Scaled Down

48 Ridge Road was completed in 1885 by the builder Richard Metherell in the style of a town house for a wealthy merchant: three bedrooms, two reception rooms and two more staff bedrooms in the roof. The current owner has kept the interior true to its origins, with only the addition of a small utility room at the rear, built in Victorian materials and style. These terraces were built in sets of eight or six. The house you see on the left, No 50, is an end of terrace and its roof ridge runs at right angles to the street, as does the house at the other end of this group of six. Nos 48 and 50 are laid out internally as mirrored pairs. These two houses are typical of the scores of others close to the North London village of Crouch End.

A terrace house provides warmth in winter and is coolly protected from the summer sun. Soundproofing is generally efficient. This is why terraces were built over several centuries. Each one of the eight rooms of No 48 has a fireplace, which would once have helped account for the London smog, not seen since 1962. Today, with so few working fireplaces and the authorities having long given up enforcing the smokeless rules, the owners heat the ground floor reception room with a roaring winter fire.

This model is of an extended facade only, with the rear of the houses not included. Both buildings do of course, continue further back into the site and each has its own private garden as shown in the original street plan at the top of the page.