Named after Elizabeth I’s gardener, Richard Baldwin or Baldwyn (born around 1561), who held property here from 1589 on the site of Brook House and its gardens. Baldwin combined his gardening role with that of treasurer of the Middle Temple. In 1689 one of his descendants Bladwyn Higgons sold the property to the Leigh family. For many years it enjoyed the privilege of sanctuary and petty criminals fled here to live unmolested by law until 1697 when the privilege was abolished.
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