Posts Tagged ‘church’

Around Swiss Cottage 1988

Wednesday, December 29th, 2021

Sigmund Freud, sculpture, Oscar Nemon, Fitzjohn's Avenue, Belsize Lane, South Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7h-61-positive_2400
Sigmund Freud, sculpture, Oscar Nemon, Fitzjohn’s Avenue, Belsize Lane, South Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7h-61

Around Swiss Cottage 1988: Sigmund Freud (1856–1939) escaped from Austria after it was annexed by Nazi Germany and came to London, spending his final year until his death in the house in Maresfield Gardens which now houses the Freud Museum. Croatian sculptor Oscar Nemon made three busts of Freud for his 75th birthday in 1931 and visited him in London in 1938 to make a final bust on which the head of this sculpture was based. Funds were later raised for him to create this bronze sculpture which was unveiled in 1970 next to Swiss Cottage Library where I photographed it.

In 1998 it was moved to a more prominent position at the junction of Fitzjohn’s Avenue and Belsize Lane and it was Grade II listed in 2016.

Taplow, Winchester Rd, Swiss Cottage, Camden, 1988 88-7h-63-positive_2400
Taplow, Winchester Rd, Swiss Cottage, Camden, 1988 88-7h-63

The five tower blocks of the Chalcots Estate where built for the London Borough of Camden in 1967-8. Taplow, Burnham, Bray, and Dorney are 23 storeys while Blashford has 19. The land was owned by Eton College and the names come for the area around Eton.

Cladding was added to the towers in 2006 by the same companies that clad Grenfell Tower but using fire-resistant rock-wool. When a fire broke out in a flat in Taplow in 2012 the fire was contained and did not spread and there were no deaths.

Embassy Theatre, Eton Avenue, Swiss Cottage, Camden, London, 1988 88-7k-61-positive_2400
Embassy Theatre, Eton Avenue, Swiss Cottage, Camden, London, 1988 88-7k-61

Originally a stucco double-fronted Italianate Victorian villa, it was converted in 1890 into the Eton Avenue Hall for the Hampstead Conservatoire, a prestigious private music college; Cecil Sharp the great collector of English folk song was its principal from 1896-1905 and composer Arnold Bax one of his pupils.

The building was converted again after the college had closed and opened as the Embassy Theatre in 1928, with a school of acting from 1932. Damaged in the war it reopened in 1945, continuing as a theatre until 1956 when it was sold to the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, now a college of London University.

College Crescent, South Hamnpstead,  Camden, 1988 88-7k-63-positive_2400
College Crescent, South Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-63

College Crescent was built by the Eyre family who were (and are) major landowners in Swiss Cottage and parts of Hampstead, with the first houses built in the late 1840s. Initially it was named as three streets, College Villas Road, College Terrace and College Crescent.

40 College Crescent was not one of the original houses, but was built around 1880 on the site of Abbey Farm Lodge as the family home for Samuel Palmer or Huntley and Palmer’s biscuit firm in Reading. Following his death this area of open space with a drinking fountain and shelter – as its inscription states – “presented to the Borough of Hampstead for the public benefit in memory of the late Samuel Palmer of Northcourt, Hampstead by his widow and family. 1904”. It was Grade II listed in 1993.

St. Thomas More, Roman Catholic, Church, Maresfield Gardens, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-64-positive_2400
St. Thomas More, Roman Catholic, Church, Maresfield Gardens, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-64

In 1938 the Archbishop of Westminster bought Hyme House at 3 Fitzjohn’s Avenue, for some years the studio of successful society portrait painter Philip de László (1869-1937) as the first English home for the Swiss-based Sisters of Mercy of the Holy Cross. The Sisters converted the studio into a church and bought the next two houses on the street to set up a girls school which they ran until 1985, after which it became a hotel.

In 1950 the studio had become too small and a second church was built on the site, but further expansion made this inadequate. The current church, built a restricted site on tennis courts at the back of the house and fronting onto Maresfield Gardens was designed by Gerard Goalen following the Second Vatican Council to maximise participation of the laity in the Mass. It was Grade II listed in 2016.

Netherhall Gardnes, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-42-positive_2400
Netherhall Gardens, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-42

A very rectangular house with a gate made largely of circles, but with the ironwork on the top of the gate reflecting the only non-rectangular feature of the frontage, and carefully positioned on top of it.

The Tower, Fitzjohn's Ave, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-46-positive_2400
The Tower, Fitzjohn’s Ave, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-46

An irresistable Gothic fantasy. Development in this area had been prevented for years after the death of the estate owner Sir Thomas Maryon Wilson in 1821, whose will prevented his sons building on the land, and efforts by his son (confusingly of exactly the same name) to get the will amended came to nothing. When he died, his brother Sir John inherited and was able to make a deal making part of the estate a part of Hampstead Heath and making development possible in other areas.

The Tower, Fitzjohn's Ave, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-32-positive_2400
The Tower, Fitzjohn’s Ave, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-32

Sir John divided the estate in 1873 with his son Sir Spencer Maryon Wilson who developed Priory Road and Fitzjohn’s Avenue from 1875 on, as a wide road with wide pavements linking Swiss Cottage and Hampstead which was described by Harpers Magazine a few years later as “one of the noblest streets in the world”.

The Tower, Fitzjohn's Ave, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-33-positive_2400
The Tower, Fitzjohn’s Ave, Hampstead, Camden, 1988 88-7k-33

A much quoted Camden History Society article describes the Tower at No 25 as an ornate mansion which is now “a fine example of ‘Disneyland Gothic'”. The building with 25 rooms dates from 1880-1, its architect JT Wimperis, a very prolific Victorian architect for Herbert Fleming Baxter (1839-1905), an extremely wealthy American merchant who was a part of a family with extensive estates in Shropshire. The house has been restored and is now divided into flats. Rather surprisingly it was not Grade II listed until 1999.

My walk will continue in a later post.


Click on any of the pictures to go to a larger version in the album 1988 London Photos, from where you can browse through the album.


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Another Chelsea Walk – 1988

Monday, October 4th, 2021

Church Of The Ñazarene, Grant Rd, Battersea, Wandsworth, 1988 88-5j-54-positive_2400
Church Of The Ñazarene, Grant Rd, Battersea, Wandsworth, 1988 88-5j-54

I returned for another walk in Chelsea, taking the train to Clapham Junction and taking a few pictures on my short walk to the bus stop of the Church Of The Ñazarene close to the north entrance to the station on Grant Road. The church, a twelve-sided building by Green Lloyd Adams was built in 1970 on the edge of the Winstanley Estate, developed by Battersea Council in the 1960s. The lettering on the ramp ‘JESUS SAID I AM THE WAY’ is designed for maximum size rather than typographical nicety.

Currently extensive building work is being carried out to considerably extend the church, though its future may be threatened if Crossrail 2 goes ahead. Of the two pictures I made I preferred a view across the small area with seats to a cleaner architectural view also included in the album.

Falcon Rd, Battersea, Wandsworth, 1988 88-5j-55-positive_2400
Falcon Rd, Battersea, Wandsworth, 1988 88-5j-55

On the bus I took advantage of an unusually clean front window on the upper deck to take a photograph of Falcon Road with the Queen Victoria pub. Also apparently known as ‘Spikey Hedghog’ the pub which had been there since the 1860s closed permanently in 1999 and was demolished to build the 8 flats of St Luke’s Court.

The picture also includes a falcon – both image and text on the side of a lorry. Elsewhere you can read a short post Falcon Road – a Memory of Battersea by someone who grew up living in the pub which gives an idea what the area was like, probably in the 1950s.

Beaufort St, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5j-45-positive_2400
Beaufort St, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5j-45

I got off the bus in Beaufort St in Chelsea and photographed this doorway there before walking along Cheyne Walk. Although the door is on Beaufort St, this is Belle Vue Lodge with the address 91 Cheyne Walk. It gets a lengthy mention in the Survey of London, first published in 1913 which suggests it dates from before 1771. It states that in 1829 it was occupied by “Luke Thomas Flood, who was a great benefactor to the parish. He was evidently a friend of the historian, for he addressed some lines to him, which conclude with the halting line ‘Sweet Chelsea shall ever live in thee.’ Flood Street was named after him, and his benefactions are celebrated at the parish church by a service on January 13th,—’Flood’s Day.'”

Houseboats, River Thames, Chelsea Embankment, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5j-32-positive_2400
Houseboats, River Thames, Chelsea Embankment, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5j-32

I walked across Cheyne Walk to make a photograph over the roofs of houseboats at the moorings, looking towards Chelsea Harbour and at left the Rank Hovis flour mills at Battersea and the Battersea Rail bridge. Then I think only used by goods trains this now carries frequent services of the London Overground as well as Thameslink trains.

Cheyne Walk, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5j-33-positive_2400
Cheyne Walk, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5j-33

I took a picture of houses in Cheyne Row. That at left is No 104 with two blue plaques, for the artist Walter Greaves (1846-1930) and Anglo-French ‘Poet, essayist and historian’ Hilaire Belloc (1870-1953) whose poem Jim (who ran away from his Nurse and was eaten by a Lion) ends with the famous lines:
‘And always keep ahold of nurse
For fear of finding something worse.’

No 104 doesn’t get a mention in the Survey of London, but No 100 at right of the picture is part of Lindsey House which it suggests was “rebuilt much in its present external form by the third Earl of Lindsey in 1674” but then divided into separate houses as 95-100 around 1775. It gets a very long entry.

Beaufort St, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5j-22-positive_2400
Beaufort St, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5j-22

I walked back up Beaufort St, passing a long row of frontages with identical garden ornaments which I think is Beaufort Mansions, though the gardens now have hedges. I think these mansion flats probably date from around 1890.

Shop window, Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5j-23-positive_2400
Shop window, Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5j-23

I was on my way to take a few more photographs on the King’s Road, including a several shop interiors. I think the name of the shop is on the wall at left, part hidden, Pineapple.

More pictures from this walk in a later post.


Click on any of the images above to go to a larger version in my album 1988 London Photos from where you can browse other images in the album.


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All photographs on this page are copyright © Peter Marshall. Contact me to buy prints or licence to reproduce.


Dovehouse Green, Chelsea Square & Upper Cheyne Row 1988

Sunday, October 3rd, 2021

Millars Obelisk, Dovehouse Green, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988  88-5i-54-positive_2400
Millars Obelisk, Dovehouse Green, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-54

Dovehouse Green was the name given to the King’s Road Burial Ground on the corner of Dovehouse St and King’s Road when it was improved by the Chelsea Society and Kensington & Chelsea council to celebrate the the Queen’s Silver Jubilee and the Golden Jubilee of the society in 1977. The area was given to the parish by Sir Hans Sloane in 1727 and opened as a burial ground in 1736. Chelsea soon outgrew this small area and a new burial ground was opened on the east side of Sydney St in 1812 and there were no more interments here other than in existing family tombs.

The Millar Obelisk which became the centrepiece of this small public park was erected in the old burial ground in 1751, by the wealthy leading bookseller and publisher Andrew Millar to mark the family burial place. Buried close to it were three of his children who died before it was erected and Millar himself who died in 1768 and his wife who outlived him by 20 years. You can read more at Millar’s obelisk, a post by Baldwin Hamey on London Details.

The park has been refurbished a couple of times since I made this picture, but its basic layout remains. On the other side of Dovehouse St is Chelsea Fire Station with its tower. If Crossrail 2 is ever built this may be the site of a station on it. Dovehouse street got its name around 1880, having previously been called Arthur St; I think the name was probably ‘borrowed’ from an early Dovehouse Close some distance away on the other side of King’s Rd. Just to the north of the burial ground was the workhouse for St Luke’s Parish, Chelsea, demolished in the 1970s.

Chelsea Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988  88-5i-42-positive_2400
Chelsea Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-42

Chelsea Square is a couple of hundred metres to the northwest of Dovehouse Green, though a little further to walk. It was developed as Trafalgar Square in 1810, five years after the battle, with houses around a garden designed to encourage wealthier people to move to Chelsea, then something of a slum. The area came to the Cadogan estate when the lease ran out in 1928 and they redeveloped the area replacing the existing houses from 1931 and building on around a quarter of the garden. New houses were according to the Victoria County History, “designed in early Georgian style by Darcy Braddell and Humphrey Deane, and built of pinkish stock brick, with bright red brick dressings and green-glazed tiles.” and “neo-Regency villas in white stucco… designed by Oliver Hill and built in 1930 and 1934.”

Chelsea Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988  88-5i-55-positive_2400
Chelsea Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-55

Presumably to avoid confusion with the rather better known Trafalgar Square in Westminster it was renamed Chelsea Square in 1938. Many other duplicated London street names were also replace at the time.

Church of Our Most Holy Redeemer and St Thomas More, Cheyne Row, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988  88-5i-61-positive_2400
Church of Our Most Holy Redeemer and St Thomas More, Cheyne Row, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-61

Designed by Edward Goodie, this Grade II listed Roman Catholic church opened in 1895. It gained the dedication to St Thomas More after he was made a saint in 1935. Damaged by bombing in 1940, it was repaired after the war. Much internal work was carried out in the 1970s.

The Studio,  Upper Cheyne Row, Lawrence St, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988  88-5i-62-positive_2400
The Studios, Upper Cheyne Row, Lawrence St, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-62

Upper Cheyne Row is sometimes referred to as Millionaires’ Row, though that would now apply to most London streets. One house here was recently on the market for £22m. The sign ‘The Studios’ on No 27 has now gone.

Chelsea Pottery, plaque, Lawrence St, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-63-positive_2400
Chelsea Pottery, plaque, Lawrence St, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-63

The LCC square blue plaque which can just be seen on 16 Lawrence St has the message ‘CHELSEA CHINA WAS MANUFACTURED IN A HOUSE AT THE NORTH END OF LAWRENCE STREET 1745-1784
TOBIAS SMOLLETT NOVELIST ALSO LIVE IN PART OF THE HOUSE 1750 TO 1762′. You can read more about Lawrence St from the article on ‘A London inheritance’ Lawrence Street And Chelsea China.


Click on any of the images above to go to a larger version in my album 1988 London Photos from where you can browse other images in the album.


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All photographs on this page are copyright © Peter Marshall. Contact me to buy prints or licence to reproduce.


30 Sept 2007 – Two Religious Events

Thursday, September 30th, 2021

Martydom of Ali

On Sunday 30th September 2007 I photographed two events in London connected with religion, the first Muslim and the second organised by Christian Aid.

Shia Muslims hold a large parade every year mourn the martydom of Ali, a cousin who grew up the the house of the prophet Muhammad and was one of the first to profess his belief when the prophet disclosed his divine revelation when Ali was around ten years old. Later he married Muhammad’s daughter Fatimah and was a great warrior and leader and one of the foremost Islamic scholars.

Ali was elected as the fourth Caliph at a time when civil wars were taking place between Muslims following the death of his predecessor, and he fought in a number of battles, eventually being assassinated in 661 CE by a member of a group who regarded him as a heretic while praying in the mosque at Kufa, now in Iraq. Many of the details of events around this time are disputed.

Ali is one of the central figures of Shia Islam and they regard him as having been the rightful successor to Muhammad while Sunni Muslims supported the father-in-law of Muhammad, Abu Bakr who became the first Caliph. The split led to various battles but only became a schism almost 20 years after Ali’s death, when Ali’s son Husayn and family were killed at the Battle of Karbala in 680 CE.

The ceremonies which involve a procession with an elaborate flower-decorated coffin, and tall banners about Ali, began at Marble Arch with a long period of mourning. There was much beating of breasts and then a procession moving very slowly down Park Lane with much continued mourning and beating of breasts. The men march in one group and then the women behind them, the two groups separated by the bier. Many of the men are stripped to the waist and their bodies become reddened by their powerful beating.

It’s an impressive event which I photographed on several occasions. The stewards at the event have sometimes told me “We do not photograph the ladies” but I’ve also had emails from some of the women thanking me for recording their participation in the ceremony.

Cut the Carbon

An event of a very different nature was taking place at St Mary’s Battersea, a church with fine views across the River Thames that Turner sat at window above the entrance to record – and a window inside remembers him, with another for William Blake, along with some splendid monuments, one with a relief illustrating Edward Wynter’s feats of crushing a tiger to death and overcoming 60 mounted moors.

I was there with others to photograph the arrival of Christian Aid’s ‘cut the carbon’ march, arriving in London at the end of a thousand mile journey from Bangor in Northern Ireland via Belfast, Edinburgh, Newcastle On Tyne, Leeds, Birmingham and Cardiff to London – including a detour to meet Prime Minister Gordon Brown at the Labour Party conference in Bournemouth. The following day they were going on to City Hall and then to finish at St Paul’s Cathedral.

This was a march 14 years ago with an international perspective on climate change, with walkers from Brazil, El Salvador, Kenya, India, Bangladesh, South Africa, Congo and elsewhere. When I photographed it the following day in front of Tower Bridge it was led by marchers from Brazil representing an organisation of landless farm workers – and I was very pleased a few months later to include picture of them in my show on environment protests as a part of Foto Arte 2007 in Brasilia.

More at:
Mourning the Martydom of Ali
Cut the Carbon march

and on October 1st 2007
Christian aid Cut the Carbon march – final mile


All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.


More Around the King’s Road 1988

Friday, September 3rd, 2021

London House, Fulham Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-45-positive_2400
London House, Fulham Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-45

My walk around the streets to the north of the King’s Road took me as far as the Fulham Road where I found London House at No 266 and joined to it a Servite Catholic Church. Our Lady of Dolours was started by two Servite priests, missionaries from Florence who arrived in London in 1864. Building the church here, designed by Joseph Hansom began in 1874 and it was opened the following year by Cardinal Manning. The church is Grade II listed. London House is currently being refurbished and extended, returning the exterior to something more similar to its Victorian original.

Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-44-positive_2400
Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-44

V K Patel is still listed as having a dental surgery on the King’s Road, and, allowing for the various London number changes has retained the same phone number, but is now in a very different building to this rather run-down looking and overgrown house, which I think has probably been demolished.

Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-42-positive_2400
Langton St,, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-42

Flavio looks like an Italian restaurant and although my contact sheet suggests it was on the King’s Road, was actually a few yards from it in Langton St. I think it is now an Irish restaurant with a different shopfront.

Kings Rd area, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-54-positive_2400
Kings Rd area, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-54

I’m unable to remember where I took these two decorative bowls on window ledges, but think it might have been on Lamont Road or one of the adjoining roads.

Kings Rd area, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-56-positive_2400
Hobury St, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-56

31 Gertrude St is on the corner with Hobury St and the door is actually in the latter street. It retains the simple elegance that attracted me to photograph it back in 1988. Poet and novelist George Meredith (1828-1909) has a blue plaque on the next house down Hobury St. It was his poem ‘The Lark Ascending’ that inspired the well-known composition by Ralph Vaughan Williams and elsewhere Meredith was the first to publish the word ‘tweets’ as a verb, though his twittering was avian.

Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-52-positive_2400
Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-52

Chamberlin, Powell & Bon designed 355 Kings R for Kensington and Chelsea council and this 15 storey 152 ft high tower was built in 1968-71. The council sold it off in the 1980s when the brickwork was begining to need repair and it was reclad and converted to private flats. At the right is an office of Roy Brooks, the estate agent who became a legend in the 1960s (he died in 1971) and made a fortune through his adverts in the Sunday Times and Observer desribed the houses he was selling in vivid terms as hardly fit for human habitation, exagerating any defects and making them up where none existed.

Lamont Road Passage, Park Walk, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988  88-5c-53-positive_2400
Lamont Road Passage, Park Walk, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-53

A handy passage for those living in Lamont Road to get to the shops in Park Walk and the King’s Road. The picture is of its corner with Park Walk and at left you can see Roy Brooks Estate Agents, a tree in the Milman’s Street Moravian Burial Ground and the house on the corner of Milmans St and the King’s Road. There is of course another tree in the shop window.

Clicking on any of the pictures will take you to a larger version in my album 1988 London Photos from where you can browse the other images in the album.


All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.


More from Brent 1988

Friday, June 11th, 2021

Church of God of Prophecy, High St, Harlesden, Brent, 1988 1988 88-3c-41-positive_2400
Church of God of Prophecy, High St, Harlesden, Brent, 1988 88-3c-41

One of our better selling ‘newpapers’ recently published yet another sensationalist feature about no-go areas in some of our cities, where white men fear to tread. Back in the 1980s it wasn’t Muslim fundamentalists that were alleged to make our sity streets unsafe, but largley Caribbean and African gangs that were supposed to be roaming the streets in certain areas of the city, and one of those that people used to warn me about was Harlesden. But as in other such areas, although I was walking the streets with aroun £10,000 pounds worth of photographic gear in a bag on my shoulder I met with no problems.

High St, Harlesden, Brent, 1988 88-3c-51-positive_2400
High St, Harlesden, Brent, 1988 88-3c-51

Partly of course I had little or no trouble becuase of the time of day I usually worked, seldom in the evenings whe there are more people who might be a threat on many streets. And if I saw people dealing in drugs or other illegal activities I might cross the steer. And I certianly avoided dark alleys. But I can’t recall any such things being necessary in Harlsden. Often people would ask me why I was taking pictures, and I’d make an effort both in general terms and about the specific scene. And while they might not have always appreciated what I was saying it did sometimes make them see the scene at least partly as I did – perhaps with the rather odd game of noughts and cosses iin the picture above.

The Creole Organisation, High St, Harlesden, Brent, 1988 88-3c-52-positive_2400
The Creole Organisation, High St, Harlesden, Brent, 1988 88-3c-52

I don’t know what The Creole Organisation at186 High St Harlesden did, but Harlesden was a leading centre of Creole Music back at this time, and the record label Creole Records used an identical logo on some releases of its ‘Harlesenden Sounds’. It was based at 91-93 High Street, Harlesden. More recently it has been a solicitor’s and estate agents, but I think it is now a private house.

Harlesden Tyres, High St, Harlesden, Brent, 1988 88-3c-53-positive_2400
Harlesden Tyres, High St, Harlesden, Brent, 1988 88-3c-53

Harlesden Tyres on the corner of Nightingale St and the High St caught my attention becuase of its signage, and in particular the two Michelin Men.

Tejal Motors, High St, Harlesden, Brent, 1988 88-3c-54-positive_2400
Tejal Motors, High St, Harlesden, Brent, 1988 88-3c-54

While across Nightingale Rd, Tejal motors had a good selection of arrows in three different styles an a long list of repairs it could do while you wait.

Marshall Bros, Kilburn Lane, West Kilburn, Westminster, 1988 88-3d-02-positive_2400
Marshall Bros, Kilburn Lane, West Kilburn, Westminster, 1988 88-3d-02

Given my name it would have been difficult to walk past Marbro House, home to Marshall Bros, Builders Merchants at 266a Kilburn Lane. It clearly appeared to have been built for some other purpose, and before becoming a Builder’s merchants was a Methodist Chapel. It has now lost these steps and doorway on Kilburn Lane and has been converted into flats with an entrance around the corner in Herries St. I think it is just across the border in the City of Westminster.


All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.


Hammersmith to Holland Park

Saturday, May 22nd, 2021

Brook Green, Hammersmith, Hammersmith & Fulham, 1988 88-1a-56-positive_2400
Brook Green, Hammersmith, Hammersmith & Fulham, 1988

Helpfully a street sign and a number inform me that this is 180 Shepherds Bush Rd, at the western edge of Brook Green. The road at one time used to wander around here but long ago traffic was routed straight through the grassy space, with both new and old road remaining as Shepherds Bush Road. There are no properties on the new section of the road, just a bus stop, traffic signs and traffic lights.

Without the information on the photo it would be hard to place this picture, as nothing visible remains of this part of the factory which housed Express Lifts and was I think part of the large Osram works which had began making carbon lamps here in 1881. It went on to produce many other types of lamps until around 1955, continuing only to produce argon and electronic valves until 1988 and was demolished the same year, with only its tower with the famous Osram Dome elsewhere on the site being saved, incorporated into the Tesco Superstore that took its place

Sinclair Rd, Hammersmith, Hammersmith & Fulham, 1988 88-1a-43-positive_2400
Sinclair Rd, Hammersmith, Hammersmith & Fulham, 1988

You can still find this pair of houses on Sinclair Rd, part of one of many conservation areas in Hammersmith & Fulham. There are a number of houses with impressive paired porches on the street, substantial four storey houses dating from around 1880. This pair is one of relatively few to have retained the stucco urns under the porticos, and this is a particularly impressive example with slender columns and capitals, but I think the real attraction for me was the incredibly morose bearded and moustached crowned head at the base of a finial.

Springvale Terrace, Hammersmith, Hammersmith & Fulham, 1988 88-1a-32-positive_2400
Springvale Terrace, Hammersmith, Hammersmith & Fulham, 1988

In the same conservation area as Sinclair Rd is a small section of very different housing. This small block which contained around 24 late Victorian terraced houses with a small Radiator Factory at its north end had been replaced by these modern buildings by 1988. The picture is taken from the road at the south side of this small estate.

St John the Baptist, Church, Holland Rd, Holland Park, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1a-26-positive_2400
St John the Baptist, Church, Holland Rd, Holland Park, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988

Crossing the railway at the bridge on Addison Gardens took me from Hammersmith & Fulham into the Holland Park area of Kensington & Chelsea and St John the Baptist Church in Holland Rd, a remarkably exuberant Grade I listed building by the distinguished Victorian church architect James Brook, “cathedral-like in scale and ambition, combining Brooks’s devotion to severe early Gothic models with a degree of material opulence not seen in his better-known East End churches”. Begun in 1872 it was completed in stages when the parish had the money and only finished after Brook’s death with finishing touches (perhaps unfortunate) by his successor John Standen Adkins in 1910.

The well-illustrated feature on the history of the church on the church web site states “St John’s is a distinguished and integrated time-capsule of the Anglo-Catholic movement. It is regularly in use for that traditional form of worship today.”

Holland Park Gardens Holland Park, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1a-15-positive_2400
15 Holland Park Gardens, Holland Park, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988

The London School of English is still in this imposing building in Holland Park Gardens. Perhaps surprising I avoided the wide sweep of steps leading up to its door, probably in order to emphasise the nest of balloons tied to its railings.

Addisland Court, Holland Villas Road, Holland Park, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1a-11
Addisland Court, Holland Villas Road, Holland Park, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1a-11

Addisland Court is a prestigious block of flats that screams 1930s Art Deco and its site design also very much reflects the golden age of motoring (when it was only for the rich.) A three bedroom flat here has an estimated value of around £2million. It was apparently used as a location in a couple of episodes of a TV series of Agatha Christie’s Poirot. It was built in 1936, designed by William Bryce Binnie whose other works include the East Stand at Arsenal’s old Highbury ground and who after distinguished war service had been assistant architect at the Imperial War Graves Commission for which he designed a number of memorials in France and Belgium.


All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.


More West End 1987

Tuesday, September 8th, 2020
Dover St, Mayfair, Westminster, 1987 87-5l-35-positive_2400

I can offer little explanation for this rather sad looking bust, odd cup and plates which my contact sheet says I photographed in Dover St. I think the odd cup in the foreground is actually an extremely naff clock, with the lower snake’s head pointing to the hour and the upper head to a disk showing minutes. In the unlikely event it was working I took this picture at around 11.58. What it lacks is a rod coming out of the top with an arm holding a small bird or fly whizzing around for the seconds.

I guess the guy in the background could be Titus or Vespasian; most of the other Emperors had fancier hair, at least in their busts. This one looks around life-size and could well be the sculptor’s grandfather but more likely a copy of an older figure. From the number of similar busts around I have a picture of circles of student sculptors around a bust in a gallery at perhaps the V&A, each chipping away at a block of marble as an exam piece. Whoever did this one would have deserved a decent grade.

Berkeley St, Mayfair, Westminster, 1987 87-5l-56-positive_2400

More sculptures with two young stone ladies pretending to hold up a porch in Berkeley St. It looks a rather boring job. But although both seem to be scratching their heads they don’t appear to be putting a great deal of effort into it.

Ukrainian RC Cathedral, Duke St, Mayfair, Westminster, 1987 87-5m-24-positive_2400

Whenever I see this building it amazes me that this gaudy and extravagant edifice was built as a Congregational Church, the King’s Weighouse Church, built in 1889-91 to the designs of Alfred Waterhouse, better known for his Natural History Museum in South Kensington. Congregationalists are Puritans, tracing their heritage back to the Brownists and the London Underground Church of the 1560s. Rejecting the ecclesiastical trappings at the centre of the Anglican Church – cathedrals, bishops, vestments, formal liturgies, priests, the sign of the cross and more – they espoused a simple austere faith based on the priesthood of all believers.

Of course over the years there was some back-tracking. But most Congregational church buildings remained suitable austere, often with at least a hint of the Classical – and some did it very finely but without great ornament. Sadly their practices deteriorated to the extent of allowing church choirs, though these consisted of adult members who considered they could sing, and organs. But as someone raised in the tradition (though no longer involved) I still fine the ornate nature of this building surprising.

Perhaps it was becuase the King’s Weighouse came from an older – and Royal tradition, tracing its ancestry back to Queen Matilda’s ‘Free Chapel’ at the Tower of London, founded by her in 1148 and not subject to the rule of any bishop. When the 1662 Act of Uniformity made the Book of Common Prayer and other aspects of Anglican practice compulsory almost the entire congregation left and shortly after began to worship as an independent congregation in an ancient building on Cornhill where foreign goods coming into London were weighed – the King’s Weigh House. They kept the name when they built their own chapel where Monument station now is, and later in other buildings, bringing it to Mayfair where they combined with a congregation already on this site and then built a new church.

Perhaps it was the influence of this building which in the 1920s led the church, then led by Rev Dr W. E. Orchard to moving towards Rome and developing what became known as ‘Free Catholicism’. The church never really recovered from wartime requisition and bomb damage and closed in the 1950s. Since June 1968  it has been the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral of he Holy Family of Exile, which seems a far more suitable use for the building. You can read more about it on the Cathedral web site, from which much of the above comes.

Air St, Piccadilly, Westminster, 1987 87-5m-33-positive_2400

In Air Street we could almost be inside a cathedral. The rebuilding of the area around Piccadilly Circus was a subject of various proposals, plans and debates from around 1886 until 1928 which you can read in some detail in British History Online and possibly make more of than me. It involved many of the UK’s leading architects of the era, including Richard Norman Shaw and Sir Reginald Blomfield. I think that this section was built to Blomfield’s designs in 1923-8, but by that point in the text my eyes were fully glazed.

Regent St, Westminster, 1987 87-5m-34-positive_2400

In Regent St I was faced with the problem of photographing something which I find rather bland and boring – like most of the more monumental architecture of that period.

I found another curve to go with the two of the street, but I think it is no longer there – and many other details of the shops etc have changed. Bus Stop C is still there, but no longer served by Routemasters.

Christ Church, Cosway St, Marylebone, Westminster, 1987 87-5m-36-positive_2400

Christ Church in Cosway street, Marylebone was no longer a church when I took this picture having been made redundant in 1978 and converted into offices. This Grade II* church was built in 1824-5 by Thomas Hardwick and his son Philip Hardwick, one of the more interesting of the many cut-price Commissioner’s Churches built from 1820-1850 to cope with the rapid expansion of the urban population.

Despite the appearance it is a largely brick building with stone dressing. It was altered in 1887 by Sir A W Blomfield but I think this did not affect the portico or tower, a rather unusual construction, “3-stage tower with square Ionic peristyle with cylindrical core rising into octagonal cupola with volutes.”

More on page 4 of my album 1987 London Photos.


All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.


Iona – the Abbey

Friday, August 14th, 2020

Every time I peel an onion, something I do several times most weeks, it reminds me of our stay at Iona. As paying guests of the Iona Community at the Abbey we took our part in the daily chores which kept the place running, and each morning after breakfast I went with the other ‘Otters’ – the work group to which I had been assigned to the kitchen to prepare vegetables. My part in this job seemed always to be one of two or three of us peeling onions – and you need a lot of onions to cook vegetarian meals for around 50 or 60 people.

There are a lot of dodges that people advise to avoid tears when peeling onions, and I think I tried them all. They may help if you are only peeling one or two, but none help if you have a mountain of them to get through. You cry, and crying only makes it worse. Still, I think I preferred it to cleaning the lavatories and washrooms that my partner was assigned to.

The Abbey is essentially a twentieth-century reconstruction carried out by teams of volunteers from the Iona Community after the site with its ruins was gifted to the Church of Scotland by the 8th Duke of Argyll in 1899, with more modern living accommodation built alongside it in a matching external style.

The Duke is still present – in marble, lying beside his wife.

As well as the abbey, alongside it is a small church, the oldest building on Iona (c 1150) with an ancient graveyard where 48 Kings of Scotland were buried. They were joined more recently by Labour leader John Smith; a boulder marks his grave with the message “An Honest Man’s The Noblest Work of God”.

There are ruins of another chapel in the grounds, as well as those of a former Bishop’s House, and splendid views across the sound to Mull, enough to drag me out of bed for a short walk before breakfast (and onions.) And of course there were a number of short religious services, optional but an important part of the experience, though with too much unaccompanied singing for my taste.

More pictures in and around the Abbey from our visit 12 years ago on My London Diary.



Brixton Feb 1987

Monday, August 3rd, 2020
Celestial Church of Christ, Coldharbour Lane, Loughborough Junction, Lambeth, 1987 87-2p-11-positive_2400
Celestial Church of Christ, Coldharbour Lane, Brixton, Lambeth, 1987

Friends and others I showed pictures to at the time or talked about my work with often expressed surprise at some of the areas of London I went to when taking photographs. They saw places like Brixton as crime-ridden and dangerous and wondered that I felt safe, particularly as I was walking around the streets carrying a bag with expensive equipment worth thousands of pounds on my shoulder.

Beds, Coldharbour Lane, Loughborough Junction, Lambeth, 1987 87-2p-23-positive_2400
Beds, Coldharbour Lane, Loughborough Junction, Brixton, Lambeth, 1987

I did think a little about it myself and even once attended a training session – the only man in a group of women – about keeping safe on city streets. But the only times I ever really felt threatened were not in the kind of areas that some reacted with horror to, but in lonelier parts of the plusher suburbs.

Furniture, Coldharbour Lane, Loughborough Junction, Lambeth, 1987 87-2p-25-positive_2400
Furniture, Coldharbour Lane, Loughborough Junction, Brixton Lambeth, 1987

I felt more at home in the many working-class areas of London than in the West End or City, and certainly dressed in a way that fitted in more there. I tried hard to be aware of my surroundings and not to behave in ways that drew attention to myself. And I think I was reasonably street-wise, keeping calm and confident, looking as if I knew what I was doing and where I was going and being aware of others. There were a few times when I decided against going down a particular street or alley, or crossed the street to avoid possible trouble. Because I needed the light I always worked during the day time, when all areas are safer.

White goods, Coldharbour Lane, Loughborough Junction, Lambeth, 1987 87-2p-36-positive_2400
White goods, Coldharbour Lane, Loughborough Junction, Brixton, Lambeth, 1987

Of course taking photographs does make you stand out, but mostly people just ignored me. A few would stop and talk, and I tried to explain why I was taking a picture, though I think they mostly thought I was mad but harmless. Some people thought I must be from the council – or the newspapers, and occasionally people – particularly children – would insist I took there picture. Of course I did.

Flats, Coldharbour Lane, Brixton, Lambeth, 1987 87-2p-41-positive_2400
Flats, Coldharbour Lane, Brixton, Lambeth, 1987
Burroughs, Coldharbour Lane, Brixton, Lambeth, 1987 87-2p-64-positive_2400
Burroughs, Coldharbour Lane, Brixton, Lambeth, 1987

‘Burroughs’ closed as an Eel and Pie shop in the 1990s, but remains as a restaurant. Its shop-front had been replaced by something flat and bland but was recreated a few years ago, and it now serves Japanese soul food rather than cockney.

There are a few more pictures from this area in February 1987 in the album 1987 London Photos.