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Bloomsbury Project

Bloomsbury Streets, Squares, and Buildings

Capper Mortimer Estate

Estates in Bloomsbury

1 Duke of Bedford
2 City of London Corporation
3 Capper Mortimer
4 Fitzroy (Duke of Grafton)
5 Somers
6 Skinners' (Tonbridge)
7 Battle Bridge
8 Lucas
9 Harrison
10 Foundling Hospital
11 Rugby
12 Bedford Charity (Harpur)
13 Doughty
14 Gray's Inn
15 Bainbridge–Dyott (Rookeries)

Area between the Foundling and Harrison estates: Church land

Grey areas: fragmented ownership and haphazard development; already built up by 1800

About the Capper Mortimer Estate

This estate in the north-west corner of Bloomsbury originated as the Bromfield site, later known as Brickfields, which was occupied by the farming Capper family in the eighteenth century (Survey of London, vol. 21, 1949)

It had been acquired by Hans Winthrop Mortimer of Caldwell, Derby by 1768, and residential development began at the end of the eighteenth century (Survey of London, vol. 21, 1949)

It comprised an area of Bloomsbury roughly bounded by Tottenham Court Road, University Street, Pancras (Capper) Street, and Gower Street

Although small, it became significant in the development of Bloomsbury

The eastern end of the site, at the end of University (then Carmarthen) Street and north of the part of Gower Street on the Duke of Bedford’s land, was sold at auction in 1825 for residential development, but acquired by John Smith, Benjamin Shaw, and Isaac Lyon Goldsmid as the site for the new University of London (now UCL)

The area to the east of UCL, particularly around Mortimer Market, has also been extensively redeveloped for buildings of UCL and UCH

University Street

Also known as Carmarthen Street/New London Street

It is in the north-west of Bloomsbury, on the Mortimer estate, running west from Tottenham Court Road to Gower Street south of Grafton Street

It was developed in the early nineteenth century

On Horwood’s map of 1807 it is shown as New London Street, continuing as it did the line of Maple Street, then known as London Street

It was originally intended as access to the planned Carmarthen Square which was never built

It was subsequently renamed after the University of London (now UCL) built there instead

No. 22 was the home of printmaker and former Keeper of Prints and Drawings at the British Museum, John Thomas Smith, who died impoverished here in 1833 (Oxford Dictionary of National Biography)

The army officer and writer (Robert) Calder Campbell died at his home here in 1857 (Oxford Dictionary of National Biography)

The new University College medical school was built here between 1903 and 1907

The former Duke of Wellington pub in the street was renamed in the twentieth century to commemorate philosopher and reformer Jeremy Bentham, spiritual father of UCL

This page last modified 14 April, 2011 by Deborah Colville


Bloomsbury Project - University College London - Gower Street - London - WC1E 6BT - Telephone: +44 (0)20 7679 3134 - Copyright © 1999-2005 UCL

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