brown hart gardens

Photo credit: The Beaumont. 

Photo credit: The Beaumont. 

Brown Hart Gardens. Westminster. Brown Hart Gardens, London W1K 6TD.

This unusual roof garden began life as a communal garden at ground level, laid out for the benefit of the then working class dwellings in Brown Street and Hart Street. 

In 1905 the Duke Street Electricity Substation was built over the gardens. Designed by Charles Stanley Peach, the substation is a remarkably substantial and ornate building, with deep basements, a domed pavilion, steps at either end, and a formal balustrade. 

The landowner, the Duke of Westminster, insisted that as compensation to the community for the loss of the communal garfden a paved Italian garden, with trees in tubs, should be built on top of the substation. Closed to the public int he 1980s, the roof garden was re-opened to the public in 2007. A refurbishment followed in 2012.

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