Kensington Square

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Kensington Square
Kensington Square London.jpg
Looking west across Kensington Square from the southeastern corner
Length 0.2 mi[1] (0.3 km)
Coordinates 51°30′02″N 0°11′24″W / 51.5006°N 0.1900°W / 51.5006; -0.1900
Inauguration 1685 (1685)

Kensington Square is a garden square in Kensington, London. It was founded in 1685; hence it is the oldest such square in London.[2]


The garden in the centre of the square is private but is accessible to the public through the Open Squares scheme.

Heythrop College[edit]

Located at number 23 is the University of London Heythrop College[3] "The Specialist Philosophy and Theology College of the University of London," which includes a library of books originally established, "in 1614 in Louvain by the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits) for the study of philosophy and theology."[4]

Former residents[edit]

The square includes the former home of the composer Hubert Parry at number 17; the former home of the nineteenth century liberal philosopher John Stuart Mill at number 18; the former home of John Simon the sanitary reformer and pathologist at number 40; and the former home of Pre-Raphaelite artist Edward Burne-Jones at number 41—each of whom is commemorated with a blue plaque. The lawyer and Positivist Vernon Lushington had 36 Kensington Square as his family's London home. It was Lushington who had introduced Burne Jones to Dante Gabriel Rossetti at the Working Men's College. The Lushingtons and Parrys were often in and out of each other's houses.

Between 1831 and 1896 the Kensington School was based in the square, starting at number 31 and eventually occupying number 25-29. The school is notable as one of the founders of the Football Association in 1863. The school built classrooms and fives courts in the gardens of the houses; all that remains is number 27a, the cottage behind number 28.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]