Gray's Inn Gardens were originally laid out by Sir Francis Bacon in the early 1600s with cherry, birch and groves of elms. There was a mount with a pavilion on the terrace to the west, a bowling green and a kitchen garden. The design was simplified in the mid-1700s by a 'Mr Brown' - probably Capability Brown.
The poet Shelley (1792-1822), who was severely in debt, used to meet his future wife Mary Godwin (1797-1851) here in secret on Sundays, which was the only day of the week when debtors could not be arrested.
The buildings on the west side of the garden date from the early 1800s. The dark grey buildings are Raymond Buildings, where Charles Dickens also worked as a solicitor's clerk, earning 15 shillings a week. Utterly bored, he amused himself by dropping cherry stones on the heads of passers-by.