This perspective from the garden is attributed to Sir Charles Barry (1795-1860), for Colonel Charles Richard Fox (1841-42). The substantial villa was originally built in 1827 on the new Addison Road, created as part of the speculative development by Lord Holland after 1820 in the grounds of Holland House, bought by Henry Fox, first Lord Holland with two hundred acres in 1768.
The largest of seven villas at the northern end of Addison Road at Holland Park Avenue, the first occupant was Charles Richard Fox, later General and an MP, the illegitimate son of Lord Holland. Although he could not inherit the title, he later married Lady Mary Fitzclarence, daughter of the future King William IV.
The seven villas were built by the London builder Joseph Woods in a plain brick unadventurous style. Barry altered this house in 1841-42 and this carefully finished watercolour dates from that time, for house and garden with fountains, clipped bushes and boundary wall are all in the Italianate style popularised by him from the 1830s. There are echoes of contemporary designs by Thomas Hope's son, Henry Thomas Hope, who remodelled The Deepdene, Surrey (1836-40), and of Thomas Cubitt, who famously built Osborne House on the Isle of Wight for Queen Victoria and Prince Albert ( 1845-48). The Italianate design is one more reminder of the enormous influence of the romantic southern style with memories for the traveller of a Mediterranean heat, cooling fountains, shady loggias and sun blinds that was to reach its apogee in the palaces of Kensington Palace Gardens, significantly nick-named 'Millionaires' Row'.
Following General Fox's death, the house was largely demolished about 1875, a small portion surviving as part of the Holland Park Tennis Clubhouse.
495.00mm wide 305.00mm high (19.49 inches wide 12.01 inches high)
Survey of London, Northern Kensington, London 1973 p105
Howard Colvin, A Biographical Dictionary of British Architects: 1600-1840, London, 1995
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