Roehampton

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Coordinates: 51°27′22″N 0°14′09″W / 51.4561°N 0.2359°W / 51.4561; -0.2359

Roehampton is a district in south-west London, forming the western end of the London Borough of Wandsworth. It lies between the town of Barnes to the north, Putney to the east and Wimbledon Common to the south. The Richmond Park golf courses are west of the neighbourhood, and just south of these is the Roehampton Gate entrance to Richmond Park itself—the largest of London's Royal Parks. Roehampton is 6.3 miles (10.1 km) south west of Charing Cross.

Contents

Etymology

The Roe in Roehampton is thought to refer to the large amount of rooks which still inhabit the area in large numbers.

Description

Roehampton emerged as a favoured residential suburb of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries following the opening of Putney Bridge in 1729 and the development of a number of large private estates from which several of the original houses survive. Roehampton House (grade I) by Thomas Archer was built between 1710–12 and enlarged by Sir Edwin Lutyens in 1910. Parkstead House (grade I) built in 1750 for William Ponsonby, 2nd Earl of Bessborough, now forms part of Roehampton University. Mount Clare (grade I) built in 1772 for George Clive, cousin of Lord Clive, which forms part of Roehampton University, along with Grove House (grade II*), built originally for Sir Joshua Vanneck in 1777 (also owned by the University). 'Capability' Brown is reputed to have laid out the grounds. The University also owns Downshire House (grade II*); built in 1770 and once occupied by the Marquess of Downshire. Roehampton Village has retained something of its rustic Georgian charm, best exemplified by the King's Head Inn, at the foot of Roehampton High Street and the Montague Arms, Medfield Street, both 17th century in origin. Dramatic change came to Roehampton when the London County Council built the massive Dover House Estate of the 1930s and the Alton East and West Estates of the 1950s. At Highcliffe Drive on Alton West the LCC essentially retained the Georgian landscape and placed within it five ultra modern slab blocks: Binley, Winchfield, Dunbridge, Charcot and Denmead Houses, (all grade II*) inspired by Le Corbusier's Unite d'Habitation.

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