Torrington Square

Torrington Square is a square in Bloomsbury, owned by the University of London, located in central London, England.[1] Today it is a square in name only, most of the houses having been demolished by the university. The southern end of the square is dominated by the University of London's Senate House. Birkbeck College and the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) are located here. To the southwest is Malet Street and to the southeast is Russell Square. The square is the site of a weekly farmers' market, held on Thursdays.[2]

View of Torrington Square.
Armillary sphere sundial outside Birkbeck College in Torrington Square, unveiled on 12 June 2008 by Princess Anne to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the University of London External System.

Notable peopleEdit

John Desmond Bernal lived in a flat at the top of no. 22. In November 1950, Pablo Picasso, a fellow communist, en route to a Soviet-sponsored[3] World Peace Congress in Sheffield created a mural in Bernal's flat.[4] In 2007, this became part of the Wellcome Trust's collection[5][6] for £250,000. It was displayed at the 2012 Tate Britain exhibition on Picasso and Modern British Art.[7] The poet Christina Rossetti lived at 30 Torrington Square until her death here on 29 December 1894 from breast cancer.[8]

See alsoEdit

Other squares on the Bedford Estate in Bloomsbury included:



  1. ^ "Torrington Square Guide". LondonTown. Retrieved 17 December 2017.
  2. ^ "Homepage". Retrieved 17 December 2017.
  3. ^ Eric Hobsbawm, Interesting Times, p. 181
  4. ^ Goldsmith, Maurice (1980). Sage: A Life of J. D. Bernal. London: Hutchinson. p. picture. ISBN 0-09-139550-X.
  5. ^ night that Picasso was a little plastered, The Times, 2 April 2007.
  6. ^ Picasso goes on show in London at Wellcome Collection, Culture24, UK, 14 January 2008.
  7. ^ "Picasso and Modern British Art: 15 February – 15 July 2012". Tate Britain. Tate Gallery, UK. 2012. Retrieved 16 March 2012.
  8. ^ Bryson, John,"Christina Rossetti English poet", Encyclopædia Britannica, 7 September 2015. Retrieved on 24 March 2016.

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 51°31′19″N 0°07′50″W / 51.52201°N 0.13050°W / 51.52201; -0.13050