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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 LMA/4424
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1935
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 0.01 linear metres
Name of creator(s): Unknown.


Administrative/Biographical history:

Hampstead Garden Suburb is an area of outstanding architectural importance situated to the north west of London. In 1951, Nikolaus Pevsner in his Buildings of England - Middlesex described it as 'the aesthetically most satisfactory and socially most successful of C20 garden suburbs'. The Suburb was the vision and accomplishment of Henrietta Octavia Barnett (later Dame Henrietta).

In 1905 Henrietta published an article in the Contemporary Review stating that she wanted to create a place where the rich and poor could live together. The estate would be aesthetically pleasing as it would consist of low dennsity housing and would be planned as a whole, a mixture of buildings and nature. The community would be served by a range of local amenities including churches, libraries, schools and shops. It would be a suburb for all, the old, the young and the handicapped. Nobody would be excluded. Henrietta wanted to bring different classes together rather than create a classless community. She hoped that the result would avoid the worst evils of conventional suburbs of the time - social segregation and destruction of the countyside.

The head architect employed by Henrietta was Raymond Unwin. He had the responsibility of surveying and planning the estate as a whole. Edwin Lutyens was appointed to plan the centrepiece, Central Square. The land purchase negotiations took place between 1900 and 1907. It was on the 2nd May 1907, that Henrietta ceremoniously cut the first sod of grass. Building work from this point was rapid, and by October of the same year the houses which are now known as 140 and 142 Hampstead Way were completed. Also in 1907, Cenral Square was constructed with its showcase buildings of St. Jude's Church, the Free Church, and the Institute.

Although the Hampstead Garden Suburb Trust Ltd owned and administered the suburb, a large section of the housing was built by the Co-Partnership companies. The Co-partnership Tenants Ltd. was formed in June 1907, and they aimed to built houses for all classes but especially for the working class. They had a dividend limitation of 5% which limited their profits. The tenants of the houses were the investors, and after expenses had been deducted, surplus profits were divided amongst these tenants in proportion to the rent that they paid. The profit was given in shares only.

Other companies which were involved in the construction of housing in the period before the First World War were the Improved Industrial Dwelling Company Ltd. and the Garden Suburb Development Company (Hampstead) Ltd.

There were also Suburb Tenants Societies who elected their own Board of Management. The Hampstead Tenants Ltd and the Second and Third Hampstead Tenants Ltd (formed 1907, 1909 and 1910 respectively) and finally the Oakwood Tenants Ltd formed in 1913. The impact of all these companies was considerable as they increased the size of the Suburb by more than twofold during the period in which they were building.


Scope and content/abstract:

Architect's plan of 42 Vivian Way, Hampstead Garden Suburb. Although this plan is of 42 Vivian Way, number 40 is a mirror image of this one. There are minor differences between the two properties - 42 has one large dining room, whereas 40 has two rooms, and was extended in 1953.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

One item.

Conditions governing access:

Not available for general access.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright to this collection rests with the City of London.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Donated to the Archive in August 2002.

Allied Materials

Related material:

See ACC/3816 for the records of Hampstead Garden Suburb (and a more detailed history); and LMA/4255 for more building plans from the suburb.

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
August to October 2010.

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