Hammersmith Area Guide
What’s it all about:
At the restless heart of Hammersmith where you’re surrounded by busy shopping centres, transport hubs and office developments, it’s surprising to remember that within a few minutes’ stroll you’ll find attractive riverside walks, tranquil parks and village like enclaves to explore. And for many, the appeal of the area lies in this heady contrast of the convenient and the cultivated. Unsurprisingly, this contrast has lured residents from all walks of life. Whether you’re a family looking for a period property within walking distance of some of the Capital’s most popular schools, or a young professional couple trying to get their foot on the West London property market, Hammersmith is sure to satisfy even the most niche request. Hammersmith has a multicultural population, partly owing to the French School at Brook Green. This has lent the area a buzzing cosmopolitan vibe, but it’s comforting to know that it’s easy to escape if the bustle gets too much, with the nearby A4 and excellent transport connections to Heathrow.
Culture & Development:
Eating and drinking: The Grove is an award-winning gastropub. Among a scattering of riverside watering holes, The Dove is the most atmospheric with a history going back to the 17th century. Low beamed and with reputedly the tiniest bar in Britain, it is a popular spot from which to view the annual Boat Race as it heads towards Mortlake. Also, by the Thames is the world class River Cafe, which launched the career of Jamie Oliver. Nearby Brackenbury Village has a thriving social scene and lots of lovely places to eat and drink.
Culture: The Riverside Studios is an arts centre with cinema, theatre and gallery. Currently undergoing a three-year redevelopment, the studios began life as a Victorian factory. As well as an imaginative programme of performance, the Lyric Theatre has a roof garden where you can enjoy a sandwich and a contemplative moment high above the bustle of King Street below. For live entertainment from international stars, you can’t beat the Hammersmith Apollo.
With its central location, playing fields and picturesque lake, Ravenscourt Park provides a tranquil oasis amidst the activity of busy Hammersmith. Just a short walk from the station, it’s a popular spot for an after school walk or weekend picnic. Just across the river in Barnes, the London Wetland Centre is home to several important species of wildlife and is beloved by West London locals.
Head down to the river at The Mall, a waterside stretch featuring grand old merchants’ homes, including Kelmscott House, which was once the home of 19th century designer and artist William Morris. It’s a very fetching spot for a waterside wander, with views across to Barnes. Hammersmith’s riverside location allows locals to enjoy beautiful views as they stroll along the Thames, and there are several popular parks that stretch along the riverbank, including Furnival Gardens and the acres of Bishop’s Park.