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Notting Hill

Notting Hill

Overview
Notting Hill is an area in London
London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

, England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

, close to the north-western corner of Kensington Gardens
Kensington Gardens
Kensington Gardens, once the private gardens of Kensington Palace, is one of the Royal Parks of London, lying immediately to the west of Hyde Park. It is shared between the City of Westminster and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. The park covers an area of 111 hectares .The open spaces...

, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea is a central London borough of Royal borough status. After the City of Westminster, it is the wealthiest borough in England....

. It is a cosmopolitan
Multiculturalism
Multiculturalism is the appreciation, acceptance or promotion of multiple cultures, applied to the demographic make-up of a specific place, usually at the organizational level, e.g...

 district known as the location for the annual Notting Hill Carnival
Notting Hill Carnival
The Notting Hill Carnival is an annual event which since 1964 has taken place on the streets of Notting Hill, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea , London, UK each August, over two days...

, and for being home to the Portobello Road Market.

Notting Hill has a contemporary reputation as an affluent and fashionable area; known for attractive terrace
Terraced house
In architecture and city planning, a terrace house, terrace, row house, linked house or townhouse is a style of medium-density housing that originated in Great Britain in the late 17th century, where a row of identical or mirror-image houses share side walls...

s of large Victorian
Victorian architecture
The term Victorian architecture refers collectively to several architectural styles employed predominantly during the middle and late 19th century. The period that it indicates may slightly overlap the actual reign, 20 June 1837 – 22 January 1901, of Queen Victoria. This represents the British and...

 townhouses, and high-end shopping and restaurants (particularly around Westbourne Grove
Westbourne Grove
Westbourne Grove is a retail road running across Notting Hill, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, a section of west London, England. It runs from Kensington Park Road in the west to Queensway in the east, crossing over Portobello Road...

 and Clarendon Cross).
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Quotations

Would you like something to eat? Something to nibble on? Apricots, soaked in honey? Quite why, no one knows, because it stops them tasting like apricots and makes them taste like honey... and if you wanted honey, you could just... buy honey. Instead of apricots. But nevertheless they're yours if you want them.

[to Martin] If I were to employ a wet rag would I have to pay it as much as I pay you?

Actually, apart from the American, I've loved only two girls. The first one left me faster than you can say Indiana Jones, and the second one, who seriously ought to have known better, casually marries my best friend.

It's as if I've taken love heroin, and now I can't ever have it again.

[after hitting his shin on a fence while climbing over it] Now what in the world in this garden could make that ordeal worthwhile? [Anna kisses him] Nice garden.

[about Anna's new film project] Any horses in that one? Or hounds for that matter; our readers are equally intrigued by both species.

"I am just a girl standing in front of a boy, asking him to love her."

"For June who loved this garden from Joseph who always sat beside her." Some people do spend their whole lives together.

Hi. I'd just like to apologize for my friend, he's really sensitive. Don't worry about it! I'm sure it was harmless. I'm sure it just friendly banter. I'm sure you guys have dicks the size of peanuts! Enjoy your dinner, the tuna's really good.

Why does a man take it for granted that a girl who flirts with him wants him to kiss her - when, nine times out of ten, she only wants him to want to kiss her?

Encyclopedia
Notting Hill is an area in London
London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

, England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

, close to the north-western corner of Kensington Gardens
Kensington Gardens
Kensington Gardens, once the private gardens of Kensington Palace, is one of the Royal Parks of London, lying immediately to the west of Hyde Park. It is shared between the City of Westminster and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. The park covers an area of 111 hectares .The open spaces...

, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea is a central London borough of Royal borough status. After the City of Westminster, it is the wealthiest borough in England....

. It is a cosmopolitan
Multiculturalism
Multiculturalism is the appreciation, acceptance or promotion of multiple cultures, applied to the demographic make-up of a specific place, usually at the organizational level, e.g...

 district known as the location for the annual Notting Hill Carnival
Notting Hill Carnival
The Notting Hill Carnival is an annual event which since 1964 has taken place on the streets of Notting Hill, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea , London, UK each August, over two days...

, and for being home to the Portobello Road Market.

Notting Hill has a contemporary reputation as an affluent and fashionable area; known for attractive terrace
Terraced house
In architecture and city planning, a terrace house, terrace, row house, linked house or townhouse is a style of medium-density housing that originated in Great Britain in the late 17th century, where a row of identical or mirror-image houses share side walls...

s of large Victorian
Victorian architecture
The term Victorian architecture refers collectively to several architectural styles employed predominantly during the middle and late 19th century. The period that it indicates may slightly overlap the actual reign, 20 June 1837 – 22 January 1901, of Queen Victoria. This represents the British and...

 townhouses, and high-end shopping and restaurants (particularly around Westbourne Grove
Westbourne Grove
Westbourne Grove is a retail road running across Notting Hill, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, a section of west London, England. It runs from Kensington Park Road in the west to Queensway in the east, crossing over Portobello Road...

 and Clarendon Cross). A Daily Telegraph article in 2004 used the phrase the 'Notting Hill Set
Notting Hill Set
The Notting Hill Set is an informal group of young figures in prominent leadership positions in the Conservative Party, or close advisory positions around the current party leader and Prime Minister, David Cameron....

' to refer to a group of emerging Conservative
Conservative Party (UK)
The Conservative Party, formally the Conservative and Unionist Party, is a centre-right political party in the United Kingdom that adheres to the philosophies of conservatism and British unionism. It is the largest political party in the UK, and is currently the largest single party in the House...

 politicians, such as David Cameron
David Cameron
David William Donald Cameron is the current Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service and Leader of the Conservative Party. Cameron represents Witney as its Member of Parliament ....

 and George Osborne
George Osborne
George Gideon Oliver Osborne, MP is a British Conservative politician. He is the Chancellor of the Exchequer of the United Kingdom, a role to which he was appointed in May 2010, and has been the Member of Parliament for Tatton since 2001.Osborne is part of the old Anglo-Irish aristocracy, known in...

, now respectively Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer
Chancellor of the Exchequer
The Chancellor of the Exchequer is the title held by the British Cabinet minister who is responsible for all economic and financial matters. Often simply called the Chancellor, the office-holder controls HM Treasury and plays a role akin to the posts of Minister of Finance or Secretary of the...

. However, the large houses have also provided multi-occupancy rentals for much of the 20th century. Caribbean immigrants were drawn to the area in the 1950s, partly because of the dubious practices followed by the landlord Peter Rachman
Peter Rachman
Peter Rachman was a London landlord in the Notting Hill area in the 1950s and 1960s. He became so notorious for his exploitation of tenants that the word "Rachmanism" entered the OED as a synonym for any greedy, unscrupulous landlord.-Career:Rachman was born Perec Rachman in Lvov, Poland in 1919,...

, and became the target of white Teddy Boy
Teddy Boy
The British Teddy Boy subculture is typified by young men wearing clothes that were partly inspired by the styles worn by dandies in the Edwardian period, styles which Savile Row tailors had attempted to re-introduce in Britain after World War II...

s in the 1958 Notting Hill race riots.

Notting Hill has had an association with artists and "alternative" culture since its development in the 1820s. There are also areas of deprivation to the north, sometimes referred to as North Kensington
North Kensington
North Kensington is an area of west London lying north of Notting Hill Gate and south of Harrow Road.North Kensington is the key neighbourhood of Notting Hill...

, or Ladbroke Grove
Ladbroke Grove
Ladbroke Grove is a road in west London, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. It is also sometimes the name given informally to the immediate area surrounding the road. Running from Notting Hill in the south to Kensal Green in the north, it is located in North Kensington and straddles...

, from the name of the street.

Origin of the Notting Hill name


The origin of the name "Notting Hill" is uncertain though an early version appears in the Patent Rolls
Patent Rolls
The Patent Rolls are primary sources for English history, a record of the King of England's correspondence, starting in 1202....

 of 1356 as Knottynghull, while an 1878 text, Old and New London, reports that the name derives from a manor in Kensington called "Knotting-Bernes,", "Knutting-Barnes," or "Nutting-barns", and goes on to quote from a court record during Henry VIII
Henry VIII of England
Henry VIII was King of England from 21 April 1509 until his death. He was Lord, and later King, of Ireland, as well as continuing the nominal claim by the English monarchs to the Kingdom of France...

's reign that "the manor called Notingbarons, alias Kensington, in the parish of Paddington, was held of the Abbot of Westminster." For years, it was thought to be a link with Canute, but it is now thought likely that the "Nott" section of the name is derived from the Saxon
Old English language
Old English or Anglo-Saxon is an early form of the English language that was spoken and written by the Anglo-Saxons and their descendants in parts of what are now England and southeastern Scotland between at least the mid-5th century and the mid-12th century...

 personal name Cnotta, with the "ing" part generally accepted as coming from the Saxon for a group or settlement of people.

Potteries and Piggeries


The area in the west around Pottery Lane was used in the early nineteenth century for making bricks and tiles out of the heavy clay dug in the area. The clay was shaped and fired in a series of brick and tile kilns. The only remaining nineteenth-century tile kiln in London is on Walmer Road.
In the same area, pig farmers moved in after being forced out of the Marble Arch
Marble Arch
Marble Arch is a white Carrara marble monument that now stands on a large traffic island at the junction of Oxford Street, Park Lane, and Edgware Road, almost directly opposite Speakers' Corner in Hyde Park in London, England...

 area. Avondale Park was created in 1892 out of a former area of pig slurry
Slurry
A slurry is, in general, a thick suspension of solids in a liquid.-Examples of slurries:Examples of slurries include:* Lahars* A mixture of water and cement to form concrete* A mixture of water, gelling agent, and oxidizers used as an explosive...

 called 'the Ocean'. This was part of a general clean-up of the area which had become known as the Potteries and Piggeries.

19th century development



The area remained rural until the westward expansion of London reached Bayswater
Bayswater
Bayswater is an area of west London in the City of Westminster and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea to the west . It is a built-up district located 3 miles west-north-west of Charing Cross, bordering the north of Hyde Park over Kensington Gardens and having a population density of...

 in the early 19th century. The main landowner in Notting Hill was the Ladbroke family, and from the 1820s James Weller Ladbroke
James Weller Ladbroke
James Weller Ladbroke was a Nineteenth century landowner and the principal developer of the Ladbroke Estate, a substantial parcel of land in Notting Hill, London, England.Many streets in Notting Hill still bear the Ladbroke name today, including Ladbroke Grove and Ladbroke Square, and the former...

 began to undertake the development of the Ladbroke Estate. Working with the architect and surveyor Thomas Allason
Thomas Allason
Thomas Allason was an English architect, surveyor and landscaper, noted in particular for his work at Connaught Square and the Ladbroke Estate in Kensington.-Early life:...

, Ladbroke began to lay out streets and houses, with a view to turning the area into a fashionable suburb of the capital (although the development did not get seriously under way until the 1840s). Many of these streets bear the Ladbroke name, including Ladbroke Grove
Ladbroke Grove
Ladbroke Grove is a road in west London, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. It is also sometimes the name given informally to the immediate area surrounding the road. Running from Notting Hill in the south to Kensal Green in the north, it is located in North Kensington and straddles...

, the main north-south axis of the area, and Ladbroke Square
Ladbroke Square
Ladbroke Square is a garden square in Notting Hill, west London, England.- Location :Ladbroke Square and its gardens lie north of Holland Park Avenue and Notting Hill Gate...

, the largest private garden square
Garden square
A garden square is an open space with buildings surrounding a garden, often located in fashionable urban areas. There are many garden squares in London, England, for example. The large estates in London, e.g., the Bedford Estate in Bloomsbury, included garden squares in their development....

 in London.

The original idea was to call the district Kensington Park, and other roads (notably Kensington Park Road and Kensington Park Gardens) are reminders of this. The local telephone prefix
Telephone numbering plan
A telephone numbering plan is a type of numbering scheme used in telecommunications to allocate telephone numbers to subscribers and to route telephone calls in a telephone network. A closed numbering plan, such as found in North America, imposes a fixed total length to numbers...

 7727 (originally 727) is based on the old
Director telephone system
The Director System was a system which made it possible to call subscribers at other telephone exchanges without operator intervention in large multi-exchange cities, and to have a mixture of automatic and manual exchanges within these cities...

 telephone exchange
Telephone exchange
In the field of telecommunications, a telephone exchange or telephone switch is a system of electronic components that connects telephone calls...

 name of PARk.
Ladbroke left the actual business of developing his land to the firm of City
City of London
The City of London is a small area within Greater London, England. It is the historic core of London around which the modern conurbation grew and has held city status since time immemorial. The City’s boundaries have remained almost unchanged since the Middle Ages, and it is now only a tiny part of...

 solicitors, Smith, Bayley (known as Bayley and Janson after 1836), who worked with Allason to develop the property. In 1823 Allason completed a plan for the layout of the main portion of the estate. This marks the genesis of his most enduring idea – the creation of large private communal gardens, originally known as "pleasure grounds", or "paddocks", enclosed by terraces and/or crescents of houses.

Instead of houses being set around a garden square, separated from it by a road, Allason's houses would have direct access to a secluded communal garden in the rear, to which people on the street did not have access and generally could not see. To this day these communal garden
Communal garden
A communal garden is a normally formal garden for shared use by a number of local residents, typically in an urban setting. The term is especially used in the United Kingdom...

 squares continue to provide the area with much of its attraction for the wealthiest householders.
In 1837 the Hippodrome
Kensington Hippodrome
The Kensington Hippodrome was a racecourse built in Notting Hill, London, in 1837, by entrepreneur John Whyte. Whyte leased of land from James Weller Ladbroke, owner of the Ladbroke Estate, and proceeded to enclose "the slopes of Notting Hill and the meadows west of Westbourne Grove" with a high...

 racecourse was laid out. The racecourse ran around the hill, and bystanders were expected to watch from the summit of the hill. However, the venture was not a success, in part due to a public right of way which traversed the course, and in part due to the heavy clay of the neighbourhood which caused it to become waterlogged. The Hippodrome closed in 1841, after which development resumed and houses were built on the site. The crescent-shaped roads that circumvent the hill, such as Blenheim Crescent, Elgin Crescent, Stanley Crescent, Cornwall Crescent, and Landsdowne Crescent, were built over the circular racecourse tracks. At the summit of hill stands the elegant St John's church
St John's Notting Hill
St John's Notting Hill is a Victorian Anglican church built in 1845 in Lansdowne Crescent, Notting Hill, London,designed by the architects John Hargrave Stevens and George Alexander , and built in the Victorian Gothic style...

, built in 1845 in the early English style, and which formed the centrepiece of the Ladbroke Estate development.

The Notting Hill houses were large, but they did not immediately succeed in enticing the very richest Londoners, who tended to live closer to the centre of London in Mayfair
Mayfair
Mayfair is an area of central London, within the City of Westminster.-History:Mayfair is named after the annual fortnight-long May Fair that took place on the site that is Shepherd Market today...

 or Belgravia
Belgravia
Belgravia is a district of central London in the City of Westminster and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. Noted for its immensely expensive residential properties, it is one of the wealthiest districts in the world...

. The houses appealed to the upper middle class, who could live there in Belgravia style at lower prices. In the opening chapter of John Galsworthy
John Galsworthy
John Galsworthy OM was an English novelist and playwright. Notable works include The Forsyte Saga and its sequels, A Modern Comedy and End of the Chapter...

's Forsyte Saga novels, he housed the Nicholas Forsytes "in Ladbroke Grove, a spacious abode and a great bargain".
In 1862 Thomas Hardy left Dorchester for London to work with architect Arthur Blomfield. During this period he lived in Westbourne Park Villas. He immersed himself in the city's literary and cultural life, studying art, visiting the National Gallery
National gallery
The National Gallery is an art gallery on Trafalgar Square, London, United Kingdom.National Gallery may also refer to:*Armenia: National Gallery of Armenia, Yerevan*Australia:**National Gallery of Australia, Canberra...

, attending the theatre, and writing prose and poetry. His first published story "How I Built Myself A House" appeared in Chamber's Journal in 1865. Here he wrote his first―but never published―novel The Poor Man and the Lady in 1867, and the poem "A Young Man's Exhortation," from which Graham Greene took an epigraph for his own novel, The Comedians
The Comedians (novel)
The Comedians is a novel by Graham Greene, first published in 1966. Set in Haiti under the rule of François "Papa Doc" Duvalier and his secret police, the Tontons Macoute, The Comedians tells the story of a tired hotel owner, Brown, and his increasing fatalism as he watches Haiti descend into...

. Arthur Machen
Arthur Machen
Arthur Machen was a Welsh author and mystic of the 1890s and early 20th century. He is best known for his influential supernatural, fantasy, and horror fiction. His novella The Great God Pan has garnered a reputation as a classic of horror...

 (1863–1947), the author of many supernatural and fantastic fictions, lived at 23 Clarendon Road, Notting Hill Gate, in the 1880s. He writes of his life here in his memoirs, Far Off Things (1922) and Things Near and Far (1923). His mystical work The Hill of Dreams
The Hill of Dreams
-Plot summary:The novel recounts the life of a young man, Lucian Taylor, focusing on his dreamy childhood in rural Wales, in a town based on Caerleon. The Hill of Dreams of the title is an old Roman fort where Lucian has strange sensual visions, including ones of the town in the time of Roman Britain...

(1907; though written ten years earlier) has scenes set in Notting Hill. It is here that the protagonist Lucian Taylor encounters the beautiful bronze-haired prostitute who will later connive at his death.

Early to mid-20th century



The reputation of the district altered over the course of the 20th century. As middle class households ceased to employ servants, the large Notting Hill houses lost their market and were increasingly split into multiple occupation. During the Blitz
The Blitz
The Blitz was the sustained strategic bombing of Britain by Nazi Germany between 7 September 1940 and 10 May 1941, during the Second World War. The city of London was bombed by the Luftwaffe for 76 consecutive nights and many towns and cities across the country followed...

 a number of buildings were damaged or destroyed by the Luftwaffe
Luftwaffe
Luftwaffe is a generic German term for an air force. It is also the official name for two of the four historic German air forces, the Wehrmacht air arm founded in 1935 and disbanded in 1946; and the current Bundeswehr air arm founded in 1956....

, including All Saints' church
All Saints Notting Hill
All Saints Notting Hill is a Victorian Anglican church in Talbot Road, Notting Hill, London. It is a Grade II* listed building, built of stone with polychrome decoration in the Victorian gothic style. The west tower has five stages with the stump of a spire, and the sanctuary features paintings by...

, which was hit in 1940 and again in 1944. In the postwar period the name Notting Hill evoked a down-at-heel area of cheap lodgings, epitomised by the racketeering landlord Peter Rachman
Peter Rachman
Peter Rachman was a London landlord in the Notting Hill area in the 1950s and 1960s. He became so notorious for his exploitation of tenants that the word "Rachmanism" entered the OED as a synonym for any greedy, unscrupulous landlord.-Career:Rachman was born Perec Rachman in Lvov, Poland in 1919,...

 and the murders committed by John Christie
John Christie (murderer)
John Reginald Halliday Christie , born in Halifax, West Yorkshire, was a notorious English serial killer active in the 1940s and '50s. He murdered at least eight females – including his wife Ethel – by strangling them in his flat at 10 Rillington Place, Notting Hill, London...

 in 10 Rillington Place, since demolished. The area to the north east, Golborne, was particularly known for being, in the words of Charles Booth
Charles Booth (philanthropist)
Charles Booth was an English philanthropist and social researcher. He is most famed for his innovative work on documenting working class life in London at the end of the 19th century, work that along with that of Benjamin Seebohm Rowntree influenced government intervention against poverty in the...

, "one of the worst areas in London". Southam Street had 2,400 people living in 140 nine-roomed houses in 1923, and the slum children from this street were documented in the 1950s photographs of Roger Mayne
Roger Mayne
Roger Mayne is an English photographer, most famous for his documentation of the children of Southam Street, London.-Life and work:...

.

In late August and early September 1958, the Notting Hill race riots occurred. The series of disturbances are thought to have started on 20 August when a gang of white youths attacked a Swedish woman, Majbritt Morrison, who was married to a West Indian man. Later that night a mob of 300 to 400 white people, including many "Teddy Boy
Teddy Boy
The British Teddy Boy subculture is typified by young men wearing clothes that were partly inspired by the styles worn by dandies in the Edwardian period, styles which Savile Row tailors had attempted to re-introduce in Britain after World War II...

s", were seen on Bramley Road attacking the houses of West Indian residents. The disturbances, racially-motivated rioting
Race riot
A race riot or racial riot is an outbreak of violent civil disorder in which race is a key factor. A phenomenon frequently confused with the concept of 'race riot' is sectarian violence, which involves public mass violence or conflict over non-racial factors.-United States:The term had entered the...

 and attacks continued every night until they petered out by 5 September.

The dire housing conditions in Notting Hill led Bruce Kenrick
Bruce Kenrick
Rev Bruce Kenrick was a social activist and Minister in the United Reformed Church and the Church of Scotland...

 to found the Notting Hill Housing Trust
Notting Hill Housing Trust
Notting Hill Housing Trust is a charity registered in England which aims to deliver urban regeneration and new developments. Originally launched in 1963 in Notting Hill, they now have 25,000 homes across London and the South East and are a member of the G15 group of London housing associations...

 in 1963, helping to drive through new housing legislation in the 1960s and found the national housing organisation Shelter
Shelter (charity)
Shelter is a registered charity in England and Scotland that campaigns to end homelessness and bad housing. It gives advice, information and advocacy to people in need, and tackles the root causes of bad housing by lobbying government and local authorities for new laws and policies to improve the...

 in 1966. Nos 1-9 Colville Gardens, now known as Pinehurst Court
Pinehurst Court
Pinehurst Court is a portered Victorian mansion block at 1-9 Colville Gardens, just off Colville Terrace and near the Portobello Market in Notting Hill, London, England.-History:...

, had become so run down by 1969 that its owner, Robert Gubay of Cledro Developments, described conditions in the buildings as "truly terrible".

The slums were cleared during redevelopment in the 1960s and 1970s when the Westway Flyover
Westway (London)
The Westway is a long elevated dual carriageway section of the A40 route in west London running from Paddington to North Kensington. The road was constructed between 1964 and 1970 to relieve congestion at Shepherd's Bush caused by traffic from Western Avenue struggling to enter central London on...

 and Trellick Tower
Trellick Tower
Trellick Tower is a 31-storey block of flats in North Kensington, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, London, England. It was designed in the Brutalist style by architect Ernő Goldfinger, after a commission from the Greater London Council in 1966, and completed in 1972...

 were built. It is now home to a vibrant Mediterranean community, mainly Portuguese, Spanish and Moroccan.

Late 20th century gentrification


By the 1980s, single-occupation houses began to return to favour with families who could afford to occupy them, and parts of Notting Hill are today among London's most desirable areas. The parts of Notting Hill near Holland Park
Holland Park
Holland Park is a district and a public park in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, in west central London, England.Holland Park has a reputation as an affluent and fashionable area, known for attractive large Victorian townhouses, and high-class shopping and restaurants...

 are characterised by well-maintained stucco-fronted pillar-porched houses, private gardens, communal gardens, access to the public parks at Holland Park and Kensington Gardens, and smart shops.

Geography


The hill from which Notting Hill takes its name is still clearly visible, with its summit in the middle of Ladbroke Grove
Ladbroke Grove
Ladbroke Grove is a road in west London, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. It is also sometimes the name given informally to the immediate area surrounding the road. Running from Notting Hill in the south to Kensal Green in the north, it is located in North Kensington and straddles...

, at the junction with Kensington Park Gardens.

Notting Hill has no official boundaries, so definitions of which areas fall under Notting Hill vary. The postcode "W11", centred on the Post Office in Westbourne Grove
Westbourne Grove
Westbourne Grove is a retail road running across Notting Hill, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, a section of west London, England. It runs from Kensington Park Road in the west to Queensway in the east, crossing over Portobello Road...

, near the junction with Denbigh Road, is the one most closely associated with Notting Hill, although the postcode immediately to the north, "W10", covers that part of North Kensington which would fall within a broader definition. The local historian Florence Gladstone, in her much reprinted work "Notting Hill in Bygone Days" defines Notting Hill as the whole of that part of Kensington which is north of the road known as Notting Hill Gate.

Notting Hill therefore forms the major part of North Kensington
North Kensington
North Kensington is an area of west London lying north of Notting Hill Gate and south of Harrow Road.North Kensington is the key neighbourhood of Notting Hill...

, and is considered an alternative name; though estate agents differentiate North Kensington
North Kensington
North Kensington is an area of west London lying north of Notting Hill Gate and south of Harrow Road.North Kensington is the key neighbourhood of Notting Hill...

 as a distinct area including Notting Dale and the area east of Ladbroke Grove leading up to Harrow Road
Harrow Road
The Harrow Road is an ancient route in Greater London which runs from Paddington in a northwesterly direction to Harrow. With minor deviations in the 19th and 20th centuries, the route remains otherwise unaltered...

. That part of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea is a central London borough of Royal borough status. After the City of Westminster, it is the wealthiest borough in England....

 roughly encompassed by the electoral wards of Saint Charles, Golborne, Notting Barns, Colville, Norland, and Pembridge, which is bounded on the north by Harrow Road and on the south by Notting Hill Gate
Notting Hill Gate
Notting Hill Gate is one of the main thoroughfares of Notting Hill, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. Historically the street was a location for toll gates, from which it derives its modern name.- Location :...

 and Holland Park Avenue
Holland Park Avenue
Holland Park Avenue is a street located in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, in west central London in England. The street runs from Notting Hill Gate in the east to the Holland Park Roundabout in the west, and forms a part of the old west road connecting London with Oxford and the west...

, includes all areas known as Notting Hill, including Notting Barns, the centre of the Notting Hill race riot. David Cameron
David Cameron
David William Donald Cameron is the current Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service and Leader of the Conservative Party. Cameron represents Witney as its Member of Parliament ....

, leader of the Conservative Party
Conservative Party (UK)
The Conservative Party, formally the Conservative and Unionist Party, is a centre-right political party in the United Kingdom that adheres to the philosophies of conservatism and British unionism. It is the largest political party in the UK, and is currently the largest single party in the House...

, is known as part of the "Notting Hill Set", though he states he lives in North Kensington.

There are four tube stations in the area: Westbourne Park
Westbourne Park tube station
Westbourne Park is a London Underground station on the Circle and Hammersmith and City lines, between Ladbroke Grove and Royal Oak stations, and in Travelcard Zone 2 in The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea . Although the Metropolitan Railway had been extended to Notting Hill and Hammersmith...

, Ladbroke Grove
Ladbroke Grove tube station
Ladbroke Grove is a London Underground station on the Circle and Hammersmith & City lines, between Latimer Road and Westbourne Park stations, and in Travelcard Zone 2 set in The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea ....

, Latimer Road
Latimer Road tube station
Latimer Road Station is a London Underground station in North Kensington on the Circle and Hammersmith & City lines between Wood Lane and Ladbroke Grove stations...

 and Notting Hill Gate
Notting Hill Gate tube station
Notting Hill Gate tube station is a London Underground station in the street known as Notting Hill Gate. On the Central Line, it is between Holland Park to the west and Queensway to the east. On the District Line and Circle Line it is between High Street Kensington and Bayswater stations...

. Ladbroke Grove tube station was called Notting Hill when it opened in 1864. The name was changed in 1919 to avoid confusion with the new Notting Hill Gate station.

Notting Hill is part of the parliamentary constituency of Kensington
Kensington (UK Parliament constituency)
Kensington is a parliamentary constituency in the Parliament of the United Kingdom in west London, comprising the northern and central parts of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, around Kensington...

, represented by Conservative Sir Malcolm Rifkind
Malcolm Rifkind
Sir Malcolm Leslie Rifkind KCMG QC MP is a British Conservative Party politician and Member of Parliament for Kensington. He served in various roles as a cabinet minister under Prime Ministers Margaret Thatcher and John Major, including Secretary of State for Scotland , Defence Secretary and...

.

Ladbroke Grove


Ladbroke Grove is a road in the northern part of Notting Hill, stretching up to Kensal Green
Kensal Green
Kensal Green, also referred to as Kensal Rise is an area of London, England. It is located on the southern edge of the London Borough of Brent and borders the City of Westminster to the East and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea to the South....

, straddling the W10 and W11 postal district
London postal district
The London postal district is the area in England, currently of , to which mail addressed to the LONDON post town is delivered. The area was initially devised in 1856 and throughout its history has been subject to periodic reorganisation, contraction and division into increasingly smaller postal...

s, and also the name of the immediate area surrounding the road. Ladbroke Grove tube station
Ladbroke Grove tube station
Ladbroke Grove is a London Underground station on the Circle and Hammersmith & City lines, between Latimer Road and Westbourne Park stations, and in Travelcard Zone 2 set in The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea ....

 is on the road where it is crossed by Westway
Westway (London)
The Westway is a long elevated dual carriageway section of the A40 route in west London running from Paddington to North Kensington. The road was constructed between 1964 and 1970 to relieve congestion at Shepherd's Bush caused by traffic from Western Avenue struggling to enter central London on...

.

Notting Hill Gate



A turnpike
Turnpike trust
Turnpike trusts in the United Kingdom were bodies set up by individual Acts of Parliament, with powers to collect road tolls for maintaining the principal highways in Britain from the 17th but especially during the 18th and 19th centuries...

 gate was constructed at the foot of the hill on the main road from London to Uxbridge, now Oxford Street
Oxford Street
Oxford Street is a major thoroughfare in the City of Westminster in the West End of London, United Kingdom. It is Europe's busiest shopping street, as well as its most dense, and currently has approximately 300 shops. The street was formerly part of the London-Oxford road which began at Newgate,...

, Bayswater Road and Holland Park Avenue along this part of its route. The point at which the turnpike gate stood was known as Notting Hill Gate. The gate was there to stop people passing along the road without paying. The proceeds were applied towards the maintenance of this important road. The gate was removed in the 19th century.

Portobello Road




Portobello Road runs almost the entire length of Notting Hill from north to south. It runs parallel to Ladbroke Grove. It contains Portobello Road Market, one of London's best known markets, containing an antique
Antiques
An antique is an old collectible item. It is collected or desirable because of its age , beauty, rarity, condition, utility, personal emotional connection, and/or other unique features...

 section and second-hand, fruit and veg and clothing stalls. The road was originally a lane leading to Portobello Farm in the north of Notting Hill.

Westbourne Grove


Westbourne Grove is a retail road running across Notting Hill from Kensington Park Road in the west to Queensway in the east, crossing over Portobello Road. It contains a mixture of independent and chain retailers, and has been termed both "fashionable" and "up-and-coming".

The Notting Hill Carnival
Notting Hill Carnival
The Notting Hill Carnival is an annual event which since 1964 has taken place on the streets of Notting Hill, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea , London, UK each August, over two days...

 passes along the central part of Westbourne Grove.

North Kensington



North Kensington is the key neighbourhood of Notting Hill. It is where most of the violence of the race riots
Notting Hill race riots
The Notting Hill race riots were a series of racially-motivated riots that took place in London, England over several nights in late August and early September 1958.-Context:The end of World War II had seen a marked increase in Caribbean migrants to Britain...

 occurred, where the Notting Hill Carnival
Notting Hill Carnival
The Notting Hill Carnival is an annual event which since 1964 has taken place on the streets of Notting Hill, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea , London, UK each August, over two days...

 started and where most of the scenes in the film, Notting Hill were shot.

The area's main transport hub, Ladbroke Grove tube station
Ladbroke Grove tube station
Ladbroke Grove is a London Underground station on the Circle and Hammersmith & City lines, between Latimer Road and Westbourne Park stations, and in Travelcard Zone 2 set in The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea ....

, was called Notting Hill from its opening in 1864 until 1919. The name was changed then to avoid confusion with the new Notting Hill Gate station. Ladbroke Grove is the area's main thoroughfare.

Estate agents now call the super-rich area to the south Notting Hill when referring to Notting Hill Gate and Holland Park
Holland Park
Holland Park is a district and a public park in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, in west central London, England.Holland Park has a reputation as an affluent and fashionable area, known for attractive large Victorian townhouses, and high-class shopping and restaurants...

.

North Kensington was once well-known for its slum housing, as documented in the photographs of Roger Maine. Property prices have now risen dramatically as hordes of international investment bankers buy up the stuccoed Victorian houses. However, North Kensington retains high levels of poverty and unemployment and a high-proportion of social housing for rent.

Waves of immigrantion to the area has occurred for at least a century, including, but certainly not limited to, people of Irish, Jewish, Caribbean, Spanish, and Moroccan extraction. This constant renewal of the population makes the area one of the most cosmopolitan in the world.

Residents from Notting Barns, one of the neighbourhoods in North Kensington, have set up their own community website, www.nottingbarnslive.com

Carnival




Notting Hill Carnival
Carnival
Carnaval is a festive season which occurs immediately before Lent; the main events are usually during February. Carnaval typically involves a public celebration or parade combining some elements of a circus, mask and public street party...

is an annual event in August, over two days (Sunday and the following bank holiday
Bank Holiday
A bank holiday is a public holiday in the United Kingdom or a colloquialism for public holiday in Ireland. There is no automatic right to time off on these days, although the majority of the population is granted time off work or extra pay for working on these days, depending on their contract...

). It has continuously taken place since 1965. It is led by members of the Caribbean population, many of whom have lived in the area since the 1950s. The carnival has attracted up to 1.5 million people in the past, putting it among the largest street festivals in Europe.

It attracted press attention in 1976 for clashes with the police, which occurred in 1976 at the conclusion of the Notting Hill Carnival after police arrested a pickpocket and a group of black youths came to his defence. The disturbance escalated and over 100 police officers were injured. Two notable participants in this riot were Joe Strummer
Joe Strummer
John Graham Mellor , best remembered by his stage name Joe Strummer, was the co-founder, lyricist, rhythm guitarist and lead vocalist of the British punk rock band The Clash. His musical experience included his membership in The 101ers, Latino Rockabilly War, The Mescaleros and The Pogues, in...

 and Paul Simonon
Paul Simonon
Paul Gustave Simonon is an English musician and artist best known as the bass guitarist for punk rock band The Clash. Recent work includes his involvement in the album The Good, the Bad & the Queen with Damon Albarn, Simon Tong and Tony Allen, released in January 2007...

, who later formed the seminal London punk
Punk rock
Punk rock is a rock music genre that developed between 1974 and 1976 in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia. Rooted in garage rock and other forms of what is now known as protopunk music, punk rock bands eschewed perceived excesses of mainstream 1970s rock...

 band The Clash
The Clash
The Clash were an English punk rock band that formed in 1976 as part of the original wave of British punk. Along with punk, their music incorporated elements of reggae, ska, dub, funk, rap, dance, and rockabilly...

. Their song "White Riot
White Riot
"White Riot" is a song by English punk rock band The Clash, released as the band's first single in 1977 and also featured on their debut album. There are two versions: the single version , and a different version on the UK album...

" was inspired by their participation in this event. Further incidents continued for a few years, but receded for several decades, until 2008 when approximately 500 youths clashed with police on the Monday.

As the event grew, concerns about the size of the event prompted Ken Livingstone
Ken Livingstone
Kenneth Robert "Ken" Livingstone is an English politician who is currently a member of the centrist to centre-left Labour Party...

 to set up a Carnival Review Group to look into "formulating guidelines to safeguard the future of the Carnival". An interim report by the review resulted in a change to the route in 2002. When the full report was published in 2004, it was recommended that Hyde Park
Hyde Park, London
Hyde Park is one of the largest parks in central London, United Kingdom, and one of the Royal Parks of London, famous for its Speakers' Corner.The park is divided in two by the Serpentine...

 be used as a "savannah"; though this move has attracted some concern that the Hyde Park event may overshadow the original street carnival.

In 2003 Carnival was run by a limited company
Corporation
A corporation is created under the laws of a state as a separate legal entity that has privileges and liabilities that are distinct from those of its members. There are many different forms of corporations, most of which are used to conduct business. Early corporations were established by charter...

, the Notting Hill Carnival Trust Ltd. A report by the London Development Agency on the 2002 Carnival estimated that the event contributes around £93 million to the London and UK economy
Economy of the United Kingdom
The economy of the United Kingdom is the sixth-largest national economy in the world measured by nominal GDP and seventh-largest measured by purchasing power parity , and the third-largest in Europe measured by nominal GDP and second-largest measured by PPP...

.

Cultural references


Notting Hill provides the setting for novels by G. K. Chesterton
G. K. Chesterton
Gilbert Keith Chesterton, KC*SG was an English writer. His prolific and diverse output included philosophy, ontology, poetry, plays, journalism, public lectures and debates, literary and art criticism, biography, Christian apologetics, and fiction, including fantasy and detective fiction....

 (The Napoleon of Notting Hill
The Napoleon of Notting Hill
The Napoleon of Notting Hill is a novel written by G. K. Chesterton in 1904, set in a nearly unchanged London in 1984.Although the novel is set in the future, it is, in effect, set in an 'alternate reality' of Chesterton's own period, with no advances in technology or changes in the class system or...

), Colin MacInnes (Absolute Beginners
Absolute Beginners
Absolute Beginners is a novel by Colin MacInnes, written and set in 1958 London, England. It was published in 1959. The novel is the second of MacInnes' London Trilogy, coming after City Of Spades and before Mr. Love and Justice...

), Michael Moorcock
Michael Moorcock
Michael John Moorcock is an English writer, primarily of science fiction and fantasy, who has also published a number of literary novels....

 (the Jerry Cornelius quartet), RC Sherriff (The Hopkins Manuscript
The Hopkins Manuscript
The Hopkins Manuscript is a science fiction novel written by R. C. Sheriff in 1939. Originally titled An Ordinary Man, the novel was republished by The Macmillan Company in 1963, before being reprinted by Persephone Books in 2002....

), and Alan Hollinghurst
Alan Hollinghurst
Alan Hollinghurst is a British novelist, and winner of the 2004 Man Booker Prize for The Line of Beauty.-Biography:Hollinghurst was born on 26 May 1954 in Stroud, Gloucestershire, the only child of James Hollinghurst, a bank manager, and his wife, Elizabeth...

 (The Line of Beauty
The Line of Beauty
The Line of Beauty is a 2004 Booker Prize-winning novel by Alan Hollinghurst.-Plot introduction:Set in Britain in the early to mid-1980s, the story surrounds the post-Oxford life of the young gay protagonist, Nick Guest....

). Dan Waddel's The Blood Detective is a murder novel set in the past and present - featuring Notting Dale. The area's newer, wealthy residents are satirised in Rachel Johnson
Rachel Johnson
Rachel Johnson is an English editor, journalist and author based in London.Johnson is the daughter of former Conservative MEP Stanley Johnson and artist Charlotte Johnson Wahl , the daughter of Sir James Fawcett, a prominent barrister and president of the European Commission of Human Rights...

's novel Notting Hell(2006), which is set in grand houses surrounding a fictional communal garden.

The area is also the setting of the films The Knack …and How to Get It (1965), Performance
Performance (film)
Performance is a 1968 British crime drama film; the film was produced in 1968 but not released until 1970. Directed by Donald Cammell and Nicolas Roeg, Performance stars James Fox and Mick Jagger of The Rolling Stones in his film acting debut.-Plot:...

(1970), with Mick Jagger
Mick Jagger
Sir Michael Philip "Mick" Jagger is an English musician, singer and songwriter, best known as the lead vocalist and a founding member of The Rolling Stones....

, and Notting Hill
Notting Hill (film)
Notting Hill is a 1999 British romantic comedy film set in Notting Hill, London, released on 21 May 1999. The screenplay was by Richard Curtis, who had written Four Weddings and a Funeral. It was produced by Duncan Kenworthy and directed by Roger Michell...

(1999).

New Crossrail Station


At a site just to the east of the Old Oak Common site, Kensington and Chelsea Council has been pushing for a station at North Kensington / Kensal
Kensal Green
Kensal Green, also referred to as Kensal Rise is an area of London, England. It is located on the southern edge of the London Borough of Brent and borders the City of Westminster to the East and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea to the South....

off Ladbroke Grove & Canal Way, as a turn-back facility will have to be built in the area anyway. Siting it at Kensal Rise, rather than next to Paddington itself, would provide a new station to regenerate the area. Amongst the general public there is a huge amount of support for the project and Mayor Boris Johnson stated that a station would be added if it did not increase Crossrail's overall cost; in response, Kensington and Chelsea Council agreed to underwrite the projected £33 million cost of a Crossrail station, which was received very well by the residents of the Borough. TfL is conducting a feasibility study on the station and the project is backed by National Grid, retailers Sainsbury's and Cath Kidston, and Jenny Jones (Green Party member of the London Assembly).