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Marylebone (sometimes written St. Marylebone or Mary-le-bone) is an affluent, inner-city area of central London, located within the City of Westminstermarker. It is pronounced or .

Marylebone is in an area of London that can be roughly defined as the area bounded by Oxford Streetmarker to the south, Marylebone Roadmarker to the north, Edgware Roadmarker to the west and Portland Placemarker to the east. Occasionally, this area is designated as "Marylebone Village". A broader definition of Marylebone is then used, which encompasses Regent's Parkmarker, Baker Street and the area immediately north of Marylebone Road, containing Marylebone Stationmarker, the original site of the Marylebone Cricket Club at Dorset Square, and the neighbourhood known as Lisson Grovemarker to the border with St John's Woodmarker. The west side of the Fitzroviamarker area up to Cleveland Street was also previously considered to be part of Marylebone.

Today the area is mostly residential, with many medical and dental offices in its central area. Since the opening of the Jubilee Line at Baker Streetmarker station (with its direct links to Canary Wharfmarker), Marylebone - particularly Marylebone Village - has become a very sought-after area of Central London.


Marylebone gets its name from a church called "St Mary's" (now known as St Marylebone Parish Churchmarker), which was built on the bank of a small stream or "bourne", called the Tybourne or Tyburnmarker, that rose further north in Swiss Cottage, eventually running along what is now Marylebone Lane before it was built over. The church and the surrounding area later became known as St Mary at the Bourne which, over time, became shortened to its present form, Marylebone.It is a common misunderstanding that the name is a corruption of Marie la Bonne (French for "Marie/Mary the good").

The manor of Tyburn of mentioned in the Domesday Book as a Church possession. Early in the thirteenth century it was held by Robert de Vere, 3rd Earl of Oxford. At the end of the fifteenth century Thomas Hobson bought up the greater part of the manor, in 1544 his son Thomas exchanged it with Henry VIII, and it remained with the Crown until the southern part was sold in 1611 by James I to one Edward Forset, who had held it as a fixed rental under Elizabeth I. James retained the park as a deer park, including land now known as Regent’s Parkmarker. Forset's manor of Marylebone then passed by marriage into the family of Austen.

In 1710, John Holles, Duke of Newcastle, purchased the manor for £17,500, and his daughter and heir, Lady Henrietta Cavendish Holles, by her marriage to Edward Harley, Earl of Oxford, passed it into the family of the Earl of Oxford, one of whose titles was Lord Harley of Wigmore. Lady Margaret Cavendish Harley married William, second Duke of Portland, and took property into the Portland family, whose surname is Bentinck. Street names, a-plenty. In the 18th century the area was known for the raffish entertainments of Marylebone Gardensmarker, scene of bear-baiting and prizefights by members of both sexes, and for the duelling grounds in Marylebone Fields. The Crown repurchased the estate in 1813.

A large part of the area was constructed by the Portman family and is known as the Portman Estate. Another significant portion of the area, including Marylebone High Streetmarker, is the Howard de Walden Estate Both estates have aristocratic antecedents and are still run by members of the aforementioned families. The de Walden Estate owns, leases and manages the majority of the 92 acres of real estate in Marylebone which comprises the area from Marylebone High Street in the west to Robert Adam’s Portland Placemarker in the east and from Wigmore Streetmarker in the south to Marylebone Roadmarker in the north.

The Metropolitan Borough of St Marylebonemarker was a metropolitan borough of the County of London between 1899 and 1965, after which, with the Metropolitan Borough of Paddingtonmarker and the Metropolitan Borough of Westminstermarker it was merged into the City of Westminstermarker.

Such place names in the neighbourhood as Cavendish Squaremarker and Portland Placemarker reflect the Dukes of Portland landholdings and Georgian-era developments there.

Streets of Marylebone

Mansfield Street is a short continuation of Chandos Street built by the Adam brothers in 1770, on a plot of ground which had been underwater. Most of its houses are fine buildings with exquisite interiors, when put on the market now will have a price tag in excess of £10 million. It has attracted people who understand attractive buildings - at Number 13 lived religious architect John Loughborough Pearson who died in 1897, and Drogo & Delhi designer Sir Edwin Lutyens, who died in 1944. Immediately across the road at 61 New Cavendish Street lived Natural History Museum creator Alfred Waterhouse.

Queen Anne Street is an elegant cross-street which unites the northern end of Chandos Street with Welbeck Street. The painter JMW Turner moved to 47 Queen Anne Street in 1812 from 64 Harley Street, now divided into numbers 22 and 23, and owned the house until his death in 1851. It was known as "Turner's Den", becoming damp, dilapidated, dusty, dirty, with dozens of Turner's works of art now in the National Gallery scattered throughout the house, walls covered in tack holes and a drawing room peopled by cats with no tails.

Wimpole Street runs from Henrietta Place north to Devonshire Street, becoming Upper Wimpole enroute - the latter where Arthur Conan Doyle opened his ophthalmic practice at number 2 in 1891. A six-floor, Grade II 18th-century house at 57 Wimpole Street is where Paul McCartney resided from 1964-66, staying on the top floor of girlfriend Jane Asher’s family home in a room overlooking Browning Mews in the back, and with John Lennon writing I Want to Hold Your Hand on a piano in the basement. At her father's house at number 50 lived for some time between 1840 and 1845, Miss Elizabeth Barrett, then known as the author of a volume of poems, and who afterwards escaped and was better known as Mrs. E. Browning. Today, at the bottom end of Wimpole at Wigmore can be found a sandwich shop named "Barrett's". Not a chainstore.

Bentinck Street leaves Welbeck Street and touches the middle of winding Marylebone Lane. Charles Dickens lived at number 18 with his indebted father (aka Wilkins Micawber) while working as a court reporter in the 1830s, and Edward Gibbon wrote much of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire while living at number 7 from the early 1770s. James Smithson wrote the will that led to the foundation of the Smithsonian Institution while living at number 9 in 1826, while number 10 was briefly graced by Chopin in 1848, who found his apartment too expensive and moved to Mayfair. More recently, Cambridge Spies Anthony Blunt and Guy Burgess shared a flat at an unrecorded Bentinck Street address during the Second World War, as did Swinging Sixties two-some John Dunbar and TV repairman “Magic Alex”, where the former introduced the latter to John Lennon in 1967.

Marylebone has some “Fabs” heritage, overall, also with a Ringo flat at 34 Montagu Square, and the original Apple Corps HQ at 95 Wigmore Street.

Welbeck Street at the intersection of a right turn onto Bentinck Street was the location of a near-fatal traffic accident for Sherlock Holmes in The Final Problem, soon followed by a falling brick in Vere Street - Moriarty's work, most likely.

Bulstrode Street, small and charming, is named for a Portman family estate in Buckinghamshire, itself named after a local family there made-good in Tudor days. Tucked away, with a few terraced houses, Bulstrode has been the home of minor health care professionals for hundreds of years. RADA student and aspiring actress Vivien Leigh, aged twenty in 1933, gave birth at the Rahere Nursing Home, then at number 8, to her first child. Also, a small tubercular patch in her lungs was discovered.

The north end of Welbeck joins New Cavendish Street, the name changed from Upper Marylebone Street in the late nineteenth century. At a house across New Cavendish from its join with Welbeck, that stood at number 13 on the corner of Marylebone Street, was born in 1882 Leopold Stokowski, son of a Polish cabinet maker. Young Stokowski sang in the choir of St Marylebone Church.


Marylebone was formerly a part of the Metropolitan Borough of St Marylebonemarker, and the St Marylebone UK Parliament constituency (1918–1974).


Areas of Marylebone include:


Former landmarks


Tube stations

Railway stations

In Marylebone:


  • St Marylebone Schoolmarker (comprehensive specialist school in Performing Arts, Maths & Computing for girls founded in 1791)
  • Sylvia Young Theatre Schoolmarker (fee paying performing arts school)
  • St Vincent's RC Primary School (Catholic Voluntary Aided Mixed School)
  • Francis Holland Schoolmarker (independent day school for girls)
  • Portland Place School (independent secondary school)

Notable residents


  1. Oxford Authors' & Printers' Dictionary, O.U.P, 1965
  2. ""Maryburne rill", in Harrison's Description of England 1586, noted by Henry Benjamin Wheatley and Peter Cunningham, London, Past and Present: its history, associations, and traditions, Volume 2, p. 509.
  3. Wheatley and Cunningham, p. 509.
  4. Wheatley and Cunningham; they note the annual rents brought in £900.
  5. Wheatley and cunningham, p. 511.
  6. See both Baron Howard de Walden and Harley Street.

External links

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