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Preserves the old name ‘Bishops Wood’ - marked thus on the Ordnance Survey map of 1822. earlier ‘Byssehopeswode’ c.1387, that is 'the bishop's wood", from Middle English ‘bishop’ and ‘wode’, this being part of the Bishop of London's manor in Hornsey from the earliest times.
Skirts Highgate School Playing Fields with school buildings interspersed with stately Victorian houses in pale brick, elaborately detailed.
Cut Through Lane or Nightingale Lane (not on AZ)
A wide passageway between the Kenwood kitchen garden and the stable block. This path is a short cut to Millfield Lane leading to Highgate Ponds and West Hill.
Two stones mark the Old parish boundary between Hornsey and St. Pancras parishes at the end of the lane. They are situated in what was once the dividing ditch, which has been filled. English Heritage has installed notice boards and a poop scoop point for dogs immediately over the stones which, for a time, were turfed over. Now the turves have worn, the tops of the two stones may be seen again at ground level. The stone nearest Hampstead Lane is for Hornsey Parish and its date concealed below ground is 1823. The more southerly stone next to it is for St. Pancras dated 1830.
Name from Fitzroy House, a Palladian villa 1770 for Colonel Charles Fitzroy Lord Southampton. Demolished in 1828. Brown landscaped grounds cover this area. Now a number of houses post war. Site of Sherrick's Hole Farm. Millionaires. Can be reached from Hampstead Lane via The Grove. This is the former carriage drive, remained a secluded country lane until the later c20, and became a favourite place for select houses by architects for themselves.
10 Vincent Harm’s own house, 1932-4, Bequeathed by Harris to the Borough of Camden; now used for a horticultural training scheme.
6 by Ove Arup 1958 for himself.
The Elms. Shabby and characterful. Set back, modest country villa by Basevi for himself. Behind its own lodge and drive. Much added to, but its core is still the modest country villa The site of The Elms had previously been that of Mother Huff's tea-house and gardens for fifty years. It was referred to in 1705 in Baker's comedy Hampstead Heath when it was performed at Drury Lane: Well, this Hampstead's a charming place, to dance all Night at the Wells, be treated at Mother Huff's, to have presents made one at the Raffling-Shops, and then to take a walk in Cane Wood with a Man of Wit that's not over rude,
There was woodland until suburban streets were laid out from c. 1910. Much of the development was by Walter Quennell, with many houses designed by his brother C.H.B. Quennell in a free English domestic style
Athlone Hospital. Was Caen Wood Towers. Now geriatric department of Middlesex Hospital. Garden design there, especially rhododendrons. Much simplified. Sculpture. An ambitious Victorian red brick villa with superb views to the s. 1870-2 by E. Salomons & J.P. Jones for Edward Brooke, patentee of Magenta. Much simplified. Originally with elaborate shaped gables, an oriel, and carved supporters instead of pinnacles on the tower above the porch. The sculpture was by J. P. Philip; the chimneys of Cosseyware.
Beechwood House. One of the few surviving mansions. Dr.Johnson's summer house. Built c. 1834 in the grounds of the former Fitzroy House by George Basevi for his brother.
Lodges for Kenwood
Boundary of the Bishops Park course is marked today by the granite setts across Hampstead Lane
Long high wall at Kenwood. This great wall gives the impression of a barrier to keep people out. But it does not continue by Kenwood House and its purpose was to screen the kitchen garden to protect it from cold from the north. Flues from fires that could be lit in cold weather still exist on the south side of the wall. Both this garden wall and the service buildings between here and Kenwood House were part of a 1793-96 development.
Cul de sac with timber buildings. Leonard Michaels six restrained brick and timber-clad houses of the 1960s
Kenwood House. The house is iced with brilliantly-painted stucco like an enormous cake. A private house until as late as 1927, it as 18th-century Adam interiors and a notable collection of pictures bequeathed by its last owner, the Earl of Iveagh, head of the Guinness brewing family. It was built in 1616, and remodelled in 1764 when it was essentially a ruinous castle using Old monastic buildings. In 1665 Fifth Monarchist men were there and murdered people there.It was owned by the Bill family until 1790 when Brydges rebuilt it and then sold it in 1704. In 1715 owned by the Argyle family. The 1st Earl of Mansfield bought Kenwood in 1754 and transformed it to the designs of Robert Adam. On the south facade Adam applied a decorative scheme entirely of stucco, one of the earliest examples of this technique, using a material which had been patented by the Adam brothers.. William Murray, very clever who was Lord Chief Justice for 32 years. He was the third Earl of Mansfield who reversed John Wilkes conviction. Gordon rioters tried to burn it down but they got drunk at the Spaniards first. In 1914 London County Council bought much of the grounds, Guinness bought the house and left it to the public. Unexploded bomb on the terrace. It houses a very important collection of paintings, including works by the great English painters, a magnificent Rembrandt self-portrait and a famous Vermeer. Its has a superb library.created from 1767, one of the finest of Adam's interiors with the niches inspired by the Roman Pantheon and the blue and white stucco ceiling by Joseph Rose of Yorkshire with painted panels by Antonio Zucchi, who accompanied Adam on his trip to Dalmatia and who came to work for the firm in London in 1767. Features in films 'Notting Hill’, ‘The Upside of Anger’.
Very magnificent Repton garden with maze like rhododendrons. Bird feeders, tits and nuthatches. The estate was long and thin from Kenwood House to the top of Parliament Hill but only the width of the Wood. The early rectangular Jacobean garden running from the House to the lake was swept away and the ground landscaped to the present 'natural' contours. The lake had been linked visually by what is now the Concert Pond to give the appearance of a river sweeping round the Wood and dropping down the Highgate Ponds to London. How much the land from the Wood to Parliament Hill was landscaped we do not know, but we do know that many hedges were removed. Mansfield looked to Highgate over Fitzroy Park, to Jack Straw's Castle over Evergreen Hill and to Hampstead over the Maryon Wilson fields. And as this splendid landscape was open to the view of the local inhabitants
Birdcage made for Festival of Britain by Reg Butler. Work in metal.
Sculpture Henry Moore reclining figure
Billgate, near Kenwood. Home of Southwood Smith who is the grandfather of Octavia Hill. He was a doctor and a sanitary engineer and he contributed to the 1842 report on the Poor Law Board and was one of the first members of the General Board of Health
Barracks in the stable
Dr.Johnson's summerhouse, burnt down. Was a charming thatched rustic hut was originally at the home of the Thrales, in Streatham. Here the great Doctor took tea with Mrs. Thrale.
Empyrean. Monolith by Barbara Hepworth. In Corrib limestone 1953
Lake - near a seat, the infant Fleet bubbles up out of the lawn to feed the lake
St. Pancras boundary with Finchley. A path by the lawn west of Kenwood House which through shrubberies on both side is close to the Finchley boundary but just inside St. Pancras parish.
Iron plate on an oak tree near a short path to the car-park. Until the autumn of 1993 an iron plate of 1791 was fixed to the foot of the tree and its supporting piece of metal may still be seen sticking up from the ground against the tree which now has a fence round it. It was of oval design marked 'S P x P 1791'. On the left of the tree at its base is a small Finchley stone of 1845 embedded in the trunk giving some indication of how the tree has grown in the last 150 years.
Farm Cottage, and Dairy Cottage. Remains of Kenwood Farm.
Three fallen stones on a mossy hillock above the embankment of the path out to the meadows near Farm and Dairy cottages opposite the private entrance to the staff yard and a notice marked 'Staff only'. These three stones mark the place where St. Pancras and Finchley meet Hampstead parish
Tarmac path which continues from Cut Throat Lane as a passageway across the grass is not marked on nineteenth century maps. It was constructed after the stables became a staff yard with access out into Parliament Hill Fields, sometime after 1924, in time for King George V to use it when he opened the woodland and meadow at Kenwood to the public on 18th July 1925.
Ditch which may just be discerned as a shallow depression in the ground parallel to the raised path running by the fence south of Kenwood House. The parish boundary follows the course of the old ditch marked by boundary plates and stones, with the site of old Hampstead Lane a few feet further north. The filled ditch formed the southern edge of the bishop of London's hunting park. In a deed of 1226 granting the site of Kenwood to Holy Trinity Priory, Aldgate, the estate is described as being wood and heath enclosed on all sides with a ditch in the parish of St. Pancras of 'Kentisseton' next the park of the bishop of London. This section of boundary would have had an earthen bank and hedge to enclose the deer during the middle ages. The hedge was probably south of the lane, which was inside the bishop's park, between the lane and the ditch. Remnants of the hedge are suggested by the line of oaks by the footpath. Some of these trees were probably planted before the landscaping of 1793-6 when the stable block was built. Any surviving mediaeval hedge would have been lost then. The ditch was still there in 1887. The path and depression of the ditch are separated by the oak trees. This is a remarkable survival of an original hedge of the parish and manor boundary and the trees lean into the ditch from the raised carriageway. It is the only place where the ditch is discernible in Hornsey parish, no doubt because it was enlarged to form the boundary of the bishop's hunting park at a time when there would originally have been a fence to be succeeded in later years with a thick hedge. The Hornsey manorial boundary is certainly pre-Conquest, but the records of the Bishop of London's lands are scanty. However the ditch of Hampstead with St. Pancras is one such boundary, surrounding the estate on which Kenwood stands today, and this was recorded as being 'heath and woodland enclosed by a ditch' in 1226 so it is probable the ditch has survived from that time
Path running by the fence south of Kenwood House. This raised path follows the original course of Hampstead Lane before it was diverted by Lord Mansfield in 1793-96. Beyond the enclosed nursery gardens, markers have survived along the course of old Hampstead Lane further east, but they are either by the back walls of houses in Hampstead Lane or, in the case of mansions such as Beechwood and Caenwood Towers, in the gardens.
Carriageway - Just a few yards down the slope on the carriageway there is another Hornsey boundary plate, no. 296, and a St. Pancras stone, no. 209, undated but with a clear inscription on the back. This is on the old course of Hampstead Lane, standing at its junction with old Millfield Lane - previously known as Millfield Farm Lane - which was used by a detachment of horse-guards sent to intercept the Gordon Rioters who were approaching Kenwood with malicious intent in June 1780.