The wholly suburban and institutional surroundings which characterize Strawberry Hill today have done much to conceal the close link that once existed between Walpole’s famous Gothic villa and its setting. More crucially for architectural history, they have obscured the topography of the land which Walpole found when he arrived at the site in 1747, and which played an important part in the future developments at Strawberry Hill. Indeed, it can be argued that the situation as he found it tended to encourage the retention and accretive development of a pre-existing structure as described above by Peter Guillery. Having decided on retention, the topography and pattern of land ownership seem to have made almost inevitable the asymmetrical plan, created from 1758, which has earned Strawberry Hill a place in architectural history. Finally, the timing of these developments can be seen to have been greatly influenced by Walpole’s progress in land acquisition.