“Take your son and heir where there is sun and air”*

*1914 Underground poster for Hampstead (“we carry dogs and folding mailcarts”).

From Wikipedia:

Chalybeate waters, also known as ferruginous waters, are mineral spring waters containing salts of iron.

The word “chalybeate” is derived from the Latin word for steel, chalybs, which follows from the Greek word χάλυψ khálups. Khálups is the singular form of Khálubes or Chalybes, who were a people living on Mount Ida in north Asia Minor and who were expert in iron working.

Ferruginous comes from the Latin word ferreus meaning “made of iron”, which is derived from the Latin word ferrum, “iron”.”

From Historic England entries:

“Chalybeate well and drinking fountain flanked by steps. 1882. By HS Legg. South side with rusticated granite base flanked by swept granite walls with spurstones which also flank ascending stone steps; Portland stone superstructure. Base with trough over which a channelled granite arch with keystone. Above, a stone plinth with dentil cornice continuing around the pilasters at angles with carved floral panels. Plinth inscribed “Chalybeate Well” above the arch and with central granite panel inscribed

“To the memory of the Hon. Susanna Noel who with her son Baptist 3rd Earl of Gainsborough gave this well together with 6 acres of land to the use and benefit of the poor of Hampstead 20 December 1698./Drink traveller and with strength renewed/Let a kind thought be given/To her who has thy thirst subdued/Then tender thanks to Heaven.”

Plinth supports a shaped pediment with carved cartouche including a coat of arms. North side plainer with pilasters flanking the stone plinth with dentil cornice and central faceted granite bowel set in a shaped panel; pediment with carved coat of arms in a roundel.

HISTORICAL NOTE: during the early C18 Hampstead became famous for its chalybeate waters. The original spa building stood opposite.

Lodge dated 1886 by H.S Legg for the gardener of Gainsborough Gardens, developed between 1882 and 1895.

Legg uses an eclectic Vernacular Revival manner for which he is noted…

Gainsborough Gardens was laid out between 1882 and 1895 on land belonging to the Wells and Campden Charity Trust. Plots were developed speculatively under the close scrutiny of the Trust and their Surveyor H.S Legg. The development adopted the newly-heralded ethos shown at Bedford Park Chiswick, developed from 1875, where different styles of building cohere informally in a planned, leafy environment. E.J May, recently appointed as principal architect at Bedford Park, designed the first building: Nos. 3 and 4, Gainsborough Gardens, in 1884. Both architecturally and historically, this was a significant step in changing attitudes towards the emerging suburbs.

This is set against the background of steps to limit expansion onto Hampstead Heath and the preservation of Parliament Hill Fields, an achievement attributed to CE Maurice who built and lived at No. 9A. He was married to the sister of Octavia Hill, philanthropist and founder of the National Trust.

The history of Gainsborough Gardens is prominent in the history of the protection of open spaces, particularly in Hampstead where the seeds of national awareness were sown.

Former baths and wash-houses (pictured above). 1888. By Henry S Legg; converted to housing c1985. Stock brick with tiled hipped roof having a Flemish gable to the penultimate left hand bay and tall brick slab chimney-stack with stepped brick cornice on left hand return. 5 bays of 9 windows. 2 storeys. Right hand bay canted. Round-arched entrance, in gabled bay, with hood on tall brackets, fanlight with keystone and panelled door. Paired cambered arch 2-pane sashes to left hand ground floor bay and all of 1st floor. Ground floor with 2 and 3-light sashes having stone lintels and mullions. Stone plaque inscribed “The Wells and Campden Baths and Wash-houses 1888″ at first floor level beneath sill cornice. Carved coat of arms set within gable.

INTERIORS: not inspected. HISTORICAL NOTE: the building was designed for the Wells and Campden Charity, a major local landowner. An early surviving baths building, it is significant and symbolic that a site was chosen for it right by that of the original Chalybeate spring, at the heart of an important group of listed buildings and closing the view at the end of Flask Walk.”

From: T F T Baker, Diane K Bolton and Patricia E C Croot, ‘Hampstead: Public Services’, in A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 9, Hampstead, Paddington, ed. C R Elrington (London, 1989):

“…The first baths and washhouses for the public were built by the Wells and Campden charity: 14 private baths, a laundry, and a drying-room were opened in Palmerston Road, Kilburn, in 1887, and 9 baths, a laundry, and drying-room in Flask Walk in 1888. Though said to be very much appreciated by the poor, they incurred such financial loss that in 1906 the charity threatened to close them. After much argument over the price and a public inquiry, the council leased the baths in 1908 at a nominal rent. The washhouses continued in use until the 1970s: Palmerston Road baths were closed in 1976 and demolished as part of the rebuilding of the area, and Flask Walk baths were closed in 1978 and converted into private housing.

The vestry opened its own baths in Finchley Road, opposite the North Star, in 1888 in a building designed by A. W. S. Cooper and Henry Spalding. There were two swimming baths for men, one for women, and 24 private baths; washhouses were not required in that neighbourhood. Success led to the opening of a second bath for women in 1891…”

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