Castellan Avenue, RM2

Place Name

Edward Castellan was a wealthy stock trader who purchased Hare Hall, an 18thCentury mansion, with his wife Lucy in 1897. At the time it had been in the ownership of a working farmer called Pemberton who had died three years earlier, the Castellans, found the mansion “very dilapidated” and had to remodel the entire property. Rotten window frames had to be replaced, and plumbing installed for the first-ever indoor bathrooms. The new owners preferred to live on the ground floor, and added two handsome rooms at the back of the house, plus a pimple-like porch at the front. During the First World War the property was used as the camp for the Second Sportsman’s Battalion, when it was reported that the estate was owned by Major Victor Edward Castellan and Major Charles Ernest Castellan. Local historian Ged Martin explains: “One technique used by developers building near a stately mansion was to borrow the names of former owners, the more aristocratic the better. Ex-owners of Hare Hall (now Royal Liberty School) gave swish-sounding names to Gidea Park streets – Wallinger [Avenue], Pemberton [Pemberton], Castellan [Avenue], Severn [Avenue]. When building began in Upminster in 1909, developers used names like Deyncourt, Engayne and Branfill to add cachet to their new homes. But for 99 years from 1543, Upminster Hall had belonged to a family called Latham. That didn’t sound aristocratic, and so ‘Latham’ was scratched off the map and replaced with the much posher ‘Waldegrave’. The famous Victorian Society hostess, Lady Waldegrave, had lived at Navestock, but Navestock is not Upminster. The Lathams eventually got posthumous revenge, in the modern gated development, Latham Place, where houses sell for over a million pounds.”


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