What have you missed since March 26th?

Hello. Today’s final “What have you missed…” comes from both Mark and Jonathan. Why?

Sadly, this is the end. WHL has been going for nine years, but all good things etc. etc. We explain all (including what’s happening to the mailing list – don’t worry, we’re not selling your data!)

We’ll both be at a farewell drinks event at Bobby Fitzpatrick’s on Thursday (April 5th) from 7.30pm. Everyone’s welcome. No need to RSVP, just turn up. I imagine we’ll be there until fairly late.

Of course the news doesn’t stop – and there’s plenty this week, so let’s crack on

Kilburn High Road was closed because of a fire at Oxfam. Two people were rescued and thankfully there were no serious injuries.

Fire engines block off KHR to deal with Oxfam fire. Photo via William Vanner

West Hampstead could be in for a sizeable windfall from the sale of Liddell Road – but will any of that money actually be spent here?

Maybe that’s a question to ask the candidates for the upcoming local election. We profile all 18 candidates from the three main parties in both West Hampstead & Fortune Green wards (NB: we will keep this page updated).

There’ll be a hustings, co-hosted by WHAT and the NDF, on April 9th. Council hustings are relatively unusual, so it might be worth going along and asking about the pertinent issues.

One person not standing is existing West Hampstead councillor Phil Rosenberg. We spoke to him about his experiences as a ward councillor and what the future holds. Phil was also on Channel 4 News this week in relation to the anti-semitism demo in Parliament Square.

Election time always means a few political big hitters drop in to help canvas support. Swiss Cottage, which is being seen as a bellwether ward, in particularly popular with both defence secretary, Gavin Williamson and former Conservative education Minister, Nicky Morgan dropping in. Morgan certainly knows the area, she used to live on Sumatra Road.

It’s been two years since West Hampstead resident Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe was first detained in Tehran. To mark this, her husband and others campaigning for her release held an event on Fortune Green.

There’s been much debate over the future of Billy Fury way, but what is really the best way to manage the footpaths around there? We surveyed pedestrian footfall last weekend and in just one hour mid-Saturday morning, just three people used the steps from West End Lane down to Billy Fury Way, while 168 people used the parallel Blackburn Road. Food for thought.

Are you are 30-year-old woman living in Camden? Good news.

Plans are afoot to improve Kilburn Grange’s adventure playground, Work should start this autumn.

Brent is applying to TfL to resurface the northern section of Kilburn High Road. The decision should be made later this month – fingers crossed.

There’s a new shop opening on Mill Lane. Lots of sequins.

Did you loosen – and lose – your (Hermès) tie this week? It’s been found.

Southwark police are still searching for Phil Nicol who has been missing for a month. He was last seen on Fortune Green Road – they are asking if anyone has any CCTV footage.

And for our final week we shared 18 ways you know West Hampstead is in your blood. Doesn’t get more hard-hitting than this.

Coming up
Thurs 5th Whampdrinks @ Bobby F’s
Fri 6th April – 7:30pm Jazz pianist Omar Klein at the Sherriff Centre. Bio here and tickets here.
Mon 9th 7.30pm Election hustings in the Synagogue Hall
Tues 10th – John Lloyd in conversation at West Hampstead Library on the current state of journalism and fake news.
Tues 10th – Lucy Mangan in conversation at West End Lane Books
Mon 16th – Locally Sourced ‘Rant Night’ at the Alliance
Tues 17th – Elizabeth Day in conversation with Susie Steiner about her book ‘The Party’ at West End Lane books.

Sat 21st – 7:30 GoWestHampstead Quiz, at Emmanuel Church. booking essential (includes meal)
Tues 24th – 7.30pm Spring Singfest with five, count ’em, five choirs in Emmanuel Church
Thurs 26th – Susie Steiner in conversation with Detective Inspector Graham Macmillan at West End Lane Books.
Sat 28th April – 7pm performance of Handel’s Messiah at UCS. Tickets here.

Last ever tweet of the week (*sniff)

What have you missed since March 19th?

After a quiet spell, the phone snatchers were back, with at least four incidents on Friday night.

Tom, our resident gourmand (glutton?) paid a visit to newcomer Ham. How did he find it?

Tila Studio on Fortune Green was broken into this week, as was Glass Art on Mill Lane.

So sad to hear @Tilastudio in @WHampstead got broken into two days ago. Thieves stole cash and equipment. So much damage caused. It’s appalling. Pic (and text): Joe Sayegh

The luxury retirement home planning application for Gondar Gardens is going to appeal. Number of luxury self-contained retirement flats = 82, number of affordable homes = 0 “we can’t afford to provide any”

In more popular planning news, West End Lane Books will be getting its jacuzzi and spa extension. Or maybe just more space for books.

A West Hampstead café or restaurant in a prime location is up for sale. Speculation is rife as to which one it is…. Answers on a postcard, please.

This week local author Susie Steiner revealed her likes and dislikes about West Hampstead. “Pants and socks, people, pants and socks.”

A crack house was closed in Fortune Green Ward.

Local estate agents John’s & Co wrote a (sponsored) post about how the local market diverges from national trends (though that crack house story above might just send prices plunging!)

The most popular single journey destinations from West Hampstead tube station were revealed. Bond Street beat Canary Wharf to the top spot.

Brent Council is undertaking a ‘have your say’ on specific town centre areas within Brent, including the Kilburn High Road. Now’s your chance to make your voice heard.

TFL is consulting on ‘modernising’ the Overground, which in plain English means there might not be a ticket office in the new West Hampstead station.

Meanwhile, on the buses, after C11 services were cut earlier this year, there is now talk of reducing the 328 service too.

The clothing bin saga continues. The company that owns them has come forward but apparently, it has been dissolved…

Want to know what the space where the Paramount building is, looked like in days gone by?

Coming up this week

It’s Easter!

Fri 30th (Good Friday)- 7:30pm Poetry and the Sacred at the Sheriff Centre

And beyond…

Fri 6th April – 7:30pm Jazz pianist Omar Klein at the Sherriff Centre. Bio here and tickets here.

Tues 10th April – John Lloyd in conversation at West Hampstead Library on the current state of Journalism, Fake news.

Tues 10th April – Lucy Mangan in conversation at West End Lane Books

Tues 17th April – Elizabeth Day in conversation with Susie Steiner about her book ‘The Party’ at West End Lane books.

Thurs 26th April – Susie Steiner in conversation with Detective Inspector Graham Macmillan at West End Lane Books.

Sat 28th April – 7pm performance of Handel’s Messiah at UCS. Tickets here.

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since March 12th?

The post office in the Sherriff Centre was burgled. Apparently, the burglars tried first on Monday evening, but were disturbed by a cleaner. They came back at 9.30pm, but were disturbed by the alarm before trying again in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

We all know how the leopard got its spots, but how did David’s Deli get its name?  We learned how in our Insight with Ellias the owner.

There was another moped enabled mobile phone snatch near Kilburn tube, but this one had an unexpected ending. (In case you don’t know Ashley was on Made in Chelsea).

Fortune Green seems very confused, Which season are we in? asked Scotty

The Chalcots Estate in Swiss Cottage has been in the news again (it was evacuated in the wake of the Grenfell fire). The council now wants to replace the windows for £30 million, on top of the £50 million it’s already spent on post-Grenfell improvements. Not to mention the millions it cost to install the original defective cladding. Residents haven’t ruled out running their own candidate in the local elections.

Another week, another Tory typo…(at least we hope it was), apparently they are campaigning for ‘reduced air quality

Clothing bank update: they have been given one month to be removed. There is more to this story than we first thought. Were these clothing banks ones that were first stolen?

West Hampstead bakery Roni’s suffered what appeared to be a premeditated attack at its Belsize Park operation. And there was a second attack.

Phil Nicol has been missing for over two weeks, he’s from Peckham but was last seen at the O2 Centre on March 3rd. He then boarded a 13 bus and got off at Fortune Green Road. He has not been seen since. Do you recognise him?

WHAT again proved at their AGM that they punch above their weight in getting things done round here. Holding Thames Water, TFL and Camden to account on road closures and diversion. Others may tweet the tweet, WHAT actually does stuff. Plus TFL confirmed they are undertaking a feasibility study over access to the tube station.

There was another burglary on Iverson Road. Watch out as there was a similar one on Mapesbury Road using a diversion tactic. Fireworks.

There was a moving performance of ‘Finding Mummy: Nazanin’s story’ at JW3.

The owner of these these (very cute dogs) has been located.

Coming up
Mon 19th – Locally Sourced at the Alliance, looks like an excellent evening

Wed 21st – it’s the ENO community choir concert at the Sherriff Centre. It’s free, but ticket here.

And this week why not try the cinema at JW3

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since March 5th?

Oh no! Water leak season has started again. A series of leaks affected a wide area and many houses were left without water.

Damas Gardens, Kilburn’s Syrian restaurant, was fined £1,000 by Camden for fly tipping on the Kilburn High Road.

It’s less that two months until local elections, but the Conservatives are apparently asking you to vote for a question mark. Just a typo we were told. The missing candidate is actually Sedef Akademir.

“Can’t possibly carry all that guv…” Photo via Ian Cohen

Our historians reported on a real life ‘Death in Paradise’. Actor and sometime West Hampstead resident, George Rose was murdered in the Caribbean in the 1980s.

It was gridlock on West End Lane due to two sets of temporary traffic lights. The theme of local campaign group WHAT’s AGM next week is appropriately: Roadblocks and Diversions!

There are at least two huge metal ‘clothes banks’ in West Hampstead that are not charity boxes and appear to have been illegally placed there some time ago. They’re at least half a tonne each. Did no-one at the council spot this?

We have a good samaritan among us. A mystery man paid for the groceries of an older man at Sainsbury’s who had come out without any money. The older chap’s wife is very thankful.

Do you recognise this flowery handbag? It has an empty purse inside. It was dumped outside someone’s house but we are trying to reunite it with its owner. Or do you recognise an abandoned hold-all, which contained a quantity of cash, and was left outside the tube station.

There was a burglary on Iverson Road. Police advice is to make sure doors and windows are locked but maybe time for a webcam?

Local resident, engineer and writer, Roma Agrawal, appeared on Any Questions. Go Roma!

The Priory Tavern on Belsize Road has changed hands.

And while we are down that end of the KHR, here’s a trip down memory lane.

This Wednesday sees the next Sheriff Concert series. The moving force behind them, pianist Yehuda Inbar (we’ve heard he’s good) and violinist Timothy Redout, are playing ‘the Romantic Influence’ (you know – Schubert, Schumman, Brahms and beyond)

It is coming up for TWO years since Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe was put in Tehran’s notorious Evin prison. To mark this, and to mark her second Mother’s Day in jail, there are a series of events coming up: a performance of ‘Looking for Mummy’ at JW3 (if you haven’t seen it is very moving), a comedy fundraiser hosted by Shappi Korsandi (sadly sold out), paint a pebble for Mother’s day and an event on Fortune Green.

Good Luck to Jess Curtis, a West Hampstead teenager, who is off trekking to Everest base camp. She’s raising money for a charity that helped her brother, James, who was born profoundly deaf but now able to hear. You can support her here.

Coming up this week
Tues 13th – 6:30 to 8:30 Cycle maintenance workshop @ Sidings
Wed 14th – 7:30 WHAT AGM @ West Hampstead Library
Wed 14th – 7:30 Concert at Sheriff Centre
Fri 16th – 6:30 Private view of Kingsgate Workshops exhibition. Machiavellian Mary.
Sat 17th – 7:30 at JW3 ‘Looking for Mummy‘ Nazanin’s story.
Sat 17th – 7:30 to 9:30 Emmanuel Church. It’s Barn dance time again!
Sun 18th – Coffee concert at St. Cuthbert’s church.

What have you missed since February 26th?

It was cold, and quite snowy. In case you didn’t notice. Some locals took it in their stride, and many (very many) of you whipped out your cameras.

As previewed last week, Ham opened (sorry Ham, we really can’t be bothered to keep inserting the line over the a). The cold weather threw up some challenges that probably weren’t in the business plan!

There has been a huge jump in fly-tipping reports. Locally, Camden is getting round to enforcing the no-bins-on-street rule it promised when the new contract was introduced a year ago.

Flowers in the snow via @ingamells

Lately may have closed, but former owner Gordon Stevenson is still around and he talked to us about his 38 years at the helm of West Hampstead’s favourite club.

Kilburn Ironworks (whose owners are taking over Lately) is itself now for sale – offers around £1 million.

It’s Mother’s Day next Sunday. What better gift than something from your ‘hood.

The council tax increase we reported last week was approved, though Labour slightly wrong-footed the Tories by finding an extra £540,000 for extra policing, (or it could be said by adopting a Tory proposal).

The Mayor got interested in the West London Orbital Rail scheme, which would end at West Hampstead. What! more commuters? There was, however, no mention of how the £250 million scheme would be funded.

Those of you on Twitter may remember a recent plan to get a board games night up and running. Good news – it starts this week.

London-wide estate agent Dexters, which recently acquired Martin & Wright’s office in West Hampstead, has acquired north London agency Benham & Reeves, including B&R’s office near the tube station in West Hampstead.

Walkies! The Wag Club, the doggie daycare place that opened on Mill Lane a year ago is on the move. It’s moving to larger premises: the former scuba shop in Child’s Hill.

West Hampstead actresses Emma Thompson and Imelda Staunton held a Q&A at the Tricycle. Thompson revealed that Nanny McPhee might become a musical and shared the experience she drew on for her performance in Love, Actually.

Coming up

It’s quite an arty week
Wed 7th and Thurs 8th – 19:00 to 21:00 The Art Room is holding a pop-up exhibition of fashion illustrator Jo Bird RSVP
Thurs 8th – Local artist Alketa Xhifa Mripa will have her installation up in Kings Cross outside St. Martins
And why not pop in to the Camden Arts Centre to see the Giorgio Griffa exhibition?

Tues 13th – 6:30 to 8:30 Cycle maintenance workshop @ Sidings
Fri 16th – Opening of Kingsgate Workshops exhibition. Machiavellian Mary.
Sat 17th – 7:30 to 9:30 Emmanuel Church. It’s Barn dance time again! Yee-haw.
Sun 18th – Coffee concert at St. Cuthbert’s church.

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since February 19th?

Council tax is going up 4.99% – we took a closer look as to why and how austerity is affecting things. It’s going to be £1,487 for an average band D property.

Hām opened with a soft launch. WHL went for brunch on Sunday; was it Hamtastic?

Camden was rocked by a series of stabbings last week, two of them fatal. Those took place not far apart over in Kentish Town but earlier on the same day, there was one much closer to home in Kilburn. Thankfully, that one was not fatal.

Further up the Kilburn High Road, a pensioner was run over by an HGV and died on the spot from his injuries. The crossing in question (at Brondesbury Road had been highlighted by KOVE as potentially dangerous (as there is not enough time for older people to cross).

Flippin’ eck! As spotted by Fenella Nichols

The ‘masseur’ who was on trial for sexually assaulting his clients got a nine-year sentence.

Watch out – a resident using the ATM at Tesco was scammed and his account was cleared out.

Watch out – another resident nearly had her handbag snatched outside Banana Tree by thieves on a moped.

However, there was some good news on the crime front. The Fortune Green SNT Police made seven arrests at two addresses on Fordwych and St. Cuthbert’s Roads.

Local Councillor Phil Rosenberg, spoke out about the continuing anti-semitism in the Hampstead and Kilburn Labour Party.

Local actor Greg Wise did a book reading at West End Lane Books (signed copies still available) which he co-wrote about his sister Clare who died prematurely of cancer. From the start of the illness she wrote a blog which Greg carried on when she was too ill to continue.

West End Lane Books is running a competition – Bookshop Bingo. How well do you know the bookshop and its staff?

And the ever-creative Village Haberdashery is running a children’s art show. Deadline for submissions is the 9th March! the theme is ‘Spring’. Here are more details.

Nazanin Zaghari- Ratcliffe is still in prison in Tehran. And it was made more explicit that is was because of debt owed to the Iranians. The authorities offered to release under armed guard but the family declined.

Did you miss the photo workshop on Fortune Green? You can see some of the photos here.

Did you miss the FoWHL (Friends of the Library) AGM? You can read the report here.

Coming up
26th Mon – NDF AGM
3rd March – Walk – The Wonder Women of Hampstead Cemetery (£10) book tickets here

Tweet of the week
Oh the wisdom and wit of Wet Fish Cafe

What have you missed since February 12th?

Kaboom! A house partially-collapsed on Sumatra Road. It had been empty for over 10 years and had been in some planning limbo. In a sign of quite how crazy property prices are it was labelled as being on ‘millionaire’s row’ by the Daily Mail. Ironically, it was just around the corner from the humble house where Alfred Northcliffe lived, who founded the … Daily Mail.

Talking of Ham… sorry, Hām, our newest restaurant is opening on February 28th. For a taste of what to expect, the Caterer met the chef – formerly from The Ledbury. The Eater was awaiting the opening too. And they are looking for staff.

An 18 year-old-man was stabbed in Compayne Gardens

The gap formerly known as house on Sumatra Road. Pic: Chris Simpson

Out of the mouth of babes… A West Hampstead six-year-old has started a campaign against plastic waste. She’s right, let’s join her.

The Friends of West Hampstead Library had its AGM this week. There was a very good turnout, ‘ with cake’ (are the two related)? Cllr Simpson said future library closures would be “over his dead body”. It does look like there may be volunteers working at the library at some stage though.

The Ham & High, which has been going for 150 years, is closing its offices on the Finchley Road and relocating to Barking. It will keep a couple of ‘hot desks’ in the area. Former reporters were sad at the news.

Another local restaurant, Wet Fish Cafe, celebrated its fifteenth birthday this week. Congratulations.

Alas, not so fortunate for Tiffin Tin on Mill Lane. They were broken into this weekend.

St. James and St Mary’s churches are still looking for a new vicar. Any suggestions?

Stanley Rosenthal, who had lived in West Hampstead all his life (indeed in the same house), passed away at 94. His memories of fellow school children turning up with no shoes in the 1930s turned him into a life-long Liberal supporter (an anecdote he recounted to me, although the newsletter got the party wrong. Apologies.)

Our historians looked back to the punk-era in West Hampstead, and an artist who helped them.

A freight ’super-hub’ was approved, just off the Cricklewood Broadway, by Barnet Council as the Conservatives hold a one-seat majority on the planning committee. It is not actually in Camden (its about 500 metres to the north) but local Fortune Green councillor, Lorna Russell, who fears the impact on our area, addressed their planning meeting. There were hundreds of letters opposed and three in favour. This gives a bit of a background about what it will be.

JW3 wants to put a large ad space on the apartment blocks it owns on Finchley Road.

Local resident Gio Spinella (a councillor the other side of the Finchley Road in Frognal) was elected Conservative leader in Camden, taking over from Claire-Louise Leyland. Turns out he had to leave Sicily because of the Mafia.

Coming up this week

Mon 19th – Locally Sourced ‘An Evening with Virginia Woolf’ at the Alliance

Mon 19th – an Evening with Mick Herron and his latest book, London Rules, at WEL Books

Mon 19th – Tricycle fundraiser Jim Carter + Kenneth Branagh and Derek Jacobi. Tickets here.

Wed 21st – Greg Wise reading from his sister, Clare’s book on her experience of cancer,@WEL Books

Fri 23rd – Sherriff Concert series, Heath Quartet. Tickets here.

Sun 25th – Join the Friends of Fortune Green for the big cut-down (of perennials). Help make West Hampstead more beautiful.

Sun 25th – Tricycle fundraiser Jim Carter + Emma Thompson and Imelda Staunton (last few tickets left)

Mon 26th – NDF AGM at the Library.

Tweet of the week

WE WON THE ZONE 2 world cup! (It was a hypothetical knock out league of zone 2 tube stations). West Hampstead beat Maida Vale in the final. More details here.

What have you missed since February 5th?

There are more details of the scammer we warned about last week, including her photo which has now been released by the police. She struck again on Walm Lane this weekend.

The chemist by West End Green had eight tins of baby formula stolen this week – the suspect had stolen four tins the previous week and came back again, but this time the shelves were empty. Other chemists and Waitrose are having the same problem.

We ate at the Clock Cafe. Did it strike a chord?

Another accident on Mill Lane, time for some traffic calming? Pic: Russ Denton

There was the sound of gunfire in Kilburn on Thursday night.

On Sunday morning a 28-year-old man and a 43-year-old woman were arrested in Kilburn as suspects for a murder of a 55-year-old woman in Fellows Road, Belsize Park on Friday.

There was a warning about cars being broken into on Gascony Avenue, Smyrna Road and Westbere Road. Follow the usual advice – don’t leave anything of value visible.

This week we met local engineer Roma Agrawal who published her debut book. She is passionate at explaining the wonder of engineering, and gave a good restaurant tip, in our latest insight.

It’s been 100 years since some women got the vote. What were they doing in our area?

And still fighting for women’s rights 100 years later, local artist (and owner of Curled Leaf) Alketa Xhafa-Mripa is installing her piece ‘Thinking of you’ in Kings Cross on March 8th. It involves hundreds of women’s dresses and if you want to donate you can drop one off at the Curled Leaf, or any Lush store by March 1st.

A masseur based in West Hampstead was in court accused of assaulting three clients.

Tory council candidate Maria Higson has switched from West Hampstead to Hampstead, following Hamish Hunter pulling out as a candidate for Hampstead.

It’s the Friends of West Hampstead Library’s AGM this week on the 15th. ‘Past Tense, Future Perfect?’
And to get in the mood this is the latest post from their writer in residence. It’s a nice read.

And talking of literary matters, our friends at West End Lane Books have requested planning permission for an extension.

Coming up

Tues 13th Nick Coleman on ‘Voices, How A Great Singer Can Change Your Life’ at WEL Books

Tues 13th – 6:30 to 8:30 NEW cycle maintenance workshop at Sidings Community Centre

Thurs 15th FOWHL AGM at, errr, West Hampstead Library…!

Sun 18th: 2-4pm. Photographic workshop on Fortune Green. Sign up here

And beyond…

Mon 19th – Locally Sourced ‘An Evening with Virginia Woolf’ at the Alliance

Mon 19th – an Evening with Mick Herron and his latest book, London Rules, at WEL Books

Mon 19th – Tricycle fundraiser Jim Carter + Kenneth Branagh and Derek Jacobi. Tickets here.

Wed 21st – Greg Wise reading from his sister, Clare’s book on her experience of cancer,@WEL Books

Fri 23rd – Sherriff Concert series, Heath Quartet. Tickets here.

Sun 25th – Join the Friends of Fortune Green for the big cut-down (of perennials). Help make West Hampstead more beautiful.

Sun 25th – Tricycle fundraiser Jim Carter + Emma Thompson and Imelda Staunton (last few tickets left)

Tweet of the week

We thought this (below) was really clever.

What have you missed since January 29th?

The application to build 82 retirement flats on the former Gondar Gardens reservoir site was refused by Camden Planning. The Mayor’s office also refused the application particularly over the lack of any affordable housing.

There is a scammer about – watch out. She will claim to be a neighbour and ask for £20. (The story also contains a summary of how to contact your local Safer Neighbourhood team).

How’s the Overground redevelopment progressing?

Not a sunset, but a sunrise as seen, early, by WHL (on our Instagram).

The Sherriff Centre – and some local mums and a dad (hello Richard!) made an appearance on the One Show in a story on ‘baby brain’. It’s on iPlayer – the segment starts at 3’30”

West Hampstead dog walkers continued their (ever so polite) fight with Camden Council over the cemetery. Camden backed down slightly and said as long as dogs were kept under control then people are welcome to walk them there. It appeared one part of the council had not been talking to another.

Camden signed up to new air quality targets by 2030, which means it will be getting even tougher on cars. Will it improve West End Lane and the Maygrove/Iverson situation?

South Hampstead School is hosting a performance of Looking for Mummy: Nazanin’s story on 9th Feb for 160 sixth formers and will be live-streamed to more schools.

Western Food & Wine, the convenience store at the corner of Sherriff Road is being forced to close after 20 years after the landlord apparently hiked the rent.

It was the last day of the Kilburn Ironworks.

Camden replaced the memorial bench to the popular Kilburn café owner, Huseyin Gulbudak, who was stabbed to death by his son. Someone stole the first bench back in July.

Coming up

Ooh! Ooh! there are a couple of seats still available for the Tricycle fundraising evening with Jim Carter interviewing Emma Thompson and Imelda Staunton on 25th Feb. Buy now while stocks last.

(And there are also still tickets for the event on Mon 19th Feb with Kenneth Branagh and Derek Jacobi).

Mon 5th – Fitness for older men @CAWH 12:30 – 1:30pm

Fri 9th – Ultimate Improv Friday is back!

Sun 11th – 3pm Patrick Hemmerle at St. Cuthberts playing the rest of Bach’s well tempered Klavier (he’s good!)

And beyond

Tues 13th 7:30pm – Nick Coleman book talk  @WELBooks – How a Great Singer can change your Life

Thurs 15th 7:30 pm Friends of West Hampstead Library AGM.  Their 20th!

Mon 19th 7:30pm Locally Sourced @ the Alliance; An evening with Virginia Woolf (not actually her of course)

Tweet of the week

It was #Groundhogday this week and that is exactly what it feels like for this local who is trying to get the Christmas trees removed from West End Green.

What have you missed since January 22nd?

A gruesome lead story this week. A decapitated fox’s head was found in a West Hampstead garden on Friday morning. According to SNARL, an independent group helping the police with the notorious M25 cat killer, this looks like it could be a related incident. Pet owners, keep an eye on your cats.

Tom went to try the new vegan buffet offered by Mon Way, was it his way or the highway?

Camden is ‘criminalising’ West Hampstead dog walkers. We ‘doggedly’ investigated this issue and think they should have let sleeping dogs lie.

Fortune Green as photographed by FoFG’s new artist in residence Peter Coles.

Local business Ink Media (publishers of the rather good EasyJet magazine among others) is looking to float on the stock market for £70 million. The company is based in the commercial space at the bottom of the Blackburn Road student accommodation. [paywall]

In a surprise move Claire-Louise Leyland is standing down as leader of the Camden Conservatives and as a Belsize councillor at the May elections.

Cllr Phil Rosenberg has a twin brother, Bill. Who knew?

This guy has been going to the Swiss Cottage Odeon. Every week. Since 1945.

Into dance and house vinyl? there’s a ton at Cancer Research – and more to come. A (sometimes) DJ is having a clear out.

All we want for Christmas is for… last year’s Christmas trees to be gone! It’s a month after Christmas day and they were still there.

It’s nearly Valentine’s day – one local couple celebrated in a rather different way!

As we announced last week, Lately is closing (the owners of Kilburn Ironworks aren’t commenting yet on their plans to take it over). We’re interested to hear your memories of West Hampstead’s favourite nightclub… if you can remember any of them. Drop us a mail <>

Coming up.
Hotly tipped for Oscar success, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri is on at the Tricycle Cinema, while JW3 is showing Churchill biopic Darkest Hour

What have you missed since Jan 15th?

One of Kilburn’s nicer bars, Kilburn Ironworks, which opened in 2014, is closing in early February. On Twitter, the owners have hinted that they might have another local operation starting soon….

… West Hampstead institution Lately is shutting up shop. The nightclub has been a fixture of West End Lane for as long as most of us can remember (and we can’t remember much after too many late nights there). A planning application has gone in for a large-scale revamp of the venue, turning it into a bar. Who’s behind it? A bit of digging into the planning app seems to suggest that it’s the owner of… Kilburn Ironworks

Kilburn had a visitor from the Falkland Islands. Twitter was all aflutter. What was it? How did it get to NW6? Turned out it was a striated caracara (a Falkland’s falcon or Johnny Rook to the locals), and it had escaped from London Zoo.

A striated caracara a long way from the Falkland Islands… spotted by tashry18

Do West Hampstead kids have enough opportunities to play outdoors in our neighbourhood? Not at this time of year maybe, but with summer on the distant horizon we investigated the latest Play Street initiative from Narcissus Road (and took a look at parks too).

The Mayor has announced a further thirteen tube stations that will get step-free access. Once again West Hampstead is not among them. But there may be some light at the end of the tunnel as TfL has agreed to conduct a feasibility study into a lift.

The Tricycle has three job openings, so looks likes the theatre is gearing up to open up again. Hurrah! (Any budding producers out there…)

Jeweller Dinny Hall has lived in West Hampstead for more than 30 years, and this is what she likes about it.

A sushi place has opened up fairly recently on Broadhurst Gardens (near La Mer). Sushi Tokoro is tiny but is getting some good reviews especially for it’s (good value) set lunches.

Last week’s news about the food hygiene ratings contained a link to a rather out of date list of local restaurant scores. Apologies to those restaurants whose scores have since improved. The latest scores are here: and there’s also a new twitter bot tracking changes in NW6 scores.

Is Camden Council due for a £1 million windfall?

Love board games? One local is trying to set up a regular meetup. I imagine it will have the monopoly in the area.

Or if drumming is more your thing, another local is trying to set up a drumming circle.

Coming up

Thurs 25th – 12-1pm West Hampstead SNT will be a JW3
Sun 28th – 3pm At St. Cuthbert’s Church, Patrick Hemmerle playing ‘the Well Tempered Klavier’

What have you missed since January 8th?

West Hampstead tube station is still not on the shortlist to get a lift.

The student housing block on Blackburn Road has applied to add 41 extra rooms – which means a new storey, or two. We got the full story…

The new restaurant replacing Brioche is going to be Hām. Like the Wet Fish next door, the name isn’t a particularly good indication of the cuisine. Hām is the Old English word for home, and the origin of the ham in West Hampstead. It launched on social media, and posted this photo of the interior. It’s due to open in February.

A sneak preview of West ‘Hām’pstead’s new restaurant

West Hampstead is ‘slightly’ polluted. Cough, cough.

Minkies got renamed “8oz”. The owner has moved back to the US and sold the original Kensal Rise business but not the West Hampstead stall; instead he changed the name and went into partnership with a former employee. (Minkie, by the way, is the name of his wife)!

Sirous is getting a serious (a ‘Sirious’…) refurbishment and will reopen as a steakhouse apparently.

Local food hygiene ratings were in the news once again, with a few West Hampstead venues scoring zero or one.

You’ve been asking what happened to the new Sunday food market in the O2 car park… it went into hibernation over Christmas but will be back at the end of January. Perhaps on the 21st even.

Over at the Saturday West Hampstead farmer’s market it’s time to choose your favourite stall again! Last year’s winner was Brinkworth Dairy. (and the year before that)

Neave Brown, renowned architect of the brutalist Alexandra and Ainsworth Estate, died.

Camden is consulting on a vision for Camden in 2025. There is a drop in session on Tuesday afternoon at the Kingsgate centre to get locals’ views. Is anything meaningful going to come from it, or is it a sop to community engagement?

The Minster Road Nature reserve was renamed the Jane Evans reserve, in recognition of her work setting it up.

DCS Catherine Roper, head of the recently merged Camden and Islington police forces, is leaving. She will be replaced temporarily by Superintendent Nick Davies and permanently in April by DCS Iain Raphael. He will be the fourth head of the Camden force since December 2015.

Coming up

Mon 15th – Locally Sourced at the Alliance; 7:30pm with Richard Prince and Nicola Burnett Smith
Tues 16th – Drop in at Kingsgate Centre 2:30 to 5pm for Camden 2025.
Tues 16th – Fortune choir restarts 7pm at Emmanuel Church
Thurs 18th – It’s the Community Associations AGM 7pm Emmanuel Church

What have you missed since December 28th?

Welcome back! Hope you had a good holiday break. What has been happening in West Hampstead at the start of 2018?

On New Year’s day, it was 56 Years since the Beatles came to Decca’s West Hampstead studio (now ENO) to audition … and were turned down. Our historians investigated why.

Part of the pavement on West End Lane was roped off on New Year’s day following an assault early in the morning. One of the baristas from Caffe Nero was heading to work to open up when he was assaulted from behind by two men, witnesses outside the Black Lion said. The poor guy was taken to hospital where he had some stitches but otherwise was mainly bruised. He has been off work, but he should be back this coming week.

Need to shed some Christmas kilos? Our gym correspondent looked at some of the newer West Hampstead options to help you tone up.

This rather ‘shitty’ car was spotted on Iverson Road by Andy Storrar

And this car was crunched on Gascony Avenue during storm Eleanor. Pic thanks to the owner Rhona

And this car was crunched on Gascony Avenue during storm Eleanor

And talking of cars, this lovely one has been stolen! Anyone seen a red Porsche? There have been a spate of car thefts in the area (including Shiva Tiwari’s – one of the Labour candidates for West Hampstead). Be extra careful.

There have also been some more moped snatches.

Burt Kwouk’s widow sold his copy of two Pink Panther scripts at auction to raise funds for the Marie Curie hospice where Burt was cared for in his final days.

The new owner of the student housing on Blackburn Road has put in a planning application to add an extra story (and 41 more bedrooms) on top.

The Council have pencilled in £26.8 million from the sale of Liddell Road (which it granted planning permission for flats and office space).

In a not very surprising move former Conservative Cllr Andrew Marshall (who quit the party over Brexit) has announced he will join the Lib Dems, but won’t be standing for a seat.

In restaurant news…

The Clock Cafe (formerly Lena’s) reopened (after nearly a year!) with much the same food, which was popular before.

amibento, the new Japanese place has opened (where the Chinese takeaway was). It’s a welcome back to West Hampstead for the owner who used to work as a chef at Sushi Gen when it originally opened. They also have a restaurant in Chelsea apparently.

On Mill Lane, Mon Way’s vegan Sunday buffet is gathering a few fans.

Kentish Town’s Beef & Brew is scouting a second location following a successful crowdfunding campaign – it’s looking at neighbourhoods like Dalston, Brixton, West Hampstead…

There was a classical concert in the Sherriff Centre, with all tickets sold; a Bechstein piano, a well-known tenor and comfy sofas. It was the first of a series.

West End Lane Books featured on Channel Four News when local children’s author Jeff Norton was filmed responding to the Government’s latest reading initiative.

Tiger (the cat) who was lost at the end of last year, was found on New Year’s Eve. Hurrah. The owner was very thankful for all the help finding Tiger.

Quite a few locals were concerned about the state of Fortune Green after Pines and Needles, the Christmas tree sellers were gone. Camden does have a deposit and are aware, but can’t do any re-seeding until Easter (it isn’t warm enough for the seed to germinate). However, grass has its own powers of regeneration and the Green is already looking a bit better, but we will have to see.

Coming up

Mon 15th – Locally Sourced at the Alliance; Richard Prince and Nicola Burnett Smith

Tweet of the week

And a reminder to recycle your Christmas tree, whatever it’s size if you haven’t already – at Fortune Green or Kilburn Grange

What have you missed in 2017?

Hope you are all having a peaceful and relaxing holiday. We’ll kick off with the news over the past ten days, and then we thought we’d do a quick “news review” of the year.

A local carol singer raised over £100,000 over the past 40 years. Hallelujah!

A new restaurant is recruiting already. Could ‘HAM’ be where Brioche was?

The Iverson Road Space didn’t reopen by Christmas as planned, but should reopen in January.

Although the plague of moped thefts has eased, there have been a couple recently: outside the tube station and another outside Waitrose. So this is still an issue. It only takes a second to loose your phone.

It’s the final week for consultation on the pedestrianisation of part of Oxford Street. The 139 would be one of just two buses that would continue to pass along the street.

The Fortune Green Safer Neighbourhood Team cracked down on rogue landlords in West Hampstead, with Sun journalists in tow.

A gang of (pretty hapless) burglars who smashed their way into Banana Tree back in May (and five other premises) were sentenced to jail.


The year started with a bang in January when a green Porsche smashed into Lena’s Café.

Work began in earnest on the Overground station upgrade. It’s running a little behind schedule, but not too much. Passenger numbers passing though the three West Hampstead stations topped 20 million for the first time.

Planning continued to dominate as a local issue, with the controversial redevelopment of 156 WEL approved in February. Travis Perkins is still trying to get the decision reversed or delayed in the courts but is running out of options. The Ballymore flats at West Hampstead Square FINALLY welcomed their first occupants in late January, eighteen months late. And the most recent scheme for Gondar Gardens came up for consultation.

There was a new recycling regime! Introduced on April 1st it didn’t exactly run smoothly. Even six months later there were still issues.

And on that note we took a walk up West End Lane. Like the one we took down the Kilburn High Road.

Christmas trees can be recycled too… all the details are here: Please don’t dump them on the street, like someone from West Hampsted Square appeared to do on Boxing Day!?

and the winner for the first fly tipped Christmas tree of the season is …. as spotted by @ciano_ire (in fact it was beaten by this one – dumped a week before Christmas!)

There were a number of coming and goings ; M&S opened in FebruaryLadudu closed in March and Rosa’s opened on the same site. Lola’s Bakery joined the West End Lane cafés, while on Mill Lane, the Kitchen Table closed to be replaced by the MillHouse.

Father Andrew stepped down from St. James Church (a.k.a. the Sheriff Centre) in May (but remains the postmaster for the time being).

In June there was (another) general election. At the start of campaigning, the polls and bookies tipped the Tories to win Hampstead & Kilburn from Labour, but in the end Tulip won with a margin of over 15,000

Also in June, with worries about terrorist incidents in many people’s minds, West End Lane was closed off with concern about a chemical smell.

There was a very visible rise in moped-enabled crime in the area particularly in the latter half of the year with a spate of mobile phone thefts; and two guys were arrested when their moped was cornered by police after a man was stabbed to death after an attempted robbery of his phone in Maida Vale. There have been other arrests and things have improved, but it is still an issue.

It was our 300th newsletter in October!

Finally, after more than 600 days in prison, things are looking more positive for West Hampstead resident Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe (Freudian typo corrected). Richard, her husband has kept her name in the news. There was a tying of ribbons round a tree on Fortune Green at Easter to mark one year in prison, and a march in November. She celebrated her birthday on Boxing Day and may be eligible for early release next month.

Coming up

There is a very interesting (monthly) concert series starting at the Sheriff Centre, sponsored by Bechstein pianos.

First one on Friday January 5th is a recital by tenor Mark Padmore accompanied by Andrew West on Piano. The following wednesday they are playing the same concert – in the Cologne Philharmonic Hall!

Tweet of the week

The campaign for a lift at West Hampstead Station received some (very local) support…

What have you missed since December 11th?

Things are gearing up for Christmas so we checked out some of our local stores for some present ideas.

There was a house fire on Inglewood Road. Thankfully no-one was hurt.

Firefighter Sam in action on Inglewood Road. Image thanks to Adam Morris.

Unfortunately, after a lull, there was another moped phone theft on West End Lane.

In another theft (or it may have been the same one) the thieves chucked away the Microsoft phone they snatched – they didn’t want it!

And there were two burglaries on Pandora Road. The Safer Neighbourhood Teams (SNT) reminded you to keep vigilant.

It was the West End Lane Books Christmas quiz.

There is an exhibition on artist David Bomberg (who lived on Fordwych Road) coming to the Ben Uri Gallery in June next year.

Konnichiwa to West Hampstead’s newest arrival.

Banana Tree lost an appeal on its decking and it will have to go.

The Kilburn councillors spoke out AGAINST the parking issues that MILAM (Maygrove, Iverson etc RA) are experiencing! MILAM wasn’t happy.

With Christmas and New Year coming up the next newsletter will be on the 28th December and after that back on the 7th January. For those of you sticking around over the holidays, look out for our West Hampstead Christmas survival guide this week.

With that, a very Merry Christmas from West Hampstead Life.

Coming up this week

Mon 18th – Locally Sourced at the Alliance. Christmas readings, pianist and tenor and an open mic!
Sat 23rd – Carols on the Green (organised by Emmanuel Church)

What have you missed since December 4th?

It snowed! You can always rely on the Wet Fish for an appropriate tweet.

We took a closer look at the redevelopment of Gondar Gardens into luxury retirement flats (including indoor swimming pool and chauffeur-driven cars) but ‘can’t afford’ any affordable housing. S-e-r-i-o-u-s-l-y?

Time for another Insight in West Hampstead; this time we popped into the Mill Lane Barbers to meet Prod.

Aaah – West Hampstead in the snow. Pics were taken by Pennygrinder (and there are more if you click the link)

No sooner had we published our profile of Prod (who is originally Greek Cypriot) than on Wednesday West End Lane was over-run by Nicosia Apeol fans who stopped on their way to Wembley where their team was playing Spurs. Heavy police presence, lots of beer was drunk (Christmas came early for the Alice House) and chanting.

West End Lane reopened on Monday evening after the burst water main was repaired. But quite a few locals enjoying the quite traffic-free atmosphere asked if it could be more permanent.

At the Junction of Finchley Road and Frognal lane, a car caught fire. Shut the Finchley Road apparently.

Things seem to have quietened down on the moped-theft fronts but alas there was an attempted robbery at the tube station on Tuesday. *Keep vigilant*

An Albanian drugs gang was sentenced to over 44 years in prison after being arrested in an (unspecified) ‘West Hampstead’ restaurant.

It was the NDF meeting – it was well attended and some really good discussion on planning issues. If you care about this sort of thing, it’s worth coming along. The next meeting will be the AGM.

This poor local can’t bury her cat. It was killed in an accident and at the behest of a neighbour Veolia collected it, but can’t now find it.

Boris made his trip to Tehran – there were a number of items discussed but Nazanin’s case was high up the agenda.

Last Tuesday, friends, family and supporters of Nazanin were outside 10 Downing Street singing carols (quite tunefully thanks to Richard’s family coming from Wales).

This week saw the latest Friends of West Hampstead Library (FoWHL) event; two thesps for the price of one as Jim Carter interviewed Derek Jacobi. It sounded like it was another really good evening.

If you missed it (and many did) there is another opportunity as Jim Carter is organising two fundraising evenings for the Tricycle; Monday 19th Feb in conversation with Derek Jacobi + Kenneth Branagh and another one with Emma Thompson + Imelda Staunton (Sun 25th Feb – this one is sold out already).

Looking for a West Hampstead present for Christmas? Doris Lessing’s Nobel Prize medal is coming up for auction, the bidding starting at £250,000. If that is a bit high, we’ll be doing a rundown of local present ideas in a *slightly* cheaper price-range.

The head chef to the Italian ambassador was cooking up a storm at Scavolini in this sponsored post.

We did a round up of things to do in December, as usual, there is quite a lot.

Tweet of the week

We think this tweet and the subsequent chain is, well, barking mad. But it’s got 1.8k likes!

What have you missed since November 27th?

Tulip entered into a bit of a spat with Channel Four news; they questioned her at the recent Nazanin rally on West End Green about a Bangladeshi QC who has disappeared. She got flustered and made what she later said was an “ill-judged” comment to a producer, although still reported the episode to the police; Channel 4 in turn complained to Labour about her comment and publicised the footage.

There’s increased competition on the Christmas tree market here in West Hampstead. We took a closer look at the options. Where will you buy yours from? And will your spend over £600 for the full service?!

The killers of of Yasir Bashir (the guy who was shot in Kilburn this time last year) received long prison sentences. It also appears that the kid who pulled the trigger (still unnamed due to his age) had a traumatic upbringing.

West End Lane was out of action this week due to a water main that burst on Wednesday morning. Any hopes of a speedy repair were dashed. Latest is that is may be re-opened by Monday. (Why do they burst over winter?)

Repairs underway on West End Lane, as seen by Michael Hilton

The tube station was closed on Monday due to a passenger incident. Apparently, it was a young lady who fell onto the tracks but was rescued.

And it was crunchtime on Mill Lane

It was the West Hampstead Christmas market, and Emmanuel School AND Beckford School Christmas Fairs on the same day.

The Lib Dems picked their candidates for Fortune Green ward; Cllr Flick Rea (the last Lib Dem standing) will stand again. She is joined on the ticket by local mum Tracey Shackle, who helped improve Maygrove Peace Park and by another local Adrian Bridge, who is a travel writer for the Telegraph.

RIP Jean Smith. This former West Hampstead librarian was a popular figure in the area and as Cllr Flick Rea said “Jean was for many years, a loved and respected member of West Hampstead’s community”.

Nazanin continued to be in the news – there was moving interview with her three year daughter Gabriella (in the Sun of all papers). Supporters for Nazanin’s release will be outside 10 Downing Street singing carols on Tues 5th. Here’s hoping Nazanin IS home for Christmas.

It’s the West Hampstead NDP meeting this week (Mon 4th) and the nascent Kilburn NDP meets on the 5th.

It’s taking joint chairs AND a secretary to fill the boots of James Earl as chair of the Fordwych RA! (We will miss you James).

The Sherriff centre is proving inspirational. Not just here but to the Knox United Church in … Calgary!

A new sushi place is opening up, down on Broadhurst Gardens!

And a new ‘eatery’ is opening at 32 Mill Lane called Mon Way; with a vegan buffet over Sunday.

It was the Whampsocial at the Gallery – I know I’m biased but I really can’t recommend these highly enough. It was another really pleasant event and great to meet more new people.

Coming up this week

Mon 4th – West Hampstead NDF meeting 7:30pm

Tues 5th – Carol singing for Nazanin at 10 Downing Street

Tues 5th – Kilburn NDF 6:30pm
Tues 5th – Derek Jacobi @ West Hampstead Library (fully booked)
Sat 9th – UCS Chorus concert
Wed 13th – Sidings AGM
Thurs 14th – Christmas Concert at Emmanuel church.

What have you missed since November 20th?

West Hampstead was all over the news this weekend due to a rally for Nazanin on West End Green and Mum’s march to the Islamic Centre in Maida Vale.

There is a new Christmas tree seller in town, Pines and Needles, and they are not popular. Locals are worried about the impact on the Mill Lane Gardening project which raises money to train those with learning disabilities. Although in all fairness quite a few like the lights on the Green. P&N have agreed not to trade next Saturday (during the Xmas market, when the Mill Lane Gardening Project will be selling at the Market) and will make a donation to the project.

Last week was Thanksgiving so the chance to tell the story of the artist behind Mount Rushmore, you know those four Presidents carved into the mountainside, who lived in Kilburn. Yes, really.

It’s just under six months until the 2018 local elections, but Camden Labour launched their campaign. They are gunning for a landslide with Swiss Cottage and Belsize in their sights. And maybe even Hampstead if the last election figures were anything to go by?

The Tories have chosen their candidates but haven’t publicised it very well (indeed can’t find a list anywhere on their website).

The Lib Dems are choosing theirs tomorrow.

He’s not standing in West Hampstead, but in neighbouring Hampstead, however, rising star Henry Newman of Open Europe was on Radio 4 Any Questions (and was open about his Italian boyfriend in one answer).

Thameslink 2000 is arriving in …2020. Originally costed at £650m the total bill will be £7bn…

This was a trip down memory lane on a C11.

West Hampstead tastes like ‘spam and chocolate’, odd but better than poor Kilburn

Camden refused permission for those ugly phoneboxes on West End Lane. At the bottom, by the stations, it would have cluttered the pavements we are trying so hard to keep clear. Up by West End Green, there are already several ugly and unused phone boxes.

Wanna rent on shop on Mill Lane? Included parking (if you don’t mind you customers climbing over a car to enter the shop)

Wanna know how to refurbish your flat on a shoe-string? This West Hampstead resident shows you how.

Mini-saga. A ring was lost! A ring was found. Much shorter than Lord of the Rings.

Coming up this week

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…

Wed 29th – WELBooks Christmas 20% off day.
Thurs 30th – Whampdrinks at the Gallery
Fri 1st – Sheriff Centre Christmas Countdown (5-6pm for the kids)
Sat 2nd – 8th West Hampstead Christmas market on West End Green 10am to 4pm.
Sat 2nd – Emmanuel AND Beckford Christmas fairs
St 2nd – Fundraising walk – on homelessness raising money for C4WS
Sun 3rd – Hampstead Village Christmas Fair 12-5pm
Mon 4th – West Hampstead NDF meeting

Tweet of the week (and click on it to hear Emma talking)

What have you missed since November 13th?

A new farmer’s market opened up in the O2 carpark. It was a soft opening this week, but some nice stalls and the weather was good.

Sticking to the food theme, Deliveroo opened up a new kitchen in the area, more delivery choices, but at what cost?

There will be a mum’s march, supported by local Emma Thompson, this coming Saturday 25th at 10:30 for Nazanin. Meeting point is West End Green with a short speech, refreshments and writing Christmas letter for her. Then off for the march.

Is this a bridge I see before me? Well, the beginnings of one at least. Seen at West Hampstead Overground.

It was Children in Need on last Friday, they raised (ahem) ‘a bit’ of money. Hopefully more from the Katie Melua official single, which was recorded at Hoxa studio in … West Hampstead.

More locally, there was a ride and raise spinathon (six hours!) at Studio Society to raise money for mental health work for those affected by the Grenfell tragedy. Well done Claire, Ruth and all the cyclists for raising over £4,000.

And… West Hampstead was in the thick of Mitzvah day, the Jewish fundraising and action charity day. The Mayor was out helping to collection at little Waitrose and there was cooking at JW3, but too many multi-faith interdenominational cooks?

Among other charities they were raising money for CW4S, it’s the Mayor of Camden’s chosen charity which over the winter months operates a weekly shelter out of Emmanuel church (and other churches in Camden).

Crisis are looking for volunteers at Christmas, particularly for female volunteers at their Women’s residential centre in North London. (Ed – I volunteered at Crisis one year, it changed my attitude to the homeless).

This West Hampstead property was originally offered for £3.5 million earlier this year, failed sell at £3.25 million in June. Came this week to auction (lot 18) at £2.5 million – and sold for £2.165 million (38% off the original asking price).

Is West Hampstead becoming a dormitory town? This studio flat is for rent at £1,400 a month; two single beds but erm no living area.

This local was assaulted the other day when they asked a mini-cab driver to pick up some rubbish they had dropped. Did you witness anything?

Hampstead School has a sixth form open evening on Thursday 23rd.

Friends of West Hampstead Library new writer in residence posted this blog piece on the recent Graham Gouldman event. It’s a lovely read. Welcome to West Hampstead Tal!

Just over a month ’til Christmas… Cocao Bijoux are opening a pop-up shop.

Titan (he’s a missing cat) has been spotted down near Maygrove Road. Anyone living down there (MILAM we are looking at you) can you take a look?

Tweet of the week

Coming up this week

20th, Mon – Locally Sourced, poetry and jazz @theAlliance
24th, Fri (and on-going) new exhibition ‘Ripe’ at Kingsgate project space
24th/25th/26th – Kingsgate Centre designer-maker fair (highly recommended)
25th, Sat – Barn dance Community Association at Emmanuel church! Yee-haw.
30th, Thur – Whampdrinks at the Gallery (highly, highly recommended!)

What have you missed since November 6th?

Moped snatches of mobile phones continue to be a problem. One poor woman had her phone snatched outside Wickes on West End Lane.

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s ongoing imprisonment in Tehran hit the headlines this week. In a gaffe, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said she was ‘training journalists’, which was seized on by the Iranian authorities as confirmation she was spying. He apologised and may be going to Tehran along with Richard, Nazanin’s husband.  Michael Gove is coming under fire on the issue.

Richard is also very concerned about his wife’s mental and physical health, with recent discoveries of lumps in her breast.

Another West Hampstead sunset thanks to StevieJLowy

A West Hampstead mum, suffering from cancer, was overwhelmed by a crowdfunding drive to raise money for childcare costs for her twins. It’s reached £8,000 with a target of £10,000. You can donate here.

Bienvenue Maison de la Vie (new cafe on the KHR).

Gung Ho, the chinese restaurant, is being reduced in size, apparently part of it will become an architect’s office.

We have heard that Salt House on Abbey Road has been sold to property developers.

A planning application has gone in to redevelop the Gondar Gardens reservoir (the fourth or fifth…) into luxury retirement flats (with an in-house chauffeur service). More on this next week.

There are moves afoot to rename the Minster Road Nature Reserve after Jane Evans who did so much to get it set up.

Anyone seen this earring?

Dexter the cat was found!

Gay West Hampstead 1. Joe Orton lived on West End Lane with Kenneth Halliwell (and for much longer than he lived in Islington)

Gay West Hampstead 2. Keith Vaughan artist, lived on Lyncroft Gardens. His photos are the subject of an exhibtion.

Paddington 2 opened to applause all round (think the Friends of Fortune Green has its movie for next August sorted!). The voice of Aunt Lucy is West Hampstead’s own Imelda Staunton.

Happy 100th birthday to West Hampstead resident Norah. She recalls back in the 1930s, West End Lane had ‘three butchers, a dairy and a haberdashery’. No change then – we still do: Brinkworth Dairy and the butchers at the farmers’ market + two permanent butchers and .. the Village Haberdashery).

What have you missed since 30th October?

The police say things are improving on phone snatches, (‘down by a quarter in the last three months’) and they recovered these two mopeds (along with drugs). They also thwarted this attempted phone snatch and caught this robbery suspect .

But… there have been a few more phone snatches this week – including from the partner of former leader of Camden Council. Apparently, it is not the first time it has happened outside the back of Sainsburys in the O2. Be vigilant.

Other phones were snatched outside Little Waitrose and in a new twist someone had their headphones snatched

Those famous West Hampstead skies were back this week. This one spotted by KateGleeson1

There’s still a long way to go before everyone’s going to be satisfied by the new rubbish and recycling contract (hint: communication is critical, as the comment below the article makes clear).

Remember, remember that there’s lots to do in November. Here are 12 things to get you started. With a couple of extras for good measure.

Monday was not a good day for transport… there was a crash by the Overground station (it was a BMW) and one on the Kilburn High road too!

And over on the Thameslink morning travel were disrupted by TWO broken down trains, one at Farringdon (which took over an hour to sort out). There was further disruption on Tuesday and Wednesday … and Friday. Sigh.

A man reported being raped after being followed from Finchley Road Tube station.

Boris Johnson condemned Iran for detaining West Hampstead mother Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe. The petition calling for her release has reached more than a million signatures. Yes, more than 1 million. Have you signed yet?

And in coffee shop news this one is up for rent and there is a new French one opening on the Kilburn High Road. Oh-la-la.

What have you missed since October 23rd?

A local resident was scammed at Barclay’s cashpoint. Don’t let it happen to you.

Phone thefts are still an issue and the West Hampstead SNT was handing out this advice.

A woman’s body was found by Menelik Road. Her death was not being treated as suspicious

Who does this leave this apparently never ending supply? wondered Mandira Bhimjiyani? (and WHL too).

WHAT held its public meeting on rubbish and recycling. We know it is an issue dear to your hearts but seems that while lots of you can tweet the tweet, coming to a public meeting was a bit too much of a commitment … Still, it was a good turnout and those that were there, although sympathetic to recycling and terribly polite, gave Camden and Veolia a thorough grilling. More details next week.

A couple of events for Halloweentreats (and maybe face-painting) on offer by Fortune Green or how about decorating a chocolate skull? (cost involved)

The Good Ship closed, but fortunately, its popular comedy club has sailed over the Colonel Fawcett in Camden.

Georgia Gould the new leader of Camden Council has been out and about in sunny West Hampstead.

West Hampstead resident (and Countdown champ) James Slater has been selected to stand as a Labour candidate for Hampstead ward, and at 19 he’s the youngest candidate.

Work began on La Brioche – apparently it’s going to have a brunch focus during the day and then become a restaurant at night. So nothing at all like its next-door neighbour The Wet Fish Café then.

Someone ‘clocked’ that at long last Lena’s Cafe 2 is reopening under a new name… Salad and coffee apparently.

It was a Whampdinner – they really are great fun. If you want a fun night out, with good food and meet some cool new people, sign up. If you don’t, then don’t. (next Whampevent is a Whampdrinks on the 30th Nov).

Newest arrivals on Fortune Green… a plumbers merchants and ….an(other) estate agent.

A teenager (16) was convicted of the shooting of Yasir Beshira last December in Kilburn. A 21 year-old accomplice from West Hampstead was also convicted of the murder. Another defendent was found guilty of manslaughter.

More about the man stabbed in that terrible phone theft incident in Little Venice his alleged killers were arrested in West Hampstead.

It was the Community Associations quiz night in Emmanuel Church.

As if we don’t already have enough trainlines, there is a suggestion that HS2 runs via … West Hampstead!

Ever wondered what it was like to be an older person using local buses?

Mill Lane was resurfaced and for a few brief moments was truly ‘car-free’.

The Friends of Library put on an EXCELLENT evening with Graham Gouldman.

Property madness 1. Wanna buy an ex-council house? It’s only £1.2 million. better hurry though. it’s under offer…

Property madness 2. This guy spotted an empty house in West Hampstead. And it earned him £10k! Though apparently it wasn’t actually empty and now the tenants are being asked to leave.

Property (not madness) LSE have digitised Booth’s map of London poverty. West Hampstead is on the edge, it was mostly ‘Middle class. Well-to-do’, ‘Fairly comfortable. Good ordinary earnings’ with some ‘Mixed. Some comfortable others poor’. No change really.

Camden is submitting a bid to be the London Borough of Culture at the end of November. Now is your chance to have a say.

WHL went to Amnesty UK’s performance of ‘Looking for Mummy’; the dramatisation of West Hampstead resident Nazanin Zaghari-Ratclilffe’s imprisonment. It was an excellent and moving portrayal of complex issue.

And another (younger) West Hampstead resident received a letter. So what you wonder? Well, it was from Paddington Bear!

Coming up this week

After a bumper week last week – as you can see from the newsletter, a bit quieter this week.  But keep and eye out for ’10 things to do in November ‘.

Tues 31st Oct – Halloween! (see above)

Wed 1st Nov. – Mark Forsyth on a “Short History of Drunkeness at WEL books. Might include glass of wine (geddit).

What have you missed since October 16th?

It’s WHL’s 300th newsletter! Wow. Being a smart lot, you’ll realise that’s more or less six years of reporting on the local news. We now reach more than 2,500 of you and it’s gratifying that we keep hearing how much people appreciate the newsletter.

Before we start with this week’s news here is our very first newsletter!

What did we cover? Well there was something on the Milliband brothers (remember them?), Camden were handing out 2,000 snow shovels – and it hasn’t really snowed since! Gym news as The Gym group was opening up, a Robert Webb tweet, Achillea Flowers got a mention (it also was opening that week), there was talk of a tube strike… and we asked if the Met police should be more visible? Oh and something on recycling. All sounds rather familiar…

It’s sad that this 300th edition coincides with a crime wave that once again is our lead story this week… on which note, let’s crack on.

Earlier in the week there were arrests of two teenagers on a moped in Broomsleigh Street – following an earlier mobile phone snatch on a moped and fatal stabbing in Little Venice.

Then on Thursday, there was an already planned Area Action Forum (public meeting) on moped-related crime, which was well attended and saw a frank presentation by the new Neighbourhood policing Inspector Richard Berns.

There have been further moped-enabled mobile snatches, across the area and from this guy, but good to hear that people rallied round to help him. This one on the weekend and these not, one but two on the night of the meeting. WATCH OUT.

Teenager being arrested after the stabbing incident last night. Picture: @leocodron

To coincide with our 300th newsletter we are having a Whampdinner this week – on the outer reaches of our ‘hood (and indeed a bit beyond) at the Clifton pub. Nice place though. If you want to join there are a few special anniversairy newsletter spaces! Please email They are great fun and it’s nice to meet fellow Whampers. Who knows, we might even crack open the Whampagne.

Mill Lane is closed in sections this coming week, but it is still open for business! It seems to be reopened at the end of each day once work is finished though.

Note that WEL is also closed on Saturday nights to Sunday mornings for crane works at the Overground station. Also note both these sets of work affect bus services.

Camden staged a ‘flytip’ PR stunt but as many pointed out there were enough real fly-tips around. Talking of the perennial problem of rubbish local group WHAT are holding a public meeting this week on the 25th in the Synagogue Hall. They have produced a sensible report with lots of suggestions. If you care about rubbish – and we know many of you do – this is your chance to question Camden.

The Boundary commission have decided to proceed with the proposed changes; so it will be Hampstead. Commissioners decide to drop Kilburn and add Child’s Hill and Hampstead Garden suburb after all. They are asking for further comment and who knows if it will actually happen.

Our historian Dick Weindling was interviewed on Dutch radio about the Beatles being turned down by Decca. You can ‘see’ the radio interview here.

Will there finally be action on parking pressures on Iverson Road?

More on Nazanin – David Cameron wrote on her behalf, which proves she is a spy! ? And there is a performance of the Edinburgh show about her (details below).

Places available at  Fordwych Nursery, which has been open since 1946! (but has just been refurbished) for 2 and 3 year olds.

There was a car crash on the Finchley Road, at the start of rush hour.

The back of 529A Finchley Road has applied to become another fitness studio (see more gym news).

Black Lion – it was all happening and they had a free beer festival (warning this tweet gets rapidly really annoying…).

Welcome to FoWHL new writer in residence and this week they have ‘An Evening with Graham Gouldman’ of 10cc etc fame (look him up kids) but sorry, it’s fully booked.

It’s Halloween coming up – Achillea flowers are getting in the mood… and there is a (chocolate) skull decorating workshop at the Sheriff Centre!

And finally – anyone seen the cats Titan? or Al?

Coming up this week

Mon 23rd – Final Good Ship comedy night.

23rd – Looking for Mummy. Edinbrugh show about Nazanin. Tickets (£10) here.

Tues 24th Fowhl – evening with Graham Gouldman (sorry it’s full booked)

Wed 25th – WHAT public meeting on rubbish (not sold out) at the Synagogue Hall 7:30pm

Thurs 26th – WHampdinner (details above)

Sat 28th – the Smyths at Good Ship (sold out, might be returns)

Sat 28th – CAWH quiz at Emmanuel church – a few places left.

What have you missed since October 9th?

There has been a further spate of mobile phone snatches; by West End Green, on Westbere Road and an attempted one on West End Lane. There will be an area action forum this Thursday in the Synagogue Hall to discuss the this issue. Do come.

There’s a brand new chocolate shop on Broadhurst Gardens. But what’s happened to Cocoa Bijoux?

A couple of local venues celebrated their first birthdays.

Finchley Road (in the early 60s?) with trees! image: @villagevoice1

It’s been six months since the introduction of the new rubbish regime and local campaigning group WHAT is holding a public meeting on the 25th on ‘what is working and what is not working’. Coincidentally it is Clean Camden fortnight. Though looks like someone forget tell Kingsgate place… or here and on ‘Mess’ina Avenue

After a slight delay the local Labour party chose it’s candidates for West Hampstead ward in next year’s council elections.

Camden is the third happiest place in London, but neighbouring Brent is one of the unhappiest places in the country! Are they SO different?

West End Lane will be closed on Saturday nights for the next six to nine weeks by the Overground Station (and don’t forget Mill Lane will be closed in sections from the 21st to the 28th).

Her friends and family though that West Hampstead resident Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, who is being detained in Iran, might be up for early release but instead she faces three further charges and up to 16 more years in prison. Richard, her husband wrote this letter in the Evening Standard, Local MP Tulip Siddiq and Richard appeared on Channel 4 news, while Iranian lawyer and Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi said Britain must do more.

This Wednesday and Thursday, local film-maker Anna Bowman will be at Kingsgate Community Centre between 1-3pm collecting memories of local community organisations established in the 1970s and 80s. If you have any memories, do go along and share them. You can contact Anna here.

A true West Hampstead stalwart was recognised by Camden magazine – step forward Sue Measures. She has run a tight ship at the Sidings Community Centre for 32 years, including working with local young people. This past Saturday she ran Sidings’ annual heritage fair.

Camden magazine also had an article on the new Kingsgate school building at Liddell Place. A reminder to parents – you need to apply to it (and any other schools) by the end of October. The article omitted that the school will be in the middle of a building site once construction starts on the adjacent housing.

Good news and bad news. First the bad news, the Good Ship is closing for good on the 29th. The final band on stage is incredibly popular tribute act the Smyths and heaven knows we’re miserable now.

The good news is that the Good Ship comedy club is sailing over to Camden to a new home at the Sir Colonel Fawcett (it’s the sister pub to Kilburn’s Sir Colin Campbell). The final show in Kilburn on the 23rd still has tickets available but the special extra show on the 26th is already sold out.

There are scant details on the changes in the C11. This document from TfL just says the changes are ‘to match demand’ but gives no evidence or explanation. The change was introduced on Saturday.

The Hampstead Theatre is facing a 14% cut in its Arts Council subsidy.

Theresa Le – of Ladudu and now Ladudu sauces – was handing out samples at the West Hampstead Farmer’s market this weekend. They are also available to buy at Natural Fruit and Vegetable on West End Lane.

What have you missed since October 2nd?

A former lettings agent was sentenced to 30 months for theft from several properties including some in West Hampstead. He continue to posed as one to borrow keys from other firms.

The spate of mobile phones and bags snatching continues in the area.

There will be an area forum on the 19th focusing on this ongoing problem.

We popped into Curled Leaf on Mill Lane to get an insight. It’s a good vegetarian option for the area run by Luli and Alketa, she is also an artist, who has just done a TED talk.

Glorious West Hampstead sunset this evening as seen by @MarkSpivey

Save West End Lane 1. There have been four different planning applications to install phone boxes up and down the narrow pavements of West End Lane; on the incredibly busy pavements outside West Hampstead Square, at the junction of Iverson Road and West End Lane, in front of Waitrose and up by West End Green. They seem primarily a vehicle for advertising. No thanks. Local organisations WHAT and the NDF strongly object.

Save West End Lane 2. The Kebab shop opposite the overground has changed hands and installed a garish sign. It hasn’t got planning permission and the Council are taking enforcement action.

What is it about Mill Lane? As well as the Insight with Curled Leaf, we also popped into the Alliance – to meet Hélène Clément who works behind the bar. She has just published her first book. London book launch next week in South Ken. Oh la la.

Staying on Mill Lane we also talked to Lora Verner an artist and photographer who took up art again at the nearby West Hampstead Community Centre. Earlier in her career she had taken photos of Biba, which are now in the V&A. (The photos are in the article, worth a look)

Following the architect of the Alexandra and Ainsworth Estate winning the RIBA gold medal there was this analysis. If you care about housing in London, or just housing it’s worth a read.

There will be fewer C11s ‘to match demand’.

It was the Tory Party conference where the Camden Tories pondered their fate in face of the onslaught of Labour in London.

The planning committee approved redevelopment of Holy Trinity Church on the Finchley Road to be replaced by the Lighthouse. If they can raise £11m to build it that is.

La Brioche closed for good. Roger and the team will be missed.

Are you confused by the checkout queues at Waitrose…? It seems many are.

Tweet of the week

It was Bookshop day this week, so someone paid a visit to West End Lane Books…

What have you missed since September 25th?

As part of National Poetry Day on Thursday, local poet Ted Booth wrote a poem about freedom dedicated to Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe. The West Hampstead mum was denied parole from her Iranian jail this week. Her husband Richard read the poem outside the Iranian embassy and 1,000 copies were given out in West Hampstead.

Tom’s been out and about, eating Italian at Nona in Fairhazel Gardens. How did he find it?

Make a note – Mill Lane will be resurfaced (and closed in sections) from Sat 21st Oct to Sat 28th.

And here are the top twelve things to do in (and around West Hampstead) in October.

Putting your litter in the bin is anything but #despicable in West Hampstead. Image: Marianne Jones

The police are appealing for witnesses to the hold up at the Sherriff Centre, apparently the perpertators were three men dressed in black on mopeds.

The police have also been warning of phones being snatched by moped thieves by the tube station. Be aware. [Ed – reports of another mobile being stolen at the Thameslink last night].

Transport news 1. Following the Underground, is the Overground station ticket office set to close?

Transport news 2. Another train link for West Hampstead! Looks like the Green light for new/upgraded passenger line ‘the West London Orbital’ from West Hampstead to Old Oak Common (future Crossrail hub). More passengers for the the interchange…

Politics (Lib Dem) – former local councillor Nancy Jirira spoke at the Lib Dem conference on how minority ethnic groups are unaware of Lib-Dem policies. Or indeed the Lib Dems.

Politics (Lab) – Tulip continues to battle against a hard Brexit.

There was a very good piece on understanding the World Transformed (i.e. Momentum).

And some cross-party consensus … on chocolate biscuits!

This week saw a (sad) farewell to Paul Perkins who ran the Winch youth centre for nine years (previously there had been seven directors in as many years). The Winch provides after-school clubs and activities for young people. It is a charity WHL has long supported.

Architectural award news 1. Neave Brown architect of the Alexandra and Ainsworth Estate won the RIBA Gold medal (highest award for architecture)

Architectural award news 2. Emmanuel Church was nominated for the best church renovation.

And sticking to the architectural theme there was this rather cool historical map of NW London, showing West Hampstead (or West End as was then) in …. 1790!

West Hampstead resident Ben Corrigan appeared earlier this season on Dragon’s Den with as part of a team of three pitching Pouch (an online voucher wallet). The dragons liked the pitch as all five made offers.

Tweet of the week

Worth a click to read the comments.

What you missed since September 18th?

We had a feeling that crime was on the rise as we recently reported… a few days later local Councillor Lorna Russell was burgled.

This week, more evidence that crime about that rise. Last Wednesday, at the Sherriff Road post Office there was an armed robbery. On Mill Lane two men on a moped attempted to steal a mobile from a partially-sighted man. On Broadhurst Gardens Lacq nail bar had its windows smashed. And on Crediton Hill a car was stolen.

And the Police response? A ‘consultation’ on CLOSING the Safer Neighbourhoods Team Offices on West End Lane.

After some pressure to act the local councillors, particularly Cllr Russell who was recently burgled and had her mobile stolen too, have arranged an area forum on Thursday 19th Oct with crime high on the agenda. If you are concerned about this issue (and who isn’t?) please come along.

There was an incident outside the Library.

Our historians delved into the case of Frank Vosper an actor who mysteriously died at sea aged 36.



Image: left by anon.

More crime news.  Ed – WHL took some flack this week for being too crime focused in this newsletter but we feel it is an important issue that is not getting the response it deserves.

The trial continues on the murder of Yasir Bashira who was shot dead off the Kilburn High Road last December. One of the accused Sammi Tesfazgi, stolen car dealer of Lithos Road, denied being involved with the shooting.

Staying on the Kilburn High Road. There was a warning to watch out for this guy.

And in a final crime story the sister nursary (in Camden) to the Fortune Green playcentre, was burgled. Both are run by social enterprise PACE. Who burgles a nursary?

Now on to politics…

Some changes in the Camden cabinet; Fortune Green councillor Richard Olszewski got a big promotion stepping up to replace Theo Blackwell in charge of Finance.

Meric Apak was moved on from bins and was replaced by Adam Harrison who immediately come up to West Hampstead to try to listen to locals about bin and rubbish problems. More walkabouts are promised.

New leader of the Council Georgia Gould is looking at ways to liven up boring council meetings.

Four cottages behind West Hampstead fire station are set for refurbishment. London Assembly Member Andrew Dismore said ‘it was scandalous that the previous Mayor was prepared to leave the properties empty’ but was curiously silent on the fact that the Mayor before that, Ken Livingston (Labour) also left the properties empty.

Christmas is coming! The Village Haberdashery are launching Makers Market: basically every Sunday from October 1st they will be hosting 24 pop-up shops over 12 weeks. There. is. some. great. stuff.

The Xmas market will be on Saturday 2nd December. If you are interested in a stall please email .

It was a ‘barn’ storming night at Emmanuel Church, as the Community Association held a barn dance.

Wenzel’s the bakers opened for a second shop. As Brenda from Bristol would say ‘What, another one, you’re joking’.

And in more carbohydrate news there is new chocolate shop opening on Broadhurst Gardens.

A Nigerian restaurant is set to open on the Finchley Road.

Local author Anthony McGowan did his book talk at West End Lane Books on his latest book ‘The Art of Failing’ and an interview in the Ham & High.

Local author #2 Susie Steiner is back on the case as she talked to the Ham & High about the return of DC Manon Bradshaw in Persons Unknown.

What have you missed since September 11th?

Labour selected its three candidates for Fortune Green ward.  Welcome back (and congratulations) to Lorna Russell and Richard Olszewski and welcome to new candidate Sorin Floti

The selection for West Hampstead, however, wasn’t quite so smooth. And – people of West Hampstead – we can’t recommend highly enough Richard Osley’s political coverage of our area in the CNJ.

As Richard points out given Labour only have 54 candidates for 54 seats (and apparently the lists are closed) and West Hampstead now goes to the back of the queue – since the best candidates stand first could we end up with the leftovers? Reminder: of the last three candidates one left to became an independent and the other two stepped down after one term.

At the celebrity charity cricket match at HCC this Sunday we were ‘bowled’ over by Emma Thompson’s performance (throwing the first ball). Who says sport is fixed? The celebrities won. By one run. On the last ball. Good turnout and funds raised for charity so everyone is a winner (including WHL – in the raffle! )

WHL got down and dirty on the Kilburn High Road (KHR for all you kids) following complaints about the state of things. Room for improvement we think. A lot.

And as it happens the Evening Standard Property section did an area guide to Kilburn.  The area has ‘a raw and real feel’ (see above). And Kate Moss once lived here – really? Yes, really!

PoTW 295

A West Hampstead property appeared in (the prestigious) Architectural Digest.  Ooh-err.  Hang on – it’s a converted … garage!?

You need an extra bedroom.  It will ‘only’ cost you £790,000 to move from a two-bedroom to a three-bedroom in Camden. Gulp.

Looking for an office in the area?  The commercial units in the Ballymore building are up for rent, but not cheap.

It was the NDF meeting last week.  The new owners of Nido (the student housing) were there presenting plans to remodel some of the facades and expand the building (adding an extra 40? rooms). It’s only a couple of years old!

More property news – a West Hampstead landlord was fined £339,000 for breaches of planning/ renting sub-standard housing.

If like WHL, you are interesting in decent housing for everyone then we recommend ‘Unreliable Evidence’ on Radio 4, which this week looked at housing law.

Is West Hampstead getting fitter?  There is a planning application for a shop on Mill Lane to become a fitness studio and another one in a basement off West End Lane to become a gym. There was a sponsored post this week from Studio Society the new immersive gym by Fortune Green. They still have a good opening offer.

But @Scandisgirl rightly pointed out the reason for all these gyms is to… (click to find out).

Thinking about a secondary school for your child?  Hampstead School is having open mornings.

It was Cllr Flick and Ted’s excellent adventure in poetry and prose at the library.  Good turnout (nothing to do with the good canapés I can assure you) and a lovely evening.

Local, Lydia Parker is directing Dolphin and Sharks which garnered some good reviews and is at the Finborough Theatre. It’s set in a Harlem copy shop…

… and talking of copy shops WHL bumped into these familiar faces David and Debbie of Colour Division.

… and talking of closing, LaBrioche is closing as early as this coming week.  Eeek. There will then be a two month refurb before it re-opens under new ownership.

It was the farmer’s market’s fifth birthday – cake all round. And another present to West Hampstead… they have withdrawn their planning application. It garnered support – until people read the small print.

WHL warned you it was going to be an action packed West Hampstead weekend, and it was.

All over London it was Open House. WHL got to fulfil two long held Open House wishes; on Saturday WHL visited the Alexandra and Ainsworth Estate, a legacy of the Sidney Cooke era of Camden Housing.  It’s a bit tired outside but inside the flats are great. And on Sunday it was a to visit the Isokon building.

And there is more! WHL also popped into the launch of Stomp School by Jeff Norton at West End Lane Books. The perfect book to read to your little monsters. And again. And again (but with little jokes for adults to keep it fun)

And in even further book news – last week saw the appearance of @chrisdifford in West End Lane books, an event truly cool for cats. And you read it here first – he’ll be back! Book. Your. Tickets. NOW!

And coming up this week another book reading by Tony McGowan of his new book “The Art of Failing’. WHL met him for a Q&A.

The countdown to closure on the Good Ship is ticking. Sad face. But some good events coming up.

What, another one?! There is a comedy night to raise funds for Cricklewood Library. It’s part of a wider fundraising initiative to raise money for Cricklewood Library.  Not West Hampstead, but for those in upper Fordwych Road it is their closest Library.

Clare Balding played the young gun trio song about Matt (of the Naz and Matt Foundation). Be the Man. And if you want to hear more about the band you can here (esp if you are into nu-folk). It too, is inspiring!

And in more entertainment news the Troubadour sessions are back at the Railway. Next one is Tuesday 19th I think.

Tweet of the week

And finally, has Gollum (or anyone else lost a ring…?) on Fordwych Road.

What have you missed since Sept 4th?

Sad news from the Kilburn High Road. The Good Ship, the popular music and comedy venue, is closing at the end of October. It’s been a victim of changes to licensing hours, which we reported on earlier.

Kingsgate Primary School – Lower School opened this week. It is supposed to have a traffic management plan to minimise traffic but the first couple of days didn’t exactly go according to plan. Local residents were not happy, they were already at breaking point before the school opened.  The Councillors and school then stepped in with CPZ enforcement and things improved – until it rained (which is does in winter). And the school is only 3/4 full. And the flats and office space isn’t built yet. And one parent hasn’t quite got this ‘travel plan’ concept…

After our recent story on the apparent rise in crime in West Hampstead, particularly Fortune Green, one of the Fortune Green councillors was burgled!

West Hampstead. This happened to Cllr Russell - don't let it happen to you. Follow crime prevention advice.

West Hampstead. This happened to Fortune Green Cllr Lorna Russell – don’t let it happen to you. Follow crime prevention advice.

Tannin & Oak was broken into as well.  And in this tweet there is report of yet another burglary.  Time for some action by the Police and the Council.

Tree down on West End Lane. Vandalism?

Labour choses candidates for West Hampstead Fortune Green this Monday and Tuesday.  With Phil Rosenberg and James Yarde standing down and Angela Pober becoming an independent it will be three new candidates on the slate in West Hampstead at least.

Local MP Tulip was held up re-entering the country because her daughter’s passport has her husband’s name on it. So she is campaigning to have BOTH parents names  in a child’s passport.  And secondly, we reliably hear from our sources  @nurseryworld that she is to chair the APPG on childcare and early years.

Down at the National Theatre another local, Imelda Staunton, has just opened in ‘Follies’.  5* reviews enter stage right ‘it’s jaw-droppingly good’.

Meanwhile, over at Hampstead Cricket Club Jim Carter is organising a celebrity cricket match next Sunday (17th).

Musician Chris Difford (look him up kids) did a talk at West End Lane books this week.  It was packed to the rafters.  After a very entertaining talk, the guitar came out and he sang a couple of songs including ‘Up the Junction’. It truly was cool for cats.

They always said Guglee curries were hot, but it appears they might have been too hot – there was a fire above their Finchley Road branch.

The Afghan restaurant Ariana II made an appearance on ‘A Cuckoo’s Calling’.

Seems like people are getting into the ‘swing’ of the new bar on Mill Lane.

It’s Mitzvah day coming up in November (Jewish Volunteering day) and this year they will be including visiting residents of Sidney Corob House  in West Hampstead.

And in the same week WHL was also asked by the Abbey community centre for caring residents to visit elderly residents in Whampstead.

Coming up this week (and beyond)

There is a whole bunch of stuff happening on Sunday which warranted a separate round-up article even!

Tues 12th –  NDF meeting
Wed 13th – Flick n’ Ted’s excellent adventure in Poetry and Prose
Thus 14th to Mon 18th – Ham & High Literary Festival @ JW3
Sat 16th + Sun 17th – Open House
Sun 17th – WHCC celebrity cricket match (starts 1:30pm)
Mon 18th – Locally Sourced is back @LaBrioche with a singer and a poet
Sat 23rd – it’s a Barn Dance @Emanuel Church

Tweet of the week

Things seem a bit gloomy recently ….

What have you missed since August 28th?

‘How Not To Be A Boy’ was published. Author and West Hampstead resident Robert Webb was out promoting it on R4 in Woman’s Hour and Channel 4 news this week, it was also R4’s book of the week (see below). You can pick up a signed copy at our friends @WELBooks (while stocks last).

It was the fire station’s open day and the young (and some not so young) residents of West Hampstead turned out in force. Earlier the week some grateful residents dropped off a homemade chocolate cake at the fire station to say thank you.

Rubbish continues to vex us. This week there was this on West End Lane, this off West End Lane, this on Netherwood road, and this on Quex Road. Come on Camden – get a grip. But let’s not just whinge – do something. Write to with any issues, fly-tip hotspots, bins left on streets.

PoTW 293

The Evening Standard called West Hampstead ‘A sought-after swan that was formerly an ugly duckling’. The cheek of it! It is well connected (true) but  apparently there is a lack of green space (Kilburn Grange? West End Green? and of course… Fortune Green?)

They were promoting flats for £134k in Ballymore (aka West Hampstead Square). Seemed rather cheap for West Hampstead, reading the small print this is for just a quarter of a flat.

And more dissing of West Hampstead, this time by the FT! They did an ‘at home with FT’ interview with England fast bowler and West Hampstead resident, Steven Finn; but they relocated him to Hampstead. Sigh. [Paywall]

Cat was lost (twice even?). Cat was found. Cat and owner reunited. West Hampstead comes to the rescue again.

Oh no! Our little Waitrose is closing for a week – mainly to get the flooring replaced. No easy task as the store will be completely emptied for the work and stock sent to other stores.

The Black Lion is also closing five days for its refurb! But reopening at 6pm on the 8th with a relaunch party. (So, no pressure on the builders then…:-)

And there’s more… The Iverson Road open space will be closed and redeveloped this Autumn. WHL was skeptical there had been enough consultation but MILAM locals say otherwise. Still, at £100,000+ it’s a bit pricey.

This Wednesday is the first day at school for the new pupils of the Kingsgate infants school expansion, which opens this week at the Liddell Road site. Good luck kids!

An incident outside the NLT on KHR. Cavendish Road closed.

WHL goes a little bit Hello magazine as it’s been wedding bells. Congratulations to Claire from @Achilleaflowers, who married a former Kitchen Table barrista. Love on Mill Lane! And also to the newly-wed @carlabradman. Read all about her wedding here.

WHL went to see the latest opening at Kingsgate Project Space. Interesting and some talks coming up in the month long exhibition. If you want to up your coolness you could do worse than exploring this (and buying a very reasonably price print).

The football season is starting. WHFC is looking for new players more details on the link.

Tweet of the week

This week it’s not a tweet but book of the week, Radio 4’s book of the week … ‘How Not To Be A Boy’. Quick load episodes before they roll off (then have 28 days to listen).

What have you missed since August 21st?

It was a bank holiday weekend so printing presses took at break, so this is being posted a day late. Now on with the news.

A guy had his mobile snatched outside the Thameslink Station. And a woman had a substance thrown in her face in Kilburn (thankfully it turned out to be ‘only’ boiling water).

All this prompted WHL to talk to our local police sergeant and look at the crime stats. And yes crime is on the up – 50% in Fortune Green.

Tulip offered to help sort out rubbish problems, but she is our MP not a councillor and this is a council issue.  Instead please email WHAT (), our local amenity group with details of any house where this is an issue (bins left on street), fly-tipping hot spots and other issues you are having (e.g. how to get new bags for the food waste bins) they will compile a report.


More detail on the shooting of Yasir Beshira.

And even the Mayhew Animal Home has been affected by the uptick in crime – someone stole their van.

A West Hampstead boy went missing.  But he’s been found.

West Hampstead’s travel links are top the rankings.

Remember we calculated how rich you need to be to afford housing in West Hampstead?  We underestimated – Pete Redfern bought a £709,950 flat at One Mill Lane – allegedly at a staff discount.  Who is he? The boss of Taylor Wimpey, who earned £10.7 million over the past two years. And the ultimate irony – he’s also a trustee of homeless charity Crisis.

Camden have paid out £18 million and counting on the Chalcot’s Estate; £10 million on evacutation, a further £8 million to make the blocks safe. Plus will pay millions more to remove and replace the cladding.

West Hampstead resident, Denis Quilligan is organising a tenant fightback against the merger of Notting Hill and Genesis Housing Associations.

The band who sang ‘Be the Man’ at Glasto about Matt Ogston met Matt at Naz’s memorial bench in the cemetery and you can hear the song here. It’s very moving.

Tweet of the week 

It’s not West Hampstead, but it was the Notting Hill Carnival, so we make this our ToTW

What have you missed since August 14th?

Incident on Saturday when an elderly lady fell from her flat onto the balcony below. She suffered a broken leg; ambulance and police in attendance.

Another incident on Sunday with 10+ police cars on the Finchley Road,  not clear what was the cause.

A teenager has been accused of killing Yasir Beshira on December last year.  Yasir (also called Loopy) was allegedly a drugs runner who wanted to start dealing on his own account.

More on last week’s 113 on fire. It really was on fire; one local man bravely tried to tackle the blaze.

@aryaSchnoodle has spotted something wrong with this new construction in @WHampstead ?

@aryaSchnoodle has spotted something wrong with this new construction in @WHampstead ?

Our historians have dug up a sad story about a body buried in Kilburn.

West End lane to become White Hart Lane? For the next TWO years while their stadium is being developed Spurs home games will be played at Wembley, making West Hampstead a stop off point for a quick pint before the game.

And did you did you witness a brawl in the early hours of August 5th on the Jubilee Line?

The latest blog post about Nazanin, after 500 days in prison, suggests maybe, just maybe, things are improving. Very, very tentative though.

Will we get in the ’Swing’ of things at the new arrival on Mill Lane?

And staying on Mill Lane, the barbers are recommending their new neighbours (Mill House, formerly the Kitchen Table).

Want a sneak preview of “How Not To Be A Boy?

It was the Kilburn Grange Festival. Very inclusive – even the dogs were invited!

There’s a new artistic director at JW3. WHL wishes her well.

This Kilburn teenager needs YOUR help! Get voting…

The end of Summers (at the Sir Colin Campbell on KHR), but fear not they have another chef lined up.

It’s National Burger day on the 24th August! Discounted burgers on offer – it’s a guilty pleasure I grant you, but it’s organised by a WHL reader (we are talking about you K)

Tweet  Meow of the week


What have you missed since Aug 7th?

Apparently, 42 of us are Lottery millionaires,  in our postcode area. Really National Lottery?

Our latest insight was with Ted Booth, the Library ‘writer in residence’. Ted brings poetry to West Hampstead, literally (in all senses).

There was a funeral on Quex Road for the leader of the former leader of the GMB, Mary Turner. Jeremy Corbyn, Sadiq Khan, and several MPs, were all there to pay their last respects.

Last week a burning car, this week … a burning bus. the 113 caught fire on the Finchley Road on Sunday evening.

113 on fire on the Finchley Road. Image thanks to Mark Hutton.

113 on fire on the Finchley Road. Image thanks to Mark Hutton.

Still problems with rubbish collections, including this West Hampstead resident!

The lifts are out of action in Ellerton (the council block on Mill Lane) and a mother, who lives on the 11th floor, slipped on the steps while carrying her one year old baby . Baby unharmed but mother bruised her elbow and jarred her neck.

Paul Perkins, the long standing CEO of the Winch (the youth centre in Winchester Road) is leaving and moving on to a new role at Save the Children. WHL wishes him well.

Twitterstorm on 16th Aug for Nazanin.  Please retweet at 6:30pm and help get closer to the goal of 1,000,000 signatories for her  release petition (already over 925,000).

Getting married? Someone donated a number of wedding dresses to the Scope store in West Hampstead.

Lena’s Cafe 2 is set to reopen ‘in a couple of weeks‘?

The tiny new coffee shop opposite the Overground station has opened – good luck!

We were quite excited to find Teresa (of @ladudufood) delicious sauces for sale in the fruit and veg shop on West End Lane. We also heard she has been doing online demonstrations.

Is it tough on the streets of West Hampstead?

A man was attacked and found unconcious on Skardu Road.

Maybe it is – there were a couple of attempted burglaries on Crediton Hill.

There was an incident on the KHR, police out in force but we didn’t find the cause. Does anyone know?

Have you seen this missing Kilburn man?

Or this missing French woman who was visiting West Hampstead?

How many shopping days to Christmas…?! The Village Haberdashery will be running ‘maker market’ on Sundays from October to Christmas. Do you know a designer-maker who might want to showcase their products? If so let them know

Go and see +-Human, the Random International installation at the Roundhouse! One of top ten tips for August – Time Out gave it 4*, we give it 5*. It’s £5 during for the installation (under 26s go free) and £15 for Fri/Sat nights with Wayne McGregor Dance

Have any old photos of how West Hampstead and Kilburn are changing? Take them along to the ‘Kilburn: Now and Then’ tent at the Kilburn Grange Festival on Saturday.

Tweet of the week

The FoFG screening of ‘Toy Story’ on Fortune Green was success – this tweet caught the mood.

What have you missed since July 31st?

We are entering the summer doldrums, but no silly season here at WHL.

There was an acid attack – in West Hampstead. We hope the victim is OK and the perpetrators are caught.

Goodbye, Father Andrew. With much sadness West Hampstead is ‘rid of that turbulent priest’ (in the opinion of some, but not us). Praise for his farewell sermon and a good turnout for his goodbye event.

It’s the summer holidays, but there is still plenty to do in (and around) West Hampstead. We did a round up of our top ten.

RIP Naz - gone three years, but not forgotten. Image: Naz & Matt foundation

RIP Naz – gone three years, but not forgotten. Image: Naz & Matt foundation

Glad to see the FO Minister paid a visit to Nazanin’s daughter, Gabriella.

Want to chill out and keep fit? There was a sponsored post from Yoga London Club, grab a free class to see what’s on offer.

And opening this week on Fortune Green is Studio Society –  fully immersive exercise, with spin, yoga, zumba you name it. All with surrounding images.

NW6 – we have our own song! You can hear it for yourself here.

A handy round up of West Hampstead restaurants, but WHL would humbly suggest, with a couple of omissions.

Nearly choked on my cornflakes this morning as local author Susie Steiner was on Broadcasting House as one of the newspaper reviewer . After I heard the stories she picked out; dead body farms (to see how bodies decompose in different situations)  and germ-infested sponges (in the Daily Mail) I really was choking on them.

The Cumberland Tennis Club’s women’s team have made it to the Aegon National finals in Bournemouth in September.

What have you missed since July 24th?

Avoid the 4:26pm Bedford to Brighton and 5:08pm Sutton to St. Albans services, they are among the top ten most crowded trains in the country. The latter is designed for 391 passengers, but crams in 758 of us. Good news though they are four carriage trains, which are set to become eight or even twelve carriage.

Rubbish? The local papers continue to be littered with letters and complaints about rubbish. We took another look at the problem – it was eye-catching (and contains eyesores).

Jessi Parrott, grew up in West Hampstead, is walking 100m. Quite a challenge as she has severe cerebral palsy.

Aurevoir West Hampstead memory from @J_Freemantle

Aurevoir West Hampstead a memory from @J_Freemantle

We ate at The Petite Coree – did we have a grand old time?

One of our benches is missing! Particularly sad because it had a plaque dedicated to the Kilburn cafe owner killed last year.

Wanna buy an average property in Camden? As a first time buying couple (with a average Camden joint salary of £88,526) you will need a deposit of …£490,737. That’s 56% of the average purchase price which is £866,973. To save that even on that joint salary it would take 27 years for the deposit – the longest of ANY area in the UK. And it’s ‘so Moneysupermarket’, but you can do the maths here yourself.

This Londoner laments that property is too expensive – and she’s a local property correspondent.

What another one? West Hampstead’s newest estate agent, John’s and Co has opened its doors.

A number of rabbis have called for a boycott of the JW3 after it ran a GayW3 festival earlier this year. Sigh.

Ooops. Camden Council had to pay out £2.5 million to settle a potential lawsuit, which they tried to keep it quiet.

Belsize community tennis club is under threat. Camden won’t renew the lease without a break clause (and as it happens, has also commissioned a ‘feasibility’ study to redevelop the land).

Following last week’s debate on imprisoned West Hampstead mother Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, she has been allowed to see a psychiatrist for her depression; and there will be a play about her at the Edinburgh Fringe (Looking for Mummy: Nazanin’s Story).

The Royal Free carpark is set to close – and be redeveloped into a £42 million UCL institute of immunity and transplantation. Some spaces will be made available round the back.

Fan of concrete? The Alexandra and Ainsworth estate are seeking old photos of the estate.

Fans of green space? The Fortune Green Councillors have supported the London National Park City campaign.

Local actress Phyllida Law has written a book about her life in the theatre. No, she’s not dead now of course.

Local author Anthony McGowan was excited to see the arrival of the first copies of ‘The Art of Failing’. We hope it is successful! West Hampstead locals might get more out of it than most…

Tweet of the week

Bye-bye James. Aurevoir.

What have you missed since July 17th?

A section of Finchley Road was closed after a suspicious package was reported. It turned out that it “wasn’t a viable device”. Does that mean it wasn’t suspicious, or that it was but was just not viable?

New bakery Lola’s took some flak for having a disabled toilet that was up some stairs, but apparently a ramp is available on demand.

The local Safer Neighbourhood Team issued this warning.

Shocking scenes in West Hampstead this week... We don't feel able to publish the full image!

Shocking scenes in West Hampstead this week… We don’t feel able to publish the full image! via @Scandisgirl.

Tom gave his verdict on Kilburn’s Quartieri, following the recent whampdinner.

The Kitchen Table had its final farewell, and now everything’s coming up Mill House!

Some residents of the Chalcots estate, who were evacuated in the wake of the Grenfell fire, have started to be moved back in.

Maygrove & Iverson Road residents continue to push for some respite from their parking woes and met with officers from Camden. One for all of you in parking zone CA-Q.

Brioche has put in for a refurb as it is due for an upgrade (the biggest change: bi-fold doors)

Tulip Siddiq MP continues to fight for the release of West Hampstead resident Nazanin Zachary-Ratcliffe and arranged a debate in Westminster Hall about Nazanin’s plight and that of other imprisioned dual nationality Britons.

Tulip also held a reception to say thank you all the voluntary groups in H&K.

The West Hampstead Women’s Centre won the Queen’s award for voluntary service.

The Kilburn Grange festival had to be postponed after the bad weather. It will now take place on August 19th.

Daniel Raven-Ellison passed though West Hampstead this week on his #bigwalkroundlondon. Who is he? He’s the guy driving the National Park City initiative with our growth area it’s a particularly interesting concept for West Hampstead (just a shame he didn’t stop to find out more).

A vehicle was abandoned in Kilburn. Upside down.

Fortune Green councillor Flick Rea sat for a portrait masterclass at Hampstead School of Art. It turned out to be a revealing experience.

Local comedian Matt Green gave an insight into his West Hampstead life.

An old street sign appeared by Barclays .

One local captured some of the dramatic storm earlier this week.

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since July 10th?

The Kitchen Table as we know it, bows out after 10 years.

The rubbish situation continues to drive West Hampstead crazy. It’s nearly three months now and the local councillors, not just the Labour ones, say ‘it’s settling down’. Really? Yet…they did finally start taking some action on a particular black spot (this is what it normally looks like) , but appear ignore many others. Hidden in plain sight. Then there are the missed collections and @fengsushi isn’t making itself popular.

There have been a rash of crimes in the area recently; a mugging on West End Lane, an attempted burglary on Sheriff Road , an actual one by Fortune Green, several windows smashed on West End Lane shops, and a burglary and car windows smashed as well. Take extra care, and if you are victim of a crime please report it to the police so they can get a true picture of the situation.

Falling masonry on Fawley Road brings the fire brigade out. Image via @jemimahknight

Falling masonry on Fawley Road brings the fire brigade out. Image via @jemimahknight

Our historians tracked down a missing cinema on Kilburn High Road.

And in a twist of fate there is a(n other) large-scale planning application for that same site.

Swiss Cottage’s Tory council candidate for next year’s local election, Calvin Robinson, appeared as the poster boy for a Government teaching campaign and then railed against left-wing brainwashing in schools.

More detailed analysis of ward by ward voting in GE2017 shows how strongly marginal wards like West Hampstead, Fortune Green, and even neighbouring Tory wards voted Labour.

Local MP Tulip Siddiq has arranged a debate in Parliament this week on British prisoners in Iran, including West Hampstead mum Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe.

Remember the lost tortoise last week. Apparently it was not one, but two different tortoises. Both found and back home. But maybe they were trying to meet each other? A tortoise tryst thwarted?

Some good property news, of sorts, Kilburn offers the best choice of rental properties in London.

In a sponsored post, the Studio Society updates us on its gym which is opening very soon on Fortune Green Road.

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since July 3rd?

How many?? We crunched the numbers on entry/exit figures for West Hampstead’s three stations. Tbh even we were surprised.

It was the Jester Festival last weekend, that much you know. But to get an unbiased view on it, we asked a newcomer to the area to pay a visit.

There was a Whampdinner at Quartieri (the new pizza place on the KHR). Good food, good company and good limoncello. (If you’ve not been to one before, do subscribe to the newsletter and invites – they are a really fun night out in the ‘hood, and it’s  and always nice to meet fellow whampers who are even more interesting after a glass or two of wine).

Tortoise lost. Sad face. Tortoise found! Smiles all round. Pics and general good samaritan from Jemima Knight and Weary cynic (yes really).

Tortoise lost. Sad face. Tortoise found! Smiles all round. Pics and general good samaritanness from Jemima Knight and Weary cynic (she has a good heart after all! 🙂

(astonishingly 17 other people claimed it as ‘their’ missing tortoise)!

And Coco (cat) was missing, but has been found.

Now that we have reunited tortoise and owner. And Coco and her owner. Anyone recognise this ginger cat?

Hello Lola. After a soft opening over the past few days, Lola’s bakery opens on Tuesday Thursday the 13th.

Latte Lassi is moving in where Cocoa Bijoux was (and Cocoa Bijoux is moving further up Broadhurst, apparently)

Genius club is taking over the Movers and Shakers spot. To sell games and toys.

Monsters of Art is opening a new tattoo shop off Oxford Street.  But fear not, it’s keeping the one on Mill Lane.

It was Pride weekend – and there is an appeal for information and memories of the gay scene at the Lower Ground Bar. It had a gay scene?

I know I said no more election news, but while the overall election turnout in the UK was 68.7%, and in London it was over 70%, but in West Hampstead it was the highest in Camden at over 80%.

Remember Woods & Woods? It was the pine furniture shop where Tesco is now. Damien Pullen, the owner and familiar face in the area, has died suddenly.

Comments are officially closed on the farmers’ market expansion but experience suggests that it’s still worth commenting if you have not already. You can do so here.

West Hampstead local Harriet Dart played in the women’s doubles (or ‘dubs’) at Wimbledon. She was not successful this year but who knows what the future will bring.

Help to buy isn’t really helping in Camden; in the last financial year only 13 loans were issues in the borough! And none would have been much help buying this house in West Hampstead- it’s on the market for £4 million.

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since June 26th?

The farmers’ market wants to extend the hours of operation from 4 to 82 hours a week. Too much, too soon?

Georgia Gould, the newly elected leader of Camden Council, has continued to come under pressure over the Chalcots estate.

There was a good analysis of the backstory from Richard Osley at the CNJ.

It was a beautiful weekend for the Jester Festival (a new resident’s take on it next week).

How a festival got it's name; It's 'Jester' a Festival. Yes really.

How a festival got its name; It’s ‘Jester’ (i.e. just a) Festival. Yes really. Image: @JesterFestival

Following last week’s news, reported in these pages, The Kitchen Table had a huge upsurge in orders for bacon butties – though they hadn’t seen their new accolade and had no idea why until someone told them.

TimeOut visited Ariana II – and they liked it (a lot), as do we.

It’s Gay pride this coming week. A good time to highlight the ongoing journey of Matt Mahmood-Ogston and his work for the Naz&Matt Foundation, with this interview and this very moving song from Glastonbury.

Susie Steiner, local author and multi-tasking mother, held a combined book launch and birthday party! With a very suitable cake…

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since June 19th?

The reverborations  of Grenfell Tower* continue, coming close to Whampstead as the towers on the nearby Chalcots estate were deemed unsafe by fire safety officers and residents had to leave. Some residents have refused to move saying this is an over-reaction.

* apologies for getting the incorrect day in the last newsletter

In a rather more positive story some locals (including WHL) got together to do something about a local issue.

Some other local infrastructure was improved this week too – but will it be enough?

Thankfully temperatures have fallen over the weekend, but last week it was certainly hot (see below) and also on the tube, although the Jubilee Line wasn’t too bad. (Apart from the signal failure…).

Phew - as seen by @zmdih

What a scorcher – as recorded in Hampstead by by @zmdih

and a tweet.

Last piece of election news (probably).  Remember how H&K was a top ten Tory target seat?  Well the result puts it in another top ten – top ten biggest swing to Labour (at 12.3% it was the fifth largest).

And in another top ten – West Hampstead’s own Kitchen Table’s bacon butties make it to the top ten, nationwide!

WHL welcomes Cllr Richard Cotton as the new mayor of Camden. His chosen cause is C4Ws Homeless project, which operates partly in West Hampstead over Winter. (He also voted against 156 WEL).

and this past week 156 WEL (aka Travis Perkins) was given official planning permission.

At 11m2 is this the smallest property in West Hampstead? On the link price is £175,000 but on the agent’s website it is up to £195,000!

There is talk of redesigning the student housing on Blackburn Road. Already? It was only built a few years ago.

Things are happening around Fortune Green…

In a sponsored post, Studio Society introduces ‘techsercise’ to West Hampstead.

There is talk of a new estate agent – as Brenda from Bristol would say – what, another one!?

and possibly a new deli.

Down on West End Green, the lease on Fortune Gate (on of the oldest businesses in WHampstead) is up for sale.

Summers at the Colin Campbell got another good review – but excuse me NW5 is NW5 and NW6 is NW6. Never the twain shall meet.

Local cafe owner (and artist) Alekta of @curledleaf on Mill Lane was exhibiting at the Southbank.

The Camden Arts Centre has a new artist in residence.

Kingsgate workshops open studios was very inspirational.

Local author Victoria Slotover made the long list for the Debut Dagger’s award.

Tennis fever is upon us – good luck to Harriet Dart

A sporting legend was spotted in Whampstead. Goran Ivanesevic was in the picture too.

Has anyone seen Scooby? (a missing moggie)

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since June 12th?

It was the Big Lunch weekend – Screen on Fortune Green AND Big Lunches so a lot to cover – here’s how they went.

There was a chemical alert on West End Lane. A story picked up by the Standard, Express and Daily Mirror, but only West Hampstead Life got to the ‘bottom’ of it.

West Hampstead responded to last Monday’s horrendous news by collecting donations at the Sherriff Centre and at the Kitchen Table.

Waitrose brought a trolley of treats to say thank you to their neighbours at the fire station who had returned from a long night at #Grenfelltower

An amazing sunset over Whampstead spotted by @lironada

An amazing sunset over Whampstead spotted by @lironada

There is a planning application to extend the farmer’s market to seven days a week. But is it too much, too soon?

The election may be over but it seems there was a bit of a bromance going on.

The Conservatives launched an internal investigation into their poor election performance in H&K.

And a son was giving his dad some advice now that he has time on his hands.

Rubbish is still a hot local issue. Now the election is over can something be done about it?

The Council voted to close the Netherwood daycare centre to boos and jeers.

The Achilles Jumble trail was a big success, but everyone was too busy selling their stuff to take photos!

Congratulation to West Hampstead resident Sabina Miller for her BEM in the Queen’s birthday honours.

Someone was a bit lax with security on their car, luckily it was the police not a thief that saw it.

There was a premier in Hampstead, of err, the movie ‘Hampstead’.

The Standard rather liked the Tricycle’s latest offering (= 5*, “100% proof theatrical magic”). You can book tickets here.

Tweet of the week

Thanks to Waitrose for their gifts to the returning firefighters (not firemen as Steve Buchanan-Lee pointed out).

What have you missed since June 5th?

The big news. You can’t have missed it. Tulip Siddiq was re-elected as MP for H&K.

Commiserations to the other candidates; Claire-Louise Leyland for the Tories, Kirsty Allan for the Lib Dems, John Mansook for the Greens, and independents Hugh Easterbrook and Rainbow George.

A man was arrested following the murder of a woman in Kilburn.

Whampstead sky and station. Image by Eli

Whampstead sky and station. Image by Eli

Election news (last one… for now)

It was the West Hampstead Farmers’ Market’s fifth birthday. Changes afoot (which we told you earlier)!

It was Gabriella’s third birthday. Cake at the Embassy no less, and best wishes from West Hampstead.

OUTDOOR FILM SCREENING alert! Saturday 17th June the Friends of Fortune Green are showing ‘Arrival’ – on the Green, under the stars and cycle-powered. Starts at sundown, but get there early to grab a good spot.

On Sunday 18th there are Big Lunches taking place at Iverson Road (for MILAM residents), Hillfield Road (for Hillfield and Aldred) and Gondar (for Gondar, Agamemnon and neighbouring streets). Any others? Let us know.

The Libraries writer-in-residence Ted Booth is reaching the end of his term. His blog is worth a read. Obvs.

And talking of artists in residence the Camden Arts Centre has a new one. (If you haven’t seen the Geta Bratescue exhibition there. One word – go. Ends on the 18th.)

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since May 30th?

There was another terrorist attack. Some local Labour activists were at Borough Market, but all safe thank goodness.

It’s election day on Thursday. Our final interview for H&K 2017: Tulip Siddiq.

(And in case you haven’t read them; here are the interviews with Claire-Louise Leyland (Conservative), Kirsty Allan (Lib Dem) and John Mansook (Green)).

If you want a break from politics our historians focused on West Hampstead’s pioneering society photographer (she inspired Cecil Beaton no less).

Local actors and cricket fans Jim Carter and Michael Simkins were on Radio 4 on Saturday telling the story about the Hollywood cricket club.

You know the 'hood is out of control when the Bridge Cafe starts charging £500 for breakfast! ? says @bkgpeters

You know the ‘hood is out of control when the Bridge Cafe starts charging £500 for breakfast! ? says @bkgpeters.

Election news

  • The campaign for H&K was profiled in the Evening Standard. In the print edition Claire-Louise Leyland got the bigger picture. Online it’s Tulip.
  • The only hustings of the campaign in H&K was held at the Granville Centre in South Kilburn. One of the main issues discussed was how to tackle terrorism.
  • Lib Dem silk Phillipe Sands QC endorsed Tulip over her stance on Article 50.
  • The election odds have narrowed considerably, with the Conservatives as (slight) favourites.
  • But Lord Ashcroft, the Conservative pollster, has a 61% chance of Tulip surviving next week (depending on youth turnout).
  • YouGov admittedly in their outlier poll called the seat for …
  • Who knew? Cllr @olivercooper is a Tory ‘wet’.
  • The Standard thought the improvement in the polls might help local Mike Katz standing for Labour in Hendon.
  • Nazanin was denied her right to vote in this election

Local improvements 1. The Black Path is being resurfaced so it is closed (but will be open on election day)

Local improvements 2. The tube station is getting an extra entrance gate.

UCS is moving mountains, literally, in renovating its sports fields.

If you live in or around Fordwych Road, please fill in this survey.

A top London restaurant blogger went to Summers (and he liked it).

Recall our article about 1 Woodchurch Road? Well for £2.5million (for a flat!) you can join them.

Flick Rea is having her portrait painted this week! And you can go along and watch.

An early review of the new Diane Keaton rom-com ‘Hampstead’.

The ENO opera on Broadhurst Gardens was really good. And pretty much sold out, but a few tickets left.

Tweet of the week

(In fact in Paris people leave shoes on the street for others to take.  Seriously.)


What have you missed since May 22nd?

Due to the tragic incident in Manchester and immediate suspension of all electioneering, our hustings was cancelled. Alas we’ve been unable to organise another one.

There were security measures taken at the O2 carpark.

Football fans were out in force before the FA Cup final. Is this a taste of things to come as Spurs play at Wembley next season?

Photo credit: Matt Stuart/Magnum Photos

Photo credit: Matt Stuart/Magnum Photos

Election news

A West Hampstead mum needs to raise £50,000 for operation and physiotherapy for her son Troy. She’s over half way there!

There is a new memorial plaque on West End Lane, for Dave Simcock.

Oh no! The leaks have started again

The Victorian Society took a stroll round West Hampstead.

Police officers were commended for their bravery.

Like living in West Dumpstead? Dumping on (lower) Fordwych Road, (upper) Fordwych Road, Smyrna Road, Crediton Hill and Mill Lane…

Tweet of the week 

What have you missed since May 15th?

The big news: Hustings on Tuesday at the Sheriff Centre. Doors open at 7:00, starts at 7:30.

Next up in our election 2017 interviews: the Conservative candidate for H&K, Claire-Louise Leyland.

A man was sentenced for ‘disgusting’ violence on his arrest.

Oh West Hampstead, there are few words... What the duck??? Seen by @rlawrence27

Oh West Hampstead, there are few words… What the duck??? Seen by @rlawrence27

Election news

Local Schools have been asking parents for extra funds – including Smartie tubes filled with coins at Emmanuel.

Have we found Ms Eckert?

The improvement of the Black Path continues. Watch out! It will be closed for a couple of days for resurfacing, first this week then again in June.

Fordwych RA held a small but successful Spring Fair.

It’s Chelsea week and there is a local(ish) Chelsea Fringe event at Fenton House, always worth a revisit.

A local(ish) exhibition on 2WW German refugee art was Guardian exhibition of the week.

If you haven’t seen‘Holocaust by Bullets’ at JW3 do go. It is very moving. And this week there is a talk by Philippe Sands.

Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery.

What have you missed since May 8th?

Don’t know who Kirsty Allan is? Hint – she’s the Liberal Democrat candidate for H&K. We interviewed her.

Gabriella, Nazanin’s two-year old daughter, got her passport back. Richard, Gabriella’s father, will be going to visit (he hasn’t seen her for over a year).

Opera – in West Hampstead!

PoTW 277

Election news…

Protestors challenged the Council on plans to close and sell off The Netherwood Day Centre for people with Alzheimers, and transfer service users to another site. Tulip has swung behind the campaign.

More proposed development for West Hampstead. This time at the Taverner’s site on Iverson Road. Exhibition on Thursday 18th.

A ‘new’ estate agent arrives in West Hampstead. Not so new, as just taking over an existing one.

Tulip has concerns about the new rubbish contract. She is not alone.

Fortune Green 1. New ‘immersive’ gym opening (another one? parking?) – ‘be part of the hype‘.

Fortune Green 2. A helicopter landed, after an accident a nearby building site.

Live over Fordwych way? or interested in a ‘green gym’?  Find out more.

Are the Ballymore cranes finally coming down?

Publication of ‘scores on the doors’ hygiene ratings by Camden, not everyone is 5*.

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since May 1st?

We spoke to Father Andrew to get more detail on his resignation, and how he will miss West Hampstead.

Will West Hampstead like Rosa’s Thai Cafe?

The Thameslink bus stop just disappeared. Without any notice. Cue much huffing and puffing on Twitter. But HUGE sigh of relief, TFL assure us it will be replaced.

Processionary Oak Moth discovered in Hampstead Cemetery. Who ya gonna call? Mothbusters.

Processionary Oak Moth discovered in Hampstead Cemetery. Who ya gonna call? Mothbusters.

Election news …

A man was jailed for the stabbing of Huseyin Gulbudak, the popular Kilburn cafe owner last summer. The loss of any life is tragic, but in this case it is even more so as the man jailed was Huseyin’s son, Baran, who was suffering from paranoid schizophrenia.

A number of burglaries in the area.  Goldhurst Terrace and the Greek Streets. But a burglar was caught red-handed on Fordwych Road.

The planning application for 11 Blackburn Road – in the Growth Area – which went quiet for months. Was suddenly approved.

After the Alice House was caught out, BananaTree has put in a retrospective application for their enclosed outside decking…

There was a planning application for redevelopment of Holy Trinity church on the Finchley Road. It’s quite eye-catching.

Remember Mario’s the Greek restaurant on Broadhurst Gardens? In the building that was due to be redeveloped. Redevelopment must be on hold as the restaurant is being refurbish.

Meanwhile up on Mill Lane, the long empty Mill Lane Bistro won’t be empty for much longer. Will be re-opening as Slimmy Choos – a(nother) cocktail bar, with Asian bites.

Grumpie old local luvvie, Michael Simkins, was lamenting the acting youth of today.

Friends of West Hampstead Library held a successful talk on WW1 spies in West Hampstead. There were quite a few, but they weren’t very good apparently!

A Ginger Cat was missing on Goldhurst Terrace. But thanks to the vigilance of neighbours, he was found! Hurrah.

What have you missed since April 24th?

The Conservatives chose their candidate, setting up all female fight for H&K. (More election news below).

Father Andrew is stepping down as vicar of St. James Church citing the Church of England as being ’institutional homophobic”.

There was a ‘clock up’ at West Hampstead Square. Some liked it , while others thought it looked like a guillotine or or didn’t like the patination (i.e. it’s rusty).

And the clock is up. As seen by @VHaberdashery

And the clock is up. As seen by @VHaberdashery

Election news …

  • The Greens have chosen John Mansook as their candidate for H&K. There is talk of collaboration with other parties (ie, Labour).
  • Unsurprisingly, given the tight battle ahead, both Tories and Labour fear “leakage to the Lib Dems” [paywall].
  • Andy Burnham said there was “too much Hampstead and not enough Hull” in today’s Labour Party. Tulip’s just hoping there is still enough Labour Party in Hampstead & Kilburn.
  • Former local Labour councillor Mike Katz is seeking selection as Labour’s PPC in Hendon.
  • There’s a straw in the wind this week with the Gospel Oak by-election.
  • It’s all getting a bit Game of Thrones.

West Hampstead’s favourite stall at the farmers’ market is officially Brinkworth Dairy. We got the lowdown on its success.

Our historian uncovered the strange story of a local diamond broker. And he will be at the Library on Tuesday with tales of WW1 spies in Camden.

Nazanin’s appeal to the Iranian High court was turned down – and reported from the Wall Street Journal to the China Daily.

Fire fighter Dave Allen left West Hampstead after 30 years of service. Good bye!

But what’s 30 years? A Broadhurst Gardens couple celebrated 71 years of marriage.

Police are looking for a man who exposed himself on the Thameslink. And are also asking for any information after a man exposed himself on the Black Path (back in December).

So – glad to see that progress is being made of clearing up the Black Path.

Camden’s new garden waste contract is still causing confusion. You can sign up on Camden’s website (and see who in your postcode has signed up). You can club together with a neighbour informally to share a collection – rather than just dumping your waste in their bags, not just dump in their waste in your bags as some are doing.

Time Out reported 14 things to do West End Lane, and its annual round up of top coffee shops included the Sanctuary Café in the Sherriff Centre and Loft (at the top of Greencroft Gardens) but missed Wired. Pah!

Rosa’s Thai opened to a good start.

A husband and wife team opened a new Osteopathy/Psychology practice at 322 West End Lane.

The Londonist took a nostalgic look at Kilburn, no longer Ireland’s 33rd County.

Local artist Zoe Grace, who has an up and down life, is taking part in an exhibition in Fitzrovia.

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since April 17th?

Theresa May announced a snap general election. Election fever hit West Hampstead, again (includes summary of the state of play).

However, ironically, the Tories have been caught on the hop has they don’t have a candidate, yet.  They are deciding this week. A Brexiteer or not a Brexiteer, that is the question.

Bins continued to be a hot topic. And the reason that some of you haven’t got your new bins or orange bags yet? is that Veolia has ‘run out’. At least a week until they get new supplies. This is ‘98% normal’ service.

In an apparently politically motivated attack someone cut down the Nazanin freedom ribbons and cards.

Flying Scotsman in West Hampstead, (train)spotted by @superfast72

Flying Scotsman in West Hampstead! (train)spotted by @superfast72

We love leafy West Hampstead – find out how to keep it that way (and more about West Hampstead’s trees including our plane trees).

Been rather dry recently – you bet. So far 0.4mm of rain this month, normally we get about 50mm in April.

West Hampstead in 2017: butcher, baker and… computer games maker.

Ever wondered about life behind the scenes at the Wet Fish Cafe? Wonder no more…

Work continues at Lena’s Cafe 2. Due to reopen soon.

And Lola’s cupcakes was due to open (at the end of April)? Looks like Rosa’s Thai should beat them too it.

Vigorous campaigning on West End Lane this weekend – by the Friends of West Hampstead Library party.

Camden Council is voting on adopting a new definition of anti-Semitism at full Council on Monday. Cllr Phil Rosenberg wrote why it is important they adopt it.

That Council meeting will be Sarah Hayward’s last full one as leader since she is stepping down as leader of Camden Labour.

Great book talk and reading at West End Lane books last week by Philippe Sands on East West Street.

Recommend a visit to Camden Arts Centre to see the Geta Bratescu exhibition, runs until 18 June.

And ‘Mill Lane FC’… catchy chant! Click on it to get the full effect.

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since April 10th?

The new recycling contract is still causing problems, but Camden and Veolia say it is ’98% sorted’.  Seems a rather high assessment.

There is a new Love Camden app to report fly-tipping.  Seems to be working, although ‘bin problems’ is not one of the options. With support from an unexpected quarter.

A minor political earthquake this week as two West Hampstead Councillors, Phil Rosenberg and James Yarde, announced they will not be standing in 2018 as councillors.

However, Phil still plans to put himself forward for a cabinet post in his remaining year.  As does Fortune Green councillor Richard Olszwecki.

A trip down memory lane thanks to the Railway.

A trip down memory lane thanks to the Railway.

The tree of freedom on Fortune Green for Nazanin was apparently vandalised in a politically motivated attack.  Someone removed most of the ribbons and cards, but some remained.

WHL went to try Summer’s dining, the new restaurant upstairs at the Sir Colin Campbell on Kilburn High Road.  Did we like?

Thanks if you filled out the West Hampstead ‘Home’ sociolology survey – good response so far, but it’s still open.

We will miss Cllr Phil Rosenberg – he’s been plugging away locally to sort out two issues; the Black Path and Billy Fury Way.  Progress made on both.

But as one issue gets resolved another one surfaces. Free Parking?  Camden seen to have given up ticketing cars parked on the double yellow lines at the bottom of Blackburn road.

Pavements on Crediton Hill were resurfaced, but in tarmac, not pavers. #ugly.

Someone stole the Marie Curie collecting tin from the counter at West End Lane books. Bad Karma. But locals rallied round to make good.

Building is underway to improve a rather ugly building at the bottom of West End Lane (by Priory Road) and funded in a novel way – by building a penthouse on top.

There was a cheese crisis at the Wet Fish Cafe.  Actually, the ‘missing stall’ was voted your favourite stall at the farmer’s market – expect an insight into them in the near future.

And Rosa’s is arriving.

What have you missed since April 3rd?

West Hampstead made the (inter)national news in a report on Nazanin’s year in prison.

Camden’s new waste contract started. In West Hampstead it wasn’t exactly smooth.

Alice House decking was given the OK by the Planning Inspector.

Ooops - car on Mill Lane. Pic thanks to FoFGNW6

Ooops – car on Mill Lane. Pic thanks to FoFGNW6

This week saw a successful Whampsocial at Bobby F’s. The first organised by Adrian and Emily – (thank you).

Gomaa opens this week, selling mink upholstered furniture.

Oddbins had – another – attempted break in.

Two weeks ago Westminster, last week Stockholm, what would you do if something like that happened locally? The Safer Neighbourhoods Team recommend downloading CitizenAID app, which explains what you could in the aftermath.

Sarah Hayward, leader of Camden Labour, announced her surprise departure. She’s stepping down on 2 May.

West Hampstead Labour councillors, and a former councillor, were on TV being unimpressed with near-neighbour Ken Livingston (Phil – you are looking quite at home on Palace Green…)

Property madness 1: “You can never be too rich or too thin” the Duchess of Windsor once said. If you are both then West Hampstead has the house for you; it’s sideways only into the bathroom though. And all for only £1.6 million! But hang on ” in the area infamously known as West Hampstead”…?

Property madness 2. If that isn’t big enough then how about nearby Kidderpore Hall? only £17m (but includes a £10 million renovation budget.

Coming back down to earth. What does home (specifically in West Hampstead) mean to you? A local sociologist is asking – please help him by answering the survey. He’d like at least 100 participants, let’s help him get there.

Sniff. It was the final tweet from James Earl as chair of the NDF. Goodbye James West Hampstead will miss you. Even Stop the Blocks.

Fancy some table tennis? Maygrove Park got two new table-tennis tables.

Spring Singfest at Emmanuel Church was lovely. A good turnout, good singing and an good chance to catch up with neighbours. And raised nearly £1,500 for the local Marie Curie hospice.

Have you been watching ‘Decline and Fall’ on the BBC? You know It’s by Evelyn Waugh, but did you know he grew up on Hillfield Road?

The London Improv Theatre is in … West Hampstead (sort of)!? Well it’s on the Finchley Road. And there is a new Improv comedy show this Friday.

M&S is offering a huge hamper in a charity raffle and guess the number of Easter eggs for the benefit of St James And St. Mary’s with All Souls hardship funds.

But Easter isn’t just about Easter Eggs, details of Emmanuel, St. Lukes and St. James and All Souls Easter services.

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since March 27th?

Sunday saw ribbons and messages being tied to a tree on Fortune Green, to mark a year since Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe was first arrested in Tehran. It was a moving event with local support and a big press turnout.

Tulip has been trying her best to support Nazanin, but couldn’t make it on Sunday. Still, we had a chat with her about her life as an MP, partisan politics and being a busy working mother.

And sticking to the politics theme, could Donald Trump have ended up a #whamper?

The new recycling regime started this Saturday, 1 April. It’s probably too late for the petition stage as it is happening but who will end up looking foolish? It doesn’t seem popular and with West Hampstead being ’true marginal’ territory, will it contribute to Labour losing control of the council?

Richard Ratcliffe adding another card for his wife to the tree on Fortune Green Photograph: Gareth Fuller PA

Richard Ratcliffe adding another card for his wife to the tree on Fortune Green. Photograph: Gareth Fuller PA

Whose clock is it anyway? We told you last week that West Hampstead Square was getting a clock and tower. But what should it say in the middle? Don’t hold your breath that Ballymore will take this on board.

This weekend the new bus routes for the 82/13 and 139 started. One local tried the new 13 bus, but then found it rather hot. And the 139 no longer ends here, but now in Golders Green.

One swallow does not make a Summer, but what about two? Two new restaurants have opened up on the Kilburn High Road.

The previously charming but rather quiet Sir Colin Campbell, has been taken over by three young guys (it’s their third pub). They were casting round for what to do for food when a young Irish chef, Ruairidh Summers (pronounced Rory and is ex-St. Johns) was looking to open his own restaurant. “Summers” opens properly this Friday.

Also opening is Quartieri. The main branch is Pizzeria Trianon Vomero and hails from Naples no less.

But just in case you were worried that was too much gentification for Kilburn, armed police were out on the KHR this week … called for what turned out to be a false alarm on a kidnapping.

And staying on the KHR, Brent side, Labour Councillor John Duffy was deselected even thought (or because?) he had called the council to account on its waste contract. He was replaced by a Corbynista.

Camden are reintroducing play streets across the borough, including West Hampstead’s Asmara Road.

Artist Suzie Malin, whose studio was next to the new Emmanuel School is trying to recover her paintings stolen from her Maida Vale studio. She is offering a £10,000 reward and someone has contacted her, but recovery is not simple.

There’s a quiz night coming up at West End Lane books.

Oooh, talking of local events, we hear that FoWHL has a good one lined up for the Autumn.

Tweet of the week

Not actually a tweet but a Facebook post.


What have you missed since March 20th?

Tulip spoke about the response to the Westminster incident last week in Parliament, the Prime Minister was grateful for her comments.

Telly historian Lucy Worsley dropped into West Hampstead to talk to 300 local kids about history. And they loved it!

What did you get your mother (or your kid’s mum) for mother’s day? One option was Cocoa Bijoux, which we visited for another local Insight.

Those famous Whampstead sunsets were back…

As spotted by @filleboheme

As spotted by @filleboheme

Sunday 2nd April will be one year since Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe was first imprisoned. At midday family and supporters will commemorate this on Fortune Green, her local park. They will be planting some perennials and tying yellow ribbons round a tree on the Green. Attached to the ribbons will be cards with thoughts of what one would do if one had a day of freedom? What would you do? Come along and take part.

The coroner concluded that if the Royal Free had not twice discharged young Michael Uriely he might have survived.

Ladudu is closing, but for one final flourish it is offering pay-what-you-want for lunch and dinner on Monday 27th. See you there. And it is even selling the art from the walls.

Bobby Fitzpatrick’s got another good review, this time from the Evening Standard. But they felt it belonged in Soho. Just jealous.

Hampstead Butcher and Providore has expanded to Muswell Hill, but One Bourbon closed in Crouch End.

Renovation work underway at Lena’s Cafe (Two) will re-open soon, apparently.

Clock this! West Hampstead Square will be getting a clock (and a tower).

And here’s some footage of what a flat looks like from inside.  Not bad.

A bit different from this cupboard, sorry bijou studio flat, in Kilburn (on the High Road). Only fits one (small) person. Here’s the listing.

Analysis of Royal Mail redirections of north London postcodes has shown that NW6 has the highest number of arrivals and departures across North London. One consequence? Some departing leave unwanted items behind and new arrivals need the recycling system explained to them.

The Library’s new(ish) writer in residence wrote his latest blog post. Worth a read. Expect more insights in the near future.

What have you missed since March 13th?

Ladudu closes its doors for the final time this week.

After Ballymore had to take its enormous sign down last week, this week M&S had its application for an illuminated sign at West Hampstead Square turned down by Camden. Meanwhile, Ballymore marketing material seems to think West End Lane has shifted over to the Finchley Road (and apparently we lie between Hampstead, Primrose Hill and St. John’s Wood).

Next Sunday is Mothers Day – we rounded up a dozen gifts you can buy locally.

No reason for thinking Cresta House scaffolding is in any way insecure, but certainly looks vertiginous. via Andrew Marshall

No reason for thinking Cresta House scaffolding is in any way insecure, but certainly looks vertiginous. via Andrew Marshall

One mother who will not be at home on Mother’s day is Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe who was imprisoned in Iran almost a year ago. She is being denied medical treatment for what appears to be a slipped disk.

A local boy tragically died of an extreme asthma attack after being released from the Royal Free.

West Hampstead tube station is apparently on a TfL short list of some 50 stations that need funding for step-free access.

West Hampstead and Fortune Green Safer Neighbourhood teams are being joined by the Kilburn team in a larger more flexible pool, when needed. Commercial burglaries are down this month after a spike in Jan/Feb, but car crime is up so don’t leave any valuables in your car overnight.

Toomai got tagged.

Miss Bake-a-boo herself wrote about the proposed redevelopment of her former premises. It’s well worth reading.

At the community consultation on the redevelopment of Gondar Gardens, it was suggested somehow that two previous applications for 16 units + 28 units now add up to the 108 units being proposed. Um?

Maeve McCormack, Labour councillor for Gospel Oak but resident of Broadhurst Gardens, is standing down as she has been priced out of Camden. In 1999, an employee paid 9.6x their salary for an average Camden property, last year that had risen to 19.6x.

Jim Carter is in conversation with Danny Boyle in a fundraiser at the Tricycle on Sunday 26th. Take your mother for a rather different (but still local!) mother’s day present?

Talking of the Tricycle, it’s the annual takeover in April though performances are in other venues as work continues on the theatre

Coming up this week
Beckett and Jazz at Locally Sourced on Monday and a barn dance at Emmanuel on Saturday. West Hampstead is nothing if not eclectic.

The book group at Swiss Cottage Library is looking at “Reading Lolita in Tehran”. While Phillips Sands is making an author’s visit to West End Lane books.

Tweet of the week

Lots of photos and comments on the arrival (onslaught?) of the new wheelie bins.

What have you missed since March 6th?

This week Ballymore agreed to take down the huge sign it had put up without planning permission. ‘Ballynomore’, as we quipped.

Staying with Ballymore, West Hampstead Square (a.k.a. Heritage Square) opened proper. Maybe it’s the weather, but it looks a bit bleak, non? plus the three London plane trees are planted too close together. And the new benches round them didn’t quite attract the ambience hoped for…

Finally – looking to move? There is a penthouse at West Hampstead Square available for only £2.1 million. Maybe cut your offer price though as prices are edging down for flats in the new local developments.

Indiana Jones’ connection to West Hampstead. Who knew!? Our local historians that’s who.

Graffiti 1 – tag on Billy Fury way can’t be removed without damaging the mural. Sad.  Does someone know the perpetrator? Hint- he’s called Kevin

Graffiti 2 – some rather odd graffiti appeared on the Barclays cash machines. Apparently, airplane contrails are part of some conspiracy to control the weather…

Changes at the helm of the Neighbourhood Development Forum. James Earl is to be replaced by new co-chairs Nick Jackson and former Cllr Keith Moffitt.

Groan. More development in West Hampstead? Consultation on plans to turn Gondar Gardens reservoir into luxury retirement homes with chauffeur-driver. More details in calendar.

Application in to turn basement and back part of Bake-a-Boo into a flat. Basement OK but back part too makes retail unit too small? Save Mill Lane!

Expect some partial closure of West End Lane for Overground redevelopment. Closer inspection of this table is rather confusing but jist is partial closures coming up.

Another theft by someone on a moped locally.  Don’t flash your mobile (or headphones).

With all the fuss about the Tories breaking their manifesto pledge on no National Insurance increase, a reminder that in the last Camden Labour manifesto: no charges for rubbish collection and  continue weekly collections…

The new bins have started arriving and they are huge. Quite how people are supposed to store them plus recycling wheelie bins hasn’t really been thought through.

Community Association quiz was a success, part of their ‘Go West’ Hampstead initiative to bring West Hampstead together – next time will be in Emmanuel Church as they will need a bigger venue. Next event second barn dance – yee haw!

The London Quilters are back for the 8th year at Swiss Cottage Library. One local recommended the exhibition – and she’s right – they are stunning. Worth a detour.

Thank you and farewell to Charlotte Green who ran the Whampsocials for us over the past year.  But welcome our new social mavens; Adrian and Emily.  Watch out for the next Whampsocial coming up soon.

Cat stuck! but the police came to the rescue – cat saved! Phew.

A peek behind the shutter of the excellent mykilburnhighroad instagram account. And here’s an why we like it.

What have you missed since February 27th?

UXB NW6. A bomb was discovered on a building site in NW6. It was made safe, taken away and exploded by the army.

After last week’s announcement by Camden Council that it is raising Council tax by 4.99% , with 3% ring-fenced to fund social care. An insight into what social care pressures local doctors are facing, with some pensioners in de-facto ‘solitary confinement’.

At WHATs recent AGM we learned more about the new recycling regime – it will be starting in less than a month!

Pic of the week

shows the perils of street drinking…

Oddly disturbing sight on our high street! As seen by @julietrix1

Oddly disturbing sight on our high street! As seen by @julietrix1

Tulip raised the issue, in Parliament, of Jacob Rees-Mogg’s use of language  at a fundraising dinner for the Hampstead Conservatives referring to the ‘pygmy-nature’ of the opposition. In the constituency of the shortest member of parliament she pointed out. (You might have caught this on the Radio 4 Today show too).

Finchley and Golder’s Green MP Mike Freer, whose constituency will be split in the boundary changes, has been tipped to stand as the Tory MP for new Hampstead & Golders Green constituency.

Among the 750 comments on boundary changes to the constituency, the highest in the country, was one by Chris Percy (aka Mr Tulip Siddiq). He raised the prospect of a legal challenge under the equalities act.

There was break-in at Oddbins – thieves got away with a bottle of bourbon – but most of the bottles and boxes were empty.

Camden Council refuses to allow utility companies access for meter readings. Apparently due to ‘health and safety’. Some residents haven’t had a reading for seven years.

It’s the West Hampstead NDF AGM. Chair James Earl is stepping down, but who will replace him?

Also on Monday the Hampstead NDF is having a meeting – so they are pressing ahead.

The Tricycle’s refurb is continuing and their auditorium is heading off to a school in Kent.

Some graffiti was subverted at JW3. They are running a GayW3 festival over the next week.

There is a Taste of Syria pop-up stall at JW3.

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since February 20th?

Storm Doris hit West Hampstead hard with trees and even a brick wall blown over.

M&S opened in West Hampstead Square on Wednesday, but just two days later a fire broke out in one of the other tower blocks with five fire engines attending. A ninth-floor balcony was damaged but thankfully no-one was hurt. Presumably this means more delays for people moving in.

Preliminary plans weer announced to turn Gondar Gardens reservoir and wildlife site into luxury retirement homes with chauffeurs!

Spring is already springing on West End Green. Photo via @bubela

Spring is already springing on West End Green. Photo via @bubela

Teenager Morgan Williams has gone missing. Although from High Wycombe, she is believed to have links to the West Hampstead area. She also went missing last month, but was found safe and well.

Tom went to One Bourbon to see what it offered the non-meat eater – his verdict here!

Local vicar, Father Andrew Foreshew-Cain has been nominated for a British LGBT award in the “Top 10 Outstanding Contributions to LGBT+ Life” category.

The rapist who carved his name into a schoolgirl’s arm in Hampstead Cemetery and then left her for dead was jailed for 17 years.

Council tax is set to rise by 4.99% (a rise of 5% would require a referendum) as Camden attempts to cover some of the cuts from central goverment.

Very sad news for those customers of Andy’s eponymous barber shop in Fairhazel Gardens. Andy has passed away after an illness. He was the epitome of a classy gentleman and had been cutting hair there for more than 50 years.

Lola’s cupcakes is due to open at the end of April in the old Colour Division site.

Maygrove Road residents took their parking concerns to Camden, but still need a lot more signatures on their petition before the council will actually consider taking any action.

The Financial Times went behind the scenes at Kilburn’s very own School of Rock – the Institute of Contemporary Music Performance.

Tweet of the Week

What have you missed since February 13th?

West Hampstead is an “area of intensification” – how far are we to meeting the 2031 housing target? (Spoiler: Very).

In Valentine’s week, what better than an Insight into one of our local florists?

Swiss Cottage councillor Andrew Marshall, who has already said he will not seek reelection next year, left the Conservative party over Brexit, and will sit out his remaining term as an independent.

Never realised how colourful the stained glass is at Hampstead Synagogue. Quite beautiful. via Chris Simpson

Never realised how colourful the stained glass is at Hampstead Synagogue. Quite beautiful. via Chris Simpson

The Friends of West Hampstead Library held a very successful evening with Jim Carter.

The Alliance was up for auction, but bidding stopped at £3.9 million, short of the £4.1 million reserve. The developer paid £2.7 million for it only a year ago, so it seems a £1 million profit in a year wasn’t enough.

From one baker to another: Wenzels has opened where Dylan’s used to be.

*Do like West Hampstead Life on Facebook, if that’s your sort of thing*

From one south-east Asian restaurant to another: Ladudu, which closes at the end of March, is set to become a Rosa’s Thai.

West Hampstead Square has opened up… for deliveries!

What is happening at Lena’s Cafe after the Porsche accident? Nothing it appears. Turns out a new owner bought the café only a month earlier. How’s that for bad luck.

Londis on Mill Lane was broken into last week.

A 16-year-old was arrested and charged with the shooting of Yasir Beshira in Kilburn earlier this year. A 17-year-old was released on bail and two other men are in custody.

A West Hampstead woman returning home from a funeral was killed after being hit by a lorry near Euston.

The planning application to install a large mobile phone mast on Blackburn Road was refused.

It’s a long read, but if you care about Camden’s budget then this piece by finance chief Theo Blackwell is interesting.

Minkies ran into all sorts of trouble on Twitter over dumping rubbish on West End Lane. Public pressure (and possibly a letter to the boss) seems to have paid off and at least the rubbish is now correctly bagged.

Talking of rubbish, It’s the WHAT AGM at the library this Monday and the public discussion will be on rubbish. Come along, quiz Camden and have your say.

Tweet of the week

What have you missed since February 6th?

The new M&S opened its doors for a sneak preview.

Has West Hampstead met its London Plan job creation targets yet? We did the sums.

Lola’s cupcakes is taking over the old Colour Division site, it won’t just be cupcakes though – Lola’s is applying for an alcohol licence.

Seems to be a blue theme this week: Sunday saw the unveiling in Agamemnon Road of a blue plaque for Burt Kwouk who died earlier this year.

New seating has arrived at West Hampstead Square and a new bus shelter at West End Green. Woo hoo.

Soul Store West is taking over the old Love & Liquor site at the bottom of the Kilburn High Road (definitely not in Maida Vale). It promises live music and food by Chicago Rib Shack.

The Ham & High gave the thumbs up to Bobby F’s.

A West Hampstead mum is seeking to raise £50,000 for an operation for her son Troy who has cerebral palsy and a big smile.

And welcome to Twitter Friends of West Hampstead Library!

Coming up this week

Can’t be in two places at once, alas. On the 15th, Jim Carter is giving a talk in the library for Friends of West Hampstead Library while next door at West End Books, ace spy writer Mick Herron will be promoting his latest book.

Tweet of the week

After daily tweets about litter being left by Minkies every morning on the narrow, busy pavement, several people suggested someone just spoke to them nicely. We will see if that has any effect.

What have you missed since January 30th?

As expected 156 WEL was approved by planning committee, after two and half hour of discussion the vote took 10 seconds and was 10-2 in favour of approval. Half the floorspace will be ‘affordable housing’, but you need to be quite rich to buy any.

As not expected, there was a robbery near Fortune Green. It wasn’t actually on the Green but in nearby Burrard Road, sketchy details but there were several arrests made.

As expected, after having stood down from the shadow cabinet Tulip voted against Brexit.

We're quite enjoying our new lake feature... not really. Photo via @juliaehudson (leak by @thameswater)

We’re quite enjoying our new lake feature… not really. Photo via @juliaehudson (leak by @thameswater)

Following consultation last autumn there will be changes coming to the 13, 82, 113 and 139 bus routes.

Trouble parking? Probably, if you live on or around Maygrove and Iverson Road. And it is set to get worse. Will Camden do anything about it?

Members of the House of Lords stepped in to help Nazanin, calling her imprisonment cruel and manipulative. The family  received a cynical offer to arrange her release for a payment to a “fixer” of £125,000, but this was rejected.

We thought we had seen peak estate agent before Christmas, but not only didn’t Alexanders close after all,  we are getting another one!

Watch out Roni’s! Dylan’s on West End Green is set to become a Wenzel’s. They have been expanding across NW London over the past few years.

Chelsea, Notting Hill… West Hampstead? A banner in West Hampstead Square announcing the arrival of Provenance, the butcher that seems to like posh addresses.

The Alliance on Mill Lane is up for auction, but the pub isn’t under threat. Having got planning permission to convert the upper floors, the developer is looking to sell the site. But didn’t tell Camden, against the rules for an asset of community value, such as The Alliance. Whatever happens, the landlord’s lease has many years left to run.

And a new feature : Leak of the week

This week’s water main leak was on Mill Lane. Repairing earlier leaks, Fortune Green Road was closed for much of the first part of the week, and West End had traffic lights for the second half.

Tweet of the week

With apologies to Tulip

And Sarah Hayward did not laugh at this. Honest.

What have you missed since January 23rd?

This past week West Hampstead has been hit by one water mains leak after another. The first was in Fawley Road where one man fought a valiant fight to get it sorted.

Others appeared in Achilles Road, Fortune Green Road and West End Lane. They were particularly treacherous when it was icy. Thames Water is sorting them out – eventually. Doesn’t the council have some responsibility to notify Thames?

Tulip’s Brexit Exit: our MP, Tulip Siddiq stood down from the opposition front bench so she can vote against the government’s Brexit bill this week. Jeremy Corbyn confirmed on the radio that shadow ministers couldn’t defy the three-line whip (but oh-the-irony that he voted against his party 535 times in the last twenty years).

Renewals work on the Jubilee line. Image via @jubileeline

Renewals work on the Jubilee line. Image via @jubileeline

WHL got another Insight into a local business; this time Rock Men’s Salon and Wired Co. coffee on Broadhurst Gardens. Why two businesses? They are run by the same guy.

The Village Haberdashery finally opened in West Hampstead Square. Yay!

156 West End Lane (aka Travis Perkins) is going to planning committee this week. The officer recommends approval.  If you want to refresh yourself about the development, A2Dominion’s website has a summary.

Camden says 50% of residential floorspace at 156 is defined as affordable; yet 35 of the 79 ‘affordable’ flats are shared ownership.  Last week we discovered that to buy a one-bed shared-ownership flat in nearby Iverson Road would require an income of over £65,000 (putting purchasers in the top 10% of taxpayers). Affordable?

There is a planning application for a 15 metre mobile phone mast on Blackburn Road.

SALT (formerly Lower Ground Bar) was back before Camden’s Licensing Panel as the police are still concerned about (alleged) drug-taking and violence at the venue.

West Hampstead politics is hotting up…

The Conservatives have announced their candidates for next year’s local elections. Several old hands standing down and lots of new faces.

And the candidate for Kilburn is that ‘ordinary member of the public’ who made a deputation to the council about waste on West End Lane (but err who works as a Tory parliamentary researcher).

There was a very interesting internal Labour Party report about its prospects for those elections; West Hampstead and Fortune Green are ‘true marginals’ and Kilburn a ‘firewall’. Labour is concerned that the introduction of fortnightly waste removal will be a key issue.

Nothing from the Lib Dems yet though. They have been rather quiet of late.

He’s an accountant, not a spy. Although her appeal was turned down, it appears that one of the charges against Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, the West Hampstead mother being held in Tehran’s Evin prison is that she is married to a British spy. He isn’t, he’s an accountant.

The shape of things to come 1. If you aren’t feeling well over the next three months and call NHS 111 you will be diagnosed by an app! Camden and Islington NHS Trust is trialling ‘Babylon’, a medical diagnosis app. Claims to be more accurate than a real-life doctor.

The shape of things to come 2. The new Camden and Islington Police Chief revealed at a meeting on Thursday that Camden may trial drones to help policing.

The Jester Festival is under threat. It needs new committee members to keep it going. If you’re ready to step up to the plate for West Hampstead contact

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What have you missed since January 16th?

vintage Porsche crashed into Lena’s cafe on West End Lane, injuring two women. WHL has the exclusive story from one of them + some dramatic photos of the scene.

Not good news from Tehran. Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s appeal against her five year sentence in Iran was turned down.

Bobby F. opened – it’s a timewarp. One review said it was in ‘sleepy West Hampstead’. The cheek of it. We have vintage Porsches crashing just a few doors down.

A weekend of tube closures: TfL engineers line up

A weekend of tube closures: TfL engineers line up

As reported last week, the council wants to close Netherwood Day Centre, due to cuts to adult social care, and shift patients to the Kingsgate Resource centre. This is the third time Netherwood has faced closure. Here is the petition against closure.

The NDF monitored pollution along West Hampstead’s main streets. It found levels were at least 50% over the maximum legal limit – and over four times up by the the junction with the Finchley Road.

Oh la la. La du du is reopening on Monday at 5pm after a refurbish (closure was due to damage from a burst water main).

If you fancy an early peek at the new M&S on 10th Feb, there are a few spaces available. Scheduled opening is 10am Wednesday 22nd Feb.

Vote for your favourite farmer’s market stall. Apparently there are small changes coming to the market (good ones).

Jim Carter spoke about his upcoming fundraising Q&As at the Tricycle.

They’re ‘aving a laugh along the KHR: comedy nights springing up – Abigail’s Party (last Sunday of the month) at the NLT hosted by local Abigail Burdess, Comedy at the Tricycle (fourth? Thursday of month) and of course The Good Ship (every Monday). It’s January, it’s gloomy, why not try something different?

Out of the area but relevant here, estate agents in South London face £100 fines for leaving their boards up longer than two weeks after a sale or rental. Apparently Camden introduced the same fines last year (really?). Why isn’t it enforced?

There was a warning about a burglary scam from our SNT team.

Which is a reminder that Paul Fairman from Camden spoke at the last Area Action meeting on dealing with anti-social behavoir. Worth noting his name in case you have to deal with it at some stage.

Significant track upgrade to Jubilee line tracks so station will be closed next weekend (28/29 Jan).  Plus West End Lane will be reduced to a single lane next by the tube station as well.

Tweet of the week:

A good week for those famous West Hampstead sunsets, but this one made the weather report.

What have you missed since Jan 9th?

Don’t adjust your computer. West Hampstead Life’s fortnightly update has gone back to weekly just as we hear that rubbish collections are going to be fortnightly. Apparently 85% of our waste can be recycled (and recycling collections remain weekly), but many locals are unhappy about the changes.

A West Hampstead teen has been found guilty of attempted murder and rape in the cemetery.

Netherwood Day Care centre is under threat again. As an alternative the Council is proposing an older people’s hub at the Kingsgate centre.

Dramatic skies over West Hampstead. Image from Instagram, Cyberdonkey

Dramatic skies over West Hampstead. Image from Instagram user Cyberdonkey

Last Monday’s tube strike created predictable crowding at Thameslink.

Work started on the Overground station.

The path to the O2 was half blocked off – but it’s not clear why? Is it for a crane for the Overground works?

Bobby Fitzpatrick’s – the old La Brocca – opens Wednesday. New wineshop Tannin and Oak also holds evening tastings ; Dylan’s lease is up for sale (premium free!) but has already gone – another bakery/café we hear. And things are stirring at defunct Rouge Lounge – a new ‘design’ store?

Down at West Hampstead Square the Village Haberdashery is moving from Mill Lane as soon as Ballymore has finished the lobby. And also, M&S has started the fit out. Of course, no-one has actually moved into the flats yet!

Some empty shops on Mill Lane are coming back to life: a bookkeeper/accountant is taking over the old post office; and a(nother) beauty parlour is opening at 74 (near the opticians). That leaves the former Mill Lane Bistro. Any takers?

So you want to start a group, throw a kid’s party or hold at meeting?  But where? We did a round-up of the local options – there are more than you might think.

Richard Osley celebrated 15 years at the CNJ with this post.

156 WEL aka Travis Perkins looks like it’s going to the planning committee in early February. We will know for sure at the end of January.

It’s the NDF meeting this week. Chairman James Earl has announced his departure, come along to find out what is happening.

‘Affordable’/shared income flats are for sale on Iverson Road. There’s an open day on Friday 20th Jan, with a 25% share on offer. The one-bedder requires an minimum income of £61,000 (i.e. within top 10% of UK taxpayers). Seriously?

Pressure is building for a review of parking controls around Iverson/Maygrove Road in light of the new developments there and the Liddell Road school/residential scheme. Camden has  said it would consider a review, but needs 800 signatures of residents from the CA-Q zone to sign a petition. Not everyone of course is in favour.

Zadie Smith recounted her memories of Hampstead School. Happy days.

Want to grow your own veg? Mill Lane Growing Together project (160 Mill Lane) will be allocating beds on Sunday 5th Feb at 11:00. Come along an express an interest.

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What have you missed since December 19th?

Welcome back West Hampstead and Happy New Year! After the extended break, there is much news.

Expect the trains and buses to be VERY busy on Monday as many Underground stations are closed because of a strike through to the end of the day. Here is TFL’s advice.

There is a trial at the old Bailey over an alleged stabbing and rape that took place in the cemetery in July last year.

Not sure if it was the sixth day of Christmas or not but there was a swan a-swanning in West Hampstead. Locals rallied round to protect it, and the Swan Sanctury in Shepperton came to the rescue. The swan was released the next day. In time for Christmas.

Photo of the week

A pine forest on Fortune Green at the Christmas tree recycling point. As spotted by @JfmJm.

A pine forest on Fortune Green at the Christmas tree recycling point. As spotted by @JfmJm.

A timely reminder that you can recycle your Christmas trees at Fortune Green or Kilburn Grange (Messina Avenue). NOT West End Green, or just dumped on the street.

If like WHL you’ve added a few pounds (Ed – kilos) over the holidays then you’ll want our round up of the local exercise options.

Is West Hampstead set to lose two loos?

156 West End Lane is not scheduled for the January planning committee. Maybe February? There was some extra time for comments over Christmas due to new information about sunlight and shadows. We shed some light on the matter.

As a unexpected Christmas surprise, Network Rail came to West Hampstead to discuss the overgrown Black Path, here’s a report from our Black Path correspondent. And as an extra bonus Network Rail also brought along two guys to cut back the worst bits.

Camden’s local area forum is this Monday (9th). It’s a public meeting open to all, and a chance to meet your councillors. Camden is set to announce new waste collection arrangements (fortnightly black bin collections and charging for collecting green waste)

Work is starting in earnest on West Hampstead Overground. Apart from building work during the days there will Sunday overnight work; track survey works tonight and hoardings next Sunday. The contractors promise both will not be noisy. WHL will be doing more on the works to remind you exactly what is happening and when.

Nazarin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, held in an Iranian prison for spying, appealed against her sentence last week. Her friends and family are awaiting the judgement.

West Hampstead appeared (again) in Location, Location, Location (WH starts at 28 mins). This time a couple looking for a two bed flat. One on Hillfield road (where a previous programme found a flat) and another on Maygrove Road. Without giving the ending away, welcome to West Hampstead Hiren and Priyanka!

Did you know West Hampstead’s link to the Cambridge spies? Philby, Burgess, Maclean and Blunt all had local connections

In other historical news, the great-great niece of the Short Brothers has started fundraising to repair the graves of these pioneer aircraft manufacturers. Their grave is in the cemetery (although it’s not clear if they lived in Ranulf Road, but their mother probably did).

In case you missed it, before Christmas we got an Insight into the Sherriff Centre.

Kilburn Station is getting a pop-up Library.

Local Stephanie Dawson is trying raise money for her mother who after being diagnosed with cancer and had to sell her caravan.

There is fundraising effort to repatriate the body of the Ecuadorian man who died in the Willesden car crash last month.

More change on Mill Lane as The Village Haberdashery moves from Mill Lane to West Hampstead Square. Alas, it’s not opening as planned, because (now here’s a surprise) Ballymore isn’t ready.

Meanwhile, Mill Lane welcomes The Wag Club, and a vape store. Not so sure about the last one.

Dallas Cowboy Jack Crawford, born in NW6 no less, is in the NFL play-offs.

We’re upping our Instagram game… do follow us

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A timely reminder for all you heading to the gym

What have you missed since December 12th?

The new school on Liddell Road (an extension to Kingsgate School) is opening with spare capacity, three not four form entry. The site for the second phase of Liddell Road will be sold in the new year – but how much for?

Latest school SATS tables were released with Kingsgate performing well, but Emmanuel and Beckford were surprisingly far down the list. Makes the spare capacity at Kingsgate even harder to understand.

It seems the the farmers’ market will be brought forward to Thursday 22nd, although if you have ordered a turkey from Fosse Meadows they will be there on Christmas Eve from 10am to noon only for collection of orders.

We visited the Sherriff Centre for another insight. If you haven’t been yet, go.

The Friends of West Hampstead Library held a successful evening of seasonal readings. Local actor, Sophie Thompson was supposed to be starring in Hook at the National but a serious injury during rehearsal put pay to that. The National’s loss was West Hampstead’s gain.

Thanks to everyone who came to Christmas Whampdrinks on Wednesday. That’s of course our last event of the year, but we’re already lining up some more dinners and drinks for 2017.

The saga of 156 West End Lane drags on. A more detailed review of the sunlight received by neighbouring properties concludes that the impact of the proposed building will not be sufficiently great for the building to be rejected on those grounds. Affected residents will likely disagree.

Following their march to Downing Street last week calling for the release from Iranian jail of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, a group of Hampstead Mums will be back there to sing carols on December 19th.

Tulip voted in the commons for the Istanbul Convention (on violence against women and domestic violence), taking baby Azalea in with her to the Commons to make sure she could vote.

TFL has apparently approved CS11 – the cycle superhighway that will involve a radical rethink of the Swiss Cottage roundabout. The knock-on impact on West Hampstead is unclear. However, Andrew Gilligan says TfL has agreed only to redesign the Swiss Cottage gyratory but not implement other key parts of the scheme.

West Hampstead tube station experienced a further bout of overcrowding this week. In the new year, we’ll be looking into local tube and train station passenger numbers in more detail.

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What have you missed since November 28th?

A man was shot and killed on Kilburn High Road on Friday. The man, in his 20s, was Yasir Beshira (also known as Loopy), who lived in a hostel in West Hampstead. A 22-year-old man has been arrested for the murder, but the police are still appealing for witnesses.

Brexit rumbles on and last week there were two motions in Parliament, one from the Government and one from Labour. Both were won by large majorities, although Tulip was one of a number of Labour MPS who voted against the Labour motion.

Richard Ratcliffe is continuing his desperate campaign for the return of his imprisoned wife Nazarin and their two year old daughter trapped in Tehran. At the beginning of last week hundreds marched to Downing Street in support of Nazanin. Bring Nazarin home.

Scrabble anyone? pic from @bubela

Scrabble anyone? pic from @bubela

Back to matters Christmas. Last week we did a twelve things to do in West Hampstead before Christmas. This week it was our ever-so-useful Christmas survival guide.

If you are still looking for that elusive Christmas present here are some options on your doorstep; the twelve gifts of West Hampstead.

And there is a Whampsocial for Christmas drinks at the Gallery this week.  Join us!

Last Saturday a man fell on the tracks at the Thameslink station. Emergency services arrived, including by helicopter (which landed in Travis Perkins yard). The man’s injuries are not life-threating.

Don’t believe everything you read in the Evening Standard. It reheated a story about 156 West End Lane; showing alternative plans, saying that Jim Carter was opposing it and that it was going to planning on December 15th. The plans weren’t new, Jim Carter wasn’t asked and it won’t be going to planning until January at the earliest.

More West End Lane news. Movers and Shapers is, erm, moving.

And almost opposite M&S popped up on Twitter to announce the opening of its new West Hampstead store (in early Feb).

Talk of peak estate agent on West End Lane was alas too early. In an about turn, Alexanders is not closing its office after all. Instead it will draft in more staff. And the new mystery tenant at West Hampstead Square will be … an estate agent; Johns & Co (Ballymore’s in-house agency).

What will be the impact of the changes in rental fees? Renters will probably benefit.

As the photo of the week showed, things are happening with Bobby’s House. Finally. It will be opening in the new year. But who is Bobby?

Tom dived into to Nautilus and here’s what he thought.

Our historians reported on a true story about the downfall of a doctor that seems more like a tragic TV soap opera.

Liddell Road is being erased from history and being renamed as … Liddell Place. We’ll be doing an update on what’s going on this week.

And finally, the Marie Curie hospice is one of the participating hospices in the London hospices choir. It is putting out a Christmas single this week. Here’s a link to the video, but be warned. It will bring a tear to your eye.

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What have you missed since November 14th?

Although there is visible progress at West Hampstead Square, it won’t be opening until January, with some flats not ready until March. Buyers waiting to move in are understandably frustrated. And in the rush to finish, work is taking place on Saturday afternoon, in breach of the construction management plan.

Camden has refused permission for the decking at The Alice House. There is some confusion about the facts, but it does not appear to be a popular decision. The Alice House will appeal.

Feng Sushi was burgled on Saturday night, thieves apparently took the safe. There was also a report of a stabbing outside The Gallery.

Sunset from Netherhall Gardens. Taken by Dominic Brett

Sunset from Netherhall Gardens. Taken by Dominic Brett

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, West Hampstead wife and mother, is apparently at breaking point and on hunger strike in Tehran’s notorious Evin prison. Her worried husband Richard appeared on Channel Four News, the Times ran an editorial calling for her release. and the Ham & High reported fears she is suicidal.

A recent non-fatal stabbing of a medical student on Billy Fury Way has promoted calls for CCTV. Camden and Network Rail are starting work on widening the steps from West End Lane in the New Year, which may help (or may be waste of money).

Some clarity on the rubbish situation on West End Lane: waste is supposed to be put out only between 10am and midday or 10pm and midnight. Clearly this is not happening. The matter was discussed at full Council on Monday with talk of tougher penalties (e.g. £200 fines)

To lose two estate agents, etc. etc. ….The already closed Portico at 322 West End Lane (which bought West End Estates’ rental business) is set to become an osteopath and treatment rooms, and Alexanders’ lease is available as manager Reuben moves on to pastures new (of course it might be replaced by another agents, and Ballymore’s own estate agent is moving into West Hampstead Square.

Meanwhile, estate agents from Paramount were found sleeping on the streets this week – but for a good cause as they were raising money for homeless charity Centrepoint. They are just shy of their £3,600 target if you want to donate.

If you didn’t catch Zadie’s Smith’s NW on the BBC it is well worth watching. Lots of familiar views in and around Kilburn (and a good story).  The opening panning shot includes brief view of the Ballymore blocks. It’s only on iPlayer for two more weeks though.

Time Out listed 14 reasons to visited Kilburn High Road – but curiously missed some popular KHR features; no Ariana II, no Black Lion.

However, top of the list was a visit to the Good Ship, the music/comedy venue, which faced a hearing about losing its late night licence on Thursday. Thankfully, the hearing went in the Ship’s favour and it will keep its 3am licence.

Were you in Kilburn in the 1950s? Two appeals are seeking more information – firstly from anyone with information about Mr Huckstepp, the butcher of Dyne Road, who saved two lives. Secondly, from locals who might recall the coronation street party in Douglas Road.

1 Woodchurch Road has had more than its fair share of artistic residents, including a Victorian painter, the actor who played Dick Barton and Irish playwright Brendan Behan (a drinker with a writing problem). A reader who lives there told us that even today a musician from a well known band lives in the building.

Author Meg Carter wrote about how authors use place in their work and reminisced about her life in West Hampstead, including the Barbara Vine (aka Ruth Rendell) thriller set here.

Talking of thriller writers, in the past fortnight local author Susie Steiner not only interviewed Jenni Murray for the talk on ‘A History of Britain in 21 Women’ arranged by West End Lane Books, but she also sold the 100,000th copy of her book ‘Missing Presumed’.

Radio 4 broadcast an interview with Josafine Speyer who organises a monthly ‘Death Cafe’ at La Brioche. It’s to discuss death. The next one is on the 12th December.

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What have you missed since October 31st?

It was Remembrance Sunday, so we looked back at some local West Hampstead soldiers who died in WW1.

The newly refurbished Emmanuel Church is offering a warm welcome to some of Camden’s homeless once a week.

We were really excited about this tiny art exhibition on Mill Lane, but it was case of blink and you missed it. And you had to look really closely to find it at all.

Staying on Mill Lane for the latest of our Insights into local businesses. We met up with Jennie from the Kitchen Table. Find out how love blossomed (alcohol is involved)

Photo of the week

Autumn in the cemetery. Image @julierrix1

Autumn in the cemetery. Image @julierrix1

But maybe she stayed too long admiring the ‘fading autumn light’ because her next tweet was this! Don’t worry she made it out.

Bonfire night saw a serious fire on the Rowley Way estate. Sixty firefighters tackled it and the next day things looked bleak.

Our friends at West End Lane Books were the victims of a reach-over and grab from the till robbery.

There was an NDF/Camden workshop on possible redevelopment/ masterplanning of the O2 centre carpark. Good turnout and some interesting thoughts. Early days though.

More NDF news. James Earl, the chair, is stepping down as he is moving away from West Hampstead. We’re not sure if planning policy allows that.

The deadline for commenting on 156 West End Lane closed this week on Camden’s website, but can still be sent in.

STB blocks has arranged a meeting about it, although sources tell us top-billed Tulip Siddiq MP probably won’t make it there until late, if at all, as she has her day job to attend to.

Tulip was only offered an out-of-date vaccine for her daughter despite living in a high-risk area for TB. Lots of other West Hampstead mums couldn’t even get that due to a vaccine shortage.

A dodgy temporary wall outside Iverson Road cottages seems to break pretty much every health and safety rule.

The air quality in West Hampstead is being measured over the next few weeks. Cough, cough.

Remember the shisha bar near Fortune Green? After being empty for months the building contractors next door are moving their office, to the relief of local residents.

Brooksby the wine merchant closed and will be replaced by … Tannin and Oak, another wine merchant, which will offer wine tastings and courses.

Someone is moving in to the old Colour Division premises, a totally different type of business. More details when we get confirmation.

If we say so ourselves there was a good Whampdinner at Sarracino. The evening started at The Railway Tavern and ended up, past midnight in the Gallery (on a week night)!

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Got any West Hampstead news? Drop us a line.

What have you missed since October 17th?

The plans for 156 West End Lane (Travis Perkins building) have finally been resubmitted. More than 400 documents later, we’ve summarized the main points. Sunlight (or lack of it) is a major issue, but three consultants agree the impact is acceptable. You can submit your comments, and the decision is expected towards the end of the year.

There was a sexual assault on the Black Path. Apparently there have been two incidents recently and the police issued this safety advice.

TfL announced plans to close the pavement near the Overground station for two weeks. MP Tulip Siddiq leapt in to help, but what do the three ward councillors have to say?

Photo of the Week

Early bonfire on West End Lane. Photo via @DenisseZavala

Early bonfire on West End Lane. Photo via @DenisseZavala

Ballymore aims to have the first West Hampstead Square residents into the first couple of blocks before Christmas. The penthouse in Block A is available for £1,975,000. M&S has applied for permission for signage. And here’s what the development currently looks like from the Chiltern Line railway.

Our local historians took a trip down West End Lane, 100 years ago and compared it to today.

Tom went to try Fiddies – the Italian place high in the Trip Advisor rankings. Rankings taken with a pinch of salt but food was flavourful.

On November 12th, the NDF is organising a workshop on master-planning of the Growth Area (development round the tube stations). Don’t just vent your spleen at 156, do something! Put the date in your diary and come along.

How can fishmonger La Mer on Broadhurst Gardens survive, when it’s barely ever open?

Staying on Broadhurst Gardens, we went backstage at the ENO.

West Hampstead Library hosted a very enjoyable poetry evening this week.

Salt, formerly Lower Ground Bar, (re)opened; but does it have a licence?

Local filmmaker Anna Bowman released a couple of short films, one on the changes at West Hampstead and the other on the businesses at Liddell Road, which reminds us – time from an update on Liddell Road very soon.

There are plans afoot (at a very early stage) to redevelop the synagogue community rooms?

Do you remember the tragic car crash on West End Lane in 2012? Amy Werner, the American student who was extremely badly injured, was back in London this week.

There are several good events in the run up to Christmas. A few highlights:

  • Jenni Murray is doing a book talk in Emmanuel church on Nov 18th.
  • On 1-3rd December JW3 is hosting a Jewish Comedy festival.
  • Also on the 3rd, the fire station is hosting an open day to celebrate 150 years of the London fire brigade – including a life-size Playmobil fireman!
  • It’s the seventh West Hampstead Christmas market on 10th December- stalls are booking fast.

A little further afield, plans were revealed to double the size of Brent Cross (and remove free parking).

And there are inspiring plans to turn an empty pub, the Corrib, in Queens Park into a community hub.

Tweet of the week
It’s from a regular West Hampstead tweeter, but timely…

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What have you missed since Oct 3rd?

Fittingly during ‘National Hate Crimes Awareness week’, the LGBTI rainbow flag flew again over West Hampstead, thanks to the help of the fire brigade. The story was featured on Channel 4 news and BBC local news.

WHL guest writer Shalini gave us her take on West End Lane’s brunch options. And apparently new-kid-on-the-block One Bourbon offers another one – with pulled pork!

Firezza pizza delivery is set to open on Monday but some lucky West Hampstead residents got free delivery of pizza on Saturday as a trial run.

What with all this pulled pork and pizza we thought the newsletter needed some balance, so…

Photo of the week

Good to be reminded of the farmer's market thanks to @filleboheme

Good to be reminded of the farmer’s market thanks to @filleboheme

Keeping up the healthy theme, WHL popped in to chat with Peppercorns about Manuka honey and gentrification.

Popular local live music (and comedy) venue The Good Ship in Kilburn is under threat as police are questioning its licence hours. John, the owner, says that problems have been exaggerated and will be making a strong case to Brent’s licensing board. It does seem ironic that just as we get the late tube venues are being made to close earlier.

Watch out – very closely – for some very small artworks appearing around West Hampstead.

Lots of activity on West End Lane over the past weekend. On Friday Salt (formerly Lower Ground Bar) reopened. And on the same night just up West End Lane, after a very rapid refit, OneSixty became One Bourbon .

There was a successful Whampsocial at the Green Room on Fortune Green, which is apparently doing good Sunday roasts.

Still nothing on 156 West End Lane (aka Travis Perkins), but expect something very soon.

Over on the Finchley Road – at 317, Camden’s planning officer has recommended approval- of ten, count ‘em, ten stories.

Care about the future of West Hampstead (part 1)? The NDF is organising a workshop on the Growth Area next month (see diary), it will be discussing masterplanning issues. If you want to have your say, put the date in your diary.

Care about West Hampstead (part 2)? There are still estate agent’s boards on West End Lane despite the ban and a number of banners too. Plus A-boards on the pavement. Time for a crackdown?

Care about West Hampstead (part 3)? And what about the terrible state of paths by the railways? Time to put pressure on Camden and Network Rail?

Last weekend Pro- and anti-CS11 (cycle superhighway) protestors demonstrated outside the Hampstead Theatre, pros outnumbering the antis. It’s on the edge of West Hampstead but could still affect us. Heavy traffic on the Finchley Road Sunday afternoon swiftly bunged up West End Lane.

Building continues apace on the extension to Kingsgate School in Liddell Road as shown in this video. It should be opened by Sept 2017 and for all you parents looking for a school place, applications have opened via Camden Council.

Is it just me, or do there seem to be a lot of burst water pipes in the area? After none for ages, there are now several. I’m wondering if Thames Water has increased the pressure? Or is it do with the arrival of autumn? Or just chance?

Keeping up the pressure for the release of Nazanin Zaghair-Ratcliffe, this week a UN working group found her detention was arbitrary and that she was denied a fair trial.

Local MP Tulip accepted the role of shadow early years minister – and posed her first parliamentary question in that role the next day. The proposed Boundary Commission constituency changes don’t seem to have created much fuss, although there was talk that the Labour Party were proposing a ‘West Hampstead and Kilburn’ constituency option to tilt the balance back in favour of Tulip. The right sort of gerry-mandering…

In another guest article, Tom Bullock gave us an insight into West Hampstead Hockey Club, right on our door step, with a report on the 1st team’s recent match at Blackheath.

Congratulations to local author Susie Steiner who is bouncing around the Sunday Times top ten fiction chart for her thriller ‘Missing Presumed’. (Following in the footsteps of another local author Renee Knight who was there earlier in the year for her thriller ‘Disclaimer’). Copies of both are available at West End Lane books.


What have I missed since September 19th?

Hold the front page. A robbery. In West Hampstead.

It’s party conference time. First, the Lib Dems, where Keith Moffitt announced he wouldn’t be standing again.

Then next up, Labour. After the final Labour hustings, a fortnight ago here in West Hampstead at JW3, the anti-Semitism row seems to rumble on. At conference, former local councillor Mike Katz spoke on behalf of Jewish Labour Movement. He was both heckled and got a standing ovation.

Local MP Tulip, despite supporting Owen Smith, has evidently accepted Jeremy Corbyn’s proposed olive branch and suggested she is prepared to join the shadow cabinet – if asked.

And talking of the Labour leadership… (bear with me) there was a suggestion in the letter pages of the CNJ that three West Hampstead Stations were confusing – with proposals for a rename. WHL thinks not!

Red, White and Blue view of Whampstead by @damawa42

Red, White and Blue view by @damawa42

Our local historians revealed the truth behind Priory Road’s millionairess typist.

And Charlotte, WHL’s social maven took us behind the scenes of Whamp events.

WHL caught up with local tattoo artist Dan Gold and found how he ended up on Mill Lane.

Emmanuel Church is about to re-open after its recent refurb – with new heating, new floors and new community rooms.

And along with the saints, the sinners – not one but two new bars opening locally; The Green Room by Fortune Green and Thunderbird by West End Green.

Trends, the off-licence on Mill Lane, could become a tanning salon. There’s a planning application to turn Monte Cristo (Shisha bar that broke many planning rules) into offices for the property company next door and another one to turn Portico, the estate agent (at junction of Crediton Hill and West End Lane) into an osteopaths.

We’ve heard of another couple of changes afoot locally, including a new tenant for Colour Division’s old spot and a change of ownership elsewhere on West End Lane, but neither has been confirmed, so we will let you know if and when we get more details.

And now a ‘not opening’. Tesco’s on West End Lane is not opening 24 hours over the weekend after all. Much to the relief of immediate neighbours.

In transport news, the local Labour Party is campaigning against proposed changes to the 13 bus route .

And there is a lot of concern about the CS11 (cycle super highway 11) and changes to the Swiss Cottage roundabout. There will be protest outside the Hampstead Theatre next Saturday (8th Oct) from both sides.

156 West End Lane update – Camden planners were waiting on some information from A2Dominion (about the impact on sunlight/daylight), which will be independently reviewed this coming week so consultation should begin by mid-October.

A couple of local developments recently consulted on – 153-163 Broadhurst Gardens (aka Mario’s block). We wrote about it here.

Not in West Hampstead but nearby – big changes for the Tower Garage site at corner of Finchley Road/Hendon Way. It is in Barnet, so (just) outside our area but well worth a look. During consultation locals were told it was be same height as surrounding buildings – plans came in and it’s three stories higher. Summary website is here and Barnet planning link (with comments) is here. Really recommend you take a look via the link.

Important change to Camden’s planning process. They will no longer send letters out, so if you neighbour wants permission to build a 20 ft extension blocking your sunlight you won’t know unless you sign up for email alerts. Tough luck if you don’t have email.

Talking of post, an undelivered bundle of was left on the street in West Hampstead. Including Kathy Lette(r)’s.

Our neighbours in Cricklewood got a sliver award for their improvements to Cricklewood Station. Inspiration for improvements to the three stations in our growth area?

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What have I missed since September 5th?

Proposed changes to parliamentary constituencies could have a major impact on West Hampstead… and its sitting MP.

Nazarin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, the West Hampstead mother arrested in Tehran in April while visiting her parents, has been sentenced to five years in prison by a judge, who still didn’t reveal on what formal charge.

West Hampstead became a little less colourful – as after 42 years Colour Division closed down (sort of suddenly).

The uptick in local crime seems to be continuing but it was nothing compared to the early 80s as our local historians revealed in ‘They shot the wrong man‘.

Photo of the week

Whampstead sunrise by @djleroyroberts (on his way to bed?)

Whampstead sunrise by @djleroyroberts (on his way to bed?)

Local Councillor Phil Rosenberg met royalty… in Hampstead Garden Suburb. (Or was he just canvassing for votes in the proposed new constituency?)

Tulip Siddiq discussed anti-semitism with Yehudi Bauer at JW3.

A local Labour member was suspended for anti-semitism although his original question was about the lack of affordable housing being built in West Hampstead (and Labour councillor Paul Tomlinson also questions Camden’s role as developer in the letters page of this week’s CNJ).

A Labour hustings took place – and was live streamed – at JW3 on Sunday evening #JewishLabourDebate.

Annoying closure of West End Lane this weekend – as they dug up the road, leading to heavy traffic down in the surrounding roads.

And last weekend round the corner on Broadhurst Gardens there was an impromptu water feature at earlier roadworks.

West Hampstead Square Heritage Lane, opening put back again (quelle surprise) M&S due to open (for Xmas) with the rest in January.

The 156 West End Lane (aka ‘Travis Perkins’) plans are up for consultation again. They should be on view at the Library. There are still questions about loss of light on neighbours and Crown Close. WHL will try to shed some light on the matter. However, Camden seems to know the outcome already, as they have started legal proceedings to get Travis Perkins out of the building.

Planning application for the Alliance Pub on Mill Lane is open for comment. Pub stays, rooms above converted into flats. Seems reasonable.

Brooksby Wine won’t be a hairdressers after all, it will be… another wine merchant (Tannin and Oak according to the planning application).

Thunderbird, the new burger and cocktail bar replacing Nfes is due to open (in about two weeks).

This coming Wednesday at Estancia Brasil, a steak house opposite the Swiss Cottage Odeon, sees the appearance, for four hours only, of cult-burger chain In-N-Out. First come, first served and limited quantities apparently.

Talking of matters hip, Merlin Griffiths of the Priory Tavern talks cocktails.

We wrongly reported in newsletter #250 that the ICMP was moving out of Kilburn. We’re delighted to report that this is not the case – they are merely moving out of one building and expanding another. Apologies.

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What have I missed since August 22nd?

Light was shed on the Black Path as a group of local turned out Bank Holiday Monday to tackle the worst of the problem.

Opening on West End Lane, where Nfes was, is Thunderbird bar. It will be competing against Salt (formerly known as Lower Ground Bar), which is set to open very soon.

Just a blip we hope, but there’s been an uptick in local crime. Following the recent assault on Billy Fury Way (police are keen to speak to a second woman who took refuge in JW3). A phone was snatched on Mill Lane and there have been a spate of car thefts targeting high-end SUVs, one of which was stolen from Crediton Hill.

"Has someone on Aberdare Gardens said something blasphemous and got the old lightning bolt treatment?" Photo/caption via @Simonjbenson

“Has someone on Aberdare Gardens said something blasphemous and got the old lightning bolt treatment?”
Photo/caption via @Simonjhbenson

In the first of a series of chats with locals, WHL provided an insight into Insight Opticians by interviewing Kiran Vyas, who has celebrated 30 years on West End Lane.

Tom ate at Feng Sushi and recommended we go along and try it, for goodness ‘sake’ [the puns are all his own doing]. While Whampdinner at Pham House was a hit. Vo (= cheers in Vietnamese).

Talking of local shops and restaurants, why not nominate your favorite for Time Out Love London 2016 Awards?

Wondered about whether the local informal RuNW6 “club” is for you? The chances are that it probably is – read all about it.

From September 4th, Swiss Cottage Library is no longer opened on Sundays. Apparently there are planned changes to West Hampstead Library opening hours too. More details this autumn.

On the other hand Tesco is extending its opening hours and will now be open 24 hours at the weekend.

West Hampstead had its own power station! Who knew? Our local historians reveal all, through the coal dust. (And for fans of this kind of thing watch out for Granny Drippens steps in the 1910 film as the train pulls into West Hampstead station).

The highly regarded Institute of Contemporary Music Performance on Dyne Road has been given its notice as the landlord want to convert it into housing. However, it plans to extend next door to make up for the lost space.

The planning application for the “Marios block” on Broadhurst Gardens has been submitted (more on this next week). Final plans for 156 West End Lane still haven’t emerged, but are expected imminently (haven’t we said this before?).

The scaffolding has come down on West Hampstead Square, Heritage Lane.

The O2 centre car park may be used for, er, parking as HS2 has it shortlisted as a potential lorry holding site.

A large green arboreal monster was photographed on Fortune Green Road.

Hampstead Cricket Club secured its place in the Premier League with a game to spare after flirting with relegation earlier in the season.

Open House is a fortnight away, so start planning your visits WHL will offers some ideas of what to visit, both locally and further afield.

A couple of local residents are getting on their bikes to raise money for charity. Mark Reynolds on a ‘Tour de Pudsey’ and Eugene Regis on his way from Land’s End to John O’Groats.

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What have I missed since August 8th?

A woman was sexually assaulted on Billy Fury Way. A suspect has been apprehended but the path feels unsafe and questions are being raised about what could be done.

As it happens plans for 317 Finchley Road – which included a ten-storey tower, yes ten storeys – proposed adding a new entrance to the path but large stretches will still be unsafe.

Parts of the Black Path, are also very overgrown and feel unsafe, but who is responsible?

Just up the railway line, Cricklewood station, is up for an award for the improvements undertaken by local volunteers.

Some serious existential debate going on on the Kilburn High Road. Image via @YouMustBeAnna

Some serious existential debate going on on the Kilburn High Road. Image via @YouMustBeAnna

It’s been a long running story but West Hampstead Mum Nazarin Zaghari-Ratcliffe has been tried in Tehran although we still don’t know exactly what for or the outcome. There is a heartfelt blog from her husband Richard here (read to the bottom).

Tulip Siddiq is ‘leaning towards’ Owen Smith, she announced during an interview on the World at One last week. You can hear the interview here – (the BBC could perhaps have chosen a more flattering  photo).

Maybe Jeremy Corbyn’s visit to a rally in Kilburn on Sunday evening can persuade her otherwise. Mention of Sadiq Khan elicited boos from the audience following his endorsement of Owen Smith.

No Deliveroo last week as delivery drivers went on strike at their new contract. They held a protest rally of about 50 scooters heading down West End Lane.

The Ham & High property section took a look at West Hampstead and decided ‘that fiercely loyal residents of NW6 love this residential area”, but you already knew that.

West Hampstead had a power station – who knew? Find out more in our next local history story.

A successful Whampgather at the Czech House. Na zdravi!

A new mural is appearing at the Mill Lane Open Space and if you want to buy some very local food it is selling veg it has grown this year on Thursday to pay for seeds for next year.

New comedy series Fleabag has migrated from BBC3 to BBC2, Sunday nights at 10pm (just as this newsletter is sent). There are glimpses of West Hampstead in it, but it’s funny so worth watch for more than that (just perhaps not with your mum in the same room).

Kilburn Cosmos rugby club is hosting a fundraising day on 3rd September after a burglar broke into the the clubhouse and stole thousands of pounds raised for new sports equipment.

It’s taken a while, but the natural fit between West Hampstead and literary festivals is happening. The Hampstead and Highgate Literary Festival is coming JW3.

And if you can’t wait until then to exercise your mind, JW3 is hosting a mind sports Olympiad from 21st to 29th August.

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What have I missed since July 25th?

Camden is planning more changes to waste collection (though it’s managed to increase recycling by just 1 percentage point over the past decade – can we describe their performance as, rubbish?)

TFL is consulting on changes to some local bus services including the 139.

There was a run of local crime news. Sadly the owner of Efes café on Kilburn High Road was stabbed to death on his premises. His son has been charged. A convicted sex-attacker, who used to live on Mill Lane, is on the loose. There was also a murder on Belsize Road, although that was over 70 years ago!

Chaos at West Hampstead tube after Thameslink failures. Photo via @jacquelinehey

Chaos at West Hampstead tube after Thameslink failures. Photo via @jacquelinehey

Tom, our resident gourmand sampled the local curry houses – what’s his take-away message?

Tragedy was averted at Finchley Road tube station after a blind man fell onto the tracks.

The latest economic statistics haven’t been that good and a few local businesses have sadly closed their doors. Mill Lane Bistro, and Home Emporium are the latest casualties.

Progress at Bobby’s House (formerly La Brocca) edges forward. There is a licensing application in. Next door the SALT appears to be rising from the ashes of Lower Ground Bar.

In planning news, the Iverson Tyres development is requesting change of use in its redeveloped site from light industrial to office use.

Tough times indeed. Camden has spent £338,000 on replacing gym equipment first introduced in 2011 (only five years ago). It promises it’s monitoring attendance rates.

At a meeting at the Kingsgate Centre, Camden Labour voted 96 to 54 in favour of Jeremy Corbyn. Local MP Tulip Siddiq has yet to announce who she will be supporting (remember, she was one of Corbyn’s nominees for leader).

Nazanin Zaghair-Ratcliffe, the West Hampstead mother being held in a Tehran prison was, after 120 days in custody, finally charged, but it was not clear with what. Her husband Richard continues to campaign for her return along with their toddler daughter Gabriella. The petition on Change.org calling for her release has over 793,000 signatories – the highest number of signatories on the platform.

Plans are afoot for Finchley Road – the troubled site next to the Overground could become a 10-storey building. Skylark Court. Yes, really.

Artist Mark Wallinger is in self-reflective mood for a new exhibition at the Freud Museum. A good excuse to visit/revisit it.

There’s a new biography out about Evelyn Waugh. So what? Well, he was born in Hillfield Road!

Feel like a trip to the beach but can’t affort the airfare? Closer to home, the Camden Beach is open for business. Or if (crazy) golf, Rio-themed no less, is more your thing then JW3 has it on offer.

Did you lose an engagement ring (at the junction of Dennington Park and Holmdale Roads)? If so get in touch and we will put you in contact with the finder. Maybe the Safer Neighbourhoods team can get in touch to let people know where to hand in lost property?

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What have I missed since July 11th?

There’s more than £3 million to be spent in West Hampstead, including half a million to spend on improvements to the interchange area. But all this spending needs a masterplan that Camden keeps postponing citing a lack of resources!.

Not that it always takes much to improve the area. The Black Lion has redone its planting and it looks good. The O2 organised a clean up of its path – much better, thank you. Next up the Black Path! Tweet your pics of the worst bits to us and @camdentalking!

Disruption to traffic locally last week, firstly an accident closed off Finchley Road and the next day a burst water main on West End Lane.

We haven’t had a burst main for a for a while but it reminded us that our creaking Victorian infrastructure can’t always cope with new development. Indeed Thames Water wrote in to oppose plans for 156 West End Lane because local infrastructure can’t handle it.

"Won't get the part for that until Tuesday mate". Photo via Philip Hewlett

“Won’t get the part for that until Tuesday mate”. Photo via Philip Hewlett

On Mill Lane a house was sealed off as a crime scene after an AirBnB party got out of hand the night before, including a stabbing (allegedly).

After 34 years, a man was convicted of raping and murdering a teenager at her home in Belsize Road.

West Hampstead is getting some new community rooms, right on West End Green in the heart of WHampstead. Hallelujah.

More changes on West End Lane; Dylans the bakers is to become a hairdressers. Roni’s, the bagel bakery, closed ‘for refurbishment’, one of the most rapid refurbishments we have seen. However, the refurbishment of Bobby’s house (RIP La Brocca), continues at… a… much… slower… pace.

The bailiffs arrived at Paya. The Asian/pizza place appears closed for good. Across the road, Roger Samuel, the estate agent,, underwent a rebrand and will reopen soon as Jaffe.

Further afield, in KilburMaidaVale, Love & Liquor is closing.

The post office on Mill Lane has moved and opened in Dass the newsagents. It’s still a bit hidden but signage and ATM arriving soon. We also discovered why it’s called Dass (scroll down a bit on link).

Pokemon Go arrived in West Hampstead with a Pokemonster (?) joining RuNW6 on the Saturday morning jaunt. But the West Hampstead Safer Neighbourhood team was less enthusiastic.

It was Love Parks week. The sun shone on Kilburn Grange for its 7-hour festival. And a replacement outdoor gym appeared, almost overnight. Up on Fortune Green it was early morning yoga with the sun salutations, toward the rising sun, of course.

If you missed it, there was a Whampdrinks last week and a Whampdinner coming up very soon .If you’re not on the mailing list for the latter, you have zero chance of getting in. So sign up!

Sadly, a person was hit by a train at the Thameslink station.

Interim a new charity opening up in West Hampstead sets out to ’empower people through psychotherapy’. It is looking for low-cost rooms to rent. Any suggestions?

And finally… Roger the kitty went missing but WHL RTed and the little blighter was found.

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What have I missed since June 27th?

EU Referendum post-mortem: which was more “Remain” – West Hampstead or Fortune Green? And why was turnout across Camden so average? .

On what turned out to be the launch day of her Tory leadership campaign, Theresa May kept a long-standing engagement with local Cconservatives. She thinks she can win the seat back – watch out Tulip!

Of course the $64,000 (£43,500 on June 22nd, £49,400 now) question is what will be the impact of Brexit be on local property prices?

Photo of the week: Rainy bus window view of West End Lane via Luca Marengo

Rainy bus window view of West End Lane via Luca Marengo

Gail’s, or more correctly GAIL’s, opened this week and is proving popular.

The new set of plans for redevelopment of 156 West End Lane were published though it’s not really clear where things stand.

At the West Hampstead/Fortune Green Area Forum this week you can find out what is happening to all that Section 106 and CIL money.  May sound boring but it’s serious stuff and serious money.

WHL got to the bottom of the West Hampstead Square/Heritage Lane mystery. Meanwhile, Ballymore claims the development will be finished by the end of the year and M&S will be moving in October, but with no movements from the cranes this seems optimistic.

Kilburn Grange keeps cropping up in local news. First there were the poorly consulted/received redevelopment plans, then it suffered damage from the poorly attended funfair and finally, without any warning or information, the existing (and perfectly fine) exercise area is gone but is set to be replaced?

Lower Ground Bar may be opening again after all… but with a new bouncer. Further up West End Lane, one unfortunate West Hampstead local won’t be going back to the Black Lion – she’s been barred.

Mill Lane Post Office closed but Jennie from the Kitchen Table threw a farewell party for Vijay the post-master. A new post office will be opening further down Mill Lane in Dass, the newsagents, in the near future.

Did you get to the Jester Festival last weekend? If not this is what you missed. Or if you didn’t get to the FoWHL talk on the Ginger Line last Monday, this is what you missed.

Ed Fordham lead a walking tour of Kilburn history. Went down well. If you fancy becoming a tour guide yourself Camden Tour are offering a year long course deadline for applications is 31st July.

Finally, this Tuesday, West Hampstead resident Nazanin Zachary Ratcliffe will be spending her 100th day in an Iranian prison, without charge. Her husband Richard is campaigning vigorously from the family home on Fortune Green Road for her release and for their two year old daughter to return home as well. He organised a candlelit vigil outside 10 Downing Street. He was able to speak to her briefly and is hopeful that the Iranian regime will show clemency during Ramadan.

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What have you missed since… August 2015!?

The rumours are true. West Hampstead Life is back with a new editor but the same mission (and a familiar face is still involved). So, on with the news.

West Hampstead resident Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe was recently seized by Iranian security services on her way back to the UK after visiting relatives. She has been separated from her nearly two-year-old daughter, who is being looked after by her grandparents in Iran. Her husband, Richard Ratcliffe, is campaigning for her return and to send their daughter a birthday card.

Saracens players celebrated their Premiership win with a quiet reflective pint at The Alice House this Sunday.

Actor and long time local resident Burt Kwuok died. Younger readers (i.e., anyone under 30) might not know the name, but he played the role of Cato Fong in the very popular Pink Panther movies of the 1960s and ’70s.

Talking of films, the Friends of Fortune Green have their first outdoor screening of the year next Saturday 4th June. It will be Brooklyn – one of the best movies of last year. Screening starts 9pm (sundown) but get there early with picnic and friends to bag a good spot.

In the past nine months West End Lane has continued to change:

Blink and you missed it – recent renovations at David’s Deli revealed some glorious old signage of days gone by. It’s been boarded up again but fear not it’s still there and sometime in in the next few weeks there’s an expert coming to take another look.

Glorious old signage revealed at David's Deli via Keith Moffitt

Glorious old signage revealed at David’s Deli via Keith Moffitt

Pizza Express should be opening soon. But it seems to have ‘spoiled the ship for a ha’penny’s worth of tar‘. Talking of pizza, Franco Manca, the rapidly expanding pizza chain, is opening up on the Kilburn High Road. It is aiming to open on June 28th. Will Pizza Express beat them to it?

Posh baker Gail’s is taking over the old Marie Curie charity shop site. Work started this week with a planned opening in early July. Majority pleased… that it’s not another estate agent.

Lower Ground bar is currently closed, apparently “for refurbishment“, though the massiveclub brawl may have something to do with it. The bar’s licence has been temporarily suspended.

And what is happening next door at much-missed La Brocca, which closed it’s doors exactly a year ago. Sources close to “Bobby F” say that its poor structural state has hampered renovations and other projects have taken priority but “pizza, cocktails and fun” are still on the menu.

More pub news – the Alliance on Mill Lane has been saved thanks, in part to the NDF getting it listed as an asset of community value and some tough negotiating by the leaseholder with the new owner. Sketchy details on its website but we’ll investigate for the next newsletter.

Mill Lane has lost a stalwart though. Bake-a-boo closed its doors for the last time today as owner Zoë explores a whole new career. She’ll be much missed.

Finally in this retail roundup, the estate agents’ boards on West End Lane, which are already much improved are due to disappear completely (scroll down a bit).

One thing that hasn’t changed since last May: West Hampstead Square still isn’t open! In the last newsletter, we reported that the opening had been pushed back from September 2015 to February 2016. That’s been and gone. Brickwork problems are believed to be partly to blame.

After A2 Dominon presented its “third and final” (its words) proposal for 156 West End Lane (a.k.a Travis Perkins), the plans were due to be submitted to Camden in November 2015. These were summarily rejected by Camden’s planners so it’s gone back to the drawing board. Revised plans are awaited.

In other large local development news, the opening of the new school on Liddell Road has been put back a year as construction has been delayed. There’s nothing on Kingsgate School’s website to confirm this. Indeed, there’s nothing obvious about the expansion of the school at all.

It’s unclear what’s going on at Monte Cristo – the breaking-all-the planning-regulations shisha bar on Fortune Green Road Seems closed, but is it?

Camden has been consulting on major changes to Kilburn Grange Park but after only one presentation. Plans include moving the only recently installed and very expensive adventure playground. Lots to discuss in a future article, would love to hear readers’ views.

Thameslink unveiled high-tech 12-carriage trains this week that can carry 1,750 passengers. Even more commuters changing at West Hampstead then?

The Sherriff Centre has opened its debt advice service, funded by its own profits. It will offer advice on a wide range of debt issues and help people facing emergency situations such as eviction or utility disconnection.

Have you registered to vote (by June 7th) for the upcoming EU referendum? According to YouGov, Camden is the fifth most pro-Europe region in the country. But, if you’re not yet sure how to vote, the Sherriff Centre is hosting an EU hustings on June 9th.

Fancy some footie? Cllr Phil Rosenberg, who in an effort to help shift a kilo or two bring the community together, has started up an informal football kickabout on Sunday afternoons at the Fortune Green play centre. They even use a fair-trade football (obvs). Free for now, but £4.50 down the line, 5-7pm, open to all.

In more serious Cllr Rosenberg news, he penned a thoughtful post about this week’s Hampstead & Kilburn Labour party meeting, which failed to address an antisemitism resolution.

There are more getting-to-know-your-neighbours event coming up with at least three Big Lunches on the 12th June. Gondar Gardens, Achilles Road and Ravenshaw Street are all hosting so if you live in and around those streets why not pop along? But please bring a dish to share.

Read a comprehensive account of all the V1 and V2 rockets to strike West Hampstead & Kilburn in WW2.

Culturally, coming up; the Friends of West Hampstead Library are hosting a book talk by Simon Garfield, up-and-coming American violinist Elena Uriosta is appearing in the St. Cuthbert’s master concert, and it’s the final week of two exhibitions at the Camden Arts Centre.

And finally, something out of this world. During British Science week in March, FoFG set up a scale model of the solar system and organised some excellent walks. If you missed them, this is a one minute version of the journey from the Sun to Neptune.

2nd June, Thurs – FoWHL; author Simon Garfield interviewed by local legend Simon Inglis.
4th June, Sat – FoFG screening of Brooklyn on Fortune Green
4th June, Sat – St. Cuthbert’s Master concert – violinist Elena Urioste
9th June, Thurs – EU hustings at the Sherriff Centre
11th June, Sat Fork to Fork Food Festival NW6 (the Kensal Rise bit)
12th June, Sun – Big Lunch day – several taking place in West Hampstead (see above)

2nd/3rd July – The 44th Jester Festival, Fortune Green

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What have I missed since July 6th?

The West Hampstead & Fortune Green Neighbourhood Development Plan was passed in a referendum. An overwhelming 93% of the 2,522 votes cast were in favour of the plan. The plan is therefore now a statutory planning document and it looks like 156 West End Lane will be its first real test.

Camden is launching a consultation on libraries this week. There’s already a “Save West Hampstead Library” campaign and petition up and running, led by local councillors – although it will be their Labour colleagues making the decision on any closures.

The Battle of Britain flypast went overhead on Friday to the delight of many locals, and the confusion of others.

Spitfires over west Hampstead via @mauriceticulous

Spitfires over West Hampstead via @mauriceticulous

Oktoberfest in Kilburn Grange park will go ahead says Camden.

The Thameslink station took the brunt of passengers on the tube strike days – and groaned under the strain.

On July 18th, The Sherriff Centre celebrates its 1st birthday – there’ll be a BBQ and various activities.

Whampdinner at Toomai was a big success – the cocktails being particularly well received.

There’s talk of a kosher restaurant/bakery opening in West Hampstead later this year.

The 139 bus was featured in the Washington Post.

On the Forum this week – the usual mix of things for sale or wanted (including goldfish!) and the start of a discussion about restaurant decking!

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What have I missed since June 29th?

The referendum on the local Neighbourhood Plan is this Thursday. Find out more and do please vote. West Hampstead Life is supporting a “Yes” vote.

Sir Nicholas Winton, who arranged for hundreds of children to escape the Nazis, died. Sir Nicholas was born in West Hampstead. We profiled him last year.

Another year, another successful Jester Festival.

Crazy weather!  via @GavinMetcalf1

Crazy weather! via @GavinMetcalf1

Hampstead School, which is really Cricklewood/West Hampstead borders, is to get a major overhaul of its buildings.

There was a minor collision between a C11 and a Sainsbury’s delivery van.

Whampsocial brought all the boys and girls to the yard. And by yard, I mean The Alliance. Next one in August!

NW6 Film Club returns on Wednesday for a screening of Amy Whitehouse documentary, Amy.

Check out the Forum for the usual eclectic range of questions, offers, and debates.

Maygrove Road is still closed.

The Scavolini kitchen store had its opening party.

Toomai celebrated its 1st birthday, and the current incarnation of Mill Lane Bistro its 4th.

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The campaign to “Save West Hampstead“, which is actually about the 156 West End Lane proposals, is in full swing and has published a detailed list of its objections. It’s unclear how much support the campaign has beyond the streets immediately surrounding the development site.

The Railway finally reopened.

The Neighbourhood Development Forum is ramping up its “Vote Yes” campaign ahead of the referendum vote on July 9th. It’s also combined with Frognal’s NDF to conduct a survey on your views on Finchley Road.

Tubes into the sunset via Bhaskar Dasgupta

Tubes into the sunset via Bhaskar Dasgupta

The plans for the Overground station were passed by the planning committee.

The Alice House is holding a “Whamp vs Food” competition on Thursday for charity Centrepoint. Some of the Saracens rugby team are turning up!

Next weekend is the Jester Festival – West Hampstead’s very own summer fete. There are bric-a-brac stall spaces still available.

There’s also an Open Garden on Menelik Road on Sunday as part of the National Gardens Scheme, which you can combine with others on Teignmouth Road and Anson Road.

Maygrove Road will be closed from July 1st to 17th as more work is done on the 65-67 development.

Beckford School holds its Summer Fair on Friday after school.

La Traviata (in English) is on at The Tricycle until July 4th. Read our review.

The Scavolini kitchen shop on Fortune Green opened.

RuNW6 – the social running club – is starting to trial an additional midweek run. Follow @ruNW6 on Twitter for more details.

West Hampstead’s Harriet Dart was given a wildcard into the Women’s Doubles qualifying tournament for Wimbledon. Sadly, she was knocked out in the first round.

Hope & Harmony at Rosslyn Hill Chapel is our Culture Hub pick of the week, alongside a couple of other local cultural treats.

Lots of things available on the Forum as well as chat about 156 West End Lane and much more besides.

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Newly elected Hampstead & Kilburn MP, Tulip Siddiq, gave her maiden speech in the Commons.

There’s already a campaign set up to contest the plans for 156 West End Lane, which affects Lymington Road residents.

In October, The Gardens bar on Broadhurst Gardens is going to become a “colonial style cat jungle & human restaurant“.

Poppies at West Hampstead - not part of planting via Mark Amies

Poppies at West Hampstead – not part of planting via Mark Amies

The Petite Corée was featured on Korean TV. I’m afraid I have no idea what any of it says, but it all seems very positive.

Holistic Hair & Beauty is closed as of Monday. Customers can visit its Belsize Terrace branch if they find themselves desperately short of hairdresser options in West Hampstead.

Property News looked at how tenants have reacted to the election.

In the never-ending saga of “When will The Railway open”? The latest is that it could be this Friday.

In South Hampstead, the police team are taking a zero tolerance approach on pavement cycling. and imposing the £50 fixed penalty notice.

The Google Streetview car was spotted in West Hampstead and Kilburn.

It seeems someone didn’t like someone else’s parking on Achilles Road (NSFW).

Camden has confirmed that it doesn’t have the budget to pay for Christmas decorations on West End Lane this year. The West Hampstead Business Association is raising funds instead – anyone is welcome to contribute. The WHBA already has the hanging baskets back up for the summer.

La Traviata at The Tricycle is our Culture Hub Pick of the Week.

A rather nice looking house on the corner of Finchley Road and Heath Drive is being knocked down for a new developent. Good “front and back” photos here.

There’s stuff for sale and for free on the Forum, or have your say on the cat café or the 156 West End Lane plans.

Local historian Ed Fordham is looking for volunteers for this year’s Kilburn History Festival in late October/early November. Contact him for details.

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The first outlines of the 156 West End Lane redevelopment plans were published. Looks like three eight-storey blocks, but firm details are hard to come by.

A good crowd braved the damp June weather on Saturday for the first of this year’s Film on Fortune Green screenings. Local author Simon Inglis introduced the classic To Kill a Mockingbird.

Police are to investiage historic sex abuse claims against a Cumberland club tennis coach (who died 20 years ago).

Sunset tonight, St Mary's to the left and the West Hampstead Square shipyard cranes to the right. via @mauriceticulous

Sunset tonight, St Mary’s to the left and the West Hampstead Square shipyard cranes to the right. via @mauriceticulous

The Neighbourhood Development Forum launched its referendum campaign. It’s been backed by all local parties and most residents associations have also come out in favour. If you live in West Hampstead or Fortune Green wards then you should have received your polling card this week. The vote is on July 9th.

Amaan’s Grill looks like it’s going to become The Meat Bar (another kebab shop), or “Turkish restaurant with a focus on hand-made food”. Meanwhile La Smorfia is going to become “Bistro, The Walk“, a “Mediterranean specialist restaurant” that has an existing operation in Potters Bar

Joy opened on West End Lane. People seemed happy.

An intellectual on Compayne Gardens couldn’t be bothered to go to the charity shops in the most highbrow example of fly-tipping seen yet. It doesn’t quite compare with the Kingsgate Road tip however.

The quest to eat everywhere on Kilburn High Road has made it to Ciao Ciao.

June’s Property of the Month is a 2-bed flat for rent on Inglewood Road.

Fortune Green received some new exercise equipemnt and play markings. Apparently the somewhat unsightly black matting will soon have grass growing through it, making it less obtrusive.

The Tricycle announced its autumn season.

Fortune Green Road will be getting road signs to warn motorists that drive above 20mph.

The Lounge Café on Kingsgate Road joined Twitter.

Do you know anyone who got married at Sacred Heart church on Quex Road? As part of the 150th annniversary of the parish, the church is inviting any couples who married there to renew their vows.

The people who use the Gondar Gardens bench have spoken.

Curled Leaf proprietor Alketa Xhafa-Mripa has been making the news with an astonishingly powerful art installation in Pristina.

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There are two public consultations this week about the proposed redevelopment of 156 West End Lane. The developer – A2Dominion – is proposing ~200 homes, of which 50% would be affordable, alongside community, commercial and employment space. The drop-in events are on Thursday and Saturday.

Astonishing or well-deserved? Tortellini Cup, the pasta kiosk in the O2 centre, tops the Trip Advisor rankings for all restaurants in London.

The revised plans for the Overground station [pdf] are now available. The main difference is that the roof has been lowered.

Iverson Road, West Hampstead, at sunset by @SteveWHamp

Iverson Road, West Hampstead, at sunset by @SteveWHamp

A few more details are leaking out about the scandal at the Cumberland Lawn Tennis Club.

Lebanese restaurant Cedar opened on West End Lane this week (where Mamacita was). It seemed there were some teething troubles early on for which the restaurant apologised.

Missed news from the previous week, Morris Beckman – a tireless campaigner against anti-fascism and all-round amazing person – died aged 94. He was often to be seen out and about in West Hampstead, and gave a talk at Locally Sourced just last year.

The England women’s cricket team came to Lymington Road on Sunday to give a cricket masterclass for women and girls before taking on a Select XI in a 25 over match.

Last chance for readers to get 10% off cooking classes in June.

Whampsocial at The Alliance brought the usual mix of new faces and old friends together. The next one is July 2nd.

The West Hampstead Business Assocation has applied to the Mayor’s Fund to match all donations for its local improvement plans

Natalie Duncan is our Culture Hub Pick of the Week. See what other treats made the cut this week.

Locals are objecting in force to the plan to turn strip club Secrets into a 300-capacity nightclub.

Starting on Saturday, the Fordwych Master Concerts are bringing some prodigious pianists to West Hampstead.

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La Brocca changes ownership on Monday after 24 years. The new owners are no strangers to West End Lane though.

A woman was hit by a take-away delivery bike on Saturday evening in West End Lane as she crossed while both lanes of traffic were stationary. An ambulance arrived, but there is no news on her condition. According to an eye witness, the bike was not travelling fast, but nevertheless it was a nasty accident.

The Mill Lane post office was apparently robbed again on Thursday. No-one was hurt.

West Hampstead Gooners spotted at the FA cup final!  via @preetsjc

West Hampstead Gooners spotted at the FA cup final! via @preetsjc

Whampsocial is back this Thursday at The Alliance.

Sushi Kou on Fortune Green Road has closed (and moved to Wimbledon).

Tom tried the mussels at The Black Lion in Kilburn.

It’s been another week of traffic frustration on West End Lane as Thames Water connects West Hampstead Square to the mains. The week culminated in both sets of temporary traffic lights being stuck on red on Sunday morning.

The development itself is now aiming for completion in February 2016 (pushed back from September this year), although Ballymore hopes the first residents will be able to move in in time for Christmas.

Five of the block names were decided last year in a competition, the other two are to be called Lily and Charlotte.

The West Hampstead Business Association is asking for specific project funding this year rather than subs as it strives to improve the area.

South Hampstead residents should try and make it to the CRASH AGM on Tuesday where there’s also a talk about “Dodgy Developers”.

A scandal is engulfing the prestigious Cumberland Lawn Tennis Club. The Ham & High scrapes the surface of the story though apparently big name lawyers have got involved, which may be why it has not published more detail.

There are a few days left to attend the Keats Festival in NW3. The event was opened by Nancy dell’Olio.

A fight broke out in the North Star on Finchley Road just before closing time on Friday. A 72-year-old man was taken to hospital with serious head injuries.

FA Cup fans were surprised to find The Railway still closed on Saturday. The pub had been due to reopen this week but further delays to the work on the flats above have pushed that date back another three weeks.

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Carphone Warehouse on Finchley Road was robbed on Wednesday.

Social finally cleared out the shop… and although the rumours have been that it was to become a bakery, it now seems that “fashion and lifestyle brand” Joy will be moving in.

There’s a licence application in for two weekends of Oktoberfest in Kilburn Grange Park.

Caught the @WHampstead fire engine twerking via @damawa42

“Caught the @WHampstead fire engine twerking” via @damawa42

The Film on Fortune Green on June 13th will be To Kill a Mockingbird.

Burrito chain Tortilla opened on Finchley Road in the old Pizza Express site.

I’m afraid our headline Culture Hub act has been and gone already this week, but we’ve got a couple of good films to look out for as well.

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After the election, Conservative Simon Marcus was gracious in defeat, while 2010’s 3rd placed Ed Fordham (who came closer in 3rd than Simon did in 2nd) admits to still finding it hard to cope with losing sometimes.

A beehive was spotted in a back garden on Tuesday and then a swarm of bees made someone’s car their home on Sunday.

A driver was robbed at gunpoint in Dynham Road on election day (yards from a CNN film crew).

I found the last affordable house in West Hampstead, in a prime position on Holmdale Rd. May need some repairs via @timcheese

I found the last affordable house in West Hampstead, in a prime position on Holmdale Rd. May need some repairs via @timcheese

Property News looked at what the election means for house prices.

Tulip Siddiq was on Andrew Neil’s show this week as a new MP.

Locals around Ingham Road, Agamemnon Road and Gondar Gardens were inundated by Hunters estate agents signs – on properties that aren’t on the market. Hunters blamed a mix-up with its board company, but the council had to remove some boards that had been hurled onto the pavement by homeowners.

There’ll be disruption on Mill Lane Wednesday-Friday due to Thames Water working to improve water pressure (they’re just installing monitoring stations, so don’t expect a power shower on Saturday).

A man who’s been to the Swiss Cottage Odeon more than 7,000 times has been named the chain’s most devoted fan.

On which note… NW6 Film Club is moving to the Odeon on Wednesday for May’s film: Mad Max, Fury Road. Details here.

The deadline for voting for the June 13th Film on Fortune Green has been extended to midnight on Monday given that it’s a tight race!

An old shop sign was temporarily revealed on the corner of Blackburn Road.

Someone left a great comment giving an insight into life on Broadhurst Gardens in the 1950s; “apart from different names on the shops, little had changed”.

Apparently, some locals think Mill Lane framers Thou Art has closed. It hasn’t, but it does have new managers.

In a week of mixed weather (!), Deluge, at Hampstead Theatre, is our top Culture Hub pick of the week.

Nido, which operates the student block in Blackburn Road, released its “gosh, isn’t West Hampstead nice“, video.

England’s very successful women’s cricket team will be playing Hampstead Cricket Club at Lymington Road on June 7th.

On the forum this week – a rundown of all the latest food hygiene scores and a poll on whether all business should have to display their score
There’s always stuff for sale!
And one mother is looking for an Emmanuel pre-schooler for playdates.

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Labour’s Tulip Siddiq won Hampstead & Kilburn by 1,138 votes. The Conservatives’ Simon Marcus was second, with Maajid Nawaz a long way back in third, ahead of the Greens’ Rebecca Johnson and UKIP’s Magnus Nielsen. Turnout was 67.5%, up slightly from 2010’s 66.3%.

Relive the night with my live Twitter feed.

Ronnie Carroll, the candidate who died between nominations and the election and therefore who remained on the ballot paper, got 113 votes. He didn’t come last.

May be interesting in hindsight… our interviews with the three main candidates in the run up to the election: Tulip, Simon, and Maajid.

West Hampstead library at 8.30am on polling day via Rita Tudela

West Hampstead library at 8.30am on polling day via Rita Tudela

May’s Property of the Month is a 2-bed flat on Crediton Hill.

Sunday saw the second round of the Netherwood Street Clean-Up, with more impressive results. If you want to get involved, the next session is on Thursday between 11-2. Meet at the open space on Netherwood Street.

Ther are two conmen working local streets at the moment. One claims to have just moved in a few doors down from you and has locked himself out. He asks for money. The other has been around before – he claims to be an antiques dealer but is just trying to get inside your house to steal stuff. If you come across either, the police ask that you call 101.

Learn about the tough men and the harsh conditions they worked in when building what is now the Thameslink railway line through West Hampstead in the 1860s.

A rebooted Whampsocial kicked off on Wednesday night at new venue, The Alliance. The next one will be June 4th – same place, from 7.30pm. Wednesday was also the latest chapter of Whampbooks – with a very healthy turnout as always.

The next NDF meeting is this Tuesday, and topics will include the referendum campaign (that’s
for the neighbourhood plan, not Europe!).

Estate agent company Countrywide, which owns more than 40 estate agent brands, has bought Greene & Co., the north-west London chain headquartered in West Hampstead. Countrywide’s Hamptons brand will be absorbing Greene & Co, although branding is apparently to be decided.

As a West End Lane doctor finally retires, patients are told they’ll have to change surgeries… but there are 18 practices within one mile.

A tree was planted on Fortune Green 22:26 10/05/2015in memory of Don Hill, who was a founding member of WHAT.

Check out the latest threads on the Forum.

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The existing Liddell Road businesses have been given until the end of the month to quit the site before building work starts on the school/flats/commercial space.

WHL reviewed The Petite Corée – we agreed with everyone else!

Local marathon runners gritted their teeth on Sunday. Did anyone local best Mark Townsend’s 2h59? No doubt at all that no-one has run more marathons over the past year than Robert Young.

Only in @WHampstead! Another use for toilet rolls: Impromptu coffee table, much to surprise of Waitrose delivery men!  via Nicolette Molnar

“Only in @WHampstead! Another use for toilet rolls: Impromptu coffee table, much to surprise of Waitrose delivery men!” via Nicolette Molnar

Got a great idea for a local public space? Enter this competition and win £300 to help make it happen.

Election news

  • The Guardian’s Dave Hill looked at H&K and wondered whether private renters might play a bigger role than the “mansion” dwellers in determining the outcome.
  • The FT meanwhile had a slightly different, though well-balanced, take on the constituency.
  • The BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme spoke to undecided voters about Hampstead & Kilburn (ff to 32’04” if you nothing about the general election, and to 37’18” for the discussion. Bonus points for spotting the deliberate mistake at the very end).

Lebanese restaurant The Cedar revealed its new sign.

The application for the Farmers’ Market banner has been withdrawn.

There was a good turnout for the midweek NW6 Film Club screening of Force Majeure at The Tricycle.

Next Sunday, as part of the club’s 150th anniversary celebrations, former England captain Andrew Strauss will be at Hampstead Cricket Club unveiling a statue in honour of a a player who scored an incredible 485 runs… back in 1886. Excitement starts at noon (there’s music, and even a cricket match at 1pm).

Turns out there was traffic on West End Lane even before Tesco delivery lorries

Holistic Health Lab opened on Mill Lane

The closure of Mamacita has led to a temporary pause in Whampsocial; but fear not… plans are afoot for a new look whampsocial starting early May. Watch this space.

Matchbox Theatre is our Culture Hub pick of the week, see what else made the cut.

Hot on the Forum

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TfL has shelved its plans to axe the 13 bus route and extend the 139 to Golders Green. Every party seems to be claiming it was their campaign wot done it; TfL simply says that the consultation overlapped with the election so it’s stopped it.

There was a tragic road accident on Thursday when a man apparently had a heart attack, crashed his car into a lamppost by the Priory Tavern on Belsize Road and died. His son, also in the car, escaped unhurt.

Matt Ogston started his 130 mile “journey to find acceptance“, in support of his partner Naz Mahmood who died last year.

Ballymore construction via @LondonPhoton

Ballymore construction via @LondonPhoton

The Petite Corée made the Evening Standard’s list of best Korean restaurants in London.

TfL has slightly revised its plans for the new Overground station. The roof has been lowered, and the sign moved. There’s also a better artist’s impression of the station in the context of West Hampstead Square.

Election news

  • Former Eurovision singer Ronnie Carroll remains on the Hampstead & Kilburn ballot sheet, despite dying last week.
  • The second large H&K hustings had a good turnout but the candidates weren’t able to get through too many audience questions One man was very angry about Foxtons.
  • According to the CNJ, the majority of the money being gambled on H&K is going on the Conservatives, though apparently there’s also been a £3,000 single bet on Labour to win.
  • This Monday is the last day you can register to vote!

NW6 Film Club is back this Wednesday (yes, Wednesday not Sunday) for Force Majeure. Check it out (and there’s an FAQ for Film Club newbies).

Camden Arts Centre’s latest exhibition is our Culture Hub Pick of the Week; but what else made the cut this week?

West Hampstead Life reviewed the Tricycle’s new play, After Electra.

The West Hampstead & Fortune Green Neigbourhood Development plan referendum takes place on July 9th. The NDF is getting its “Yes” campaign underway.

The former scooter showroom by Fortune Green is beng replaced by The Skiwear Service. Much was made on Twitter of its ability to kit out nannies for the slopes.

Property News asked for your view on the mansion tax, and discussed the state of the rental market in West Hampstead.

DJ and local resident Sara Cox gave Mill Lane’s Beauty Blossom a great plug in Saturday’s Daily Express.

The Turkish restaurant replacing La Smorfia will apparently be called N Fez, and will open in June.

Hampstead Cricket Club’s women’s team is recruiting, with two Tuesday taster sessions coming up.

Hot on the Forum

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An operating pub in Maida Vale was demolished without warning, planning permission or the knowledge of the landlady.

A Mercedes crashed through the church gate of St Mary’s church on Abbey Road.

Samuel West, actor, and director of the Tricycle’s latest play After Electra, talked to West Hampstead Life about the play and his take on Kilburn.

Sunset over St. Mary's and West end lane tonight via @mauriceticulous

Sunset over St. Mary’s and West end lane tonight via ?@mauriceticulous

On Saturday join Matt and friends in Hampstead Cemetery at the start of his walk to end religious homophobia.

Election news

  • Tulip and her Labour supporters disrupted a BoJo walkabout with hilarious photo consequences… not least the complete lack of interest from the people sitting on the bench
  • Lib Dem candidate Maajid Nawaz took the heat after the Daily Mail ran video footage of his stag night, during which he received two private lap dances. Maajid has stressed his feminist credentials in the past.
  • There were two additions to the final slate of candidates for Hampstead & Kilburn: Carroll the Eurovisionary (Ind) and Robin Ellison (U Party).

Comedy legend Arthur Smith plays The Good Ship this Monday and is our Culture Hub pick of the week. See what else made the cut.

April’s Property of the Month is a 2-bed flat to let on Gladys Road.

On Thursday, hotly tipped new author Renée Knight has the launch party for her debut novel, Disclaimer.

Want to help combat food waste and have fun? Disco Soup could be for you?

Hot on the Forum

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The Evening Standard ran a lengthy propery-related feature on West Hampstead that focused heavily on the neighbourhood’s strong community spirit.

The restaurant replacing Mamacita is “Cedar“, a Lebanese place that has an award-winning outlet in W9.

Tom got his Easter eggs from El Rocio.

Just spotted the smartest dressed cat in West Hampstead via Lorna Russell

Just spotted the smartest dressed cat in West Hampstead via Lorna Russell

There’s a new bench in Hampstead cemetery in memory of Dr Nazim Mahmood who died last year. More importantly, you can support his partner Matt by coming to the cemetery on April 18th where a walk against religious intolerance of homosexuality kicks off.

Election news

  • There was a huge turnout for our hustings at The Sherriff Centre. All five candidates fielded a wide range of questions.
  • Two photographers launched a project to capture two Hampstead & Kilburn voters and their intentions every day of the campaign.
  • On April Fool’s Day, I announced my candidacy for Hampstead & Kilburn. At least a couple of people fell for it.
  • WHAT and the Friends of West Hampstead Library have a hustings on April 15th.

Is Greggs moving to West Hampstead? The baker says no.

What did we make of the Tricycle’s Takeover play, “The Dissidents”?

A man was arrested after a Gondar Gardens woman found him in her kitchen rifling through her handbag.

One NW6 restaurant might be best avoided for a while.

A former La Brocca employee made the FT this week…. for her musical ability.

Cult classic Blade Runner: The Final Cut is our Culture Hub pick of the week, but if replicants aren’t your thing, there’s plenty of other highlights.

Someone else tries to answer that perennial question: Where IS Kilburn?

Paddy Power is applying for change of use to turn the retail unit next to Boots on Kilburn High Road (formerly a Barratt’s shoe shop) into a bookmakers.

The Groom Room in Fortune Green is up for sale.

Can anyone beat Alex’s 5,530 score playing Google Maps pacman in West Hampstead?

Hot on the forum

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Social, Mamacita and La Smorfia all closed. The strip between Tesco and Sainsbury’s is changing particularly fast.

Should parking revenue from the area be spent on improving road safety around Fordwych Road?

The West Hampstead Life general election hustings are this Tuesday at The Sherriff Centre.

A bus stop on the Kilburn High Road got flattened by a lorry. No-one was hurt amazingly.

Err... Remember that bus stop on Kilburn High Road outside Tesco....  via Oliver Denton

Err… Remember that bus stop on Kilburn High Road outside Tesco…. via Oliver Denton

A ferret was found wandering around West Hampstead.

West End Lane was rated the 19th healthiest high street in London, according to some rather bizarre criteria.

Paya rebranded as Pak Choi. It’s not open yet.

Pizza Express on Finchley Road is moving into the O2 and Tortilla is taking over the former Pizza Express site.

French is West Hampstead’s second language.

Check out the Winch’s new social enterprise, “Wheel Make a Difference” (see what they’ve done there?)

Culture Hub has a couple of picks that are on tonight!

Hot on the Forum

The Railway now hopes to open mid-May (will it be in time for the ever-lucrative FA Cup Final?)

Local teenagers shaved their heads – for all the right reasons.

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A year after the campaign started, Camden finally looks set to rid West End Lane of estate agents boards.

Matthew Ogston, partner of Nazeem Mahmood who died last year after falling from his balcony on Fawley Road, spoke to The Guardian in a moving must-read interview. Next week we’ll explain how you can show your support for Matt and his cause.

Foxtons opened its new brightly lit West End Lane branch.

It's alive... @WHampstead is complete. And they have a balloon window display. Appropriate re future house prices..?!  via Simon Benson

It’s alive… @WHampstead is complete. And they have a balloon window display. Appropriate re future house prices..?!
via Simon Benson

£80 million worth of cannabis was smuggled out of premises on West End Lane.

Camden threatened to close Broomsleigh Street at the Mill Lane end during the Beckford school run hours. Locals weren’t happy and following two public meetings, it appears the council has gone back to the drawing board.

Hot on the Forum

It’s tough being a backbench councillor in Camnden – even if you are part of the majority party – as Fortune Green’s Lorna Russell has found.

Fortune Green footpath to the cemetery will be closed for 4-5 days from Thursday for resurfacing

Two men who helped Sabrina Moss’s killer were jailed.

What are this week’s top culture picks? Check out the Culture Hub to find out.

Election news

  • Not sure who to vote for? The West Hampstead Life hustings are on March 31st. Come along to the Sherriff Centre and grill the candidates.
  • Hampstead & Kilburn Green candidate Rebecca Johnson launched her camapaign with a video.
  • Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond was in West Hampstead during the week for Conservative candidate Simon Marcus’s campaign. He looked at some cheese and some meat.

There were fewer blue margaritas at this week’s whampsocial as locals opted for more traditional cocktails!

If you’ve lost an Italian driving licence, it’s been handed in to Paramount on West End Lane.

A diamond ring’s been lost on Mill Lane.

One Sixty celebrated its first anniversary.

Monday’s WHAT meeting will still cover the Brent Cross redevelopment (which received a £97 million boost in the budget), after developers initially pulled out.

Bakeaboo made it into the Standard’s top 50 London bakeries.

The Tricycle’s Takeover festival got underway with the theatre’s young company taking over the venue for the week.

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If you had clothes at Delicate Dry Cleaners, next to Barclays, you can now pick them up from D&D Dry Cleaners, at 68 Fortune Green Road.

The timetable for the NDF referendum has been released.

A large bear caused consternation on West End Lane.

Daffs on Fortune Green via @Tetramesh

Daffs on Fortune Green via @Tetramesh

Spring continues springing on Fortune Green, but the commitee is chasing the miscreants who leave bread on the green, in contravention of signs!

Hot on the Forum this week

Foxtons has started its West Hampstead marketing push in advance of opening.

Look back at some of the most remarkable women of West Hampstead.

What did we make of JW3’s 2000 Year Old Man?

Property News: Is now the time to sell in West Hampstead?

NW6 Film Club is off to see Julianne Moore’s Oscar-winning performance in Still Alice at the Tricycle on Sunday evening. There’s even a discount for Film Club people.

Whampsocial is on Thursday – tacos, cocktails (and other drinks) and lovely locals. Come on down, it’s open to everyone.

Finchley Road roadworks led to Carmageddon at the O2 on Sunday.

The Brondesbury Group is having a night of poetry and music on March 18th at the North London Tavern.

Scavolini kitchens is moving into the corner unit at Alfred Court (aka the Sager building on Fortune Green Road)

Zoe Wanamaker in Stevie at Hampstead Theatre is our Culture Hub top pick, but check out the other carefully selected treats this week.

Kilburn’s newest bookshop (only bookshop?) had its official opening on Saturday.

Is THIS how Shoot Up Hill got its name?

We may never know if Tracy is still waiting for Alan.

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Camden councillors voted in favour of the Liddell Road scheme. Only two members of the planning committee voted against. You can watch the whole thing.

The meeting refers to some calculations by the NDF on the economics of the Liddell Road scheme, which were published on West Hampstead Life. And if, somehow, you’re new to all this, then do catch up with our Liddell Road refresher.

Cllr Lora Russell, who spoke out against the scheme, was described as having “misguided” views by fellow Labour councillors before the committee meeting.

Beautiful evening at West Hampstead streetfood market, via @MargoandRitas

Beautiful evening at West Hampstead streetfood market, via @MargoandRitas

The streetfood market returned to the Thameslink forecourt. It’s open 4-8pm Wednesday to Friday.

TfL is consulting on changes to bus services in the area. The 139 would continue on to Golders Green, and the 13 would disappear completely.

Delicate Dry Cleaners, next to Barclays, has gone bust. Customers can collect clothes stuck there between 12 and 2pm this Monday only!

Tom’s Diner went to Bengal Spice on West End Lane. Should have had the vindaloo though.

The farmers’ market sign is angering some locals again… but the Longhorn beef seems to be popular!

March’s Property of the Month is a Victorian house up near Hampstead School.

Lymington Road’s Hampstead Cricket Club celebrates its 150th anniversary this year. We looked back at the origins of the star-studded sports club.

Also on its 150th birthday was Sacred Heart church on Quex Road. It was all fields back then.

There was an exhibition of the latest scheme for Gondar Gardens. All the boards can be seen here [pdf].

Why not check out Another Utopia at Swiss Cottage Gallery this week? It’s one of our Culture Hub picks.

Hana is applying to extend the restaurant over the decking out front.

The quest to eat everywhere on Kilburn High Road reached Belvedere Traditional.

The Railway, covered in scaffolding, is unsurprisingly not going to make its planned March reopening date. Now looking at late April or early May.

Obituary: Jasper Woodcock, a major figure in work on drug dependency who was based in West Hampstead (good local anecdote at the end).

On the forum this week:

Election news

  • H is for Hampstead & Kilburn in the Guardian’s A-Z election guide
  • Labour’s Tulip Siddiq tweeted; “Dear local Lib Dem activist on the 328 bus last night. Loved your rant about me. I wsas sat right behind you FYI”.

Tweet of the Week

What have I missed since February 23rd

The planning application for Liddell Road will be decided on Tuesday when it goes in front of the planning committee. The session is open to the public (7pm Camden Town Hall)

Fordwych Road will be closed between Minster Road and Mill Lane Monday and Tuesday this week for resurfacing.

Mark Carney, governor of the Bank of England, has moved out of his Parsifal Road home. The word on the street is that he will continue to use Mill Lane Barbers for his haircut, so he can’t be going far.

Kilburn tube station, post apocalypse. No, there was just no one else around at lunchtime, via @SteveWHamp

Kilburn tube station, post apocalypse. No, there was just no one else around at lunchtime, via @SteveWHamp

A man assaulted a police officer and crashed into The Alice House.

Greg Wise, presumably with his tongue stuffed far inside his cheek, claimed to live in the “poor bit” of West Hampstead. Few would call Crediton Hill “poor”, yet West Hampstead does contain one area – the Lithos estate – that falls in the bottom 20% in the country for deprivation.

We went to see The Tricycle Theatre’s new play, Multitudes. But was it any good and why did it get its premiere in Kilburn and not Bradford?

Ever wondered what a whampdinner was really like or whether it would be your kind of thing? Watch this fantastic video.

Best Foreign Film, Ida, tops our curated Culture Hub picks. What else should you make sure you see?

There was another fun evening at whampsocial on Thursday, where the £5 Blue Margaritas went down a storm.

Hot on the Forum

A Kilburn resident is attempting to eat (and write about) in every possible outlet on the High Road. Well worth reading the story so far.

A single doctor GP surgery on West End Lane is closing.

Election News

The streetfood market returns this Wednesday. It will run Wed-Fri 4pm-8pm, with 5-6 food stalls.

Tori & Ben’s Longhorn Beef stall was voted West Hampstead Farmers’ Market customers’ favourite stall this year.

The referendum on the local Neighbourhood Development Plan will be held on Thursday July 9th.

Kilburn Older Voices Exchange is holding a daylong debate on Tuesday to discuss living in the area in our later years.

There’s a Spring Homeware event coming up at the O2 centre March 5th-8th with discounts from various shops and some free food samples from O2 restaurants.

Local cllr Phil Rosenberg received an international Jewish leadership award.

The latest proposal for Gondar Gardens (79 units, of which 50% will be affordable) will be on display at Emmanuel Church on March 6th.

Tweet of the Week

What have I missed since February 16th?

Police closed roads around the police station in West Hampstead on Saturday night after a suspect package was found. Thankfully the all clear was sounded fairly soon afterwards.

The fire in Snowman House the week before was caused by a tealight. The fire brigade tweeted a photo of both the offending candle and then the incredible damage it did.

Power cuts hit the area in the first part of the week – turning Vue cinema’s screening of Fifty Shades of Grey into one shade of black.

The good work of the Fordwych Road residents guerilla gardening project is so easily undone

The good work of the Fordwych Road residents guerilla gardening project is so easily undone, via @jscott110

Mill Lane Barbers made it into the Telegraph this weekend.

Watch a timelapse video of the big development on Maygrove Road.

Check out this week’s Culture Hub picks. They’ve got a sting in their tail.

Whampsocial is back this Thursday at Frida’s bar (downstairs at Mamacita). Add it to your calendars now! (iCal, Google, Outlook).

This week on the Forum.
As we passed 200 members, the hot topics this week were:

The troubled Secrets strip club on Finchley Road is to become… a “high quality nightclub“.

Fortune Green’s Pumpkin Café is for sale.

Tweet of the Week

What have I missed since February 9th?

A fire on the 10th floor of Snowman House was swiftly brought under control, with only one person treated at the scene despite more than a hundred people being evacuated. The fire was caused by a tealight!

1980s’ popstar Steve Strange, who died this week, got his stage name from a West Hampstead postman.

The man arrested in last week’s police swoop on Mill Lane was sent back to jail – he was out on licence.

Even the rubbish trucks are snazzy around @WHampstead via @MillLaneNW6

Even the rubbish trucks are snazzy around @WHampstead via @MillLaneNW6

The new Overground station design has divided opinion. We’re conducting a poll on the Forum to find out what locals think.

Can you help trace Mr Glassup’s St Mary’s school class of 1962?

Hot topics on the WHL Forum (now up to 176 members):

Culture Hub picks this week include a play at the Tricycle (WIN tickets here), a film screening with Emma Thompson Q&A, a top-notch stand-up and not a single shade of grey.

Property News looked at how West Hampstead renters expect a lot for their money these days.

PC Robert Brown, the country’s longest serving police officer, retired this week but he began his 47 year career in West Hampstead.

Election news:

  • Tulip is still odds-on at 1/3 with Ladbrokes, which has the lowest odds for the Conservatives of any of the main bookmakers. It explained why.
  • The Crediton Hill Residents Association held a hustings with four of the five main parties present (UKIP was absent). All four performed reasonably well, with the mansion tax being the main area of difference.
  • Hustings are coming up thick and fast:
    March 11th, Federation of Small Businesses + Ham & High hustings at LDBS SCITT in Kilburn
    March 31st, West Hampstead Life + Sherriff Centre hustings at the Sherriff Centre in West Hampstead
    April 15th, Friends of West Hampstead Library + WHAT, Synagogue Hall, Dennington Pk Road
  • The three main candidates appeared on last week’s Sunday Politics show (ff to 43’33”)

The farmers’ market is seeking planning permission for its large banner. Footfall is down by a third since 2012 and it believes the extra signage is essential. .

The eyesore corner of Finchley Road and West End Lane may finally be developed as flats over a restaurant.

Whampdinner at Mamako was a big hit – one of our buzziest yet… and there’ll be a video of it very soon!

Minkies coffee shop at Kilburn Station has been “opening soon” for longer than most of us have been alive, but the moment of truth looks like it’s upon us.

Tweet of the Week

What have I missed since February 2nd?

Camden came out fighting over the Liddell Road controversy, with a letter in the CNJ, a newsletter, and a lengthy blogpost by finance chief Theo Blackwell.

There was a major police incident on Mill Lane on Tuesday evening although quite what triggered it remains unclear.

We woke up to snow on Tuesday. Even if you didn’t draw back your curtains, Twitter and Instagram were there to save you getting out of bed!

lots of snow on Gondar gardens this morning via James Hodder

lots of snow on Gondar gardens this morning via James Hodder

This month’s Property of the Month is a 3-bed flat on West End Lane.

The first whampsocial of the year was a big hit with a great turnout. The next one is February 26th.

What’s hot on the Forum
More than 1,400 people have viewed the most popular discussion thread on the Forum and there are 35 threads going. Start your own or join in. The top topics this week were:

UCL academics came to St Augustine’s School in Kilburn to find out how students there would choose to represent their sense of the neighbourhood.

In restaurant news… The Petite Corée, which continues to get great feedback, is offering 30% off all month, while One Sixty is now on Deliveroo so you can eat smoked ribs in the comfort of your own home!

One of the world’s greatest magicians once lived on Belsize Road. We delved into the world of David Devant.

Nina Conti tops our Culture Hub recommendations for the week. See what else made the grade.

The nascent Kilburn Neighbourhood Development Forum has changed its proposed boundaries. It now excludes South Kilburn, but still remains an ambitiously large area spread across two boroughs.

If you thought naming the new South Kilburn apartments Kilburn Wells was some marketing hype, this 1806 map will make you think again.

Moody Blues’ frontman Justin Hayward recalled his first experience at the Decca recording studios in West Hampstead (now the ENO building).

Meanwhile, Neil Arthur revealed how West Hampstead provided a trigger of inspiration for his band Blancmange’s latest album.

Time Out published a list of London’s mythical street names, yet inexplicably missed out all of the Greek Streets in West Hampstead!

Tweet of the Week