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Collingham Gardens Kensington & Chelsea

Collingham Gardens

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These ornamental gardens were created for the communal use of residents of Collingham Gardens, built in the 1880s as the Gunter family developed their estate lands in this area. The original elaborate entrance gate is still in place, although the railings are modern. The gardens are laid out with lawn, mature trees, flowers and shrub beds and a network of paths.
Previous / Other name:
Site location: Collingham Gardens
Postcode: SW5 0HW > Google Map
Type of site: Garden Square
Date(s): 1883-8
Designer(s): Ernest George and Harold Peto
Listed structures: LBII: 1-18a Collingham Gardens
Borough: Kensington & Chelsea
Site ownership: private
Site management: Garden Committee
Open to public? Occasionally
Opening times: Has opened for OGSW. Otherwise private, for keyholders only
Has taken part in Open Garden Squares Weekend 14 times, most recently in 2017.
Special conditions:
Public transport: Tube: Gloucester Road (District, Circle, Piccadilly), Earl's Court (District, Piccadilly). Bus: C1, 74, 328, C3
The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/10/2007
Please check with the site owner or manager for latest news.

Fuller information:

Like much of the borough, the Courtfield area developed rapidly in the latter part of the C19th where open fields had previously covered the land from the village of Kensington to the Thames. The Court Fields originally belonged to Earl's Court Manor and were part of the large tract of land owned by the Gunter family who had made their money selling high class confectionary in Berkeley Square. They began to develop the estate from the late 1840s, commencing with The Boltons (q.v.) and continuing northwards. Many of the street names reflect the family's connections in the West Riding of Yorkshire, including Collingham Gardens, the village where Captain Robert Gunter lived in the C19th.

The houses of Collingham Gardens are described as representing 'the extreme point of late Victorian individualism' (Survey of London) and are placed in the setting of a square that was very simply laid out, with grass and trees and shrubs around the edge. Paths divided the rectangular space into three main areas. In 1928 the garden enclosure at Collingham Gardens was owned by Sir R V Gunter and leased to Mr G J Spicer, solicitor and son of John Spicer, the lease expiring in 1983. Spicer had similar leases from the Gunter family for the garden enclosures of Bina Gardens West, Bolton Gardens, Bramham Gardens, Gledhow Gardens and Wetherby Gardens (q.q.v.). Collingham Gardens was for the use of lessees who paid a rent for its upkeep, this maintenance undertaken through a Committee. In that year it was described as 'An oblong enclosure flanked on the two narrow sides byroads and on the other two sides by the rear of dwelling-houses. Laid out as an attractive ornamental garden, with a thick shrubbery along the borders abutting on roads. Contains some fine trees'. The elaborate original entrance gate is still there, but the railings are modern; like elsewhere in the borough garden railings were removed for the war effort. Protected under 1851 Garden Square Act.

Sources consulted:

Survey of London; OGSD booklet 2004; RBKC The Boltons Conservation Area Policy Statement; Report of the Royal Commission on London Squares, 1928
Grid ref: TQ259785
Size in hectares: 0.3504
On EH National Register : No
EH grade:
Site on EH Heritage at Risk list:
Registered common or village green
on Commons Registration Act 1965:
Protected under London Squares
Preservation Act 1931:
The information below is taken from the relevant Local Authority's planning legislation, which was correct at the time of research but may have been amended in the interim. Please check with the Local Authority for latest planning information.
On Local List:
In Conservation Area: Yes
Conservation Area name: Courtfield
Tree Preservation Order: Not known
Nature Conservation Area: No
Green Belt: No
Metropolitan Open Land: No
Special Policy Area: No
Other LA designation: Article 4 Direction: 1-18a Collingham Gardens

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