Moving to Hammersmith
Are you moving to Hammersmith? Away from the multinational headquarters and commercial focus, Hammersmith has some highly desirable residential enclaves. Georgian houses on the river bank, grand Victorian villas and elegant terraces, and smart modern apartment buildings mean there’s something for everyone, whatever your budget.
Our free, in-depth Moving to Hammersmith report includes info on:
• The best areas to live
• The good schools
• The average monthly rental prices
• The excellent public transport system in the city
Putting Hammersmith on the map
One of the reasons Hammersmith has become such a busy centre is its position as gateway to two of the main arterial routes out of London, the A4 and the M4 beyond that. This gives quick and easy passage out of London to the west, towards Bristol, Wales and the west country, as well as to Heathrow Airport, and in the other direction it’s one of the fastest road routes into central London. Lying five miles west of Charing Cross on the north bank of the Thames, Hammersmith is also a major public transport hub: in the heart of the Hammersmith roundabout gyratory system, Hammersmith Broadway houses a main bus station as well as one of the two Hammersmith underground stations. From here passengers have access to the District and the Piccadilly lines, while the second Hammersmith station, just north of the roundabout, is the western terminal for the Hammersmith and City line and the Circle line.
Making up one half of the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, the area contains some notable landmarks. Part of its business appeal is down to the Ark, a ship-shaped steel and glass office building on the southern side of the Hammersmith flyover. It was built in the 90s by British architect Ralph Erskine and is instantly recognisable. More historic and on a completely different scale, the Dove is one of London’s oldest surviving riverside pubs; it lays claim to the smallest bar in the world and was in former times frequented by Ernest Hemingway and Graham Greene. Another beloved Hammersmith landmark is the bridge over the Thames: opened in 1887 by the Prince of Wales, it was designed by Sir Joseph Bazalgette and has long been a favoured viewing point for the Oxford-Cambridge University Boat Race. After a bomb attack in 2,000 the bridge was restored in its original green and gold colour scheme and is now a Grade II listed structure.
You’ll find every style of house or apartment in Hammersmith, at every price point; however, given its proximity to central London, nothing here will come especially cheap. Most expensive of all, of course, are properties on the river. Squeezed between Chiswick to the west and Fulham to the east, Hammersmith’s waterfront runs along the northern side of a sweeping curve in the River Thames. Two short stretches of pedestrianised riverside, Upper Mall and Lower Mall are separated by Furnivall Gardens, a pretty riverside park. Here and in the few roads surrounding you can find some of London’s most sought after Georgian property – but it rarely comes to the rental market, so don’t set your heart on living here. There are, however, some modern apartment blocks, where you’re likely to pay a premium if you want a river view.
On the other side of the A4, Victorian and Georgian property abounds. Look out for St Peter’s Square for fine Georgian stucco houses and a beautiful church. On the other side of Kings Street from here, the Ravenscourt Park area is always popular with families, while further to the east, Brackenbury Village offers smaller properties with a slightly more crowded feel. Brook Green has a mixture of great Victorian houses and some modern blocks of flats; it’s convenient for central Hammersmith and the tube and well-positioned if you have daughters that might attend Bute House, St Pauls Girls School or Goldolphin and Latymer School.
The best addresses include:
- Upper and Lower Mall
- St Peter’s Square
- Hammersmith Terrace
- Black Lion Lane
- Luxemburg Gardens
- Ravenscourt Road, Avenue and Square
- Rowan Road
- Western Terrace
- Oxford Gate
- Wingate Road
- Pleydell Avenue
- Rivercourt Road
Who lives here and why?
With such a convenient location for central London and a good stock of Victorian housing, it comes as no surprise that Hammersmith has always been a popular place to live, not only with the businessmen who work here but also within the media and entertainment industries, not least because of its proximity to the BBC’s headquarters in Shepherds Bush. Current and former residents include Sacha Baron Cohen, Mischa Barton, journalist Marie Colvin, Roger Daltrey of the Who, Alan Rickman who played Snape in the Harry Potter movies and Harry Potter himself, Daniel Radcliffe, hairdresser Vidal Sassoon, composer Gustav Holst, actors Hugh Grant and Tom Hardy, singer Estelle and model Lily Donaldson.
Hammersmith, away from the buzzing commercial centre, is a great place to live. Although it is split in two by the Hammermsith flyover and the rest of the A4, both sides have their appeal, though perhaps the most obvious is the area south of the A4 leading down to the river. Here the pedestrian river frontage is a mixture of exquisite Georgian properties, traditional riverside pubs, parks and busy rowing clubs. North of the A4 and the CBD, Ravenscourt Park offers green open space surrounded by streets of well-restored Victorian properties, while the quiet enclave of Brackenbury village further east is an area of small Victorian terraces and cottages that acts as an overflow to Notting Hill and Kensington. North east of Hammersmith Broadway, Brook Green is also popular, with some fine Victorian villas.
But as well as good housing and easy transport links, Hammersmith offers some of its own attractions. Along King Street, as well as busy shopping during the day, there is plenty of scope for an evening’s entertainment, with a multitude of pubs and restaurants all the way down to Chiswick High Road, also a busy restaurant centre. Furthermore, Hammersmith boasts the Lyric Theatre, the Hammersmith Apollo for concerts and events, and the avant garde Riverside Studios performance space and cinema complex.
On a more serious note, Hammersmith has two excellent hospitals: Charing Cross Hospital, which is the teaching centre for the Imperial College Medical School, and Hammersmith Hospital. Education is also well-served with a wide variety of both private and state schools and there is a good range of sports facilities on offer in the district.
Hammersmith also makes perfect sense as a business location. A number of prestigious headquarters buildings and smart new office complexes have attracted a host of British and multinational big names. Coca-Cola, Disney, Pokemon, Sony Ericsson, L’Oreal, AOL UK, US Airways, Virgin Management and Royal Jordanian Airlines all are or have been located in the area. And this is hardly a new development: Hammersmith has rich industrial heritage. In Victorian times it was home to the Osram lamp factory in Brook Green and the J. Lyons factory which employed 30,000 to produce, among other things, the cakes and pastries for the Lyons Corner Houses. At Sands End, Hammersmith’s most southern tip, there was not only a gasworks and a petrol depot but also the largest municipal power station in the country – now all redeveloped to provide affordable housing for the local population.
The Best Bits
Hammersmith has great transport links and shopping, so you can keep busy near home or head off to another part of London with ease.
Bringing the Kids
If you’re bringing your family to London and you’re looking for somewhere with easy access to the centre of town and good schools, then Hammersmith is your place. There is plenty to recommend it: the riverside with its park, Furnival Gardens, and north of the A4 Ravenscourt Park offer plenty of space and sporting facilities, and there are a number of libraries, swimming pools, rowing clubs, cinemas, theatres and art galleries.
When it comes to schools in central London, Hammersmith offers an excellent choice, including two of the most prestigious independent girls’ schools in the capital. St Pauls Girls School, situated in Brook Green, often tops the league tables as the best in the country; Godolphin and Latymer School also achieves high placement in the league tables and is located just north of Hammersmith Broadway. Latymer Upper School, on Kings Street, is a top-quality co-educational independent school that takes 11 to 18 year olds, and it has its own prep school that starts at the age of seven. In the state sector, the London borough of Hammersmith and Fulham runs 17 secondary schools, including the excellent London Oratory School, which is a Roman Catholic school. There is also the private Al-Muntada Islamic School within the borough. Furthermore, at secondary level, children are old enough to commute to an even wider choice of schools throughout west and central London.
For younger children, there is also plenty of choice: there are 17 fee-charging primary schools in Hammersmith and Fulham, including the prestigious Bute House for girls and preps schools for St Pauls Girls School and Latymers Upper School. In the state sector there is a choice of 37 primary schools, including the outstanding John Betts School in Brackenbury Village. Twelve of the state primary schools are church affiliated.
Relocating to Hammersmith
For people who are relocating to London and want somewhere that’s convenient for the centre of town, while offering the benefits of smart suburb, Hammersmith could make the ideal choice. Good transport and communications, a beautiful riverfront with historic pubs and houses, a vibrant night life and great schools – it really seems to have everything one might want in a relatively small space. And while rental prices may be a little steep, there is a wide range of property available from splendid Victoriana to sleek modern apartments with panoramic river views. However, if you don’t know the area, there are a lot of factors to take into consideration when looking for a rental property, and a wide variation in the rents being asked. Not to mention the considerations of convenience for work, access to suitable schools, easy transport links for trips back home… This is when employing the services of a relocation agent can really help.
At Saunders 1865, our teams of experts combine local knowledge with first-hand experience to pinpoint the right area and the right property that will tick all your boxes. We know London property inside out and we know how much you should expect to pay and the advantages and disadvantages of choosing different areas. We can bring expertise to all these factors and help to arrange smooth, efficient and stress-free relocations – here or to other parts of London and the UK. Our services include home finding assistance, school finding, lease negotiations, temporary accommodation, move management and immigration assistance. Don’t hesitate to contact us to find out how we can help you.
If one of your UK-bound Assignees wants to live in the heart of London but can’t afford a Kensington budget, Hammersmith could be a great area to consider. Hammersmith offers great transportation, a beautiful riverfront neighbourhood, lovely homes and great schools.
Average Monthly Rents - Hammersmith