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The Lea

St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, A1E, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1997/10/31

View of the front facade and right side, The Lea, St. John's, 1998; HFNL 2005
The Lea, St. John's
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Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1920/01/01 to 1921/01/01

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/01/19

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Lea is a two-storey Tudor Revival style building located at 39 Topsail Road, St. John’s. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

The Lea has been designated a Registered Heritage Structure because of its architectural and historical values.

Architecturally, The Lea is significant because it is one of the only Tudor revival style mansions in Newfoundland. Built in 1920, the style of this house was inspired by the architecture in the United Kingdom. This two-storey, cedar shingled building boasts many of the features typical of the Tudor style including an asymmetrical façade, small diamond shaped leaded-glass windows and a dominant front facing gable. Aside from the sheer size of this home, the wealth of the original occupants was also translated through its exterior decoration. Eaves bracketing and finials were used to highlight the roof and bay windows while arched doorways and columns brought attention to the entranceways. Inspired by the low beam ceiling in the Doulton family home in Scotland, one of the unique aspects of The Lea is the large reception hall with its paneled walls.

Historically, The Lea is significant because of the prominent family associated with it. The original owner, John Parker, was best known for the famous Newfoundland shoe Company, Parker and Monroe, which he gained ownership of from his father, James Francis Parker. During the early 20th century many residents of Newfoundland and Labrador relied heavily on the urban distributors for supplies, in this case durable footwear. Along with several outlets that sold shoes and boots, the family also ran a shoe manufacturing plant that produced up to 100,000 pairs of shoes annually.

Source: Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador, unnumbered property file, "St. John's - The Lea."

Character-Defining Elements

All original features which relate to the age and design of the building in the Tudor Revival style, including:
-the multi-gabled roof, diamond shaped leaded glass windows, row windows, arched doorways;
-wooden shingle siding;
-asymmetrical facade;
-original windows including fanlights over doors;
-original doors including leaded-glass insert;
-location and appearance of bay windows;
-exterior decoration including large decorative eaves, finials, eaves brackets;
-location and appearance of shed dormers;
-moulded trim along windows and doors;
-all interior features that reflect the age and the design of the building; and,
-building height and general dimensions.



Newfoundland and Labrador

Recognition Authority

Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador

Recognition Statute

Historic Resources Act

Recognition Type

Registered Heritage Structure

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design

Function - Category and Type



Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador 1 Springdale Street, St. John’s Newfoundland, A1C 5V5

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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