For many Londoners, the Hammersmith name is associated with a roundabout congested by traffic jams, alongside a giant flyover giving (more or less) fast access to the west of the capital, aka the A4 expressway, THE WEST.
At first sight, this description does not seem very tempting, but beyond this first impression, we would really recommend discovering the many assets of this London district, popular with both English and international families.
The first strong point of Hammersmith is without any doubt its geographical location and its large transport network facilities. As already mentioned above, the Westbound road network provides easy access to Heathrow via the M4. The other major fast routes, the M3 and the M25, are also easily accessible from Hammersmith.
Public transport is not to be overlooked: many bus lines as well as no less than four metro lines available from Hammersmith underground station (Zone 2): the District line branches of Ealing Broadway and Richmond, the Piccadilly line and finally the Hammersmith & City Line and Circle Line.
The area is also close to Fulham and the elegant Kensington & Chelsea borough.
Second asset, the vast choice of schools: Whether public or private, primary or secondary, French or English, Hammersmith hosts many schools, mostly of good or excellent quality.
On the French side, we will mention the Hedgehog School for kindergarten classes and the Jacques Prévert school for primary classes, but access to the Lycée Français Charles de Gaulle is also very easy by tube.
For English state schools, Sacred Heart RC, a Catholic school for girls that has welcomed Tony Blair’s daughter; or the recent West London Free School.
Private English side, Ravenscourt Park Prep for Primary level or the prestigious St Paul’s Girl School & Latymer Upper, to name just a few.
Third strong point, the abundant and eclectic shopping experience: in addition to the proximity to the huge Shopping Mall Westfield (ranging from Prada boutiques to an H&M superstore), Hammersmith also offers many lively and shopping streets.
Around Hammersmith Tube station, the Broadway Shopping Center offers mostly supermarkets and restaurant chains but also some independent such as the Portuguese Pastry Cafe de Nata, specializing in Pasteis de nata.
The shopping street is on Kings Street with many big names such as Marks & Spencer, Primark, TK Maxx, …
But if you are willing to find a more villagey feel, head towards Brackenbury Road: small cafes and Delis, butchers (Stenton Family Butcher, for organic meat lovers) and the traditional pubs galore.
Not to mention the W6 Garden Center at Ravenscourt Park, an urban and trendy plant nursery with a small café.
Fourth and last asset, the quality of life: the Hammersmith neighbourhood offers pretty green spaces such as Ravenscourt Park and Brook Green. During the summer months a paddling pool is open for children. Also, lovely walks along the picturesque bank of River Thames in its southwestern part, with a mandatory stop in one of the historic waterside pubs such as The Blue Anchor or The Dove.
The icing on the cake: Hammersmith offers still affordable property prices for a Zone 2 area, for instance you can find three-bedroom House in Brackenbury Village starting from £ 3,000 per month.
Hammersmith is definitely an area worth having a look at when planning to relocate to London!