Laid out in the early 1890s, Julian Street is named after the family that bought a large tract of land in that part of Cattedown some seventy years earlier, in 1820. The family apparently had strong South Hams links – more precisely, near Kingsbridge – as West Alvington and South Milton, two neighbouring communities are also both commemorated in neighbouring streets here. Indeed with only Tresilian Street intervening, Julian Street, Alvington Street and South Milton Street run adjacent to and parallel to each other and were all developed in the 1890s.
For much of the nineteenth century, and into the twentieth, there was also a Julian Arms public house, in Cadleigh, near Ermington. The direct Plymouth link appears to have ended though, before the streets were developed, and when the land was sold to John Elliot, a retired colonel in the Bengal Army with a financial interest in the East Indian Company. Upon his death it passed to his son, who in turn died without an heir in 1892 whereupon the estate passed to a cousin, Tracey Elliot, who, in turn, sold the land to the Cattedown Road Building Estate.