Rutland Gate was developed over a period of more than
twenty years following the demolition in 1836 of Rutland
House, an aristocratic mansion which had stood here since
the middle of the eighteenth century. The original houses
are largely the work of two builders: John Tombs, who built
up the northern half of the street in the late 1830s and '40s,
and John Elger, who completed Rutland Gate after a hiatus
in its development during the early 1850s. Tombs was a relatively minor figure in the building world, with limited
speculative involvement. Elger, by contrast, was an established property baron, combining in himself the roles of
freeholder, developer and builder. His work in Rutland
Gate followed on from his development on the Kingston
House estate to the west, and, barring a few later houses in
Rutland Gardens, it marks the eastern extent of a large area
of Knightsbridge built up speculatively with very highclass houses during the mid- to late nineteenth century.
Many of the original houses, or at least their façades,
have survived, and their broadly Italianate style remains
the predominating architectural flavour of the street
(Plates 73, 74, 75).
The numbering is divided between an odd and an even
sequence in the upper or northern part of Rutland Gate
and a consecutive sequence in the lower. The consecutive
numbers begin with No. 27. There is no No. 21.