Hastings Street, WC1H

Place Name

After the town of Hastings, in East Sussex. When the Bloomsbury estate of former Lord Mayor of London, Sir Andrew Judd (1492 – December 4, 1558) started being built up, some 250 years after his death, its developers chose to name its street either after the man himself or localities in or close to his home county of Kent. This one is no exception, the town of Hastings being close to the East Sussex/Kent border, and not far from the town of Ashford, where Judd held the local manor. As a young man, Judd headed to London to make his fortune. In 1511 he was apprenticed to the Skinners’ Company (he later served as Master six times), which oversaw the London fur trade, and later also became involved, amassing a great fortune, in the export of Kentish wool to Calais, France. In 1553 he obtained a royal charter for the establishment of a school in his hometown of Tonbridge, Kent. He also purchased a 30-acre area of pasture land just south of St Pancras, the rents from which would go towards the opening of the new school. After he died his estate passed to the Skinners’ Company, which starting developing it. The street itself was laid out in the early 19thCentury, during a period of rapid residential development, and was at first called Speldhurst Street (another Kent reference), after the parish of Speldhurst. Shirley Green in Who Owns London says that in the 20thCentury the estate sold the freeholds of much of its Bloomsbury property, although retaining the pubs the Skinners Arms, the Euston Tavern on the corner of Euston Road and Judd Street, and the Dolphin on Tonbridge Street.

 

 

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