The Contradictory Career of Decimus Burton

In 1905, the Architectural Review stated that ‘the architectural historian of the distant future may well be excused if he formulates a theory that there were two Decimus Burtons’. Literally speaking, this was remarkably prescient, for today we associate Burton’s name not only with various inventive classical revival buildings around Regent’s Park and Hyde Park in London, but also with the remarkably futuristic glasshouses that sit in Kew Gardens, where Burton was architect for both the Palm House of 1844–48 and the Temperate House, built in stages from 1859–98 and now completing its second restoration in half a century.

26th March 2018