Bond Street

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Image:Old Bond Street 1 db.jpg
An arcade in Old Bond Street

Bond Street is a major shopping street in the West End of London which runs through Mayfair from Piccadilly in the south to Oxford Street in the north. It is one of the principal streets in the West End shopping district and is more upmarket than nearby Regent Street and Oxford Street. It is in the Mayfair district of London, and has been a fashionable shopping street since the 18th century. Technically "Bond Street" does not exist: The southern section is known as Old Bond Street, and the northern section, which is rather more than half the total length, is known as New Bond Street. This distinction, however, is not generally made in everyday usage.

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[edit] History

Bond Street takes its name from Sir Thomas Bond, the head of a syndicate of developers who purchased a Piccadilly mansion called Clarendon House from Christopher Monck, 2nd Duke of Albemarle in 1683 and proceeded to demolish the house and develop the area. They also built nearby Dover Street and Albemarle Street. At that time the house backed onto open fields and the development of the various estates in Mayfair was just getting underway. It moved predominantly from south to north, which accounts for the southern part of the street being "Old" Bond Street, and the Northern half being "New" Bond Street, the latter being added in a second phase as London continued to grow. John Rocque's map of London published in 1746 shows the whole length of Bond Street and all its side streets fully built up.

[edit] Current streetscape

At one time Bond Street was best known for top end art dealers and antique shops, clustered around the London office of Sotheby's auction house, which has been in Bond Street for over a hundred years. A few of these remain, but most of the shops are now occupied by fashion boutiques, including branches of most of the leading premium priced designer brands in the world. There are also a few miscellaneous upmarket shops such as jewellers. The street features an unusual statue by Lawrence Holofcener of Winston Churchill and Franklin D. Roosevelt, who are portrayed sitting on a park bench in conversation.

In recent years Sloane Street, which is a mile or so away in Knightsbridge, the other main shopping district in central London, has become a rival to Bond Street, with duplicate branches of many of the top boutiques.

Bond Street is mentioned in a number of works of literature, including Jane Austen's novel Sense and Sensibility and Virginia Wolf's 1925 novel Mrs. Dalloway. It is also a square on the British Monopoly board, the same colour as Regent and Oxford Streets.

[edit] Street gallery

[edit] Nearby places of interest

[edit] References

[edit] See also

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Bond Street

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