House in rear of No. 196, Tottenham Court Road

Page 188

Survey of London: Volume 5, St Giles-in-The-Fields, Pt II. Originally published by London County Council, London, 1914.

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The land immediately to the north of the City estate was formerly a field known as Cantelowe Close. In an inquisition held on 20th May, 1639, (fn. 1) it was found that John, Earl of Clare, (fn. 2) had died in possession of, inter alia, a parcel of land in the parish of St. Giles, called "Cantlowe Close," containing seven acres. (fn. 3) The land seems to have continued in the Holles family until the death of John Holles, Duke of Newcastle, in 1711, and then to have passed with most of the latter's possessions to his nephew, Thomas Pelham-Holles, afterwards (1715) Duke of Newcastle, for the plan of the new road from Paddington to Islington which appeared in the London Magazine for 1756 marked the field to the north of "The City Lands" as the "Duke of Newcastle's." In 1772 the Duke of Newcastle sold to the Duchess of Bedford and others, trustees for the late Duke, "all that close or parcell of ground, scituate in the parish of St. Pancras, (fn. 4) commonly called … Cantelowe Close, containing nine acres and a half or thereabouts." (fn. 5)

In 1776 the trustees granted to William Mace, carpenter, a lease for 78 years of a portion of the ground "in consideration of the great expense he hath been at in erecting a farmhouse on part of a field known as Cantelowe Close, and that he, the said William Mace, shall build proper and convenient sheds and other outhouses for the accommodation of 40 cows at the least." (fn. 6) It is therefore clear that the house was built in or shortly before 1776.

It stood about 150 feet east of Tottenham Court Road. The exterior (Plate 107) was of stock brickwork, with red brick window heads. The entrance doorcase was of wood, and above were two tablets showing that formerly the parish boundary between St. Giles and St. Pancras passed through the house.

The interior had a decorated wood and composition chimneypiece (Plate 107) in the north front room on the first floor.

The premises were demolished in 1914.

The Council's collection contains:—

(fn. 7) East front (photograph).
(fn. 7) Chimneypiece in front room on first floor (photograph).


  • 1. Inquisitiones Post Mortem, Chas. I. (765), 37.
  • 2. John Holles, first Earl of Clare (1564 ?–1637).
  • 3. It seems probable that the land in question (which, being partly in St. Giles and partly in St. Pancras, was descibed sometimes as in one parish, sometimes in the other) is identical with the land in St. Pancras sold, together with Clement's Inn, by Sir William Hawte to William (afterwards Sir William) Holles, ancestor of the Earls of Clare, in 1532 (Middlesex Feet of Fines, 23 Henry VIII., Hil.).
  • 4. The boundary between St. Giles and St. Pancras used to run through the middle of the close.
  • 5. Middlesex Registry Memorials, 1772, VI., III.
  • 6. The Old Farm House in Tottenham Court Road, by Ambrose Heal.
  • 7. Reproduced here.