Following my last post on Flats! I joined #househistoryhour to present a session called A Brief History of Flats. It was during this that @EllenCLeslie flagged up some other flats: the Albert Hall Mansions; although I knew the area, I did not appreciate their historical significance as part of how we would live looking forward. I certainly seemed to be the case that the English did not seem to live in flats or apartments in the same way that many others seemed to do.

As we previously saw, Peabody was already constructing some very attractive flats for the poor. Originally, flats did not seem desirable for the better off who seemed to prefer living in houses and some even saw this as an English ‘prejudice’ against living in flats or apartments.

However, the so-called Parisian mode of living gradually gained traction as the middle classes could learn find this new way of more communal living attractive and Richard Norman Shaw’s Albert Hall Mansions (1879-1886) provided huge impetus. Their development made urban living a more palatable option, and the wonderful location next to the Albert Hall, opposite the Albert Memorial in Kensington Gardens, it is hardly surprising that these flats were to become highly desirable to the wealthy.

The Albert Hall Mansions represent something beautiful of Victorian England’s architecture, especially with the backdrop of a glorious spring day in London.