The area was named after the gardens that were previously on the site, which featured a decorative fountain in the time of Elizabeth I that was set in motion by passers-by treading on hidden machinery, whether knowingly or unknowingly. Several Victorian buildings were built on Spring Gardens.
The 18th century Whig playwright and poet Susanna Centlivre, who has been described as "the most successful female playwright of the eighteenth century", spent the end of her life here, and wrote her most famous work A Bold Stroke for a Wife at her home at the corner of Buckingham Court, Spring Gardens, in 1718.
The area housed the headquarters of the Metropolitan Board of Works, which had moved from the London Guildhall, and also housed the London County Council, until it moved to County Hall. This building has since been demolished.
The area was the home of an open-air market for milk, the Milk Fair, from the formation of the Mall, until the market it was closed before the First World War.
Currently, the buildings in Spring Gardens include the Trafalgar Hotel, as well as the Headquarters of the British Council, and the London office of the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, which has been an occupant since 2013.
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