Get to Know Hammersmith
A great place to visit, if you are making a tour around London, is Hammersmith. You will find it inside the borough of Hammersmith and Fulham. If you are unfamiliar with that part of the British Capital, we can give some useful information, such as urban details, landmarks and forms of entertainment, for those who want to go there. We can also recommend Royal Cleaning to the current inhabitants of Hammersmith, but that is another matter.
Locate the District
Hammersmith lies on the river Thames in the Western half of Greater London. The district borders Kensington and Fulham to the East, Shepherd’s Hub to the North and Chiswick to the West. Charing Cross is less than 30 minutes away if you take the public transport. Should you travel by car or by bus, then you can take the Great West Road - the main British highway that runs through the district.
The citizens can use two railway stations of the London Underground, with one on each side of Hammersmith Broadway. Both are named after the district, but serve a different region.
The busiest one lies on the Piccadilly and District lines. After being founded in 1874, the station underwent three extensions. It is currently the biggest transportation facility with over 29 million customers annually.
The other Underground station lies on the City and Circle line. Founded in 1968, It is the oldest public railway station in Hammersmith and the second most used with more than 10 million users annually.
Inside Hammersmith lives the biggest Polish community in London. Their ancestors came to Britain to escape the occupation of their homeland during the Second World War. Ever since, they founded their own establishment within the British Capital.
The Polish Social and Cultural Association, founded in 1967, offers various activities and entertainment to the members of its community. These include literature, live music performances, movie projections, theater plays and art exhibitions. People who want to learn about the foreign culture can feel free to come at the venue.
45,000 people live in Hammersmith, among which two thirds were born in England. When it comes to the other ethnicities, most immigrants are from Ireland or Australia, with the former being 1000 while the latter around 1400. The other minorities have representatives from Northern and Southern America, followed by the Africans and the Highlanders.
Although most of the locals are 35 years old, the median age is 31, which is way below the average index for the UK. Compared to that, the marriage rate is quite low, with most of the population preferring the single life and less than 30 percent being married.
* Hammersmith Hospital was built in 1902 to provide care for victims of a smallpox epidemic. Here was hosted the first medical linear accelerator in the world. Nowadays the magnificent building with rich history is major teaching hospital in west London. It is part of Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, and is associated with the Imperial College Faculty of Medicine.
The St Paul Anglican Church is the main religious center. The original 16th century institution had the same name, but was demolished after 250 years of service, because it was too small for the expanding population. In the 1890s, the early English Gothic style became the inspiration behind the new building’s architecture. The strong buttresses, the tall narrow windows and the rectangular bell tower with a clock are the main features of the structure.
St Augustine’s Catholic Church was built during the First World War. The Romanesque style of the dark brick construction and the Welsh slate roof gives it a much older outlook. The interior was recently renovated into a modern 21th century design. What stands out most about the church is the white statue on the roof, just above the front entrance.
To cross the river Thames, you just have to take the Hammersmith Bridge. Although the road traffic is quite busy, there is also a zone for pedestrians, who want to get to Barnes on the other side. The original structure was built in 1827, which makes it the first suspension bridge ever over the Thames, while the current version is from the reconstruction in 1887.
The Ravenscourt Park is named after the medieval manor house it used to belong to. Unlike the mansion, the green open space survived the Second World War bombings. The park is where local residents like to go for a walk around the lake, as ducks swim in the water, or to explore the beautiful green installations and art sculptures. Over time were added a number of outdoor facilities for people who enjoy sports like tennis, basketball or bowling green.
* The Sculpture
Circle of Life by Sarah Tombs at the main entrance of The Hammersmith Hospital
The seven traffic roads connect in the South at the Hammersmith Center. The area is known for its many companies and households, which makes it one of the most preferred places for working or living. The urban buildings are surrounding the second biggest local trading market, with the Hammersmith bus station standing in the Northeastern corner.
Various stores and restaurants can be found along King Street to the West. This is the main route in the district and the best way to get to the Kings Mall shopping centre. The complex, founded in 1980, has a lot to offer to its customers. The 22,600 square meter shopping center might seem small, but has 44 stores for dining, entertainment and stock goods. Close to it are located a car park with 750 spaces, as well as two residential house estates and two office buildings.
Eventim Apollo is the best venue for concerts and comedy shows. Since its was founded in 1932, its popularity among the community has only been increasing. If back then there were 3500 seats, their number nowadays is over 5000. The building’s art deco style is considered a cultural heritage and the modern hi-tech equipment creates an interactive experience. The most valuable instrument - the organ, which was provided to the venue for its founding, is still operational and in good condition. Because of the great quality and the features, many bands have used Eventim Apollo to record their live performances.
Those who are into stage plays should check out the Lyric Hammersmith theater. The building used to be a music hall between 1888 and 1985, until it was converted into a place for local artists. The venue has a main house for regular performances and a studio for smaller productions and travelling groups. The theater hosts music group and comedy shows.
Restaurants to Try
Byron Hammersmith and Honest Burgers is where you will get to try the traditional American fast food. The main dishes are the gourmet burgers, usually served with a collso or another salad of your choice.
If you like tender meat, Nando’s Hammersmith is the right place for you. The Afro-Portuguese restaurant uses a special chilli sauce that gives the grilled chicken a spicy taste.
At the Rangrez Indian Restaurant and Wagamama, they will cook you the most famous dishes from the Asian kitchen. The former is a curry house and bar with a relaxing atmosphere, while the latter is a Japanese canteen that offers steamed rice and noodles.
* And finally, if you want to explore more, Hammersmith & Fulham Council provides a bunch of maps, which will point you to all parks and open spaces in the borough, and cycling and walking routes as well.