Added on February 3, 2022 Category Past Events

The History of Brooke House, Clapton: Henry VIII’s Mansion to Mental Asylum

Did you know that Henry VIII once had a mansion in Hackney where he reconciled with his daughter Mary? Find out this and more in this talk.

The History of Brooke House in Clapton: From Henry VIII’s Mansion to Mental Asylum – a talk by historian Sue Doe

Of all the buildings in Hackney that are lost to us, Brooke House, previously the King’s Place, is probably the most lamented.

It stood on the site of what is now the BSix College, previously Brooke House Boys School, on the junction of Upper Clapton Road and Brooke Road.

Prior to being a school it was a private mental hospital for two centuries, but in its heyday of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries it was a prominent private house with many well known owners and tenants. 

Brooke House HAD

A clue is in its name from that time – the King’s Place. That king being Henry VIII. His chief minister Thomas Cromwell, extended it to a palatial two courtyards, but the house dated from as early as 1476. Here lived Henry Percy, Earl of Northumberland, the Earl and Countess of Oxford, King Henry’s niece, Margaret Douglas and many others.

Not much of its former status was obvious when it was one of many of the large Hackney houses to be put to institutional use as an asylum. 

Its end came during the bombings of the Second World War and subsequent vandalism. The remains were pulled down. But not before an extensive archaeological survey. Lamented, but not forgotten.

Discover the story of this fascinating lost building from Hackney’s history in a talk by Hackney historian Sue Doe, co-writer of ‘Women from Hackney’s History’ (2021) and City of London Tour Guide.

Join the talk on Weds. 30th March, 7 – 8.00pm, through Eventbrite: