Dennis Severs' House in Folgate Street
is a 'still-life drama' created by the previous owner as an 'historical imagination' of what life would have been like inside for a family of Huguenot silk weavers.
Spitalfields is near to Liverpool Street station and Brick Lane.
It is a Grade II listed Georgian terraced house in Spitalfields, London, England. From 1979 to 1999 it was lived in by Dennis Severs, who gradually recreated the rooms as a time capsule in the style of former centuries. It is now open to the public.
The house is on the south side of Folgate Street
, and dates from approximately 1724. It is one of a terrace of houses (Nos 6-18) built of brown brick with red brick dressings, over four storeys and with a basement. The listing for the house, compiled in 1950, describes No 18 as having a painted facade, and that the first floor
The area straddles Commercial Street
and is home to several markets, including the historic Old Spitalfields Market
, and various Brick Lane
Markets on Brick Lane
and Cheshire Street
. Petticoat Lane Market lies on the area's south-western boundaries.
The name Spitalfields appears in the form Spittellond
in 1399; as The spitel Fyeld on the 16th-century Civitas Londinium map associated with Ralph Agas. The land belonged to St Mary Spital, a priory or hospital erected on the east side of the Bishopsgate
thoroughfare in 1197, and the name is thought to derive from this. An alternative, and possibly earlier, name for the area was Lolsworth
After the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, Spitalfields was inhabited by prosperous French Huguenot silk weavers. In the early 19th century their descendants were reduced to a deplorable condition due to the competition of the Manchester textile factories and the area began to deteriorate into crime-infested slums. The spacious and handsome Huguenot houses were divided up into tiny dwellings which were rented by poor families of labourers, who sought employment in the nearby docks.
The area has recently attracted a IT-literate younger population.