Posts Tagged ‘Kensington & Chelsea’

Catalonia & Levitation

Thursday, October 21st, 2021

I began work on Saturday October 21st 2017 with a large group of Catalans at Piccadilly Circus, demanding immediate release of the political prisoners Jordi Cuixart and Jordi Sanchez, and end to the repression and the start of dialogue to accept the electoral mandate of the Catalan Referendum.

After several speeches they set of to march to Trafalgar Square for photographs and then on to Downing St where they called on the UK Government to condemn the violence towards civilians during the referendum vote in Catalonia and to support a democratic solution.

In June 2021 the nine separatist leaders who had been jailed for sedition in 2017 were released, and talks finally restarted in September, with the Catalan government demanding an amnesty for the many pro-independence politicians still facing legal action over their part in the 2017 independence referendum and for the Spanish government to acknowledge their right to hold a referendum on self-determination, both demands still resisted by the government.

March in Solidarity with Catalonia


I left the Catalans at Parliament Square, where it wasn’t clear if their protest was ended but I was on my way to meet Class War’s Levitation Brigade of Ian Bone and shaman Jimmy Kunt (aka Adam Clifford) who were celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Yippee levitation of the Pentagon during anti-Vietnam War protests with a similar action at Kensington Town Hall.

Standing on the steps of the entrance to the town hall of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, the council responsible for the disastrous fire at Grenfell Tower, Adam called out the demons of councillors including Nicholas Paget-Brown, Rock Feilding-Mellen & Elizabeth Campbell and attempted to levitate the town hall to a height of over 70 metres. “Out, demons, out! Out, demons, out!

A security officer told them that they couldn’t do that here, but they told her it wasn’t possible to stop a levitation or exorcism and the ceremony went ahead.

Afterwards Ian Bone repeated a well-known quote from 1967 “You mean you didn’t see it, man?”

Class War levitate Kensington Town Hall

Flushed with success the Levitation Brigade decided to cross Kensington High St and repeat the exorcism and levitation at the offices of the Daily Mail, standing on the pavement outside between the offices and a highly polished Rolls-Royce.

Security staff there reacted angrily to Class War calling out the demon of Paul Dacre and their attempt to raise the building by over 70 metres, perhaps fearing it might damage the Rolls-Royce parked outside, but the levitation ceremony went ahead despite considerable interference.

Class War levitate the Daily Mail

Security here reacted rather more aggresively, coming to push the crew away and telling me I could not take photographs. I was standing on the pavement and told them I had every legal right to photograph whatever I chose, but had to move back rahter smartly to avoid getting fingerprints on my lens.

Class War of course found the over-reaction by the Daily Mail extremely amusing and continued to bait the security for some minutes after the levitation before leaving as you can see on My London Diary.

Class War levitate the Daily Mail
Class War levitate Kensington Town Hall


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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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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.


Glebe Place and Carlyle Square 1988

Saturday, October 2nd, 2021

Glebe Place, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-52-positive_2400
Glebe Place, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-52

Glebe Place on the southern side of the King’s Road is a curious street with two right-angle bends and includes a series of artists studios, some grander than others, and its residents over the years have included a huge list of artists and writers – Wikipedia lists around 30 – as well as Paul Robeson, Shirley Williams and Constant Lambert.

I don’t remember outside which house I found this rather fierce sculpture which I think is no longer present.

Glebe Place, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-51-positive_2400
Glebe Place, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-51

25 and 25a Glebe Place. The heraldic lions have since left and the roof has been replaced. No 25 was the home of artist George Washington Lambert (1873-1930) who was born in Russia, educated in Somerset and emigrated with his mother and sisters to Australia in 1887. There he began exhibiting paintings and working as a cartoonist and illustrator. In the 1900s he spent a year in Paris, then moved to London; in the First World War he was an official Australian war artist, and he returned to Australia in 1921. His second son, Constant Lambert (1905-51), a notable British composer, was born in London in 1905 and also lived here; he was the Founder Music Director of the Royal Ballet.

Carlyle Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-34-positive_2400
Carlyle Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-34

The houses at left of the picture are the pair at the north end of the east side, No 27 and 28 and to the right of them are the doors of No 25 and 24 on the north side.

Carlyle Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-35-positive_2400
Carlyle Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-35

This rather agonised looking sculpture on the balcony was at No 28 but is no longer present.

Carlyle Square was laid out by the Cadogan Estate in the 1830s after Lord Cadogan bought the land on the north side of King’s Road in 1835, quickly clearing it of the existing small houses and cottages and laying out Oakley Square around an ornamental garden. But development of the square was slow. As originally set out, there were entrances for vehicles from both the east and west sides to King’s Road; more recently an area of garden separates the square from King’s Road, allowing only pedestrian entrance, with vehicle entrance being only from Old Church St.

Development began with short terraces of 3 houses on both the east and west sides next to King’s Rd, all now Grade II listed. They were followed in 1855 by a couple of semi-detached villas on the west side and around 1860 the north side of the square was largely completed with some varied houses. The remaining gaps – including most of its east side – were completed not long after, mainly with large identical semi-detached houses with a few feet gap between them.

Among notable residents over the years were Osbert and Sacheverell Sitwell, William Walton, Sybil Thorndike, Edna O’Brien and David Frost (who held an annual summer party for some years in the garden.) No 21 was built for the Duke of Portland around 1860, and a later Duke of Portland who was Chair of the Joint Intelligence Committee during WW2 was still in residence.

Carlyle Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-22-positive_2400
Carlyle Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-22

Bushes carefully trimmed in pots under the windows of No 22.

Carlyle Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-24-positive_2400
Carlyle Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-24

This rather splendid tree is I think a fig tree and is still present – along with the pots at No 22 on the south-facing north of the square.

Carlyle Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-5i-33-positive_2400
Carlyle Square, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988

No 37-40 have walls and gate posts like this, and this is the entrance of 38. Most of the rest of the houses on the east and west side have plain iron railings.


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.


Camera Place and the Grosvenor Canal 1988

Saturday, September 4th, 2021

Camera Place, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-64-positive_2400
Camera Place, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-64

Having found there was a street in Chelsea named Camera Place I had to photograph it. It’s a short street and my picture shows around half of it, looking roughly west towards Limerston St. Chelsea used to have a Camera Square, Camera Street and Little Camera Street which have since disappeared, but as they were built in the 1820s they almost certainly have little to do with photography. By 1918 Camera Square had become something of a slum and the area was demolished, rebuilt as Chelsea Park Gardens with up-market housing in suburban garden village fashion, though retaining a rigidly square layout without the typical sinously curving streets.

The view in Camera Place has changed little; some new railings and the small tree is now rather large.

Elm Park Mansions, Park Walk, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-62-positive_2400
Elm Park Mansions, Park Walk, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-62

Elm Park Mansions has five large blocks around a courtyard, with one of the blocks (flats 25-54) occuping half the length of the north side of Camera Place, behind and to my right as I took the previous picture. The mansions with 189 mostly one and two bedroom flats were built by the Metropolitan Industrial Dwellings Company on land leased to them by Major Sloane Stanley in 1900. The Freehold for the property was taken over by the leaseholders in 1986 and since then the state of the properties has been improved. Two bed flats have sold in recent years for around £800,000.

Elm Park Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-15-positive_2400
Elm Park Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-15

Elm Park Road dates from 1875 when Chelsea Park House was demolished and the houses, many designed by George Godwin, were built between then and 1882. The central house in this picture, at 76 Elm Park Road for built for Paul Naftel, (1817-91) a Guernsey born watercolour painter and his wife and family who came to London in 1870. He moved here in around 1884 and the adjoining houses were also homes to landscape artists. Naftel later moved out to Strawberry Hill, Twickenham where he died.

Grosvenor Canal, Grosvenor Rd, Pimlico, Westminster, 1988 88-5e-12-positive_2400
Grosvenor Canal, Grosvenor Rd, Pimlico, Westminster, 1988 88-5e-12

The Grosvenor Canal was began by the Chelsea Waterworks Company who had leased the land from Sir Richard Grosvenor in 1722, and enlarged a creek there to supply drinking water and also to create a tide mill used to pump the water. When their lease expired in 1823, the then Earl of Grosvenor decide to put in a lock and turn the creek into a canal, extending it to a basin where Victoria Station now stands, around half a mile from the Thames. It opened in 1824 carrying coal, wood and stone into the centre of a rapidly growing area of London.

Grosvenor Canal, Grosvenor Rd, Pimlico, Westminster, 1988 88-5e-13-positive_2400
Grosvenor Canal, Grosvenor Rd, Pimlico, Westminster, 1988 88-5e-14

Victoria Station was built over the canal basin, and more of the canal closed in 1899 for a station extension. Westminster City Council bought what was left of it in 1905, then filled in more of it in 1927 for the Ebury Bridge estate.

Grosvenor Canal, Grosvenor Rd, Pimlico, Westminster, 1988 88-5e-14-positive_2400
Grosvenor Canal, Grosvenor Rd, Pimlico, Westminster, 1988 88-5e-14

The canal continued in use by the council taking refuse in barges from Westminster and other local authorities downriver to be dumped until 1995, making this vestigial canal the last in London in commercial use. In 2000 it began to be developed as an expensive waterside development, with the lock being retained but a boom across the entrance from the Thames prevents access for boats despite mooring pontoons inside the development.

Western Pumping Station, Bazalgette, Thames Water, Grosvenor Rd, Pimlico, Westminster, 198888-5e-15-positive_2400
Western Pumping Station, Grosvenor Rd, Pimlico, Westminster, 1988 88-5e-15

The Chelsea Water Works continued to extract water from the Grosvenor Canal until an Act of Parliament prevented extraction of water from the Thames in London in 1852 and they moved up-river to Surbiton. Sewage was increasingly becoming a problem as London grew and the ‘Great Stink’ of 1858 prompted Parliament into action, passing a bill in 18 days to construct a new sewerage system for London.

The solution by Joseph William Bazalgette was a system of sewers that delivered the sewage around 8 miles downriver to Beckton on the north bank and Crossness on the south, through main high level middle and low level sewers through North London and main and high level sewers in South London. The plans included stone embankments beside the river – the Victoria, Chelsea and Albert embankments which he designed.

Lamp post, Western Pumping Station, Thames Water, Grosvenor Rd, Pimlico, Westminster, 1988 88-5e-16-positive_2400
Lamp post, Western Pumping Station, Thames Water, Grosvenor Rd, Pimlico, Westminster, 1988 88-5e-16

Bazalgette didn’t do everything himself, but he kept a very close eye on every aspect of his great project, and some of the specifications he laid down – such as the use of Portland Cement – have kept the system running despite increasing demands since it was completed in 1875. Now it is being augmented by the new ‘Super Sewer’ running underneath the river, the Thames Tideway.

As well as engineering considerations, Bazalgette was also a stickler for the aesthetics and there are some fine examples of Victorian design in his works. The Pumping Station which housed the powerful steam engines needed to send the sewage on its way, as well as its chimney (in a picture above) and the Superintendents House here are all Grade II listed.


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.


Around the King’s Road 1988

Thursday, September 2nd, 2021

I took a stroll along the King’s Road, looking at some of the shop windows, then explored some of the streets to the north.

Shop window, Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-52-positive_2400
Shop window, Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-52

There was something very strange about this view, and looking at when I made a print made me think that somehow it had turned into a negative. The contrast between the two mannequins, one white and one black had attracted me and I think the lighting and my treatment almost makes the right hand figure dissolve.

Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988  88-5b-64-positive_2400
Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-64

Light fittings for sale in a shop window give some interesting shapes.

Chelsea Town Hall, Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988  88-5b-65-positive_2400
Boy, Kings Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-65

Stephane Raynor opened BOY on the King’s Road in 1976, and it became “the epicentre of a new dawn in both fashion and music, defining the spirit of punk and birthing the New Romantic scene that appeared in its wake.”

Elm Park Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-01-positive_2400
Elm Park Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-01

72 Elm Park Road is one of a row of individually designed late Victorian houses that make this an interesting street. Since I took this picture it has been extended with an extra storey at both top and bottom, but still looks much the same from the street. The house is now valued at around £12m and was named in 2015 as the address of one of the many people exposed in the The Panama Papers exposure of the rogue offshore finance industry

The Vale, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-03-positive_2400
The Vale, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-03

I’m unsure why this property at 26 The Vale required such an elaborate security camera, something rather unusual back in 1988. I’m sure my framing, although I was mainly interested in the doorway was deliberately to include this. The building is a part of a corner site including joined properties in Elm Park Road, and plans were made in 2012 which would have involved the removal of this doorway. It was still there in 2020.

Fernshaw Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 198888-5c-34-positive_2400
Fernshaw Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-34

Taken from the corner of Edith Terrace and looking north up Fernshaw Rd (late Maude Grove). The taller block on the right in the distance is Fernshaw Mansions. an Edwardian block in this largely late Victorian street. The houses and garden walls are generally in rather better decorative state now than in 1988.

Gunter Grove, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-46-positive_2400
Fernshaw Rd, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5c-46

This unmodernised freehold house in Fernshaw Road was for sale in 1988 and if I had been able to afford it I should have bought it. It’s one of a terrace from 1-11 and would probably now sell for around £4m. I suspect the price in 1988 was around a hundreth of that.

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


Old Church St, Chelsea, 1988

Monday, August 23rd, 2021

Old Church St, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-21-positive_2400
Old Church St, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-21

Old Church St is, as its name suggests a rather old street in Chelsea, running north from Chelsea Old Church by the river up to the Fulham Road. It is thought to be the oldest street in Chelsea but it contains two of Chelsea’s most significant modern buildings. No 66 at the left was designed in 1935–1936 by Walter Gropius and Maxwell Fry for the scriptwriter Benn Levy and his actress wife Constance Cummings. They had bought a large site – perviously the garden of a large house – here together with publisher Denis Cohen, and shared it to build a house each, with a communal garden.

Gropius, the founder of the Bauhaus, came to England in 1934 and was fortunate to get a flat in the Isokon building in Lawn Road, Belsize Park, where he met many leading left-wing intellectuals of the age including modernist architects, among them the designer of the flats, Jack Pritchard. Pritchard and Gropius worked on several projects together, few of which were ever built.

Gropius also worked with Maxwell Fry, and this house they designed together was his most significant domestic work during the 3 years before he left to take up a professorship in the USA. My photograph doesn’t show it well, as it was built to face the private garden to which I did not have access, but for those interested there are plenty of pictures on-line. It was offered for sale in 2013 for £45 million, but I couldn’t afford it. Surprisingly the house is only Grade II listed.

Old Church St, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-34-positive_2400
Old Church St, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-34

Cohen House on the other half of the site, also completed in 1936 was designed by Erich Mendelsohn and Serge Chermayeff for the publisher Denis Cohen and is more visible from the road. Like Gropius, Mendelsohn was also fleeing from Nazi Germany and went on the the USA; Chermayeff, born to a Jewish family in Russia had come here as a young boy, was educated here and became a British citizen in 1928 and emigrated to the USA in 1940 . This building is Grade II* listed. The partnership between Mendelsohn and Chermayeff only lasted a few years but produced some of the country’s outstanding modernist buildings.

Old Church St, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-24-positive_2400
Old Church St, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-24

153 Old Church St. The gate at right I think leads to 153a. THe house at the right which you cannot see much of has a blue plaque for John Francis Sartorius (fl. 1775-1831), an English painter of horses, horse-racing and hunting scenes. Accord to Mark Keble in Chelsea The Resident, 153 Old Church Street was built between 1956-57 on the former site of the studio of the renowned Welsh portrait painter Augustus John (1878-1961).

Old Church St, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-32-positive_2400
Old Church St, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-32

This house is on the corner of Carlyle Square and Old Church St and the gatepost gives its address as 26 Carlyle Square. The land here which contained a number of buildings was sold to Lord Cadogan in 1835, who quickly had the existing houses and cottages cleared and building of a new square, Oakley Square, began in 1836-7. But progress was slow and there were only a few houses completed by 1851. The square was renamed Carlyle Square in honour of the historian and writer Thomas Carlyle in 1872.

Old Church St, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-33-positive_2400
Old Church St, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-33

This house is on the corner of Old Church St and Elm Park Rd at 125-127. The plaque records the fact that William De Morgan Ceramic Artist And Novelist (1839-1917) And His Wife Evelyn De Morgan Artist (1855-1919) Lived & Died Here. The house was specially adapted for their work – and you can just see the bottom of a large studio window in this picture.

Queen's Elm Square, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-26-positive_2400
Queen’s Elm Square, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-26

Queen’s Elm Square is on the west side of Old Church St close to the Fulham Rd. It was built in 1904-6 for the Sloane Stanley Estate, just behind the Queen’s Elm pub on the corner of Fulham Rd and Old Church St. This famous pub closed in the 1990s and the ground floor is now shops. The site was earlier a field known as the Queen’s Elm Field and began to be developed – including an earlier pub – in 1792.

The Vale, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-42-positive_2400
The Vale, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5b-42

The Vale is a short street running parallel to Old Church St north from the King’s Rd about 200 yards to its west. The unusual Russian House, at 27 The Vale, was built in 1914 just before the start of the First World War by architect F.E. Williams and incorporates at in the frontage of the substantial property a Russian Dacha that had formed a part of an exhibition at the Crystal Palace in the 1890s. The house was occupied by the British Red Cross during the war and later became the home of members of the Sainsbury family. It was then converted into flats, but in the 1990s converted back into a single house. It sold in 2018 for 12.75m

Click on any of the above images to see a larger version in my album 1988 London Photos and to browse other pictures 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.


Chelsea – Social Cleansing

Sunday, August 22nd, 2021

The Gateways, Sprimont Place, College Place,  Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-43-positive_2400
The Gateways, Sprimont Place, College Place, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-43

The Gateways is a block of houses with a difference and though it may look ancient, was built in 1934 in a Tudor Revival style to designs by Herbert Winkler Wills (1864-1937) and William Kaula. Certainly unusual but not greatly to my liking the whole block was Grade II listed in 1993, some under the address Whitehead’s Grove.

Chelsea Green, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-45-positive_2400
Chelsea Green, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-45

All that remains of the old Chelsea Common is a small triangle at this road junction with two small fenced plots of grass, each with a small tree, separated by a footpath through its centre, room on both sides for a couple of park benches and a rubbish bin or two.

Chelsea Green, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-46-positive_2400
Chelsea Green, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-46

Stepping a few feet gave a clearer view of the pub, still now open but called The Wild Tavern, and the buildings down Elystan Place which are a part of The Gateways, with some good brickwork.

Bray Place, Draycott Ave, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-51-positive_2400
Bray Place, Draycott Ave, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988

The ornate ironwork around and in the door of 5 Bray Place finds an echo in the window opposite. This doorway has now been converted into a rather plain window and there are other changes to the exterior of the building. It remains a restaurant but with a different name under different management.

Blacklands Terrace, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-52-positive_2400
Blacklands Terrace, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-52

This building is on Blacklands Terrace, but confusingly has the address 18 Culford Gardens, which it and the building to its right stand on the corner of. I don’t know when it was built – or perhaps when this frontage was added, but it was very different from the properties around. The ground floor has since been altered and is now less starkly geometrical.

Avenue Court, Draycott Avenue, Knightsbridge, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-61-positive_2400
Avenue Court, Draycott Avenue, Knightsbridge, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-61

Draycott Avenue is lined with large and rather boring appartment blocks, mainly in red brick, which are slightly enlivened by some impressive doorways – and I think this is the most impressive. Most of these large blocks of flats were built in the 1930s, replacing streets of smaller houses. In Pevsner’s The Buildings of England London NW it describes them as “enormous and forbidding blocks of flats, either cautiously Art Deco or approximately neoGeorgian in style.”

Avenue Court, Draycott Avenue, Knightsbridge, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-01-positive_2400
Avenue Court, Draycott Avenue, Knightsbridge, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-01
Sloane Avenue Mansions, Sloane Avenue, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-62-positive_2400
Sloane Avenue Mansions, Sloane Avenue, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-62

Sloane Avenue Mansions also dates from the 1930s, redeveloping an area of smaller houses but was designed by G. Kay Green in a more modern style with touches of Art Deco. Built in 1931-3, it towers 11 stories above the street, though appears slightly less massive as the top two are set back slightly. Around 20,000 working class people had lived in homes around here that were cleared after the company decided to redevelop the area in 1908, though much of the area remained empty or full of part-demolished slums until the 1930s. The large blocks of flats were usually provided with underground garages for the wealthy flat-dweller.

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


Around Chelsea

Wednesday, August 18th, 2021
Michelin Building,  Fulham Rd, Brompton, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4r-46-positive_2400
Michelin Building, Lucan Place, Fulham Rd, Brompton, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4r-46

It was too hard to resist the Michelin Building any time I walked past, though I felt it had already been photographed to death – and most of my pictures were in colour, including closer views of its decorative panels.

Opened in 1911 as the first UK headquarters and tyre depot for the Michelin Tyre Company Ltd, and designed by Michelin employee and engineer François Espinasse it was more an architectural advertising hoarding featuring the Michelin Man ‘Bibendum’, his name derived from “Nunc Est Bibendum“, “Now is the time to drink”. A precursor of art-deco, it is grade II listed. It was also a fairly early use of ferro-concrete, using the Hennebique system, which gave its interior wide spaces for a tyre bay and made it relatively fire-proof. This picture was made three years after Michelin moved out, when the building was redeveloped by publisher Paul Hamlyn and restaurateur/retailer Sir Terence Conran as offices, shop and restaurant. (mainly from Wikipedia.)

Fulham Road, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4r-54-positive_2400
Trees, Fulham Road, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4r-54

This house is on the west corner of Pelham Crescent, and the three trees that attracted my attention are still there, remarkably little changed 33 years later, though of course each spring they get covered with leaves.

Selwood Terrace, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4r-61-positive_2400
Selwood Terrace, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4r-61

The east side of this street is Neville Terrace and the west side is Selwood Terrace. This front garden with a wall covered with ivy is close to the Fulham Road and I think both wall and ivy have disappeared, possibly as a part of a basement extension to the property.

South Parade, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4r-62-positive_2400
South Parade, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4r-62

I think this tall building probably dates from around 1892 and is part of long terrace including a former fire station with that date on the north side of Chelsea Square. It was the Nurses Home for the Royal Brompton Hospital and is still a part of the hospital. Chelsea square was named Trafalgar Square when it was laid out in 1810 but that was later used for a rather larger square in Westminster. The square later became a tennis club before much of the area was rebuilt in neo-Georgian style in the 1930s.

The Crown, pub, Dovehouse St, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4r-63-positive_2400
The Crown, Dovehouse St, Chelsea, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4r-63

The Crown pub is on the corner of Dovehouse St and Dudmaston Mews, just a few yards south of the Fulham Rd and more or less surrounded by hospitals. No longer a Whitbread pub it has lost the crown sign, replaced by a dreary sign with a neon crown, and other largely flowery embellishments have ruined the simplicity of the frontage. The Princess Of Wales at the left of the row of buildings closed as a pub around 2000 and is now a French restaurant, with considerably more expensive food than The Crown.

Kings Road, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-11-positive_2400
Kings Road, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-11

I took fewer pictures of the Kings Road than I should have done. This shop window display seemed more erotic than most.

Kings Road, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-16-positive_2400
Kings Road, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-16

These rather disparate buildings are still there on the Kings Road, on the south side just east of Radnor Walk, though now occupied by different shops and rather less trendy.

Jubilee Place, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-15-positive_2400
Jubilee Place, Chelsea, Kensington and Chelsea, 1988 88-5a-15

And immediately opposite the previous picture is Jubilee place, leading north with this house and wrought ironwork at No 9 over double gates leading down to a basement garage.

Click on any of the images to go to larger versions in my album 1988 London Photos were you can browse through these and other pictures.


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.