Mayfair was originally unwanted, nameless, muddy fields - the River
Tyburn swamps - situated to the west of what was then Central London
(Whitehall, Soho, Covent Garden and the City).
Mayfair got its name in 1686 when King
James II granted royal permission for a fair to be held on the site
of what is now Shepherds Market in the first two weeks of May. At
this time Soho, Whitehall and the City were the addresses of choice
for the wealthy aristocracy.
It was not until 1710 and 1719 that Sir Richard
Grosvenor and the earl of Scarborough (Mayfair's two original
landowning and developer families) built Grosvenor Square and
Hanover Square respectively, and started Mayfair's building process
that continues until the present day so that, by 1720, the former
fields were transformed into a vast building site...