Fairfax House, Putney

From: A History of the County of Surrey: Volume 4. Edited by H E Malden. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1912:

“The High Street not many years ago presented a very different appearance from its modern and townlike aspect. It contained many large old-fashioned houses with spacious lawns and lovely gardens at the back. Among the most interesting was Fairfax House, which is thought to have been built by a gentleman of that name in the reign of Queen Elizabeth. At the time of the occupation of Putney by the Parliamentary army it is said to have been the property of a Mr. Whyte, and at a later date was owned by the Pettiwards. Before its demolition in 1886 it was occupied for many years by the late Mr. Todd. The older parts of the house were of c. 1600. The front was altered some hundred years later. Fairfax House was connected by a so-called subterranean passage, now blocked up, with a house in Putney Bridge Road, which is remembered by some of the older inhabitants of the town as ‘Oliver Cromwell’s Dog-Kennel.’ ”

From: Financial Times of 20.9.08:

“In the 17th and early 18th centuries, Putney High Street continued as the home of aristocracy and other notables. All, however, was to change under the jackboot of Victorian development.

The railway and commuters arrived. From 1831 to 1911, Putney’s population increased 750 per cent. After Disraeli Road in 1866, 81 new residential roads were built, fanning out from the High Street by 1910. All High Street mansions were demolished by 1887 and replaced with shops. A campaign to save the most elegant, Fairfax House, failed. Montserrat Road now runs over its foundations.”

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