Hyde Park Barracks, London

Hyde Park Barracks, London

The Hyde Park Barracks are located in Knightsbridge in central London, England on the southern edge of Hyde Park. Historically they were often known as Knightsbridge Barracks and this name is still sometimes used informally. Hyde Park Barracks is three quarters of a mile from Buckingham Palace, close enough for the officers and men of the Household Cavalry to be available to respond speedily to any emergency at the Palace.

The first buildings on the site were constructed for the Horse Guards in 1795, and a riding school and stables designed by Philip Hardwick were added in 1857. These buildings were replaced with new ones by Thomas Henry Wyatt in the 1880s, which in turn were demolished to make way for modern buildings designed by Sir Basil Spence, and completed in 1970. It was built to accommodate 23 officers, 60 warrant officers and non-commissioned officers, 431 rank and file, and 273 horses.

The most prominent feature is a 33 storey, convert|94|m|ft|0 tall residential tower, which is one of the two most prominent modern buildings as seen from Hyde Park along with The London Hilton on Park Lane. It has been described as "dramatically modern and uncompromising",cite web |url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/programmes/breakfast/3265421.stm |title=Britain's top 10 eyesores |publisher=BBC News |date=13 November, 2003 |accessdate=2008-01-04] but many people have viewed it less favourably; it was voted number eight in a "Country Life" poll of Britain's "top ten eyesores". Lord St John of Fawsley remarked that "Basil Spence's barracks in Hyde Park ruined that park; in fact, he has the distinction of having ruined two parks, because of his Home Office building, which towers above St. James's Park".fact|date=January 2008



External links

* [http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.asp?compid=45904 Knightsbridge Barracks] at the "Survey of London

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