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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
City of Westminster in Greater London County, England, United Kingdom
 

Cavendish Square

 
 
Cavendish Square Marker image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, October 15, 2017
1. Cavendish Square Marker
Inscription. Cavendish Square was planned in 1717 as the centrepiece of the new Marylebone estate of Edward Harley, Earl of Oxford and Mortimer. The square is named after Lady Henrietta Cavendish Holies, his wife, through whom he succeeded to the manor of Marylebone when they married in 1713. Lord Harley was following the successful Hanover Square development of 1714 which in turn had imitated the pattern of private estate development in St James's Square and Bloomsbury in the 17th century. A plan showing the layout of Cavendish Square and the surrounding streets was published by the architect John Price in 1719 but because of economic recession and wars, the square itself was not completed for 50 years and then only in a form rather different from that originally planned.

There were further problems early on, on the north side, where the immensely wealthy duke of Chandos had originally wanted to build "the greatest town house in Europe". An engraving survives showing the design by John Price for this sumptuous mansion, but it was never built, being a victim of the South Sea Bubble in 1720. The Duke was able to build two existing Palladian houses which were built by George Tufnell.

The bridge over Dean's Mews which links the houses, was designed after the war for the convent of the Holy Child Jesus by Louis Osman. Jacob Epstein's sculpture

Cavendish Square Marker - Wide View image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, October 15, 2017
2. Cavendish Square Marker - Wide View
of the Madonna and Child was commissioned at this time and placed here in 1953.

Until 1906 the largest house in the square was Harcourt House which occupied most of the west side. It was replaced by the block of apartments of the same name. Since the bomb damage of the last war and subsequent rebuilding, the south side of the square has become more closely linked to Oxford Street. Originally it too consisted of large private houses similar to those on the east side which attracted the wealthy and fashionable.

Blue plaques record some of the many famous and interesting people who lived in the square. Among others who should be mentioned are Princess Amelia, the mildly eccentric daughter of George II who lived at no. 16, the corner house, (1761-80); and a succession of artists including Frances Gotes (1769-70) George Romney (1776-97) and Sir Martin Archer Shee (1799-1850) at no. 32, now demolished. Here Romney painted many of his portraits of Emma Haile (who became Lady Hamilton). The 5th Duke of Portland lived at Portland Harcourt House and was a wealthy bachelor whose concern for security caused him to erect glass screens rising 80 feet above the ground, running for 200 feet in length on either side of the back garden. Lord Asquith, who is better known as Mr Asquith, lived on the west side of Cavendish Square at no. 20 from 1894, and owned the house until 1919, although

Cavendish Square and Marker - Wider View image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, October 15, 2017
3. Cavendish Square and Marker - Wider View
in his later years he lived at Downing Street as Prime Minister.

In the early days the Square was provided with a central plot of green turf upon which sheep were allowed to graze. Later, the green area was replaced by a garden designed by Charles Bridgeman, the famous landscaping gardener, a contemporary of Capability Brown and Humphrey Repton. The statue of the Duke of Cumberland, second son of George II shown on a prancing charger, was erected in 1770 and removed in 1868. Today, only the stone base complete with its inscription remains. The statue of Lord George Bentinck (1802-48), descendant of Lord Harley, devotee of the Turf, and politician, is by Thomas Campbell, 1851.

The present layout of the garden dates from 1971 when the underground car park was built under Cavendish Square by Westminster City Council, The principal species of tree found in Cavendish Square is the London Plane (Platanus x hispanica), a tree introduced into England in 1680 and widely planted in Victorian London as it thrived in a polluted atmosphere. Cavendish Square and the surrounding estate belongs today to the Howard de Walden family, descendants of Lord Harley. The gardens are managed and maintained by Westminster City Council.
 
Erected by City of Westminster.
 
Location. 51° 30.992′ 

William George Frederick Cavendish-Betinck Statue in Cavendish Square Gardens image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, October 15, 2017
4. William George Frederick Cavendish-Betinck Statue in Cavendish Square Gardens
"Lord William George Frederick Cavendish-Scott-Bentinck (27 February 1802 – 21 September 1848), better known as Lord George Bentinck, was an English Conservative politician and racehorse owner, noted for his role (with Benjamin Disraeli) in unseating Sir Robert Peel over the Corn Laws." - Wikipedia
N, 0° 8.702′ W. Marker is in City of Westminster, England, in Greater London County. Marker can be reached from Cavendish Square just north of Margaret Street. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: City of Westminster, England W1G 0RN, United Kingdom.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Josef Dallos (within shouting distance of this marker); Sir Jonathan Hutchinson (within shouting distance of this marker); Sir Ronald Ross (within shouting distance of this marker); George Edmund Street (within shouting distance of this marker); Quintin Hogg (within shouting distance of this marker); Herbert Henry Asquith (about 90 meters away, measured in a direct line); Sir Frederick Treves (about 180 meters away); Sir George Frederic Still (about 240 meters away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in City of Westminster.
 
More about this marker. The marker is found in the middle of Cavendish Square Gardens.
 
Also see . . .  Cavendish Square (Wikipedia). "Cavendish Square is a public square in the West End of London, very close to Oxford Circus, where the two main shopping thoroughfares of Oxford Street and Regent Street meet. It is located at the eastern end of Wigmore Street, which connects it to Portman Square, part of the Portman Estate, to its west....Cavendish Square features in Robert Louis Stevenson's novel Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde as the home of Dr Lanyon, Jekyll's former best friend." (Submitted on December 19, 2017.) 
 
Categories. Settlements & Settlers
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 19, 2017. This page originally submitted on December 19, 2017, by Andrew Ruppenstein of Sacramento, California. This page has been viewed 90 times since then and 37 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on December 19, 2017, by Andrew Ruppenstein of Sacramento, California.
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