Located to the west of the historic Roman and Mediaeval City of London, the West End was long favoured by the rich elite as a place of residence because it was more often upwind of the smoke drifting from the crowded city. It was also located close to the royal seat of power at Westminster. Developed in the Seventeenth , Eighteenth and Nineteenth centuries it was originally built as a series of palaces, expensive town houses , fashionable shops and places of entertainment. The areas closest to the City around Holborn Seven Dials and Covent garden historically contained poorer communities that were cleared and redeveloped in the nineteenth century.
Districts in London's West End: