Ladbroke Grove and North Kensington are the up and coming areas of West London as young professionals and families seek more affordable homes outside the fashionable neighbourhood of Notting Hill. £10 billion is pouring into regenerate the brownfield site of Old Oak Common – around 100 acres of disused railway and industrial land. The grand plan is to build 25,000 homes and create thousands of jobs around a ‘super transport hub’ where Crossrail will meet the planned HS2 rail link to the Midlands and beyond, although the final decisions have yet to be made. This regeneration means the more affordable property prices are likely to sky rocket as people flock to the area.
Ladbroke Grove and North Kensington are on the northern edge of Notting Hill. To the west is White City and Wormwood Scrubs Park, to the north Kensal Green, while the more affluent Notting Hill lies to the south. Although the two neighbourhoods have different names, they almost seamlessly cover the same area.
Ladbroke Grove is named after the landowning family the Ladbrokes, who developed the area and surrounding neighbourhoods in the 19th century.
Ladbroke Grove tube station was opened as Notting Hill, renamed in 1919 as Ladbroke Grove (Notting Hill) and then renamed again as Ladbroke Grove in 1938.
Ladbroke Grove is the main through route and shopping street, but Portobello Road is better known for the market specialising in antiques.
Prime Minister David Cameron lives in North Kensington.
The area has a village feel and has a community web site –Golborne Life.
The 31-storey Trellick Tower on Ladbroke Grove is a concrete monstrosity to some and a fine example of modernist architecture to others. The 217 apartments are mostly social housing, but some are in private ownership.
Another landmark is a round water tower converted into a home and clad in timber. The tower stands proudly at the opposite end of Ladbroke Grove from the Trellick Tower.
Ladbroke Grove and North Kensington have streets of Victorian and Edwardian terrace homes. The most spacious family homes are found in Oxford gardens, Cambridge Gardens and Bassett Road, which run parallel to each other across the Westway from Ladbroke Grove tube station. Wallingford Avenue and Highlever Road run north from Oxford Gardens at the westward end away from the tube station. Here are neat rows of Edwardian terrace homes. Many have seen conversions into spacious apartments often extending over more than one floor.
Buy to let investors have moved into these areas and the neighbouring St Quentin Avenue, where renters will find apartments to let. Developers have also moved in to build modern apartment blocks.
One major development is The Ladbroke Grove, on the main road of the same name which runs north-south from Kensal Green to Holland Park. Above the shops, restaurants and offices are 133 apartments, offering single, double and three-bedroomed accommodation.
Housing Associations are big investors in the area, with several developments that include homes for rent, shared ownership and to buy. Among the most affordable homes are former railwaymen’s cottages on the railway side of Portobello Road.
Ladbroke Grove and North Kensington are all served by London Underground. The stations are:
All these stations are Travel Zone 2, except for Holland Park, which is Zone 1. Heathrow, the City and Canary Wharf are all within 30 – 40 minutes by tube, while London’s mainline stations are all in easy reach. The Westway and Great West Road are the nearest main routes out of London, linking with the M4 and M25.
Things to do
The giant Westfield shopping centre at Shepherd’s Bush is a magnet for shopaholics.
Bustling Queensway and Westbourne Grove are almost open all hours with shops, restaurants, cafes and bars giving a taste of mouth-watering cuisines from around the world.
Queensway is also home to Whiteley’s shopping mall and cinema complex and London’s only combined ice skating and bowling centre.
The Print Room Theatre and The Tabernacle put on contemporary shows and exhibitions for even the most discerning critics, while The Electric, Coronet and Gate independent cinemas showcase mainstream and independent films.
The annual Notting Hill Carnival runs through Ladbroke Grove every August. The carnival is one of Europe’s largest street celebrations attracting thousands of visitors.
Sports and fitness enthusiasts have plenty of open space and facilities, from Little Wormwood Scrubs and Kensington Memorial Park in the north of the district to Holland Park and Kensington palace Gardens in the south.
Schools and colleges
Ladbroke Grove and North Kensington are within easy reach of the best public and independent schools in London, ranging from nurseries to further education colleges. London’s world-renowned universities and colleges are easily accessible by bus and tube.
Ladbroke Grove and North Kensington have a London W10 post code. The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea is the local authority.