Hamilton House was a large villa situated on the south side of Commercial Road opposite St Peter’s Church. It was set in large gardens with a carriage drive and a small lake. The Town Map of 1845-46 and a plan of the house and gardens of 1868 show the gardens extending southwards to Blechynden Terrace. By 1911 the house had been divided into two parts (see clipping 1 below), with the south wing being occupied by local Territorial Army units while the north wing was used by the Church Army Hostel. When the Empire Theatre (later the Gaumont and now the Mayflower) was opened in 1928 the east wing was demolished, but the west wing survived until the 1950s (see clipping 2 below). A Max Mills photograph of 1930s (image 2) shows the west wing of the house adjacent to the theatre. A 19th century occupant of the house, a Mrs. Wyndham, gave her name to the adjacent Wyndham Court and Wyndham Place.
Hamilton Place is mentioned as a 19th century terrace in Commercial Road, on the south side opposite St. Peter's Church. It is possibly an alternative name for Hamilton House or it may refer to the area in which the house was situated.

1. Hamilton House

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From the Southampton Times, 7 January 1911

2. Hamilton House, Commercial Road

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A 1930s photograph showing what remained of Hamilton House



Further reading:
Southampton Occasional Notes 2nd Series, by ‘Townsman’, p32. (HS/h)
‘The Story of the Mayflower Theatre’, by Bill White, in SUIAG Journal, No. 9, p22-26. (H/p)


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