Walton Street and Place History

Mr Malcolm, who owned the nursery next to Thomas Gibbs’ nursery, was also the tenant of the Quail Field.  Malcolm died in 1836 and his executors negotiated to hand back the leases of the land he had occupied.

One of the first things the trustees did with the newly vacant land was to build a church.  The Commission for building new churches opened negotiations with Smith’s Charity in late 1836 and in February 1837 the trustees agreed to sell a plot of land in Quail Field for the erection of a church.  The Metropolitan Church Fund paid £300 which was presumably both for the flat and for the cost of erection of the church itself, since Basevi then set about designing and building the church.

Uncharacteristically, Basevi adopted a Tudor rather than a Gothic style.  In 1878 E P Loftus Brock supervised the addition of a north aisle, and further alterations were carried out in 1890.  The trustees gave up some more land in 1861 to allow a church school to be built.

By 1843 Basevi had supervised the building of Walton Place, just to the north east of the church.  Walton Place was named after George Walton Onslow, a trustee at the time.  There was a terrace on either side of the street and each had nine four-storey houses.  The facades were fully stuccoed, with porches supported by pilasters, and a single wrought iron balcony running along the terrace at first floor level.

In 1841 William Pocock was given permission to develop a row of houses on the south east of St Saviour’s Church.  These are the sixteen houses with stuccoed facades and linked Ionic porches which are numbered 2 to 32 (even) Walton Street.

In 1847 the local authorities decided to construct a new road to connect Sloane Street and Fulham Road.  This was to be Walton Street.  Half of it was on Lord Cadogan’s land and the north east part between St Saviour’s Church and Pocock’s row of houses was on Henry Smith’s estate.

In 1881 the trustees were asked if they could provide some land on the Old Quail field for a Scottish church.  The plans were approved in late 1882.  However, the vicar of St Saviour’s in Walton Street began a local fight to stop the new church.  In the end the church was built in Pont Street and was called St Columba’s Church.  It was destroyed by bombs in the Second World War and replaced by a church designed by Sir Edward Maufe in 1955.

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