Number 17

Residents of Number 17 Carlton House Terrace

The first resident of Number 17 was Joseph Maynard who occupied the site until about 1870.
Russell Sturgis and his family lived in the house until about 1889. 
The Duke of Grafton and the Earl of Euston co-owned the property until 1901.
Lord Mount Stevens lived in the house until about 1922, and then passed it on to his wife, Lady Mount Stevens, to whom it belonged until about 1933.

Number 17 was the home of The Royal Empire Society until about 1936/1937.
The house then became home to various government departments until 1948 when the Ministry of Works took over the lease until about the mid-1960s.
In the late 1960s the Federation of British Artists along with the Civic Trust and the Town and Country Planning Association stated their interest in using the site as offices.
By the end of 1971 the three organisations had moved into the building following extensive restoration and alterations.

Today, Number 17 houses the Federation of British Artists in the basement and sub-basement. The Mall Galleries is on the ground floor. The rest of the building is occupied by offices for different organisations.


Number 17 in Victorian Times

As a domestic building, the layout of Number 17 was one of a typical Victorian upstairs-downstairs house.  Details from a census taken of No.17 in 1871 show that Mr Russell Sturgis, his wife, two sons and two daughters had some 17 staff and servants living in the house at the time.

Despite the number of staff, members of the family would rarely have seen them, as they operated on separate floors of the house. Indeed, servants were to go unseen, using a separate staircase at the back of the household to carry out their daily duties.

The servants’ spent most of their time working in the basement, which would have included rooms for them to dine and work in, including a pantry, wine cellar, meat cellar, ice store, fuel store and various workshops.

The sub-basement was slightly more grand, and was probably used as the offices for the senior personnel – possibly including the head butler, the cook and the head coachman – and probably stored household goods like china, silver and bedlinen to serve the house upstairs.

The ground floor would have been used by the family and consisted of a reception and entertaining rooms where guests were received and dinner parties were held. The first floor contained all the family rooms including a dining room, sitting room, library and bathrooms. The second floor principally consisted of bedrooms, children’s rooms and bathrooms. At the very top of the house, 150 arduous steps from the basement, were the servant’s sleeping quarters.