The House Where Churchill Died

Hyde Park Gate is a cul de sac off the Kensington Road, a stone’s throw from the Albert Hall and Albert Memorial. It’s a mix of houses from the second quarter of the 19th century and some fairly dreadful modern additions.

Wander down the street and you’ll pass blue plaques to Robert Baden-Powell, the founder of the Scout movement, to the author Enid Bagnold, Sir Leslie Stephen (father of Virginia Woolf and Vanessa Bell, both of whom were born here) and the sculptor Sir Jacob Epstein*.

But the address that draws people down to the bottom, very quiet, end of the street is number 28, as this was the house bought by Sir Winston Churchill in September 1945, and in which he died twenty years later, on 24 January 1965.

Churchill also owned number 27 (it cost the grand sum of £7,000), which he’d acquired the March after buying the first house, which he used for his office (he had the upper floors turned into apartments and rented out).

While Prime Minister from 1951 the Churchills moved into 10 Downing Street and the houses were both let, but on his retirement in 1955 Winston and Clementine came back to Hyde Park Gate and had the two properties and their gardens knocked together. (The houses were reinstated as separate buildings after their sale in 1965; Clementine having moved to a smaller place in Princes Gate 1/2 a mile away.)

It was at number 27 that Churchill recuperated after breaking his leg in Monte Carlo in 1962, a bedroom and bathroom having been set up on the ground floor, and number 28 where he made his last public appearance, waving to the crowds who had gathered outside to celebrate his 90th birthday in November 1964.

On 15 January Churchill had a stroke (the eighth he had had) which was to prove fatal, and he died around 8am on 24 January.

The Land Registry lists sales for both 27 and 28, but none of recent date. 27 was sold in 2001 for nearly £6 million, and number 28 in 1996 for £2.5 million, but the house on the market as recently as 2017 (you can see the listing for it here, including the floor plans and photos of some spectacularly ugly interior decor) when the asking price was £22.9 million.

You can see other addresses where Churchill live on a map I put together here.

*one of the most famous sculptures of Churchill is by Epstein, a bust completed in 1947, one of which is in the White House.

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