The Garden Guide

Book: London and Its Environs, 1927
Chapter: 16 Edgware Road, Paddington, St John's Wood

Harrow Road and Kensal Green

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HARROW ROAD traverses an unattractive portion of Paddington. A few minutes' walk from Edgware Road is Paddington Green, on which is a statue of Mrs. Siddons (1755-1831), by Chavalliaud, after Reynolds's painting. Mrs. Siddons is buried at the north end of the churchyard (now a recreation ground) behind the adjoining church of St. Mary (1791), the successor of the church in which Hogarth was secretly married to Sir James Thornhill's daughter in 1729. About + mile farther on, on the right, is Warwick Crescent, at No. 19 in which (rebuilt) Robert Browning lived from 1866 to 1887. Matthew Maris (died 1917), the painter, lived at 18 Westbourne Square. About 3 miles from Edgware Road the Harrow Road skirts Kensal Green Cemetery, adjoined on the west by the Roman Catholic Cemetery of St. Mary's. Many eminent persons are buried at Kensal Green, but the monuments are rarely artistic. In the unconsecrated ground to the left of the main entrance Robert Owen (1771-1858), the socialist and philanthropist, lies near the south side (pink obelisk). Close by is the Reformers' Memorial, to his comrades and followers. From the entrance to the consecrated portion a main avenue leads straight to the chapel, while the north avenue diverges on the right, the south avenue on the left. In the last, about 170 yards from the entrance on the right, is the ivy-clad tomb of William Makepeace Thackeray (1811-83). The next tomb but one is that of John Leech (1817-64), the caricaturist. A little farther on a narrow path on the right leads back to the main avenue, passing (right) the tomb of the Brunels, the engineers. In the main avenue, as we approach the chapel: on the right, William Mulready (1786-1863) and, behind, John Phillip (1817-67), the painters; then Sir William Molesworth (1810-55), the politician (large mausoleum). From the elaborate monument to Ducrow, the circus-rider, on the main avenue, a path leads south to the grave of Thomas Hood (1798-1845; large bust), nearly opposite which is that of M. W. Balfe (1808-70), the composer. Farther to the west in the main avenue, a bust marks the grave of George Cruikshank (1792-1878), the artist. Near the north-west corner of the chapel rest the novelists Wilkie Collins (1824-89) and Anthony Trollope (1815-82). Following the avenue leading to the south from the chapel-entrance and then the right branch at the fork we reach the grave of Leigh Hunt (1784-1859). In this cemetery rest also Sydney Smith (1771-1845), Shirley Brooks (1816-74), editor of 'Punch,' Sir John Ross (1777-1856), the Arctic explorer, Charles Kemble (1775-1854) and Charles Mathews (1776-1835), the actors, John Lothrop Motley (1814-77), the historian, and Dr. J. Beattie Crazier (1849-1921), the Canadian philosopher. Harrow Road goes on via Harlesden, in which is Willesden Junction, an important station on the London, Midland & Scottish Railway, and Wembley. The old Church of Willesden, with a few brasses and (in the churchyard) the grave of Charles Reade (1814-84), novelist and playwright, lies circa 1 mile north of Willesden Junction.