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The Info List - Lincoln's Inn Fields





Coordinates: 51°30′58″N 0°07′00″W / 51.5161°N 0.1166°W / 51.5161; -0.1166

Street sign

Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields in Spring 2006

Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields is the largest public square in London. It was laid out in the 1630s under the initiative of the speculative builder and contractor William Newton, "the first in a long series of entrepreneurs who took a hand in developing London", as Sir Nikolaus Pevsner observes.[1] The original plan for "laying out and planting" these fields, drawn by the hand of Inigo Jones, was said still to be seen in Lord Pembroke's collection at Wilton House
Wilton House
in the 19th century,[2] but is untraced.[3] The grounds, which had remained private property, were acquired by London County Council
London County Council
in 1895. It is today managed by the London Borough of Camden
London Borough of Camden
and forms part of the southern boundary of that borough with the City of Westminster. Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields takes its name from the adjacent Lincoln's Inn, of which the private gardens are separated from the Fields by a perimeter wall and a large gatehouse. The grassed area in the centre of the Fields contains a court for tennis and netball and a bandstand. It was previously used for corporate events, which are no longer permitted. Cricket and other sports are thought to have been played here in the 18th century.

Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields in 1889 from Charles Booth, Life and Labour of the People in London: red areas are "middle-class, well-to-do"; blue areas are "Intermittent or casual earnings", and black areas are the "lowest class...occasional labourers, street sellers, loafers, criminals and semi-criminals".

Contents

1 History 2 Notable premises 3 Homelessness 4 Nearest stations 5 References 6 Further reading 7 External links

History[edit]

Lindsey House, 59–60 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields

When originally laid out, Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields was part of fashionable London. The completion of the houses that surrounded it proceeded at a leisurely pace, interrupted by the English Civil War: In 1659 James Cooper, Robert Henley, and Francis Finch and other owners of "certain parcels of ground in the fields, commonly called Lincoln's Inn Fields", were exempted from all forfeitures and penalties which they might incur in regard to any new buildings they might erect on three sides of the same fields, previously to 1 October in that year, provided that they paid for the public service one year's full value for every such house within one month of its erection; and provided that they should convey the 'residue of the said fields' to the Society of Lincoln's Inn, for laying the same into walks for common use and benefit, whereby the annoyances which formerly have been in the same fields will be taken away, and passengers there for the future better secured."[4] The oldest building from this early period is Lindsey House, 59–60 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields, which was built in 1640 and has been attributed to Inigo Jones.[5] The builder may have been David Cunningham, 1st Baronet of Auchinhervie, a friend of the mason-sculptor Nicholas Stone, who also supervised the rebuilding of Berkhamsted Place
Berkhamsted Place
for Charles I.[6] It derives its name from a period of ownership in the 18th century by the earls of Lindsey.[7]

Newcastle House
Newcastle House
in 1754

Another seventeenth-century survival is now 66 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields, which was built for Lord Powis and known as Powis House. The charter of the Bank of England
Bank of England
was sealed there on 27 July 1694. It was in 1705 acquired by the Duke of Newcastle
Duke of Newcastle
(whereupon it became known as Newcastle House) who had it remodelled by Sir John Vanbrugh
John Vanbrugh
(following earlier work by Sir Christopher Wren
Christopher Wren
after a fire in 1684). It remains substantially in its circa 1700 form, although a remodelling in 1930 by Sir Edwin Lutyens
Edwin Lutyens
gives it a curiously pastiche appearance. Up to the 17th century, cattle were grazed upon the fields. Turnstiles were placed around the square to enable pedestrians to enter without the animals escaping. Shops and other businesses developed along these footpaths and some of these alleys still exist – the Great and Little Turnstile.[8] As London fashion moved west, Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields was left to rich lawyers who were attracted by its proximity to the Inns of Court. Thus, the former Newcastle House
Newcastle House
became in 1790 the premises of the solicitors Farrer & Co who are still there: their clients include much of the landed gentry and also Queen Elizabeth II. The Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields Theatre was located in the Fields from 1661 to 1848 when it was demolished. Originally called the Duke's Theatre, it was created by converting Lisle's Tennis
Tennis
Court, to become the Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields Theatre in 1695. The theatre presented the first paid public performances of Purcell's Dido and Aeneas
Dido and Aeneas
in 1700, John Gay's The Beggar's Opera
The Beggar's Opera
in January 1728, and Handel's final two operas in 1740 and 1741. Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields was the site, in 1683, of the public beheading of Lord William Russell, son of the first Duke of Bedford, following his implication in the Rye House Plot
Rye House Plot
for the attempted assassination of King Charles II. The executioner was Jack Ketch
Jack Ketch
who made such a poor job of it that four axe blows were required before the head was separated from the body and, after the first stroke, Russell looked up and said to him "You dog, did I give you 10 guineas to use me so inhumanely?". Sometime after 1735 the Fields were enclosed within an iron railing, on account of the then Master of the Rolls, Sir Joseph Jekyll
Joseph Jekyll
being ridden over by a horse. An alternative version of the story claims that Jekyll was attacked for his support of an Act of Parliament raising the price of gin.[9] From 1750 to 1992, the solicitors Frere Cholmeley were in premises on the north side of Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields, after which their buildings were taken over by a leading set of commercial barristers' chambers, known as Essex Court Chambers after their own former premises at 4 Essex Court in the Temple. Essex Court Chambers now occupy five buildings, nos. 24–28 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields. Other barristers' chambers have since then also set up in Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields, but solicitors' firms still outnumber them there.

57–58 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields

In Charles Dickens' novel Bleak House, the sinister solicitor to the aristocracy, Mr Tulkinghorn, has his offices in Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields, and one of its most dramatic scenes is set there. The description of his building corresponds most closely to Lindsey House. After a spell as a patent agents, Lindsey House has become home to the leading civil liberties barristers' chambers, Garden Court Chambers, together with the neighbouring building at 57–58, which includes some features designed by Sir John Soane, including a geometric staircase.[10] The London School of Economics and Political Science
London School of Economics and Political Science
moved onto the square in 2003, taking the leasehold of 50 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields, on the corner of Sardinia Street. At the end of 2008, a new £71 million state-of-the-art building housing the LSE's Departments of Law and Management (54 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields) was opened by the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh. Since then it has taken ownership of Sardinia House (2009), the former Land Registry Building at 32 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields (2010), 44 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields (previously the home of Cancer Research), 5 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields (2016) and Nuffield House (2017), to expand to seven its portfolio of buildings on the square. Notable premises[edit]

Former Land Registry at number 32

Aside from Lindsey House and Powis House, at number 12, 13 and 14, on the north side of the square, is Sir John Soane's Museum, home of the architect. On the same side, at number 7, is Thomas More Chambers, led by Mr Geoffrey Cox QC MP.[11] Organisations with premises on the south side of the square include the London School of Economics
London School of Economics
and Political Science and the Royal College of Surgeons (including the Hunterian Museum exhibiting the intriguing medical collections of John Hunter). There is a blue plaque marking the home of the surgeon William Marsden at number 65. On the west side, the Royal College of Radiologists has premises at 63 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields and the London School of Economics and Political Science owns a number of buildings. Aside from the Royal College of Surgeons, the School will then own the entire south side of the square. There is a statue by Barry Flanagan, an abstract called Camdonian, in the North East corner of the square. Also located at 67–69 is the Centre for Commercial Law Studies, the commercial law research and teaching centre of Queen Mary, University of London. 16 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Field is occupied by the PR company Brunswick Group, owned by Sir Alan Parker. Homelessness[edit] In the 1980s, Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields attracted many homeless people, who slept there overnight. In 1992, they were cleared out and fences were raised, and since the re-opening of Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields with its new railings in 1993, gates have been locked every night at dusk.[12] However, although homeless people no longer live there, soup vans still continue to visit Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields nightly, along the east side, adjacent to Lincoln's Inn, to provide free food to queues of homeless people who assemble at dark to collect the food and hot drink and then disappear. The vans are operated by a variety of religious organisations, and on Sundays by Imperial College London's Soup Run society. During the Muslim
Muslim
holy month of Ramadan, Muslims attend the Fields at sunset to feed the local homeless.[13] Nearest stations[edit] The nearest London Underground
London Underground
stations are Holborn
Holborn
and Chancery Lane. References[edit]

^ Pevsner, London: The Cities of London and Westminster, vol. I (The Buildings of England), (1957) 1962:55. ^ ' Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields', Old and New London: Volume 3 (1878), pp. 44–50. date. Retrieved 16 July 2010. ^ It is not mentioned in the modern literature on Inigo Jones. ^ Charles Knight, History of London," , quoted in Survey of London, below. ^ Colen Campbell
Colen Campbell
reported this tradition in Vitruvius Britannicus, I, p. 5, and illustrated it in plates 49, 50. ^ Howard Colvin,Essays, ix,(1999):NAS GD237/25/1/7 ^ Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields: Nos. 59 and 60 (Lindsey House), Survey of London: volume 3: St Giles-in-the-Fields, pt I: Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields (1912), pp. 96–103]. Retrieved 22 May 2008. ^ Cunningham, Peter (1850), Handbook of London: Past and Present, 1, J. Murray, p. 513  ^ Timbs, John (1855). Curiosities of London: Exhibiting the Most Rare and Remarkable Objects of Interest in the Metropolis. D. Bogue. p. 528.  ^ Garden Court Chambers ^ Thomas More Chambers ^ History of Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields – Camden Council Archived 11 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine. ^ Sarfraz Manzoor: How Muslim
Muslim
flashmobs can feed homeless people The Guardian

Further reading[edit]

Chancellor, Edwin Beresford, The Romance of Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields, London: Richards, 1932 (2nd edition) Plantamura, Carol, ‘’The Opera Lover's Guide to Europe’’, New York: Citadel Press, 1996. ISBN 0-8065-1842-1 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields, Old and New London: Volume 3 (1878), pp. 44–50 Manzoor, Sarfraz. "How Muslim
Muslim
flashmobs can feed homeless people", The Guardian, 22 September 2008.

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields.

History of Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields Early history of Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields at Google Maps

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London Borough of Camden

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Fields Phoenix Garden Primrose Hill Regents Park Russell Square Waterlow Park

Constituencies

Hampstead
Hampstead
and Kilburn Holborn
Holborn
and St. Pancras

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(and West Coast Main Line terminus) Euston Square Finchley Road Finchley Road & Frognal Goodge Street Gospel Oak
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railway station Hampstead Hampstead
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Lincoln's Inn
Fields

32 Lincoln's Inn
Lincoln's Inn
Fields

Peacock Theatre

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London School of Economics
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