Burlington Arcade

I had the pleasure of meeting representatives of Burlington Arcade’s not-so-new owners today (it was sold in 2010).   Not surprisingly, I’m interested in its history, built as it was alongside Burlington House, as well as its future, since it’s such a prominent part of the local neighbourhood.   It opened in 1819, the original shopping arcade and was progenitor of all those grand arcades in Brussels, Paris, Milan and St. Petersburg.   The architect was Samuel Ware, former student of the Royal Academy Schools, who was also responsible for the new main staircase in Burlington House for its then owner, Lord George Cavendish.   Part of the purpose of the arcade was to stop people throwing rubbish, particularly oyster shells, over the garden wall into the courtyard of Burlington House.   The front entrance was added by Professor Beresford Pite, designer of the cathedral in Kampala, in 1931:

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