Terms used: There is a very helpful Glossary of terms here: http://www.lookingatbuildings.org.uk/glossary/glossary.html
In Peterborough the buildings are predominantly Georgian or later. Below is a bit of information on how to recognise different styles of building and spot if they are Georgian or Victorian.
The Georgian period is from 1714 to 1830, when four successive Kings on the throne had that name, going from George I to George IV. The term is occasionally used to refer to buildings built in the reign of King William, QueenVictoria’s uncle, who ruled until 1837. To distinguish it this period is sometimes called ‘late Georgian’.
The buildings have a distinctive style and most remaining in anything like their original condition are afforded some protection through being listed. Grand stately homes were built at this time due to the accumulation of wealth by some families in this time. They created country houses with landscapes and often follies and gatehouses.
The most common type of Georgian house, and a style which was vastly popular in the Georgian period, was the townhouse. These were often speculative builds on 99 year leases, with the original intention that once the lease expired the building would be torn down and the plot re-used. However this did not always happen and reams of Georgian townhouses still remain, most notably in places such asBath.
Georgian buildings are often made of brick or stone, usually local material as it was difficult to transport building material around the country before the railways. Sometimes brick buildings were faced in stone to appear more high status. Or they have stone quoins. Some have render on the bottom floor shaped to look like stone, and then stone higher up.
Georgian buildings usually have a square symmetrical shape and carefully proportioned according to fashionable Classical design principles. These were based upon the Palladian classical orders as described by Andreas Palladio, an Italian architect of the 16th century who in turn was trying to replicate the proportions of Roman architecture. This use of the order s within architecture applied to both grand mansion houses and individual terraces.
Often two or three storeys as houses, they could be two rooms deep and symmetrical both internally and externally. They often had a panelled door in the centre of the house if large and detached, and a door to one side if they were terraced. Terraced townhouses often opened from the front door straight onto the road, with no porch. The doors often have fan lights above them letting light into the hallway. A cellar visible below ground floor was often common for locating the kitchen in.
Windows in Georgian houses, unless replaced, are often small and six paned towards the top of the property, and larger nine or even twelve panel windows on the main floors. Almost exclusively Georgian houses have sash windows which slide up and down on a series of weights and pulleys. Most also originally had internal shutters.
The most popular type of roof was tiled and hipped (A roof which slopes upward from all the sides of a building.) Often these had embellished cornices with decorative mouldings, usually known as dentilwork. The roof was often hidden behind a parapet – a low wall built around the edge of the roof which makes the buildings look totally rectangular. The chimneys were often paired and located on both sides of the houses, reflecting the internal location of fireplaces.
Victorian houses were built between 1837 and 1901, when Queen Victoriawas on the throne. However some people, including the Victorian Society itself, take ‘Victorian Architecture’ to encompass Edwardian as well, which takes this time period up to 1910.
The Victorian and Edwardian Housing boom means that British suburbs are often heavily dominated by this style of house. As a rough rule of thumb Edwardian housing tends to be slightly squatter than Victorian, but other features are often very similar. To spot a house from this period you can look out for the following traits, although not all houses will have all features, and it isn’t a hard and fast rule book this list should give you a good clue.