Vampires, actors, and plaques

On 1 December 1918, Transylvania united with the Kingdom of Romania. The region became forever firmly fixed as a set of vampire activity following the publication in May 1897 of Bram Stoker’s book Dracula.

Bram StokerThe Irish-born Abraham Stoker worked as a freelance journalist and drama critic, in which capacity he met both the famous actor Henry Irving and an actress called Florence Balcombe. Stoker married Florence and moved to England in the role of personal secretary to Irving; they lived for a time at 18 St Leonard’s Terrace in Chelsea.

The terrace takes its name from Upton St Leonard’s, a town in Gloucestershire and the former home of John Tombs, a builder and bricklayer who built both this terrace and the nearby Cheltenham Terrace.

Stoker plaque
The plaque in St Leonard’s Terrace. [Photo: openplaques.org]