|Hogarth's House Garden||Hounslow|
This early C18th house became the summer residence of the artist and satirist William Hogarth (1697-1764) from 1750 until his death. The triangular walled garden is bounded by a high wall to the north, now named Hogarth's Lane, and to the south by buildings, with Hogarth's House to the east. The garden was once larger, with an orchard and a nut walk no longer in existence, but a mature mulberry tree survives from the original planting. The property was acquired as a memorial to Hogarth in 1901 through the auspices of the Hogarth House Preservation Committee and opened to the public in 1904. The garden and house were restored in 1996/7 at the bicentenary of his birth.
The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/03/2012
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When Hogarth took the house in Chiswick, the area was a popular retreat for writers and artists, as well as members of the aristocracy. After his death in 1764 he was buried in the family tomb at Chiswick parish churchyard of St Nicholas (q.v.). His wife Jane continued to live in the house until her own death in 1789, sharing it with Hogarth's sister Anne and her cousin Mary Lewis, who then remained in residence until 1808. It was tenanted by Richard Loveday in 1810, a friend of the Hogarths, and in 1814 was acquired by his son Douglas. Throughout the C19th there were a succession of tenants including Revd Henry Francis Cary, curate of Chiswick, but by the 1970s the property was in need of repair, and the original outhouses had been cleared by 1874. It was rescued in 1891 by Alfred Dawson, whose father was the landscape painter Henry Dawson who had lived in The Cedars next door. At the turn of the century the Hogarth House Preservation Committee were trying to purchase the property as a public memorial to Hogarth, then under threat of demolition as a result of the rapidly increasing development in the area. Their appeal for funds initially failed but a secret buyer came to the rescue when the property was put up for auction on 25 November 1901, and the house was then restored and opened to the public in 1904. The purchaser was Lt Col R W Shipway of Grove House, Chiswick, who in 1909 presented it in trust to the Middlesex County Council, for the benefit of the public. In 1965 it was conveyed to the LB Hounslow.
Closed following severe damage by bombing during WWII, Hogarth's House was later restored using existing materials by John E M MacGregor. It was re-opened on 24 September 1951 as the Hogarth Museum by the Chairman of the MCC, William Grimshaw, to coincide with the Festival of Britain. On the occasion, pies made from the fruit of the ancient mulberry tree in the garden were given to children at the adjacent Hogarth's School, recalling Hogarth's own practice of making mulberry tarts for foundling children who he took in. Apart from this mulberry tree, which was probably planted when the house was built, little of the original garden and orchard survives from Hogarth's time. The orchard appears to have had 5 trees, including a walnut, hawthorn, apricot and cherry. Near the house were long flower beds, and in one corner a nut-walk; at the farthest point from the house a door in the wall led to an enclosure with a stable block that housed Hogarth's studio, which eventually collapsed in 1868. In the garden were tombstones to Hogarth's bullfinch Dick who died in c.1760, next to which his dog Pompey was buried, but there is no trace of their graves today. There was also a stone slab where Hogarth played nine-pins.
The property survived another threat of closure in the 1980s, and both house and garden were restored in 1995-97 for the tercentenary of Hogarth's birth. The garden was replanted in the style of planting when it first opened to the public in the early C20th and a new gazebo was built in the west corner in 1996. The layout has a central lawn with scattered trees that include the mature mulberry, with paths along the north and south sides of the lawn, a flower and shrub border along the north wall and trees include 4 mature planes, with poplar, laurel, laburnum and philadelphus at the east end. The garden was formerly listed on the English Heritage National Register at Grade II but was later removed from Register. It closed for major refurbishment in 2008, re-opening in November 2011 with new displays and a museum and learning area on the 2nd floor.
Mark de Novellis 'Hogarth and his House', Hogarth's House Foundation (n.d. 1997/8?); Jessie Macgregor, 'Gardens of Celebrities and Celebrated Gardens in and around London', (Hutchinson & Co, 1918) pp227-236; Sir Clifford Radcliffe 'Middlesex', Evan Brothers Ltd, (c.1950 p.47); History on LB Hounslow website