March 1971. Wallside was part of Phase II of the City’s building programme for the Barbican site. The original contractor was Turriff Limited. But after long delays and labour disputes Turriff were allowed to leave the site and their buildings were completed by John Laing Construction Limited.
It runs parallel to some remains of the Old Roman Wall from which it takes its name. It is the one part of the estate where all the dwellings face out of the estate not in. At the back, the houses overlook St Giles Terrace, the lake and the remains of the City Wall to the north. At the front, they overlook Bridgewater Square.
It is a terrace of sixteen town houses (on four storeys with integral garages), a doctor’s surgery with a flat, and a dentist’s surgery (without a flat). The homes are numbered 1 – 16. (The Barbican Estate Office classify them all as flats.) At the back, below podium level, the houses have a very attractive view over the Roman Wall and an extension of the lake which flows behind St Giles Church. The houses have small balconies at head level.
Wallside is a terrace of houses on the southern boundary of the estate.
There are normal street entrances onto the square outside the Barbican. There are entrances higher up onto the highwalk within the Barbican estate. There is no direct access onto the grass at the back of their houses, which is probably a good thing because there are no railings at the lake’s edge and the water is quite deep and would pose a danger to children.
If you walk behind St Giles Church, down the stairs to Wallside and follow the pathway round next to the Roman remains, you find yourself in an enormous deserted garden area beneath Mountjoy House and next to an extension of the lake. It’s a very nice place to sit and contemplate life.
List description of this building issued by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (as it then was) in 2001.
“Block XIII: 1-16 Wallside. Houses, including two units for doctor, dentist, or similar professional chambers. Glazed engineering brick cladding, with two-step flat roofs incorporating roof garden, and higher ventilation flue. Four storeys, set on, above and below the podium. Houses set in pairs save at either end, and entered at podium level, with square brick clad piers supporting floor above the podium. Bedrooms mainly on lower floors, reached via open tread dog-leg stair, but with some variations in the internal planning that makes it distinctive from the more regular adjoining Postern.”