The forested area now known as Regent's Park became property of the Crown when Henry VIII (1509-1547) dissolved Catholic monasteries and took their land.  A circular shape in the northern area of the appropriated land was set aside as a hunting park.  Over the ensuing years, the Park went out and in of the Crown's hands.  By the 1790s, plans were underway in the office of the Surveyor-General for Crown Lands to do something with the Park to increase its revenue and enrich the appearance of London.  The best plan for the Park was put forward by the John Nash (1752-1835) (see picture), an architect with the government Office of Woods and Forests.  His intention was to provide eloquent homes and create with space and landscape a beautiful garden city for the rich and prosperous within the City of London. 

Origin of Name

While Nash's planning was underway, Great Britain along with other European nations was fighting France during the Napoleonic Wars (1799-1815).  Money was scarce and many politicians wanted to abandon the expensive park project.  Yet Nash had the strong backing of the Prince Regent (titled Prince of Wales, the future King George IV, 1762-1830), and  planning and development continued.  The park was named Regent's Park in honor of the Prince of Wales.

Development of Park

Nash had planned for 56 opulent villas in the restricted park, but only eight were ever built.  The Zoological Gardens were added in 1828, and the gardens of the Royal Botanic Society were started in 1839.  By 1841 much of Regent's Park had become open to the general populace, serving as a public park for universal recreation and enjoyment. 

Sites in the Park

The sites included in Reynolds's Map of 1859 are presented below, following the map references.  For a detailed view in 1827 with links to many of the sites see Shepherd's map. For an overview of the Park in 1846, see Cruchley's map.


(Map Section  A-L - 1-12)


Fox C (ed). London -- World City, 1800-1840, 1992.

Russel J. London, 1994.

Weinreb B, Hibbert C (eds). The London Encyclopaedia, 1993.

Sites in Shepherd's Park Map of 1827

Click here for a map and link to sites

Site in Cruchley's London Map of 1846

Click here to see more details 13 years earlier

Abbey Lodge

Cambridge Terrace

Chester Terrace

Clarence Terrace


Cornwall Terrace

Cumberland Terrace

Doric Villa

Gloucester Gate (East Gate)

Gloucester House/Lodge

Gloucester Terrace

Grove House

Hanover Gate (West Gate)

Hanover Lodge

Hanover Terrace

Hertford Villa

Holford House


Kent Terrace

Macclesfield Bridge (North Gate)

North Villa

Park Crescent (planned Main Entrance)

Park Square (planned Main Entrance)

Royal York Baths

Saint John's Lodge

Saint Katharine's Hospital

South Villa

Sussex Lodge

Sussex Place

Ulster Terrace

York Gate (South Gate)

York Terrace