Hill Street, London

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File:Coach and Horses, Hill Street, Mayfair, W1 (2711850562).jpg
At number 5, the Coach and Horses stands on the corner with Hay's Mews. This establishment dates back to the 1740s when the area was first developed. It was then a coaching inn and now claims to be the oldest public house in Mayfair. The building is listed as Grade II.

Hill Street is a street in the central Mayfair district of London which runs southwest from Berkeley Square towards Park Lane. It was developed from farmland in the 18th century<ref name=GMT>Template:Citation</ref> and was named after a small hill there. It became a fashionable street in the 18th century and was home to a number of lords. The street contains several Grade I and Grade II listed buildings.

Development and architecture

File:Hill Street on Roque's map of 1746.png
Hill Street marked in red on John Rocque's map of 1746

The street was developed in the 1740s by John Berkeley, 5th Baron Berkeley of Stratton. When John Rocque mapped London in 1746, the development was in progress and so the streets on that side of Berkeley Square were shown only in outline. The area had previously been farmland, and Hill Street crosses Farm Street. Hill Street was named after a rise in the ground, with Hay Hill being another street nearby.

Architects included Benjamin Timbrell, who designed numbers 17 and 19, now both Grade I listed buildings, c. 1748,<ref name=BLBHume/> and Oliver Hill, who worked on number 15 in the 1920s. Numbers 1 and 3 form a Grade II listed building; other listed houses in the street include numbers 11, 31 and 36.

Claud Phillimore refurbished number 35 for Lady Astor in the late 1940s. This had six storeys and a basement to provide both a grand and comfortable residence. Lady Astor's personal living room – "the Boudoir" – had walls decorated with blue satin.<ref name=LA>Template:Citation</ref>

Literary associations

Template:Quote box thumb held literary parties in Hill Street.]] Mrs. Montagu hosted a literary salon at her new house in Hill Street. Her circle was known as the Blue Stockings Society and Doctor Johnson called her the "Queen of the Blues".<ref name=Montagu/> Other luminaries who attended her gatherings included Edmund Burke, David Garrick, Joshua Reynolds and Horace Walpole.<ref name=Montagu>Template:Citation</ref>

In Jane Austen's novel Mansfield Park, Henry and Mary Crawford's uncle is an admiral living in Hill Street. Sir Walter Scott's novel Waverley was published at the same time. In this, the hero's father is a Whig politician who lives in Hill Street.

Thackeray's Vanity Fair has Great Gaunt Street off Gaunt Square as the home of Lady Gaunt's mother. This fictional street was based upon Hill Street.

Evelyn Waugh satirised Mayfair decadence in his novel Vile Bodies. In this, Hill Street was the location of the fictional Pastmaster House – "the William and Mary mansion of Lord and Lady Metroland with a magnificent ballroom, 'by universal consent the most beautiful building between Bond Street and Park Lane'".

The bright young thing society novelist Nancy Mitford stayed at number 40 in 1955.

Fashionable street

File:Hill Street bollard 2013-10-13.jpg
A cast-iron bollard at the corner of Hill Street and Chesterfield Hill. There are four such bollards in Hill Street and they are all listed as Grade II. They are of an early 19th-century cannon design and are intended to protect pedestrians from large turning vehicles cutting the corner. The cast lettering obscured by many layers of black paint says "St George's Hanover Square".

The new housing was fashionable in the 18th and 19th centuries, and notable residents of Hill Street have included:

  • Lord Barrymore at number 20<ref name=MBB>Template:Citation</ref>
  • Lord Brougham at number 5<ref name=MBB/>
  • Admiral Byng in 1756;<ref name=MBB/><ref name=LPP/> in 1757 he was sentenced to death and shot for losing Minorca in the Seven Years' War.<ref name = "Tute">Template:Cite book</ref>
  • Lord Chief Justice Camden died here in 1794.<ref name=MBB/><ref name=LPP/>
  • Lord Morpeth, 7th Earl of Carlisle was born here in 1802.<ref name=MBB/><ref name=LPP/>
  • Lord Colborne lived at number 19 where he collected paintings.<ref name=LPP/>
  • Countess of Darnley at number 21<ref name=MBB/>
  • Admiral Philip Durham at number 9<ref name=MBB/>
  • Master of the Rolls, Sir William Grant lived at number 21.<ref name=LPP/>
  • Lord Hindlip at number 33<ref name=MBB/>
  • Sir Abraham Hume, 1st Baronet and his son the 2nd Baronet lived at numbers 17, 19 and 29.<ref name=BLBHume>Template:Cite web</ref><ref name=LPP/>
  • Lord Londesborough<ref name=MBB/>
  • Chancellor of the Exchequer, Lord Lyttelton and his wicked son Thomas.<ref name=MBB/><ref name=LPP>Template:Citation</ref>
  • The Mackintosh of Mackintosh at number 8<ref name=MBB/>
  • Earl of Malmesbury died at number 21 in 1820.<ref name=MBB/><ref name=LPP/>
  • Philip Metcalfe, distiller and patron of the arts, lived at number 20.<ref name=LPP/>
  • Mrs. Montagu held literary parties here.<ref name=GMT/><ref name=MBB/><ref name=LPP/>
  • Lord Revelstoke at number 26<ref name=MBB/>
  • Countess of Roden at number 27<ref name=MBB/>
  • Sir Evelyn Ruggles-Brise at number 41<ref name=MBB/>
  • Lord de Tabley collected and exhibited paintings and sculptures of the English school at number 24.<ref name=LPP/>
  • Marquess of Tweeddale at number 6<ref name=MBB/>
  • Lady Vane, the adulteress whose memoirs appeared in The Adventures of Peregrine Pickle, died here in 1788.<ref name=MBB/><ref name=LPP/>
  • Sir Charles Welby at number 34<ref name=MBB/>
  • Whig politician William Windham lived at number 20.<ref name=LPP/>
  • Lord Westbury at number 30<ref name=MBB/>




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