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St George Hanover Square
St George's Hanover Square by T Malton. 1787
Westminster Civil Parish Map 1870
Geography
Status Civil parish (1724–1922)
Poor law parish (1834–1870)
1851 area 1,161 acres (4.698 km2)
1901 area 1,111 acres (4.496 km2)
1921 area 1,110 acres (4.49 km2)
HQ Vestry Hall, Mount Street, Mayfair
History
Origin Commission for Building Fifty New Churches
Created 1724
Abolished 1922
Succeeded by City of Westminster (parish)
Demography
1851 population
- 1851 density
73,230
63.1/acre
1901 population
- 1901 density
76,957
69.3/acre
1921 population
- 1921 density
67,280
60.6/acre
Politics
Governance St George Hanover Square Vestry (1724–1900)

St George Hanover Square was a civil parish in the metropolitan area of London, England. The creation of the parish accompanied the building of the Church of St George's, Hanover Square, constructed by the Commission for Building Fifty New Churches to meet the demands of the growing population. The parish was formed in 1724 from part of the ancient parish of St Martin in the Fields in the Liberty of Westminster and county of Middlesex. It included some of the most fashionable areas of the West End of London, including Belgravia and Mayfair. Civil parish administration, known as a select vestry, was dominated by members of the British nobility until the parish adopted the Vestries Act 1831. The vestry was reformed again in 1855 by the Metropolis Management Act. In 1889 the parish became part of the County of London and the vestry was abolished in 1900, replaced by Westminster City Council. The parish continued to have nominal existence until 1922. As created, it was a parish for both church and civil purposes, but the boundaries of the ecclesiastical parish were adjusted in 1830, 1835 and 1865.

CreationEdit

The New Churches in London and Westminster Act 1710 created the Commission for Building Fifty New Churches with the purpose of building new churches to deal with the increasing population. The commission also chose the boundaries of the new parishes and selected suitable persons to be parish officers and vestrymen. Within the parish were some of the most fashionable areas of the West End of London, with an aristocratic population. The select vestry created by the commission included 100 men.[1] Much of the population of the parish was resident for only part of the year.[2] The parish was created in 1724 from part of the ancient parish of St Martin in the Fields. It was within the Liberty of Westminster[3][4] and the county of Middlesex. The parish vestry therefore had overlapping jurisdiction with the Westminster Court of Burgesses as well as the Westminster and Middlesex sessions.

GeographyEdit

The northern boundary was Bayswater Road and Oxford Street from Lancaster Gate, past Marble Arch, to Oxford Circus. The western boundary was the River Westbourne.[5] The southern boundary was the River Thames. The parish included the part of Hyde Park northeast of the Serpentine and the Mayfair area. To the south it narrowed, including the Belgravia area, Knightsbridge, Victoria Station and Pimlico. Hanover Square was located near to the northeastern boundary. It included within its boundaries the grounds of Buckingham Palace, although the palace itself was in St Martin in the Fields.[6]

ReformEdit

The parish adopted the Vestries Act 1831, which provided for election of vestrymen by all ratepayers. The aristocratic dominance of the vestry declined. In 1815 40% of vestrymen had titles and in 1845 it was half that.[7]

In 1855 the parish vestry became a local authority within the area of responsibility of the Metropolitan Board of Works. The parish was divided into the wards (electing vestrymen) of Dover (6), Conduit (9), Grosvenor (12), Brook (15), Curzon (12), Knightsbridge (27) and Out (27).[8]

Ecclesiastical divisionEdit

It was initially a parish for both ecclesiastical and civil purposes. However, by 1865 it was divided into eleven ecclesiastical districts.[9]

Poor lawEdit

St George was a local act parish and so it did not become part of the New Poor Law system, following the Poor Law Amendment Act 1834. This meant it did not form part of a union and the parish vestry remained in control of poor law functions, instead of a separately elected board of guardians as was typical. Following the Metropolitan Poor Act 1867, it was joined with St Margaret and St John for this purpose in 1870 as the St George's Union and a board of guardians elected.[10]

AbolitionEdit

In 1889 the parish became part of the County of London. The vestry was abolished in 1900 and replaced by Westminster City Council when it became part of the Metropolitan Borough of Westminster. It was abolished as a civil parish in 1922.

PopulationEdit

Year 180118111821183118411851187118811891190119111921
Population[11] 38,44041,68746,38458,20966,55273,23090,02889,57378,36476,95770,10667,280

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Introduction | The Commissions for building fifty new churches (pp. IX-XXXIII)". British-history.ac.uk. 2003-06-22. http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=38867. Retrieved 2013-09-11. 
  2. ^ "St George'S Hanover Square". Stgeorgeshanoversquare.org. http://www.stgeorgeshanoversquare.org/history/The-Parish.html. Retrieved 2013-09-11. 
  3. ^ Youngs, Frederic (1979). Guide to the Local Administrative Units of England. I: Southern England. London: Royal Historical Society. ISBN 0-901050-67-9. 
  4. ^ http://wellcomelibrary.org/pdf/b18247428/0/b18247428_0.pdf
  5. ^ London's Lost Rivers, Paul Talling, Random House, 2011
  6. ^ Sir Walter Besant and Geraldine Edith Mitton (1903). The Strand District, The Fascination of London. Adam and Charles Black at Project Gutenberg
  7. ^ Liberalism and Local Government in Early Victorian London, Benjamin Weinstein
  8. ^ http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/issues/21802/pages/3876/page.pdf
  9. ^ "Background - Westminster". London Lives. http://www.londonlives.org/static/WestminsterLocalGovernment.jsp. Retrieved 2013-09-11. 
  10. ^ Peter Higginbotham. "The St George's Union, Middlesex". Workhouses.org.uk. http://www.workhouses.org.uk/StGeorges/. Retrieved 2013-09-11. 
  11. ^ "St George Hanover Square CP/Vest through time | Population Statistics | Total Population". Visionofbritain.org.uk. http://www.visionofbritain.org.uk/unit/10164503/cube/TOT_POP. Retrieved 2013-09-11. 

Template:History of the formation of the City of Westminster

Coordinates: 51°30′45″N 0°8′35″W / 51.5125, -0.14306


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