Tuesday, 30 November 2010

44 Mecklenburgh Square

This house, in Mecklenburgh Square, London WC1 (named after Queen Charlotte, of the house of Mecklenburg-Strelitz), bears a privately erected blue plaque to an obscure American writer, called Hilda Doolittle. In fact, her friend D H Lawrence once stayed in the house and also wrote part of a book here. Later on, Dorothy L Sayers lived here for a while, and it is probably where she invented Lord Peter Wimsey. In her novel Gaudy Night, she makes it home to her heroine, Harriet Vane.

The large Grade II listed garden in the square itself is reserved for residents of the square (including the students in London House and Goodenough House)and was laid out as part of Thomas Coram's Foundling Hospital between 1810-1812. Samuel Pepys Cockerell and Joseph Kay were responsible for its design which includes many plantings from New Zealand. I have happy memories of tennis on the court in that sheltered, leafy place.


  1. Dorothy L Sayers bought a cottage in Witham Essex and lived and wrote there for many many years. The town has a bronze statute of her now opposite the house in Newland Street very near the Magistrates Court and the Police station. There exists in Witham a thriving Dorothy L Sayers society too and they have a museum dedicated to her. Local history. The snow is early this year and pretty. Didnt she have one hell of a life; she was something special wasn't sh;

  2. Acquainted With the Night
    Robert Frost

    I have been one acquainted with the night.
    I have walked out in rain - and back in rain.
    I have outwalked the furthest city light.
    I have looked down the saddest city lane.
    I have passed by the watchman on his beat
    And dropped my eyes, unwilling to explain.
    I have stood still and stopped the sound of feet
    When far away an interrupted cry
    Came over houses from another street,
    But not to call me back or say good-bye;
    And further still at an unearthly height,
    One luminary clock against the sky
    Proclaimed the time was neither wrong nor right.
    I have been one acquainted with the night.
    Its grand in a very simple way isn't it

  3. Dorothy L Sayers was a marvellous person. It is partly because of the faith of great minds such as DLS and John Donne that I could never be an atheist.