaster Gate Road, (fn. 119) in 1934 for flats or offices over shops between Queen's Road and Inverness Terrace at the Bishop's Road end, where part of Inver Court had been finished before the Second World War, and in 1939 for 60 single houses with garages on a site eventually taken for the Hallfield estate. (fn. 120) A few very large blocks of flats were completed. They included Maitland Court, at the southeast end of Gloucester Terrace, in 1932, (fn. 121) Queen's Court of 1930-2 and the slightly later Princess Court, at first also called Queen's Court, in Queen's Road, (fn. 122) and Barrie House of 1936-7 and a block of 1938 later called Lancaster in Lancaster Gate. (fn. 123)
Bayswater experienced only sporadic private rebuilding, like Tyburnia, until the borough council acquired from the Church Commissioners land between Bishop's Bridge Road and Cleveland Square, an area badly damaged during the Second World War, for the Hallfield estate. (fn. 124) Plans had been made by 1948, (fn. 125) the first block of flats was ready in 1952, (fn. 126) and work was finished in 1959 on the only large municipal scheme in southern Paddington; the site had been extended westward by additional land for schools. (fn. 127) Meanwhile the L.C.C. began the Barrie estate on a bombed site at the south-west end of Gloucester Terrace, where the last block was under construction in 1957. Most of its tenants became owner-occupiers, forming the Lancaster Gate Housing Association, in the early 1970s. (fn. 128)
The Church Commissioners' decision in 1954 to reorganize the Paddington Estate involved the renaming and disposal of their Bayswater property as the Lancaster Gate estate. The holding was less compact than their Hyde Park and Maida Vale estates, being mainly residential but including shops and several hotels. Plans for its sale, with that of outlying properties farther north, were announced in 1955, to include Westbourne Terrace, Cleveland Square, most of Gloucester Terrace, part of Lancaster Gate and Inverness Terrace, and shops in Queensway. (fn. 129) An early purchaser, of 65 a. in the eastern part, was the Royal Liver Co., from which Maxwell Joseph in 1958 bought 25 a. called Hyde Park North. The area was also known as 'Sin Triangle', consisting of 680 properties, mainly divided houses, from Paddington station to Lancaster Gate. (fn. 130) Eastbourne Terrace was rebuilt as office blocks between 1957 and 1959 (fn. 131) in partnership with Max Rayne. The Church Commissioners paid for the building costs and received half of the profits, in an experiment whose success encouraged them to take shares in another 25 joint companies between 1958 and 1962. (fn. 132)
Isolated changes included the building of flats called Caroline House in Bayswater Road, east of Orme Square, in the 1950s. (fn. 133) They also included the building of new hotels from 1961 and the conversion of older ones into flats. (fn. 134) Among new flats were ones in St. Petersburgh Place in 1960, at Palace Gate, Bayswater Road, and Craven Hill Gardens in 1961, in Palace Court, replacing an ornate French style house called Saxon Hall, (fn. 135) in Craven Hill in 1965- 6, (fn. 136) and Hyde Park Towers, Bayswater Road, in 1977-9. (fn. 137) Shops and maisonettes were built in Moscow Road in 1961 (fn. 138) and with offices and flats in Consort House, Queensway, completed by 1972. (fn. 139) There were no large-scale demolitions after that of Eastbourne Terrace, plans for the north-west end of Westbourne Terrace being frustrated by a preservation order in 1961. (fn. 140) By 1971 conservation had such support that the demolition of nos. 106-7 Bayswater Road, part of the former St. Agnes Villas, was followed by a successful campaign to save no. 100, where J. M. Barrie had written Peter Pan between 1904 and 1907. (fn. 141) Scattered rebuilding nonetheless continued in Bayswater Road: in 1981 Christ Church had been demolished, apart from the spire, and two sites, at the east corner of Queensborough Terrace and the west corner of Inverness Terrace, had been cleared by 1985. Renovation was then in progress in many streets to the north.
Bayswater in 1985 has retained most of its Vic torian layout, since the only rebuilding on a scale large enough to destroy the street pattern has been on the Hallfield estate. It also possesses a greater variety of 19th-century housing than do the districts to the east and north, from comparatively plain villas and cottages of the 1820s and 1830s to increasingly grandiose Italianate terraces of the mid century and ornate piles of c. 1890. Stuccoed ranges, resembling those on the edge of Tyburnia, survive in great numbers near Westbourne Terrace and also, farther west, around Prince's Square. Most of the older buildings are in Bayswater conservation area, established in 1967 and enlarged in 1978, which extends into Tyburnia. (fn. 142) The length of several north-south avenues is an unusual feature; they have no counterparts from east to west, except along the edges, and have been criticized as inconvenient and monotonous. Much of the district appears to be less permanently settled than does Tyburnia, perhaps because many homes are in converted mews dwellings, whereas the main terraces have escaped rebuilding only to survive as hotels, boarding houses, and holiday flats. The eastern and western halves, moreover, are separated by Queensway, a cosmopolitan shopping street with many late-night restaurants. (fn. 143) There has been a recent rise in organized prostitution, particularly around Cleveland Square, where the wide roads have attracted kerb-crawling motorists. (fn. 144) Noise and vice have also been blamed on a growth in cheap tourism. (fn. 145)
Bayswater Road, lined with hotels, offices, and flats, has undergone more rebuilding west of Lancaster Gate than it has to the east. The triangle formed with Westbourne Street and Lancaster Terrace is wholly filled by the Royal Lancaster hotel, with the tallest tower in the area and the Bayswater Road frontage built over Lancaster Gate Underground station. (fn. 146) To the west mid 19th-century buildings, mainly offices but including the Swan, with a canopy, (fn. 147) and a modern addition to the Park Plaza hotel, stretch to the long imposing terraces of Lancaster Gate.
The layout and the size of the houses have caused Lancaster Gate to be described as Bayswater's most ambitious and successful architectural achievement, (fn. 148) although it has also earned disapproval for treating appearances as more important than the quality of life. (fn. 149) Two ranges, designed in 1857 by Sancton Wood, are set back a little from the road, with two further ranges behind, built c. 1865 to the designs of John Johnson and flanking a square which contains the tower of the former Christ Church. Built as narrow houses of five or six storeys piled on top of a basement, the ranges are stuccoed and richly ornamented in a blend of 'English Baroque and French Mannerism'; (fn. 150) the earliest parts have continuous colonnades along the ground and first floors. Behind the façades, most of the houses have been united to form clubs or hotels. Their regularity has been broken by several insertions, the most prominent being O. H. Leicester's Barrie House, raised to ten storeys, at the south-west corner of the square. (fn. 151) The body of Christ Church has been replaced by the six-storeyed Spire House, advertised in 1985 as 23 luxury flats. (fn. 152)
Isolated survivals from the early 19th century are nos. 100-101 Bayswater Road, forming a semidetached pair of two storeys over a basement; they stand behind small gardens and no. 100, at the corner of Leinster Terrace, bears a plaque to Barrie. Beyond, with rebuilding in progress on two sites, are modern blocks: Hyde Park Towers, reaching up Porchester Terrace, the Hospitality Inn, and the eight-storeyed Porchester Gate. Buildings of c. 1900, including shops and restaurants, and the older Black Lion, with a ground-floor extension apparently of 1878, stand east of Queensway. To the west is a seven-storeyed red-brick and terracotta range by D. Joseph, who built the superstructures of several Underground stations; (fn. 153) it consists of the Coburg hotel, opened in 1907, with three cupolas, over shops and Queensway station. Next are the seven-storeyed flats of Caroline House, and the florid red-brick and terracotta Orme Court. West of Orme Square the modern white Embassy hotel contrasts with ornate late 19th-century buildings on either side of the entrance to Palace Court, (fn. 154) including the Guyana High Commission near the corner of Ossington Street. Wellington Terrace, a stock-brick survival from the 1830s, stretches to where a tiny house has been inserted over the ditch marking the former Kensington boundary. (fn. 155)
The oldest houses in Bayswater facing the main road, apart from nos. 100-1, date from the 1820s and are at Orme Square. Brown-brick town houses of three storeys and basements, originally in matching groups of three, flank the open end of the small square. An eagle on a double Tuscan column, of unknown origin, stands in front of a garden which is surrounded on three sides by a mixture of town houses and Italianate villas, on a modest scale and with some rebuilding and alterations. (fn. 156)
Palace Court, whose west side backs on Ossington Street, is 'the most interesting place in the borough for late Victorian domestic architecture'. (fn. 157) At the south-east corner King's Fund college occupies no. 2, in red brick and terracotta by William Flockhart, dated 1891. Similarly florid buildings stand next to it in Bayswater Road, although originally numbered with Palace Court, and include the yellow terracotta Westland hotel, formerly the Yellow House, no. 8, designed by George & Peto for Percy McQuoid. Set back from the east side of Palace Court are nos. 10, 12, and 14, the first two forming a pair designed by J. M. Maclaren with an elaborate stone frieze and an unusual bow window divided by rounded shafts. The west side of the road is more coherent, consisting mainly of houses of five storeys and basement, all in red brick with stone dressings and many with Dutch gables. They form a terrace, although some were individually planned. No. 45, formerly Palace Court House, was designed by Leonard Stokes for Wilfrid and Alice Meynell in 1889 and soon attracted architectural students; it has bands of brick and stone, small windows, and a first-floor bay. (fn. 158) No. 51, the Red Lodge, was built in 1889 for G. W. Joy. (fn. 159)
Elsewhere in south-western Bayswater there are humble survivals from c. 1840 on the west side of Victoria Grove (later Ossington Street and transferred to Kensington) in the form of terraced cottages of two storeys and basement, with a mews behind. On the west side of St. Petersburgh Place nos. 19 to 27 are a plain three-storeyed stuccoed range with a central pediment, next to St. Matthew's church, and the west side of Bark Place has a terrace of mid 19th-century Italianate villas of two storeys, basement, and attic. Orme Court, part of which faces Bayswater Road, also includes some ornate redbrick and yellow-tiled flats, dated 1896, at the southeast end of Bark Place. Refurbished mews dwellings survive in Chapel Side and Caroline Place Mews but many of the cramped streets nearby have been cleared for small neo-Georgian rows, as in Poplar Place, Lombardy Place, and Caroline Place. In Moscow Road the massive blocks of late Victorian and Edwardian flats are notable chiefly for their gauntness, Burnham and Windsor courts being of ten storeys over basements.
The earliest of the long avenues leading north from Bayswater Road is Porchester Terrace, which, in addition to modern flats, still has many stuccoed villas standing in their own gardens. Near the southeast end, next to Hyde Park Towers, is a stock brick pair of three storeys over a basement, built in 1823 and occupied from 1825 by J. C. Loudon, who lived in no. 3 and leased out the adjoining no. 5. Loudon illustrated the pair as an example of his 'double detached suburban villa', of which it has been seen as the prototype. (fn. 160) Villas of the 1840s, linked or in pairs, survive in Craven Hill; most are of three storeys and attic over a basement and some have been heightened.
The most spacious and dignified avenue is Westbourne Terrace, begun c. 1840 and 'unrivalled in its class in London or even Great Britain'. The houses form long stuccoed terraces of four storeys and attic over a basement, with pillared porches, many of them designed by T. Marsh Nelson. (fn. 161) They face carriage drives and were separated on either side from the tree-shaded roadway by screen walls surmounted by railings. The parallel Gloucester Terrace is also mostly of the mid 19th century, longer but narrower; for much of its length each house, of three storeys and a basement, has a segmental bay and a shallow porch. Part of the western side has been replaced by modest brick neo-Georgian flats, including Devonshire Court, and the southern end consists of taller blocks: the seven-storeyed Maitland Court to the east and Garson, Gibray, and Carroll houses, from six to ten storeys, reaching to Craven Terrace, to the west. Although houses near the north-western end have made way for the Hallfield estate, Gloucester Terrace still provides a vista stretching north of Bishop's Bridge Road. In contrast Eastbourne Terrace has been entirely rebuilt by C. H. Elsom, whose higher and lower office blocks of 1957-9, 'a gaunt bit of plain speaking', have been praised as forming a sequence as unified as that of the stuccoed ranges to the west. (fn. 162)
Between Gloucester and Porchester terraces there are many tall, tree-shaded rows, stuccoed and with pillared porches, with some discreet infilling. Cleveland Square, which rivalled Lancaster Gate as the most expensive address in Bayswater, (fn. 163) has an unusually large private garden to serve the massive range of six storeys and basements on its north side. Less spacious enclosures are in Queen's Gardens and Craven Hill Gardens, (fn. 164) to the south. Leinster Gardens is noted for two sham houses, opposite no. 23, whose façades mask a surfacing of the Underground railway. (fn. 165) Beyond Porchester Terrace, part of the narrower Queensborough Terrace and much of Inverness Terrace are similarly made up of stuccoed four- or five-storeyed rows. Inverness Terrace has two symmetrical ranges facing each other, with centrepieces, Corinthian pilasters, and continuous balconies. The ornate Inverness Court hotel is a former private house, remodelled, with its own theatre, for Louis Spitzel (d. 1906) by Mewès & Davis, architects of the Ritz. (fn. 166)
Along Bishop's Bridge Road, from Gloucester Terrace westward across the end of Porchester Terrace to Inverness Terrace, stretches the Hallfield estate, (fn. 167) initiated by Sir Denys Lasdun in partnership with Tecton but developed in the 1950s by Lasdun and Lindsey Drake. Trees have been preserved among the 15 large blocks, of up to ten storeys, and some smaller blocks, varied in grouping, and a widely praised school (fn. 168) have been provided in an attempt to realize Le Corbusier's scheme for a city in a park. The materials are in a wide range, including concrete slabs, variegated brickwork, and glazed tile, but need expensive maintenance, whose lack has led Hallfield to be described as a 'graveyard of good ideas'.
Queensway, in contrast to the other north-south roads, is almost entirely commercial, although most of the premises have flats overhead. Nineteenthcentury buildings survive mainly in the middle portion of the east side, as an assortment south of Inverness Place, where some are threatened with demolition, and a long four-storeyed range of c. 1860 from Inverness Place to Porchester Gardens. A shorter but taller Edwardian range, Beaumanor Mansions, lines part of the west side. The most prominent modern insertions include on the east side no. 26, Consort House, finished in 1972 and designed by Owen Luder in concrete with a red-brick facing as a ten-storeyed tower and five-storeyed podium over an underground car park. (fn. 169) Opposite are the seven-storeyed blocks of the 1930s called Queen's Court and Princess Court, the first and perhaps both designed by W. Henry White & Sons. (fn. 170) Queensway is notable for its restaurants and food shops, many of them foreign.
The tall stuccoed houses typical of eastern Bayswater are also found west of Queensway and north of Moscow Road, around Leinster, Prince's, and Kensington Gardens squares. All three squares also have a range served by private gardens. (fn. 171) Leinster Square has generally had a slightly lower rateable value than Prince's Square, perhaps because of the irregularity of its north range, which is the only terrace in either square not attributable to George Wyatt. (fn. 172) A few villas of the 1840s, erected for W. K. Jenkins, (fn. 173) survive nearby in Garway and Monmouth roads.