55, Centre Street, London, City of, Ontario, N6J, Canada
55 Centre Street
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
Chestnut Hill is located at 55 Centre Street and is situated on the south side of Centre Street, between Wharncliffe Road South and Cotswold Gate, in the City of London. Chestnut Hill is a two-storey buff-brick building that was constructed in 1872.
The property was designated, by the City of London, in 2000, for its historical and architectural value, under Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act (By-law L.S.P.-3316-158). Chestnut Hill is also protected by a City of London municipal easement agreement, 2003.
Chestnut Hill is an example of the retirement houses built in the late 19th century, by wealthy farmers, in the City of London. It was constructed in 1872 as a private dwelling for Andrew Weldon, a retired farmer from Westminster Township. He named it Chestnut Hill and it remained in possession of the Weldon family until 1900. In 1951, the residence became the property of the Province of Ontario and served the province in different capacities for over 50 years.
Chestnut Hill is representative of the Italianate style of architecture. Built at the height of the style's influence, the house features buff-brick construction on a stone foundation with a front entrance that is highlighted by a large semicircular transom. Typical of the Italianate style is the wide frieze, with large paired brackets at intervals and smaller brackets, which delineates the roofline. Set into the hip roof is a dormer that is accented by decorative woodwork. Also of note is the large two storey bay, with three large windows on each storey and elaborate carved stone lintels.
Inside the house, the detail of the Italianate style continues with a decorative plaster arch in the wide entrance hallway, with a grape design and keystone. Also of note are the cove mouldings found throughout the house.
Sources: City of London By-law L.S.P.-3316-158; Easement Agreement, City of London, 2003.
Character defining elements that contribute to the heritage value of Chestnut Hill include its:
- glass window etched “Alice Weldon, February 24, 1883” in the south side room
- front entrance with double leaf doors and semi-circular transom
- paired windows above the front doors
- two-storey bay with three large windows on each storey
- carved stone lintels above the windows on the facade and north elevation
- wide wooden frieze under the eaves
- dormer window on the façade
- chimneys on the north and south ends of the house that do not extend past the roofline
- wooden screen with sidelights and transom
- decorative plaster arch, panelled with elaborate plaster supports cast in a grape design and containing a cast keystone in the shape of a face in the central hallway
- stairway including newel post and railing
- six-panel double pocket doors set in archways with semi-elliptical heads
- door cases and window frame mouldings and panelling below the windows
- cove mouldings
Local Governments (ON)
Ontario Heritage Act
Municipal Heritage Designation (Part IV)
2000/01/01 to 2000/01/01
1951/01/01 to 1951/01/01
Theme - Category and Type
- Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
- Architecture and Design
Function - Category and Type
- Office or office building
- Single Dwelling
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
City of London
Planning and Development
300 Dufferin Avenue
Cross-Reference to Collection