The Fashionable Lisson Green Neighbourhood
By the end of the 18th Century Paddington Green and Lisson Green were desirable areas on the edge of the country, close to Regent's Park and the West End. St Mary's Church, the 1791 houses opposite the Churchyard and a few stucco ones in Lisson Grove, are reminders of this period. From about 1820 a small suburb was built in Cosway Street and the nearby roads. Plain, three-storey houses in London stock bricks, with roofs safely hidden behind pediments are still to be seen in Cosway Street and slightly more elegant ones, with semicircular fan-lights, in Broadley Street.
Shepherd's engraving shows Christchurch with a typical horse rider and passers by such as he always added to make his drawings saleable. The adjoining houses seen here have been demolished, but similar ones are still standing on the opposite side of the road.
Christchurch was designed by Thomas Hardwick (1752-1829) for an elegant congregation, able to appreciate art and mosaics and to pay for them. Started in 1822, it was completed in 1825 by his son Philip, who won a prize for his drawing of the church. It is built in Bath Stone, only recently made available to London architects by the opening of the Avon and Kennet Canal.