Designed by Wyatt Papworth, the building was built in 1843 as a terrace of ten luxury houses. Set on an important site at the corner of Sefton Park Road and Croxteth Road, it formed an imposing part of the ambitious and innovative Princes Park development (described below). By 1912, the building had been converted into the apartments we know today.
The South Front (facing on to Princes Park) has a basement and four storeys with a later fifth storey, making it the largest Victorian building in the area. The stuccoed building has distinctive iron balconies and the central Doric entrance with cornice and balustraded parapet.
Princes Park Mansions (date unknown)
Princes Park, 1908
By the 1840s Liverpool was fast becoming the greatest industrial city in England. A wealthy industrialist and town councillor, Richard Vaughan Yates, had speculatively purchased 97 acres of meadow and farmland around a mile and a half from the city centre. He wished to set aside around forty acres for a park, developing the remainder as exclusive housing in the form of terraces and single villas.
Yates invited the great Joseph Paxton to develop the park (which would become known as Prince's Park in honour of the birth of the Prince of Wales in 1841). Work started in 1842 and continued throughout the following year. Princes Park was a forerunner of later Victorian parks, with its principle of exclusive housing built around the edges of the park on individual plots sold for profit.
While the land plots sold far slower than Yates expected, and most of the proposed terraces were never built, it enabled Paxton to try out ideas he had been developing for years. As Paxton's first municipal design project, it was his prototype and set a pattern that would be developed and extended in all his future public projects. This makes the Princes Park development a landmark in Victorian - and civic park - design.
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