Seven Dials, in the north-west corner of Covent Garden, is a unique quarter of London whose star-shaped layout remains as constructed in the early 1690s. Mostly unknown and in a state of dereliction when the Covent Garden market moved in 1974, Seven Dials was brought back to life largely through the dedication of the Seven Dials Trust, working in partnership with the local authorities and landowners for nearly forty years. Together, the partnership virtually re-invented a lost neighbourhoodthrough a long process of urban renewal embracing social and private housing and new businesses.
The reconstruction of the Sundial Pillar by the Trust in 1989, the first project of its kind in London since Nelson’s Column in the 1840s, put Seven Dials back on London’s map and proved an effective economic regenerator. The Trust’s pioneering and much acclaimed Seven Dials Renaissance Studywhich followed, set out a long term holistic vision for the area’s maintenance and improvement.
Our long journey has involved history, architecture, horology, economic regeneration through conservation, lighting, the public realm, battles against demolition and much else.
We hope you enjoy reading about our work and achievements to date and about Seven Dials. Whether you are a casual visitor or a researcher we hope that you will find something to stir your interest.