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Irving Gardens Westminster
Summary: Irving Garden is an area of landscaping that consists of a simple lawn bounded by railings, located immediately behind the National Portrait Gallery and built in c.1890 on the site of Hemmings Row, which was demolished to build the Gallery. It surrounds the statue of the actor-manager Sir Henry Irving by Sir Thomas Brock, erected in 1910. The lawn and railings appears to be a post-war improvement as old photographs show that the area around the statue was once paved. This site has long been known for street performers and is at present the haunt of itinerant portrait artists. Nearby is a mid C19th vent shaft and exuberant lamp standard, and the white marble Edith Cavell Memorial, 1920, by Sir George Frampton.
Previous / Other name:
Site location: St Martin's Place, Charing Cross Road
Postcode: WC2N 5DN > Google Map
Type of site: Public Gardens
Date(s): 1910, railings c1950
Listed structures: LBI: National Portrait Gallery. LBII: C19th vent shaft, lamp standard, Edith Cavell Memorial, No. 10 (National Westminster Bank)
Borough: Westminster
Site ownership: WCC
Site management: Parks Service (contractor: Continental Landscapes Ltd)
Open to public? Yes
Opening times: unrestricted
Special conditions:
Public transport: Tube: Leicester Square (Piccadilly, Northern), Charing Cross (Northern, Bakerloo)
The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/01/2010
Please check with the site owner or manager for latest news.

Fuller information:

Sources consulted:

Harold Clunn, the Face of London (c1950), p. 164; Ben Weinreb & Christopher Hibbert, 'The London Encyclopaedia' (Macmillan, revised ed. 1993), p.819
Grid ref: TQ300806
Size in hectares:
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: Trafalgar Square
Tree Preservation Order: No
Nature Conservation Area: No
Green Belt: No
Metropolitan Open Land: No
Special Policy Area: No
Other LA designation:

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