West Kensington

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Coordinates: 51°29′27″N 0°12′23″W / 51.4907°N 0.2065°W / 51.4907; -0.2065

West Kensington
West Kensington is located in Greater London
West Kensington
West Kensington
 West Kensington shown within Greater London
OS grid reference TQ246783
London borough Hammersmith & Fulham
Ceremonial county Greater London
Region London
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town LONDON
Postcode district W14
Dialling code 020
Police Metropolitan
Fire London
Ambulance London
EU Parliament London
UK Parliament Hammersmith and Fulham
London Assembly West Central
List of places
UK
England
London

West Kensington is an area on the western edge of Central London primarily located within the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, encompassing some western areas of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, located 3.4 miles (5.5 km) west of Charing Cross. West Kensington, the London postal area of W14 is roughly defined as the area between Brook Green & Hammersmith Road to the west, Fulham to the south, Shepherd's Bush to the north and Kensington to the east.

It is best known as home to the Olympia Exhibition Centre and the Queen's Club at Barons Court.

Residential[edit]

West Kensington is primarily a residential area consisting mainly of Victorian terraced houses, many of which are subdivided into flats. There are excellent examples of Victorian architecture, with several houses and some entire streets listed - including the imposing mansion blocks of Fitzgeorge Avenue (off North End Road) and the mansion blocks around Avonmore Road including, Glyn Mansions (Built 1897), Avonmore Mansions and Avonmore Gardens (Built 1893) which is located next to the new Kensington Village development. West Kensington Court was purpose built and completed in 1938 with a view of providing what was considered at the time luxury flats for young professionals and families wishing to get away from the older style properties. There are also a number of ex-local and local authority buildings around the North End Road, including the recently renovated Lytton Estate. Many of these buildings have been sold off to first-time buyers and young professionals. A more recent private development, St Paul's Court, was built in 1980 on the former site of St Paul's School.

Demographics[edit]

West Kensington is a cosmopolitan enclave, with significant local population diversity. There is a significant population of Arabs, Americans, Australians and New Zealanders together with Irish, other mainland Europeans - Italian, Spanish, and French, for some of whom private schools operating in their native languages can be found around Brook Green. The area also has a large student population, given its close proximity to Imperial College London, Charing Cross Hospital, South Kensington, Hammersmith and other Central London Universities.

Locale[edit]

West Kensington has a major advantage in its location. An influx of spill-over wealth from Kensington (W8) means that the area has experienced significant developments including the opening of more speciality shops, eateries and gastropubs. West Kensington straddles the border between the boroughs of Hammersmith & Fulham and Kensington & Chelsea. Although it is true that the area has not experienced the same level of investment and rejuvenation as its neighbours Earl's Court and Fulham, new building and renovation work is ongoing. W14 had become the first London postcode to not have a post office — however an agreement was reached with North End News in February 2009 to provide a post office counter; the Shepherd's Bush Road post office is, however on the W14 / W6 boundary.[1]

Location in context[edit]

Commercial/education[edit]

Local business consists of small shops, offices and restaurants, with the Olympia Exhibition Centre nearby. Indeed, it is the mix of local shops that give the area its character.

West Kensington is within easy reach of Earl's Court, and the Broadways of Fulham, Hammersmith and Notting Hill.

There are several pubs and hotels, including The Albion public house which is reputedly haunted. The Baron's Court Theatre is also located in basement of "The Curtains Up" bar and restaurant.

The Carnival Store is a famous fancy dress and costume shop located in the same premises on Hammersmith Road and family owned for the past 40 years.

Avonmore Road has become home to Kensington Village. Kensington Village was built in the 1880s as Whiteleys Furniture Depositories, laundry and stables. Whiteleys was London's first department store, based in Westbourne Grove. The Warwick Building, a vast high-ceilinged space, was used to store Whiteleys-sourced furnishings for wealthy folk who were spending time in the colonies, such as grand pianos, chaise longues, oriental room dividers and mahogany garderobes. Kensington Village now comprises a blend of modernised Victorian buildings, such as the Warwick Building and modern new buildings such as the Pembroke Building, built in a similar style to Warwick, with London stock brick and red lintels and full height glazing. There is a cafe gym and lawn in the centre of the complex. Occupiers in the complex include Publicis the French advertising company that are marketing their offices through Frost Meadowcroft,[2] RDF Media and CACI.[3] West Kensington is also home to the Cardinal Vaughan School, the St James Independent School for Junior Boys and Girls and St James Independent School for Senior Girls.

Notable people[edit]

Transport[edit]

West Kensington is remarkably well served by public transport, owing to its central location between the Fulham, Hammersmith and Kensington hubs.

  • Tube: Six separate Tube lines are within a 5 to 15 minute walk of West Kensington.

In the area:

In areas surrounding it:

  • Hammersmith
  • Earls Court
  • High Street Kensington
  • Fulham Broadway
  • West Brompton
  • Gloucester Road
  • Goldhawk Road
  • Shepherd's Bush

West Kensington Station, the District line branch (running between Kensington Olympia-Earl's Court-Kensington High Street), Piccadilly line from Barons Court/Earl's Court, Circle and District line from High Street Kensington, Hammersmith & City line from Hammersmith tube station, and the Central line from Shepherd's Bush and Holland Park.

Nearest tube stations[edit]

Nearest locations and places of interest[edit]

Cultural associations[edit]

Blythe House has been used as a filming location for numerous films including Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.[13]

In the film Trainspotting, the flat that Renton shows the young couple around when he gets the job as an estate agent and ultimately stashes Begbie and Sickboy in is 78A North End Road, opposite West Kensington tube station.

The Nashville Rooms, now the Famous Three Kings pub, hosted many rock and punk concerts in the 1970s and early 1980s. Joy Division, The Sex Pistols and The Police all played there regularly.

The flat featured in the 1969 BBC series 'Take Three Girls' was at 17 Glazbury Road.

Heather Graham and Mia Kirshner play upper-middle-class dilettantes from West Kensington in the 2008 movie Buy Borrow Steal.[14]

Future Redevelopment of Earl's Court including the West Kensington & Gibbs Green Estates[edit]

The London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham and the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea have resolved to grant outline planning permission for Sir Terry Farrell's Masterplan for the Earl's Court Project. As the Earls Court Project would bring considerable benefits to the area, it was recognised by the Mayor’s London Plan as an Opportunity Area in July 2011. The project, expected to span 15-20 years, would involve the redevlopment of the land around the Earl's Court Exhibition Centres and the West Kensington & Gibb's Green Estate. The proposals include the redevelopment and creation of four new village centres around North End Road, West Kensington, West Brompton and Earl's Court.

References[edit]

External links[edit]