Monday, September 29, 2008

Belgrave Place , Belgravia

Belgrave Place is a busy street with one-way traffic going north from Eaton Square to the south-west corner of Belgrave Square.
Like Belgravia itself, Belgrave Square was named after Belgrave, a village near Leicester owned by the Grosvenor family.
The Spanish Cultural Centre, with its imposing columned fa├žade, stands on the corner with Eaton Square. Opposite is the Belgian Embassy which has a plaque unveiled by the late Queen Mother to commemorate the Belgians killed in World War Two (laid on 21st June, 1964).
It is not a predominantly residential street. But No. 7 & 8 on the west side is noteworthy as being an attractive residential building with a wide frontage.
Queen Victoria rented 36 as a home for her mother, the Duchess of Kent, while Kensington Palace was being constructed in the 1840s. She paid £2,000 a year rent.
Various other aristocrats lived in the square in the 19th century. The Earl of Essex was one of the first takers in this untried area in the 1840s and was nick-named ‘the Decoy Duck’ as a result.

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