image © Guy Peppiatt Fine Art | Licence: All Rights Reserved
image © Guy Peppiatt Fine Art | Licence: All Rights Reserved

St. Paul’s Cathedral and Islington from Regent’s Park, London


October 1816


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From the Collection


Following a survey undertaken in 1794 of the area that became the Regent’s Park, it was decided that areas of the park should be developed. In 1806, John Nash (1752 – 1835) accepted the post of Architect to the Department of Woods and Forestry, together with his draughtsman, James Morgan. From the outset it was intended as an exclusive development for the ‘wealthy and the good’, but in the end only 8 were constructed and plans for the summer palace abandoned. By 1830, most of the outer terraces surrounding the park from east to west were completed with the north side being left open to protect views through to Highgate and Hampstead.

In 1816, the date of this watercolour, work also began on the section of the Regent’s canal which ran through the north east corner of the park. Nash was a shareholder of the canal company, which had seen a need to link the Grand Union Canal with London’s docks at Limehouse Basin. This watercolour appears to show part of the North Eastern section of Regent’s park in the early days of development and may show part of the digging of the canal. The small block like structures dotted through the drawing are possibly brick kilns and the remains of its agricultural past are also visible. Most of the park was farmland until well in the nineteenth century. In 1826, Sir Stamford Raffles founded the Zoological Society’s menagerie in the area. The view looks across to the spires of the churches of Islington and around and to St Paul’s Cathedral, which would have been visible from the park, although Nixon has over emphasised the cathedral’s dominance


Inscribed lower right: View in the Regents Park Looking towards/Islington & the City - Oct.r 1816

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image © Guy Peppiatt Fine Art

From the Watercolour World


The Regent's Park, London, England