Sons & Co’s latest development, Pinks Mews, neighbours Lincoln’s Inn Fields – a public square that has one of the richest histories of any in London
Along with being a hub of professional legal, financial and creative activity, Holborn is also home to some of London’s most historic and prettiest squares. This includes Lincoln’s Inn Fields – the capital’s largest public square – which takes its name from the neighbouring Lincoln’s Inn, one of London’s four Inns of Court. The area has a long history dating back to the 17th century.
After initial plans for the square were drawn up by Inigo Jones – the influential English architect who also designed Covent Garden square – it was laid out during the 1630s by the builder William Newton. Once concluded, its completion was followed by the gradual construction of elegant residences that reflected the fashionable character of the area.
These houses were subsequently filled by several members of London’s aristocratic circle. Lindsey House, the earliest property of this period, came under the ownership of the Earl of Lindsey during the 18th century, whilst Powis House – originally built for Lord Powis – was renamed Newcastle House when it was acquired by the Duke of Newcastle in 1705. Newcastle House was also where the charter for the Bank of England was signed in 1964 – some 250 years later.
From 1660, the square was also home to Lincoln Inn’s Fields Theatre, created by converting the Lisle’s Tennis Court when faced with a shortage of performance venues after the Restoration. The space hosted the renowned Dukes Company and the first paid public performances of Dido and Aeneas, as well as Handel’s final two operas, catering not only for their more aristocratic audiences but for theatre-enthusiasts across the social spectrum.
A legal stronghold
As fashionable London began to move west in the mid-18th century, the Fields began to be taken over by wealthy lawyers drawn to the square’s proximity to the Inns of Court. From 1750, solicitors Frere Cholmeley occupied premises on the north side of the square which they only vacated in 1992. Newcastle House also became the home of solicitors, with Farrer & Co having moved in in 1790 and still occupying the site today. The Fields were even used as a setting for Charles Dickens’ novel ‘Bleak House’, with the author placing the offices of his antagonist Mr Tulkinghorn in a building that closely resembles Lindsey House.
The history continues
The prevalence of the legal profession is something that continues today, with the many inhabitants of the square remaining a mix of solicitors and barristers. However, along with much of the rest of London, the area has adapted over time and is now also home to an eclectic mix of other intellectual organisations; The Royal Colleges of Surgeons and Radiologists can be found on the south and west sides, the John Soane’s Museum is situated on the north side, and the London School of Economics and Queen Mary, University of London also have premises on the square.
Along the Holborn road, a short walk away from Lincoln’s Inn Field, sit the Dyers Buildings. Originally constructed in the Victorian period, these buildings have a history of their own and, like the Fields, they have also been home to solicitors’ offices. Now, the structures have been transformed into 35 luxury apartments, penthouses and loft-style properties. Whilst being privately nestled away off the main thoroughfare, the development is yet minutes away from Chancery Lane and Farringdon stations and the vibrant array of bars and restaurants Holborn has to offer. These unique residences also benefit from exceptional interior finishes and architectural features as well as the comfort of a dedicated 24-hour concierge service. A great complement to a truly historic area.
Prices at Pinks Mews range from £995,000 to £2,750,000. For further information contact Jamie Gunning at CBRE (020 7240 2255), Glen A. Cook at Hamilton Brooks (020 7606 8000) or visit the Pink Mews website to register your interest
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