BLUEPRINT OF BLOCKS OF FLATS WEST END LANE HAMPSTEAD FROM 1935
On offer today we have several blueprints, dating from 1935 and by the renowned architects Marshall & Tweedy. All except one are monochrome with a sole colour piece. All measure approximately 77 x 56cm and are in good cosmetic condition.
And now, a little bit about the Lane, current and past: -
Winding its way down from the traffic-choked Finchley Road, passing the junction with Abbey Road (the one immortalised on The Beatles’ album cover) to Kilburn High Road is West End Lane whichis one of the area’s oldest thoroughfares. Until the mid-nineteenth century it was lined with hedgerows and passed through the village of West End, now West Hampstead. These days, owing to the proliferation of restaurants, cafés, shops and housing, not to mention bikes, buses and cars, it’s difficult to imagine the scene 150 or so years ago when the lane was so serene that this was where Queen Victoria chose to take her country strolls and I'll bet she WAS amused!.
Post World War II, the majority of the Victorian houses along West End Lane and surrounding streets were converted into cheap bedsits and flats, the low rents attracting artists and musicians. But even before that the area had been associated with creative types: Walter Sickert lived on Broadhurst Gardens; Joseph Randall-Tussaud (grandson of the famous Madame and a chief modeller at the waxworks) lived on Iverson Road and TS Eliot stayed for a short period during 1915-6 in Compayne Gardens.
Today, the northern half of West End Lane is dominated by eateries. There are a few chains – Nando’s, Pizza Express and Gourmet Burger Kitchen, plus the famous coffee shops from Starbucks and Costa , however, chic independent bistro cafes now steal the show. At weekends, the Wet Fish Café (a former fishmongers at No 242), Walnut (No 280), La Brocca (No 273) and J’s (No 218) all buzz with capricious chatter from well heeled twenty - to seventy locals enjoying breakfast, brunch, a long lunch or dinner. Chance lucky and look carefully and you may even see Ed Miliband in one of them eating a bacon sandwich, If you do, be sure to say hello and ask him what hapened to Labour's £30k tombstone from the General Election campaign.
A visitor in days gone by would more likely have seen endless laundrettes rather than the current crop of independently run shops that reflect the current bo-ho village vibe of the area. Choose from West End Books (independant bookseller at No 277), Alexis Bakery (No 272) opposite the listed 1901 fire station, the Cycle Surgery (No 275) and Flowerstalk florist (No 230) or try North-West Deli (No 333) and That Organic Place (No 35 Mill Lane) a filled niche for whom local foodies are grateful as now they do not have to trek to Waitrose in Finchley Road to buy organic sourdough, marinated olives and other essentials. Although this isn’t a party area but new nightspot Ooolaalaa (No 291-293) has joined the well-established Gallery bar-restaurant on Broadhurst Gardens (No 190).
Marshall was a Newcastle architect who moved to London in 1899 and formed a partnership with Tweedy, who was in charge of the Newcastle office.
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