Circus from above


Designed by John Wood the Elder, and built by his son over fifteen years, these magnificent houses are decorated with stone carvings and three orders of columns, to form a  whole echoing the arena of a vast Roman amphitheatre.

The first foundation stone was laid on 18th May 1754 by Wood the Elder himself, who sadly died 5 days later, poor fella. Circus drawn detail
Of the notables who lived in the King's Circus, probably the two most famous are:

The Earl of Chatham in Nos. 7 & 8 , the houses in which he entertained General Wolfe just before he left in 1759 for Quebec, and we all know what happened to him there!

And the artist Thomas Gainsborough painted his most famous portraits between 1765 to 1774 at No.17.