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Laurence Humphry

Lensfield, Lensfield Road

History of Lensfield, Lensfield Road

Royal Commission Survey of Cambridge 1959: built by William Wilkins for his own use, which was demolished in 1955 and the site and gardens covered by the huge new University Chemical Laboratory.

For account of early development of the site see New Town.

Lensfield was built by the architect William Wilkins c.1811. In 1822 Wilkins sold part of the land near his house along the east side of Panton Street (which he named Annesley Place) for five terraced houses. Both Lensfield and these 5 terraced houses were demolished in 1955.


Alice Wilkins, 60, proprietor of houses, b Dublin

Alicia, 33, b London

Margaret Reader, 50, servant, b Linton

Ann Merchant, 25, servant, b Somerset

William Harradence, 21, servant, b Royston

The Stokes family had previously lived at 3 Trinity Street.

1898 The first paid Marconigram was transmitted on June 3rd, 30 years ago. It was sent by Lord Kelvin who was visiting Senatore Marconi’s experimental wireless station on the Isle of Wight. In order to illustrate his belief in its commercial future, Lord Kelvin insisted upon paying one shilling for a wireless telegram to be sent to Sir George Stokes at Lensfield Cottage [House], Union Road, Cambridge. (recalled in Cambridge Press 5/6/1928)

Sir George Stokes


Laurence Humphry, 44, doctor of medicine, b Surrey

Isabel L, 39, b Cambridge

Sir George Gabriel Stokes, father in law, widower, 81, professor of mathematics, b Ireland

William Robinson, uncle in law, India Com retired, b Ireland

Alice Day, servant, 32, cook, b Herts

Rosa A Peachey, 24, parlourmaid, b Fen Ditton

Kate Stenton, 24, housemaid, b Bottisham

2/1/1904 Laurence Humphry, physician, was summoned for not clearing the footway in front of his house known as Lensfield, on Lensfield Road, Cambridge. The pavement had been covered with leaves which fell chiefly from a tree in the doctor’s garden so a constable called and told him it was in a dangerous condition. However the Corporation had erected a fence separating his land from the highway; his premises adjoined the fence but did not adjoin the footpath. He had another frontage to Panton Street and swept the pavement there.  (Cambridge Press)

For more information about Laurence Humphry see:


Laurence Humphrey, 54, physician, b Surrey

Isabella Lucy, 49, b Cambridge

Elizabeth Kate Ward, 22, cook, b Toft

Elizabeth Florence Tenant, 28, housemaid, b London

Elizabeth Lewis, 26, parlourmaid, b Cambs

1913 Lensfield (this large house and garden took up the grounds now occupied by the Department of Chemistry)

Laurence Humphry MD, honorary physician at Addenbrookes Hospital


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