Pinner Court And Capel Gardens, Pinner

  • Pinner Road, Pinner, Middlesex, HA5 5RE/J
  • Designed by: H J Mark
  • Built: 1935 - 1936
  • Tags: Art Deco, Housing

Pinner Court and the neighbouring Capel Gardens (illustrated above) lie on Pinner Road in the Middlesex town of Pinner. They were both designed by local architect H J Mark and built by the Courtenay Property Company Limited. H J Mark worked locally, having designed much of nearby Eastcote town centre and a number of fine buildings at neighbouring Rayners Lane.

The two 'blocks' of Capel Gardens and Pinner Court lie to either side - to the west and east respectively - of the driveway from Pinner Road to Pinner Cemetery. They are approached by separate, private side roads. The two blocks are set back from Pinner Road by approximately 35 metres and between the blocks and the road are ornamental gardens, with curving paths, large trees, flower beds and grassed areas.

From Pinner town centre Capel Gardens is approached first on Pinner Road and comprises a single building to the west of the Capel Gardens side road, and a further three buildings positioned around a U-shaped drive enclosing a smaller ornamental garden. Pinner Court comprises two L-shaped buildings to the east of Capel Gardens. The area sandwiched between the two L-shapes has a smaller ornamental garden and fountain. Art Deco style lamp standards stand with the grounds of both Capel Gardens and Pinner Court.

The two blocks are generally built in the same style, with a small number of variations between the two. Each building is brick-built with white render and comprises three-storeys. Each floor has a combination of two and three-bedroom apartments. The main living room in each apartment has a large window terminating in a curved corner. All windows are metal, Crittall-style windows painted a verdigris green colour.

Above ground floor level the buildings have balconies. Those on Capel Gardens are open, projecting from the facade of the building. The balconies at Pinner Court are recessed into the main body of the building and enclosed by rounded-arch openings. All the balconies have decorative cast-iron railings painted the same verdigris colour as the windows.

Each building features a pan-tiled, hipped roof with green-coloured tiles. The roof has a deep overhang of the body of the building. Tall, white painted chimney stacks pierce each roof at regular intervals. At ground floor level are projecting entrance doorways each with a hipped roof and brick pilasters.

Together, both Capel Gardens and Pinner Court, are a fine example of a suburban 'Metro-land' inter-war Modernist development and form an exceptional example of modernist design. They remain remarkably unaltered externally and many of the apartments still maintain period features inside.

Pinner Court was awarded Grade-II listing status on 8 March 1995, the lamp standards either side of the fountain were also listed at the same time - for the group value alongside Pinner Court itself.

On Elm Park Road, around a mile to the north west in Pinner, stands Elm Park Court, built in 1936 and designed by H F Webb. Very similar in style to Capel Gardens and Pinner Court, Elm Park Court comprises three irregularly shaped buildings. Each building is a three storey block, with white-rendered walls and a green, pan-tiled, hipped roof. Pinner is remarkable, therefore, in having three exceptional Modernist apartment developments at Capel Gardens, Pinner Court and Elm Park Court.

Posted on Thursday, August 19, 2010

A celebration of Modernist architecture in Britain