Soho is London's most central village and one of London's most colourful and vibrant neighbourhoods. Its character is defined not just through its built form but by its many and varied uses and residents, and the diversity of communities that occupy its spaces.
Soho's development, though already initiated, was boosted by the Great Fire of 1666 and the demand for new housing this created. The area was largely built up by the end of the 17th century and it retains a great deal of this street pattern. It has an extremely dense, urban character, defined by an irregular and often confusing grid of narrow streets and alleyways. From the mid-18th century the area began to decline and in the 19th century Regent Street, Shaftsbury Avenue and Charing Cross Road were cut through. This introduced larger-scale, Victorian development to the area but many early buildings still survive.
The Soho Conservation Area was designated in 1969 and has been extended a number of times since, most recently in 2005.
|Publications and Documents:|
|Soho Conservation Area Map|
|Soho Mini Guide|
|Soho Conservation Area Audit SPG|
Was this useful?
Whatever your interest, Westminster City Council welcomes and encourages you to get in touch with suggestions for improvements to the site. Please tell us how useful this page was to you.