Inventory Site Record

Granville Square (Islington)

Brief Description

Granville Square was planned in 1828 by John Booth and William Joseph of the Drapers Company for the Lloyd Baker Estate and built in 1841-43. The square originally had a church in the centre but this was demolished in 1938. The estate was in private hands until 1975 and it was acquired by Islington Council in 1978. The houses were then rebuilt and converted into flats in c.1980.

Practical Information
Site location:
Granville Square/Lloyd Baker Street
What 3 Words:
Type of site:
Garden Square;, Public Gardens
Open to public?
Opening times:
8am - dusk
Special conditions:
Children's playground, tarmac sports court
Public transport:
Tube: Angel (Northern), King's Cross (Northern, Metropolitan, Hammersmith & City; Circle, Victoria, Piccadilly). Bus: 19, 38, 341
Research updated:
Last minor changes:

Please check with the site owner or manager for latest news. www.islington.gov.uk/services/parks-environment/parks/your_parks/greenspace_az

Full Site Description

The estate was once part of the land of the Knights Hospitallers, which later passed to Dr William Lloyd, Bishop of St Asaph's and one of the '7 bishops' of James II. The estate was part of the dowry of his great-granddaughter Mary, who had married William Baker of Gloucestershire in 1775. From 1819 Revd Baker and his son Thomas Lloyd Baker developed two of the fields for housing, the lower of which had tile kilns. Also on the estate is Lloyd Square (q.v.) to the north. Booth's houses have been described as 'extraordinarily individual' and there were disputes with neighbouring land-owners such as the New River Company and Northampton Estate. Originally the church of St Philip was in the centre of Granville Square, designed by E.B. Lamb and built in 1831-33, but it was demolished in 1938. The west side of the square was undermined by the railway and was rebuilt in the 1870s. The estate was in private hands until 1975 and it was acquired by Islington Council in 1978 and the houses were then rebuilt and converted into flats in c.1980. There are cast iron bollards at the north and south entrances to the Square.

Among former residents of Granville Square was William Pinks, author of 'The History of Clerkenwell' who lived here until his death in 1860. According to Pinks, Granville Square was initially to be called Sharp Square after the wife of Thomas Lloyd-Baker, Mary Sharp, but it was named after her uncle Granville Sharp, the abolitionist (1735-1813). Arnold Bennett described the square in his 'Riceyman Steps' in 1923.

Sources consulted:

Mary Cosh, The Squares of Islington Part I: Finsbury and Clerkenwell, London, 1990; Ben Weinreb & Christopher Hibbert, 'The London Encyclopaedia' (Macmillan, revised ed. 1993)

Further Information (Planning and Conservation)
Grid ref:
TQ309826 (530959,182659)
Size in hectares:
Site ownership:
LB Islington
Site management:
1841-43; 1970s
Listed structures:
LBII: 1-53 Granville Square; cast-iron bollards at north and south entrances
On National Heritage List for England (NHLE), Parks & Gardens:

Registered common or village green on Commons Registration Act 1965:

Protected under London Squares Preservation Act 1931:


Local Authority Data

The information below is taken from the relevant Local Authority's planning legislation, which was correct at the time of research but may have been amended in the interim. Please check with the Local Authority for latest planning information.

On Local List:
In Conservation Area:
Conservation Area name:
New River
Tree Preservation Order:
Nature Conservation Area:
Green Belt:
Metropolitan Open Land:
Special Policy Area:
Other LA designation:
Local/strategic view corridor

Granville Square

Granville Square - Photo: Colin Wing
Date taken: 14/10/21 11:37

Click a photo to enlarge.

Please note the Inventory and its content are provided for your general information only and are subject to change. It is your responsibility to check the accuracy.