GEORGE PUBLIC HOUSE

Overview

Heritage Category:
Listed Building
Grade:
II
List Entry Number:
1392409
Date first listed:
20-Feb-2008
Statutory Address:
GEORGE PUBLIC HOUSE, 55, GREAT PORTLAND STREET

Map

© Crown Copyright and database right 2021. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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Location

Statutory Address:
GEORGE PUBLIC HOUSE, 55, GREAT PORTLAND STREET

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County:
Greater London Authority
District:
City of Westminster (London Borough)
Parish:
Non Civil Parish
National Grid Reference:
TQ 29022 81495

Reasons for Designation

The George Public House has been listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons: * it has special architectural interest for its characterful, Italianate façade of the 1860s and a ground floor frontage with greater ornamentation than is typical of a mid-C19 public house; * the building has strong streetscape qualities and the architect or builder has utilised the advantage of a corner site; * the interior has special interest in equal measure for its survival of ornate original features including glasswork, panelling, and painted tiles depicting riders and dogs; * although some of the fittings have been moved, they have been reinstated within the pub in a manner consistent with the arrangement of fittings in a late Victorian public house.

Details



1900/0/10403 GREAT PORTLAND STREET 20-FEB-08 55 GEORGE PUBLIC HOUSE

II Public house, 1860s, with largely late-C19 interior and minor later alterations including refurbishment of upper floors in 2006.

EXTERIOR: The George PH occupies a corner site comprising six windows to Mortimer Street, a single bay on the splayed corner, and two windows to Great Portland Street. The pub frontage is articulated by marble three-quarter columns with plinths and gilded Composite capitals marking the segmental-headed windows and doors and an entablature with modillion cornice. The signage and lamps are modern replacements, as are the brass fittings on the sills. The doorway terminating the elevation to Mortimer Street and the window (formerly a doorway) on the splayed corner have pediments with gilded consoles and fluted pilasters in a Jacobean style. There is further gilded plasterwork - in alternating cartouche and shell designs - in the centre of each segmental arch. An additional doorway, also with fluted pilasters and gilded consoles terminates the elevation to Great Portland Street. All the windows and the doors contain patterned, frosted glass which has been inserted into the bottom section of the panes; this may be a later addition, perhaps using glass from another Victorian public house.

The upper storeys are Italianate in style. The fenestration comprises rectangular sash windows, some paired, with consoles and pediments to the first floor; round-headed gauged brick arches to the second floor and segmental-headed arches to the third. The second floor arches have plasterwork heads in the tympana and an acanthus frieze running between the imposts of the arches, a second frieze in a dogtooth design in on the third floor. The storeys are divided by moulded stringcourses and the elevations terminate in a heavy modillion cornice, above which are ornamental metal cresting, the slate Mansard roof, attic dormers and tall brick chimneys.

INTERIOR: ground floor appears to have been refurbished in the late C19, at which time the plan may have been opened up, and many features survive from this date including: a handsome back bar with classical-details such as colonettes, consoles, entablature and dentil cornice; Jacobean-style strapwork panelling; several wall mirrors with gilded cut-glass patterns (these are set into the back bar and the panelling); a mahogany bar with encaustic floor tiles; a series of painted tiles depicting hunting scenes and dogs set into the panelling; a dumb waiter (clad in more strapwork panelling); a vestibule with patterned glass; embossed ceiling; and decorative cornice. Although some of the fittings have been moved - the mirrored panels which were once in the sitting area are now behind the bar - these have been reinstated within the pub in a manner consistent with the arrangement of fittings in a late Victorian public house. This does not, therefore, detract from the special interest of the interior which is, in the main, in situ. There are two rooms on the first floor which appear to have been public rooms originally: both contain opulent marble fireplaces and cornices. Two original stairs survive. That from the ground to first floor has a timber newel post and that serving the upper floors has a metal newel post and timber turned balustrade. Upper levels have simple panelling below the windows and simple C19 timber fireplaces. HISTORY: The George dates from the 1860s and is first shown as a public house on the Ordnance Survey map of 1875. The building has been through a few refurbishments, some major, such as the insertion of a series of decorative glass panels and panelling in the late C19 and others more modest, such as its restoration after a fire in the upper floors in 2006.

The site occupied by the George was developed in the first decades of the C18 by the Portland Estate. The site would have originally contained a typical Georgian terraced house, perhaps with a ground floor shop, which was presumably demolished to make way for the George, possibly upon the expiry of a ground-lease. It is not known if the original name of the pub was The George. Although it was certainly known by this name by 1910 (when it is recorded as such in a Street Directory), the painted tiles depicting riders and hounds suggest it might have had a name associated with hunting when it originally opened.

REASONS FOR DESIGNATION DECISION: The George Public House is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons * it has special architectural interest for its characterful, Italianate façade of the 1860s and a ground floor frontage with greater ornamentation than is typical of a mid-C19 public house; * the building has strong streetscape qualities and the architect or builder has utilised the advantage of a corner site; * the interior has special interest in equal measure for its survival of ornate original features including glasswork, panelling, and painted tiles depicting riders and dogs.

Legacy

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
504438
Legacy System:
LBS

Legal

This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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