Blackfriar Estate – The Bishop’s Palace
Perched on the hill at the end of Central Avenue overlooking Blackfriar’s Bridge in London Ontario is a mansion called Blackfriar Estate. The building has also been known as The Bishop’s Palace, and was originally named Firbrae.
This Italianate estate home was built in 1870 by Thomas Kent whose father was granted much of the land along the river by the Crown of England in the 1840’s. Despite selling off most of the land, this parcel was retained by the family and Thomas built the home after selling some of the remaining land along the river to the City of London.
When Thomas died without an heir the house was purchased for Bishop Fallon by John Donnelly and the property became the residence of 6 Roman Catholic Bishops until 2008.
The property is now owned by Blackfriar Estate Condominiums which has made an obvious effort to retain much of the historical features of the building, while updating it for contemporary living. The building includes 3 main suites which are equipped complete with fireplaces, kitchens and bathroom facilities. Enjoy this visual tour of the three suites, the ceiling medallions and fireplaces are all original as are many features that remain within the building.