11 Carlton House Terrace, St James’s, London, SW1

A series of seven London County Council plaques were produced in 1925–6 in the ‘Della Robbia’ style, featuring a colourful raised wreath border. Five plaques of this type, manufactured by Doulton, survive, including that shown above.

From the website of English Heritage:

“GLADSTONE, WILLIAM EWART (1809–1898)

Plaque erected in 1925 by London County Council at 11 Carlton House Terrace, St James’s, London, SW1

William Ewart Gladstone was Prime Minister for four separate spells between 1868 and 1894. A major figure in 19th-century politics, he gave his name to ‘Gladstonian liberalism’, which was characterised by support for free trade and the promotion of political reforms.

From 1840, Gladstone and his family lived in three different houses in Carlton House Terrace – all built in a monumental Graeco-Roman style by John Nash in 1827–33 – and at another nearby in Carlton Gardens. 11 Carlton House Terrace was their London home from April 1856 until April 1875, and bears Gladstone’s highly glazed plaque with its attractive laurel-leaf border, made by Doulton.

Gladstone lived here with his wife Catherine and their family – they had eight children in all. At home, the couple read the Bible together daily and there were regular household prayers: Gladstone belonged to the evangelical wing of the Church of England.

Gladstone’s period at the house coincided with a second stint as Chancellor of the Exchequer, and with the first of his four premierships, which saw him take office in 1868. On leaving he wrote that he ‘had grown to the house, having lived more time in it than in any other since I was born, and mainly by reason of all that was done in it’.

His government lost a general election in 1874, and he resigned as Liberal Party leader the following year. There was a mortgage debt of £4,500 on number 11, so with economy in mind, Gladstone sold the house and some of his art collection, and moved his family to 73 Harley Street in 1876 for what was intended to be retirement. This house is also marked by a plaque, as is Gladstone’s later home in St James’s Square.”

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