Descriptive Gazetteer Entry for KENTISH-TOWN

KENTISH-TOWN, a metropolitan suburb, a parochial chapelry, and a sub-district in St. Pancras parish and district, Middlesex. The suburb lies adjacent to the Regent's canal, on both sections of the North London railway between Camden Town and Highgate, 3½ miles NW of St. Paul's; and has a station with telegraph on the Kew section of the railway, a post office‡ under Hampstead, London NW, a police station, assembly rooms, and a brewery. The manor belonged, at Domesday, to the canons of St. Paul's; went, in 1670, by lease, to the Jeffreys family, and subsequently, by marriage, to the first Earl Camden; and is now held, under lease, by Marquis Camden, of the prebendary of Cantelows in St. Paul's cathedral. The name was anciently Kentistoune, afterwards Kaunteloe or Cantelows, afterwards corruptedly Kentish Town; and is thought to have sprung from the custom of gavelkind on much of the land, in allusion to the prevalence of that custom in Kent. William Bruges, garter kingat-arms in the time of Henry V., had a country house here, and gave entertainment in it to the Emperor Sigismund, when in England to negotiate peace with France. Queen Elizabeth also had a hunting lodge here, on a plot of about 45 acres, on the E side of High street, now surrounded by Camden road villas, Gloucester place, Tor. riano-avenue, and other edificed thoroughfares, and belonging to the Dean and Chapter of Oxford. One of the best portions of the suburb began to be built on that plot about 1858; and the older portions consist chiefly of a main street along the road from Camden Town to Highgate Rise, together with several more recent streets, and contain numerous handsome houses. -The chapelry bears the name of St. John-the-Baptist, and was at first so extensive as to include what is now the chapelry of Holy Trinity, Haverstock Hill; but it was re-constituted in 1851, to exclude that chapelry, and it afterwards was divided into St. John, St. Andrew, St. Martin, and St. Luke. Pop. of St. John, 6, 595; of St. Andrew, St. Martîn, and St. Luke, each about 8, 000. Three of the livings are vicarages, and that of St. Luke a p. curacy, in the diocese of London. Valne of St. John, £420; * of St. Andrew, £420; of St. Martin, £300; * of St. Luke, £200. Patron of St. John, the Vicar of St. Pancras; of St-Andrew and St. Luke, alternately the Crown and the Bishop; of St. Martin, J. D. Alcroft, Esq. The church of St. John-the-Baptist was built in 1783, near the site of a chapel of the time of Queen Elizabeth; is a neat edifice, with a turret; and contains a monument of Grignon, the engraver. St. Andrew's church was not finished at midsummer of 1866. St. Martin's church, in GospelOak-Fields, was built in 1866; is in the later English style; and, with the parsonage, cost £15, 000. Another church was built in 1869. The Congregational chapel in Southampton road, Gospel-Oak-Fields, was built in 1865, at a cost of £2, 040. The Wesleyan chapel, on the N side of Leighton road, was built in 1864; is in the decorated English style, of Kentish rag, with Bath stone dressings; and has a handsome W window of seven lights, and a NW tower, with tall spire. The Roman Catholic chapel, on the W side of Fortress terrace, was built in 1859; and is a somewhat plain structnre, in the pointed style. The governesses' benevolent institution was built in 1849; and is in the Tudor style, after designs by Wyatt. The Birkbeck school, at Gospel-Oak-Fields, was built in 1862, at a cost of about £3, 000. There are also national and British schools.—The sub-district includes part of Highgate, and comprises 1, 634 acres. Pop. in 1851, 23, 326; in 1861, 44, 317. Houses, 5, 980.


(John Marius Wilson, Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870-72))

Linked entities:
Feature Description: "a metropolitan suburb, a parochial chapelry, and a sub-district"   (ADL Feature Type: "populated places")
Administrative units: St Pancras AP/CP/Vest       St Pancras PLPar/RegD       Middlesex AncC
Place: Kentish Town

Go to the linked place page for a location map, and for access to other historical writing about the place. Pages for linked administrative units may contain historical statistics and information on boundaries.