College Park

College Park, Hammersmith & Fulham

A late Victorian urban village in the far north of the borough, tucked between the railway line and the western end of the Harrow Road

Hidden London: Ponsard Road

There was never a college in College Park: the name derives from Oxford’s All Souls College, which used to own the land. (The college still owns land in Harlesden, Willesden and Kensal Rise, but not in College Park, it seems. See the map on this page at Who Owns England.)

The area’s devel­opment during the last quarter of the 19th century was stimu­lated by activity on both sides. To the east, Kensal Green had been built up following the success of its cemetery. To the west, Willesden Junction station had opened in 1866.

At the corner of Kenmont Gardens and Valliere Road, Kenmont Gardens school (now Kenmont primary school) was built for the London School Board in 1883. Nikolaus Pevsner describes the structure as “a romantically asymmet­rical three-storey compos­ition with battle­ments and turret.” Nowadays the school has three main community languages: English, Portuguese and Somali.

Renovation of properties on Waldo Road

The Mayhew animal home at the corner of Ponsard Road and Trenmar Gardens occupies the former site of the Christ Church mission to College Park.

College Park has a high population turnover and a wide variety of ethnic minor­ities. It also has charac­ter­istics that have made it ripe for gentri­fic­ation, so it now presents contrasting aspects: many properties have been done up while a dwindling proportion remain run-down; there are smart new live/​work units on Waldo Road and tatty shops along Harrow Road.

Located at the corner of Scrubs Lane and Harrow Road, the College Park hotel was a local landmark. It closed in the early 1990s and has since been converted into flats.

Postal district: NW10
Population: 9,175 (ward of College Park and Old Oak, 2011 census)
Further reading: Exceptional Wikipedia article on College Park (primarily the work of one knowledgeable person)

 

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* The picture of Ponsard Road at the top of this page is adapted from an original photograph, copyright Christine Matthews, at Geograph Britain and Ireland, made available under the Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic Licence. Any subsequent reuse is freely permitted under the terms of that licence.