Every month CabbieBlog hopes to show you a little gem of a building that you might have passed without noticing, in the past they have ranged from a modernist car park; a penguin pool; to a Hanoverian gatehouse.
This rather forgotten area south of Camden Town now dominated by the Eurostar was intended to be a model suburb for the lower and middle classes.
[B]uilt piecemeal from 1845-59 it was named after Oakley House near Bedford, one of the seats of the landowner, the Duke of Bedford. At the north end is St. Michael’s Church built about the same time to the Gothic design popular at that time.
To the south-east side of the square is a large number of unprepossessing social low rise flats and part of the Euston one-way road system. The other three sides of this green oasis far little better; in fact gates once were installed to bar the square from undesirable traffic.
Oakley Square Gardens were re-landscaped in 1953 to celebrate the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. Standing in the northern corner rather incongruously is a little gem of a lodge house bearing the Bedford family coat of arms set within a circular plague at roof level.
The lodge was built about the same time as the gardens. This white stucco single-storey building with dentil cornice below the Duke’s crest is a beautiful example of mid-nineteenth century architecture. Listed Grade II it was recently valued at close to £1 million.