Homes With Blue Plaques in London

Published by Mark Wilkins on

Since the facts behind the many pieces of architecture in England are worth learning, some structures have a special marker. As you walk across the streets of London, you will surely notice a lot of blue plaques. These signs are dedicated to some of the most famous people who were born and raised or lived in the English capital. The scheme, which dates back to the 1860s, is the oldest of its kind in the world.

All the locations in London with a blue plaque are historical monuments, related to the individuals, whose names they bear. These signs make sightseeing more interesting not only for the citizens but the tourists who come to visit the capital as well. In order to tell you about some famous figures from the English history and their homes, we have listed a few buildings with a blue plaque hanging on the walls of the exterior.

Ashberry Cottage

This detached house is a Grade II listed building, located in the rural area of Forest Hill. The ground floor of the red brick structure is renovated but the upper level and the roof have preserved their vintage outlook. A few steps lead to the Georgian entrance with two large oval bay windows – one on each side of the front door. The cottage offers 2900 square feet of space, which includes five bedrooms, a separate two bedroom apartment for guests and an orangery in the back of the house.

The home of King William IV in Forest Hill.

The blue plaque on the upper floor pays homage to the Duke of Clarence, who later became King William IV, and his mistress – the actress Dorothea Jordan. The site was the location of the cottage where they lived together, before the original house was demolished and the one we see today was built in its place.

Holly Lodge

Putney is the location of another red brick structure. The main features of the building are the additional extensions and the high ceilings. Most of the exterior has vintage design except for the ground floor, which is painted white. The art deco front door and the open kitchen are part of the renovation. The lodge has four floors and five bedrooms and on the outside there’s a garden with a dining terrace. Throughout the 3500 square feet of space, you will find a variety of period features.

The residence of George Eliot in Putney.

The building is the first in South England with a blue plaque, honoring a woman. Although the sign says George Eliot, this is actually the pen name of the writer Mary Ann Evans. She used to live in the lodge with her lover George Henry Lewis to whom she dedicated the novel “The Mill on the Floss”.

Tite Street

Here’s another example for red brick architecture, but this time we’ve chosen a residential building in Chelsea. Some of the apartments of the Grade II listed structure run on several levels, while others occupy a single floor. The double front entrance has steps and the first two levels have trapezoid bay windows. The third floor is surrounded by a terrace and on top of the residential building are the roof expansions. All the large single bedrooms on the ground floor have a gate leading to a private basement area.

The flat of Oscar Wilde in Chelsea.

Among the names on the blue plaques on the street you can spot Oscar Wilde. The English writer inhabited one of the apartments marked by the number 34. During the 10 year he spent in the flat with his wife and two sons, Oscar Wilde wrote several plays, including “The Picture of Dorian Gray”.

Sheffield Terrace

The following white residence can be found in Holland Park. The terrace house has rectangular bay windows up to the second floor, the front door is between them, and a chimney on each of the sidewalls. The entire property is surrounded by a concrete wall along with the private garden and the garage. The house has three levels including the ground floor but not the basement. On the sidewalls of the exterior you can see the original structure behind the white plaster. The most notable features are the lion and unicorn statues above the entrance.

The house of Agatha Christie in Holland Park.

The blue plaque on the house belongs to Agatha Christie. The world famous crime story writer lived here with her  husband Max Mallowan for several years before they left because of the bombings during the Second World War. One of the novels she wrote in the house was “Murder on the Orient Express”.

Glenshaw Mansions

This residential building with an exterior painted in beige plaster stands on Brixton Road in Lambeth. Although the original structure was well preserved, both the exterior and the interior have been renovated. The ground floor area is occupied by various stores, pubs and shops. The main features of the entrance are the red door and the semicircular arch. You can spot trapezoid bay windows on the first two floors, just beneath the terraces on the third level. The roof has several triangular sections with dormers between them.

The home of Charlie Chaplin in Lambeth.

On one of the blue plaques is written the name of British comedian Charlie Chaplin, who is best known for his character the “Little Tramp”. Before becoming the biggest star of the silent movie era, he lived here in flat number 15 for two years. Back then, the building was associated with misery and poverty.

Notting Hill

The following residential building is on the corner of Notting Hill where Portobello Road and Tavistock Road meet. The ground floor area next to the entrance has been turned into a coffee house. The red brick structure is an end of terrace building with two floors. Most of the flats have a single bedroom. The simple exterior lacks special features except for the small terrace on the second floor. In comparison to the buildings it stands between, this one has an attic with dormers.

The residence of Claudia Jones in Notting Hill.

The name you can read on the blue plaque hanging above the ground floor is Claudia Jones. The female social activist and politician came to live here after being deported from the USA. Claudia Jones is the author of the first black newspaper in Britain “The West Indian Gazette” and one of the founders of the Caribbean Carnival.

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