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Lamp posts outside 1 Northwood Road, Highgate

A Grade II Listed Building in Highgate, London

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Latitude: 51.5741 / 51°34'26"N

Longitude: -0.1408 / 0°8'26"W

OS Eastings: 528935

OS Northings: 187770

OS Grid: TQ289877

Mapcode National: GBR DT.K50

Mapcode Global: VHGQL.HPXP

Entry Name: Lamp posts outside 1 Northwood Road, Highgate

Listing Date: 18 January 2016

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1431542

Location: Haringey, London, N6

County: London

District: Haringey

Electoral Ward/Division: Highgate

Parish: Non Civil Parish

Built-Up Area: Haringey

Traditional County: Middlesex

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Greater London

Church of England Parish: St Augustine Highgate

Church of England Diocese: London

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Two late-C19 cast iron lamp posts.


MATERIALS: cast iron with frosted glass lanterns.

DESCRIPTION: two identical late-C19 gas lamp posts, converted to electrical supply in the C20. They stand adjacent to the public pavement on the forecourt of 1 Northwood Road. The base is four-sided with chamfered shoulders and rises through a series of mouldings to a slender barley twist column, which in turn rises to a winged capital with a single horizontal maintenance bracket. Above the capital, four slender bracket feet support a frosted glass lantern with a cast iron frame. A gas vent and finial surmount the lantern.


Northwood Road first appears on the Ordnance Survey map of 1895 and is not present on the 1870 edition. It is likely that the lamp posts were installed as part of the initial street development as historic images of other roads in Highgate show a proliferation of lamp posts during this period. 1 Northwood Road is set back further than the associated terrace perhaps suggesting that it was originally designed for a use other than residential. It is currently in use as a shop, and the name 'Northwood Dairy' indicates that it may have been a dairy at some time.

The lamp posts are situated just off the public pavement and on the shop forecourt. As the lamp posts are of a different design and ownership to the others in the road they may have been specifically selected for the site. Notwithstanding later conversion to electricity and the use of frosted glass, the separate ownership may also explain how they have retained their original form whereas the other examples have been upgraded to electricity via the fitment of an external electrical junction box and replacement arm and light fitting.

During the late C19 gas lamp technology was fully developed and electrical lighting was still under development, until the introduction of alternate and direct current (AC/DC) made it sufficiently reliable to be the default for new installations. Existing gas lighting continued to be used until the middle of the C20. Where gas lamps have been upgraded to electricity this often involved the addition of a small electrical connection box, and the replacement of the light fitting.

Reasons for Listing

The pair of lamp posts of c1895, at 1 Northwood Road, Highgate, are listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Rarity: although gas lamps were once common feature of the street scene, original examples are increasingly rare;
* Intactness: they are an intact pair with complete glass lanterns and without the additions normally associated with electrical conversion;
* Design quality: not withstanding their humble nature, they are attractive examples with detailed cast mouldings;
* Technological interest: they illustrate a technology which once transformed everyday safety on the streets of England’s towns and cities.

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