New End, Camden
The north-eastern corner of central Hampstead (aka Hampstead Village), east of Heath Street
With the development of Hampstead as a spa at the beginning of the 18th century, an ancillary quarter sprang up here with gambling dens and souvenir shops surrounded by new homes and lodging houses.
Shown in the photograph on the right, New End’s grandest surviving property was built in 1703–4 for the Sewells, a Quaker family, and takes its present name from its tenth owner, the wealthy clergyman Allatson Burgh.
Beyond Burgh House this was the poor corner of Hampstead, with relatively humble cottages providing accommodation for artisans. The parish workhouse was established here in 1800 and rebuilt in 1845, serving also as an infirmary and offices for the vestry, and later becoming New End hospital. As Hampstead’s star ascended, New End was enfolded in the embrace of its parent during the late 19th century.
The council added a few flats after the Second World War and most of the shops were gradually replaced by or converted to residences.
After the closure of New End hospital, the site was sold in 1986 to fund the redevelopment of the nearby Queen Mary’s maternity home as a unit for the care of the elderly. Berkeley Homes converted the hospital buildings for residential use in 1996.
From 1974 to 2011 the New End Theatre occupied the former mortuary of New End hospital, where Karl Marx was laid out before his burial in Highgate cemetery. Declining audiences forced the theatre’s closure and the building has since been transmogrified into a ‘boutique’ synagogue for the Village Shul, an independent Orthodox congregation of around 50 families.
Saved from conversion to offices in 1979, Burgh House hosts regular art exhibitions, serves as a classical concert venue and is home to the Hampstead Museum. There’s a shop and café and the house can be hired for private events (notably weddings), meetings, exhibitions and concerts.
When completed on the north side of New End in late 2019, Novel House will be Hampstead Village’s first new-build residential development in almost 20 years. With 16 apartments and one penthouse, the block’s design will be “one of a kind”, according to its website (which manages to include the word ‘design’ six times in one paragraph). The site is clearly visible – at the time of writing – in the vacant space at the top-centre of the satellite view below.
Postal district: NW3