No. 362: Leicester Place, WC2
Notre Dame de France, Leicester Place, London, WC2. Photo © Roger Dean 2011
Romance of London – John Timbs, 1865:
Garrick excelled in comedy as well as in tragedy, and in the lowest comedy too – in Abel Drugger as well as Hamlet. He followed the improvement in costume introduced by Macklin. West, the painter, once asked Garrick why he did not reform the stage in costume. Garrick said the spectators would not allow it: “they would throw a bottle at his head.”He had a particular dislike to appearing in the Roman costume; probably through a consciousness of his small person.
[Hidden away in the slightly scruffy Leicester Place, off the north side of Leicester Square, is a little gem: the Catholic church of Notre Dame de France. Having suffered extensive bomb damage during the Blitz, the church underwent a full reconstruction. The new building was consecrated in October 1955, but was still in need of interior decoration. Between 3rd and 11th November 1959 Jean Cocteau painted the murals depicting the Annunciation, the Crucifixion and the Assumption on the walls of the Our Lady’s chapel, a section of which is shown in the photograph. R.D.]