James Burton (1761-1837)

From Historical Hastings Wiki

Early Life[edit | edit source]

James Burton was born in London to a Scottish builder who shared an ancestor with Sir Walter Scott. Shortening his name from Haliburton to Burton in the 1790s following a family dispute.[1]


Offspring of Short name: James Burton

and Joined with-g1: Elizabeth Westley

Name Birth Death Joined with
Decimus Burton (1800-1881) 30 September 1800 14 December 1881 Kensington
James Burton (1786-1862)


Henry Burton (1799-1849)


Renown as builder[edit | edit source]

He was described as probably the most significant builder of Georgian London and was responsible for constructing large areas of Bloomsbury, as well as Clapham Common and St Johns Wood. He also worked with John Nash in designing Regent’s Park.[1] In addition to the property development enterprises which enjoyed considerable success, James Burton invested greatly in the manufacture of gunpowder from 1811 in the Medway area, selling this product in London via his partnership with his eldest son.[2]

St Leonards[edit | edit source]

During 1828 he commenced the design and construction of a new town at St Leonards, based upon his experiences at Regents Park with common design features at both locations. This was on land that had at one time been part of the Manor of Gensing but had recently come onto the market. Although primarily a builder, James Burton designed many of his works, those at St Leonards in partnership with his son Decimus, and examples of the construction and architectural drawings survive in the Hastings Museum.[1]

Death[edit | edit source]

He passed away in 1837 and is buried in the churchyard off West Hill Road[3]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 http://www.burtonsstleonardssociety.co.uk/history_-_the_burtons.html
  2. London Gazette issue=18156 page=1271 date=8 August 1873
  3. Hastings of Bygone Days and the Present (Henry Cousins - 1911) ISBN: 9789332862449 ESCC Library Google Books