Isokon Flats, NW3

Block in/near Belsize Park, existing between 1933 and now

(51.55199 -0.16214, 51.551 -0.162) 
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Block · Belsize Park · NW3 ·

The Isokon building is a concrete block of 34 flats designed by architect Wells Coates for Molly and Jack Pritchard, as an experiment in communal living.

Early famous residents of the Isokon Flats included Bauhaus émigrés Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer and László Moholy-Nagy, architects Egon Riss and Arthur Korn, Agatha Christie (between 1940–46) and Adrian Stokes. Jack and Molly Pritchard lived in the penthouse. The British architect Sir James Frazer Stirling was a resident during the 1960s.

A number of 1930s Isokon residents were later identified as Soviet agents and in the 1930s and Cold War period the building under surveillance by the British security services. In the mid-1930s Flat 7 was occupied by Dr Arnold Deutsch, the NKVD agent who recruited the Cambridge Five.

The communal kitchen was converted into the Isobar restaurant in 1937, to a design by Marcel Breuer.

The Isokon company folded during World War II. In 1969 the building was sold to the New Statesman magazine and the Isobar was converted into flats. In 1972 the building was sold to Camden London Borough Council, and gradually deteriorated until the 1990s when it was abandoned and lay derelict for several years.

In 2003, the building was sympathetically refurbished by Avanti Architects, a practice which specialises in the refurbishment of Modernist buildings, for Notting Hill Housing Association and is now primarily occupied by key workers under a co-ownership scheme. The refurbishment has also created a public gallery space to tell the story of the building, its notable residents and Isokon furniture.

The block has been granted Grade I listed status, placing it amongst the most architecturally-significant historical buildings.

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Lived here
Cassandra Green   
Added: 11 Sep 2020 14:34 GMT   

Rudall Crescent, NW3 (- 1999)
I lived at 2 Rudall Crescent until myself and my family moved out in 1999. I once met a lady in a art fair up the road who was selling old photos of the area and was very knowledgeable about the area history, collecting photos over the years. She told me that before the current houses were built, there was a large manor house , enclosed by a large area of land. She told me there had been a fire there. Im trying to piece together the story and find out what was on the land before the crescent was built. This website is very interesting.

Lived here
Added: 22 Sep 2022 18:30 GMT   

Well Walk, NW3 (1817 - 1818)
The home of Benthy, the Postman, with whom poet John Keats and his brother Tom lodged from early 1817 to Dec., 1818. They occupied the first floor up. Here Tom died Dec. 1, 1818. It was next door to the Welles Tavern then called ’The Green Man’."

From collected papers and photos re: No. 1 Well Walk at the library of Harvard University.

Source: No. 1, Well Walk, Hampstead. | HOLLIS for


James Preston   
Added: 28 Apr 2021 09:06 GMT   

Was this the location of Rosslyn House prep school? I have a photograph of the Rosslyn House cricket team dated 1910 which features my grandfather (Alan Westbury Preston). He would have been 12 years old at the time. All the boys on the photo have been named. If this is the location of the school then it appears that the date of demolition is incorrect.

Graham Margetson   
Added: 9 Feb 2021 14:33 GMT   

I lived at 4 Arkwright Road before it was the school
My parents lived at 4 Arkwright Road. Mrs Goodwin actually owned the house and my parents rented rooms from her.

Born here
Added: 16 Nov 2022 12:39 GMT   

The Pearce family lived in Gardnor Road
The Pearce family moved into Gardnor Road around 1900 after living in Fairfax walk, my Great grandfather, wife and there children are recorded living in number 4 Gardnor road in the 1911 census, yet I have been told my grand father was born in number 4 in 1902, generations of the Pearce continue living in number 4 as well other houses in the road up until the 1980’s



Christine D Elliott   
Added: 20 Mar 2023 15:52 GMT   

The Blute Family
My grandparents, Frederick William Blute & Alice Elizabeth Blute nee: Warnham lived at 89 Blockhouse Street Deptford from around 1917.They had six children. 1. Alice Maragret Blute (my mother) 2. Frederick William Blute 3. Charles Adrian Blute 4. Violet Lillian Blute 5. Donald Blute 6. Stanley Vincent Blute (Lived 15 months). I lived there with my family from 1954 (Birth) until 1965 when we were re-housed for regeneration to the area.
I attended Ilderton Road School.
Very happy memories of that time.


Pearl Foster   
Added: 20 Mar 2023 12:22 GMT   

Dukes Place, EC3A
Until his death in 1767, Daniel Nunes de Lara worked from his home in Dukes Street as a Pastry Cook. It was not until much later the street was renamed Dukes Place. Daniel and his family attended the nearby Bevis Marks synagogue for Sephardic Jews. The Ashkenazi Great Synagogue was established in Duke Street, which meant Daniel’s business perfectly situated for his occupation as it allowed him to cater for both congregations.

Dr Paul Flewers   
Added: 9 Mar 2023 18:12 GMT   

Some Brief Notes on Hawthorne Close / Hawthorne Street
My great-grandparents lived in the last house on the south side of Hawthorne Street, no 13, and my grandmother Alice Knopp and her brothers and sisters grew up there. Alice Knopp married Charles Flewers, from nearby Hayling Road, and moved to Richmond, Surrey, where I was born. Leonard Knopp married Esther Gutenberg and lived there until the street was demolished in the mid-1960s, moving on to Tottenham. Uncle Len worked in the fur trade, then ran a pet shop in, I think, the Kingsland Road.

From the back garden, one could see the almshouses in the Balls Pond Road. There was an ink factory at the end of the street, which I recall as rather malodorous.


Added: 7 Mar 2023 17:14 GMT   

Andover Road, N7 (1939 - 1957)
My aunt, Doris nee Curtis (aka Jo) and her husband John Hawkins (aka Jack) ran a small general stores at 92 Andover Road (N7). I have found details in the 1939 register but don’t know how long before that it was opened.He died in 1957. In the 1939 register he is noted as being an ARP warden for Islington warden


Added: 2 Mar 2023 13:50 GMT   

The Queens Head
Queens Head demolished and a NISA supermarket and flats built in its place.

Added: 28 Feb 2023 18:09 GMT   

6 Elia Street
When I was young I lived in 6 Elia Street. At the end of the garden there was a garage owned by Initial Laundries which ran from an access in Quick Street all the way up to the back of our garden. The fire exit to the garage was a window leading into our garden. 6 Elia Street was owned by Initial Laundry.

Added: 21 Feb 2023 11:39 GMT   

Error on 1800 map numbering for John Street
The 1800 map of Whitfield Street (17 zoom) has an error in the numbering shown on the map. The houses are numbered up the right hand side of John Street and Upper John Street to #47 and then are numbered down the left hand side until #81 BUT then continue from 52-61 instead of 82-91.

P Cash   
Added: 19 Feb 2023 08:03 GMT   

Occupants of 19-29 Woburn Place
The Industrial Tribunals (later changed to Employment Tribunals) moved (from its former location on Ebury Bridge Road to 19-29 Woburn Place sometime in the late 1980s (I believe).

19-29 Woburn Place had nine floors in total (one in the basement and two in its mansard roof and most of the building was occupied by the Tribunals

The ’Head Office’ of the tribunals, occupied space on the 7th, 6th and 2nd floors, whilst one of the largest of the regional offices (London North but later called London Central) occupied space in the basement, ground and first floor.

The expansive ground floor entrance had white marble flooring and a security desk. Behind (on evey floor) lay a square (& uncluttered) lobby space, which was flanked on either side by lifts. On the rear side was an elegant staircase, with white marble steps, brass inlays and a shiny brass handrail which spiralled around an open well. Both staircase, stairwell and lifts ran the full height of the building. On all floors from 1st upwards, staff toilets were tucked on either side of the staircase (behind the lifts).

Basement Floor - Tribunal hearing rooms, dormant files store and secure basement space for Head Office. Public toilets.

Geound Floor - The ’post’ roon sat next to the entrance in the northern side, the rest of which was occupied by the private offices of the full time Tribunal judiciary. Thw largest office belonged to the Regional Chair and was situated on the far corner (overlooking Tavistock Square) The secretary to the Regional Chair occupied a small office next door.
The south side of this floor was occupied by the large open plan General Office for the administration, a staff kitchen & rest room and the private offices of the Regional Secretary (office manager) and their deputy.

First Dloor - Tribunal hearing rooms; separate public waiting rooms for Applicants & Respondents; two small rooms used by Counsel (on a ’whoever arrives first’ bases) and a small private rest room for use by tribunal lay members.

Second Floor - Tribunal Hearing Rooms; Tribunal Head Office - HR & Estate Depts & other tennants.

Third Floor - other tennants

Fourth Floor - other tennants

Fifth Floor - Other Tennants except for a large non-smoking room for staff, (which overlooked Tavistock Sqaure). It was seldom used, as a result of lacking any facities aside from a meagre collection of unwanted’ tatty seating. Next to it, (overlooking Tavistock Place) was a staff canteen.

Sixth Floor - Other tennants mostly except for a few offices on the northern side occupied by tribunal Head Office - IT Dept.

Seventh Floor - Other tenants in the northern side. The southern (front) side held the private offices of several senior managers (Secretariat, IT & Finance), private office of the Chief Accuntant; an office for two private secretaries and a stationary cupboard. On the rear side was a small kitchen; the private office of the Chief Executive and the private office of the President of the Tribunals for England & Wales. (From 1995 onwards, this became a conference room as the President was based elsewhere. The far end of this side contained an open plan office for Head Office staff - Secretariat, Finance & HR (staff training team) depts.

Eighth Floor - other tennants.

The Employment Tribunals (Regional & Head Offices) relocated to Vitory House, Kingsway in April 2005.



Hampstead Heath Hampstead Heath railway station has been part of the London Overground since 11 November 2007.
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St Stephen’s Church St Stephen’s is a former church building, sited on Rosslyn Hill at its junction with Pond Street, a steep slope adjacent to the Royal Free Hospital.

Agincourt Road, NW3 Agincourt Road dates from 1881.
Antrim Grove, NW3 Antrim Grove was Antrim Street until 1895.
Aspern Grove, NW3 Aspern Grove is a street in Hampstead.
Barn Field, NW3 Barn Field - built as Georgian terraces - was opened in 1949
Belsize Avenue, NW3 Belsize Avenue was once the driveway to the former Belsize House.
Belsize Court, NW3 Belsize Court is a street in Hampstead.
Belsize Grove, NW3 Belsize Grove is a street in Hampstead.
Byron Mews, NW3 Byron Mews is a street in Hampstead.
Cayford House, NW3 Cayford House was built at the northern end of Lawn Road around 1963.
Chaston Place, NW5 Chaston Place is a street in Kentish Town.
Connaught Mews, NW3 Connaught Mews is a street in Hampstead.
Constantine Road, NW3 Constantine Road was planned as a direct route from Gospel Oak and Kentish Town to South End Green and the heath.
Courthope Road, NW3 Courthope Road is a street in Hampstead.
Cressy Road, NW3 Cressy Road was named for a famous English victory by its builder Thomas Gibb.
Downside Crescent, NW3 Downside Crescent is a street in Hampstead.
Du Maurier House, NW3 Du Maurier House is situated at the northern end of Lawn Road.
Dunboyne Road, NW3 Dunboyne Road is a street in Hampstead.
Elaine Court, NW3 Elaine Court is a block on Haverstock Hill.
Ella Mews, NW3 Ella Mews is a street in Hampstead.
Estell Road, NW3 Estell Road is a location in London.
Estelle Road, NW3 Estelle Road is a street in Hampstead.
Fleet Road, NW3 Fleet Road is a street in Hampstead.
Fountain Mews, NW3 Fountain Mews is a street in Hampstead.
Garnett Road, NW3 Garnett Road is a street in Hampstead.
Glenilla Road, NW3 Glenilla Road was built at the same time as nearby streets.
Glenloch Road, NW3 Glenloch Road was laid out over the grounds of an old house.
Glenlock Road, NW3 Glenlock Road is a location in London.
Glenmore Road, NW3 Glenmore Street became Glenmore Road in 1911.
Grafton Terrace, NW5 Grafton Terrace is a street in Kentish Town.
Hampstead Green, NW3 Hampstead Green is a street in Hampstead.
Hampstead Hill Gardens, NW3 Hampstead Hill Gardens is a street in Hampstead.
Haverstock Hill, NW3 Haverstock Hill is a street in Hampstead.
Haverstock Road, NW5 Haverstock Road is a street in Kentish Town.
Heath Hurst Road, NW3 Heath Hurst Road is a street in Hampstead.
Heathgate Place, NW3 Heathgate Place is a street in Hampstead.
Heathgate, NW3 Heathgate is a street in Hampstead.
Hillfield Court, NW3 Hillfield Court serves a prominent art deco residential mansion block of the same name in Belsize Park.
Hillfield Court, NW3 Hillfield Court is a prominent art deco residential mansion block in Belsize Park, in the London Borough of Camden, built in 1934.
Hillfield Mansions, NW3 Hillfield Mansions is a street in Hampstead.
Howitt Road, NW3 Howitt Road was built on the site of a remaining mansion of Belsize Park.
Keats Close, NW3 Keats Close lies off Keats Grove.
Keats Grove, NW3 John Keats lived in the road and his house is now a museum.
Kingsford Street, NW5 Kingsford Street is a street in Kentish Town.
Klara Court, NW3 Klara Court is a block on Haverstock Hill.
Lawn Road, NW3 Lawn Road dates from 1851.
Lisburne Road, NW3 Lisburne Road is a street running north from Agincourt Road.
Lismore Circus, NW5 Lismore Circus was a former Victorian circus with six streets radiating from it.
Mackeson Road, NW3 Mackeson Road probably dates from 1898.
Malden Place, NW5 Malden Place is a street in Kentish Town.
Mansfield Place, NW3 Mansfield Place is a road in the NW3 postcode area
Mansfield Road, NW5 Mansfield Road is a street in Kentish Town.
Marion Mews, NW3 Marion Mews is a road in the SE21 postcode area
Maryon Mews, NW3 Maryon Mews is a street in Hampstead.
Ornan Road, NW3 Ornan Road is a street in Hampstead.
Parkhill Road, NW3 Parkhill Road was Park Road until 1897.
Parkhill Walk, NW3 This is a street in the NW3 postcode area
Perceval Avenue, NW3 Perceval Avenue is a street in Hampstead.
Pond Street, NW3 Pond Street is a street in Hampstead.
Quadrant Grove, NW5 Quadrant Grove is a street in Kentish Town.
Roderick Road, NW3 Roderick Road is a street in Hampstead.
Rosslyn Hill, NW3 Rosslyn Hill is a road connecting the south end of Hampstead High Street to the north end of Haverstock Hill.
Rowan House, NW3 Rowan House is a block on Maitland Park Road.
Rowland Hill Street, NW3 Rowland Hill Street is a street in Hampstead.
Savernake Road, NW3 Savernake Road, with Constantine Road, forms a huge crescent from Fleet Road to Mansfield Road.
Savernake Road, NW3 Savernake Road is a road in the NW5 postcode area
Shirlock Road, NW3 Shirlock Road is a street in Hampstead.
South End Close, NW3 South End Close is a street in Hampstead.
South End Road, NW3 South End Road is a street in Hampstead.
Southampton Road, NW5 Southampton Road is a street in Kentish Town.
St Crispin’s Close, NW3 St Crispin’s Close is a post-war development next to Hampstead Heath station.
Tasker Road, NW3 Tasker Road is a street in Hampstead.
Thurlow Terrace, NW5 Thurlow Terrace is a street in Kentish Town.
Tranley Mews, NW3 Tranley Mews is a street in Hampstead.
Troyes House, NW3 Troyes House was built on the site of a bombed out convent.
Tudor Close, NW3 Tudor Close is a street in Hampstead.
Upper Park Road, NW3 Upper Park Terrace became Upper Park Road in 1885.
Waterhouse Close, NW3 Waterhouse Close is a street in Hampstead.
Whitebeam House, NW3 Whitebeam House is a block on Maitland Park Villas.
Wood Field, NW3 Wood Field was a post-war development aimed at providing houses for bombed out residents.
Woodland Walk, NW3 Woodland Walk is a street in Hampstead.
Wordsworth Place, NW5 Wordsworth Place runs off Southampton Road.


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Belsize Park

The Manor of Belsize dates back to 1317, with the name is derived from French bel assis meaning 'well situated'.

Belsize Manor was built by Daniel O'Neill for his wife, the Countess of Chesterfield, in the 17th century. Urbanisation took place largely between 1852 and 1878, by which time it extended to Haverstock Hill. After World War I, the construction of blocks of flats began, and now a great many of the larger houses are also converted into flats.

Belsize Park underground station was opened on 22 June 1907 by the Charing Cross, Euston & Hampstead Railway as an intermediate station on its line from Charing Cross to Hampstead. It is served by three lifts and there are 219 steps. The station was designed by Leslie Green and has his familiar facade of ox-blood faience with four round arched windows. It remained largely untouched until the late 1980s when the lifts were replaced and a new ticketing system installed.

It was during the 1930s that Belsize Park contributed most to the artistic and intellectual life of Hampstead. Artists associated with the Mall studios included Dame Barbara Hepworth from 1927 to 1939, her first husband John Skeaping and second Ben Nicholson from 1931 to 1939, and Henry Moore, who lived at no. 11A Parkhill Road from 1929 to 1940. They were members of Unit One, a group of artists and architects founded in 1933 by Paul Nash (1889-1946), who lived at no. 3 Eldon Grove from 1936 to 1939. Sir Herbert Read, the poet and art critic, who lived in 1934-5 at the Mall studios, which he described as a 'nest of gentle artists', published the group's manifesto, a theory of modern style.

Another centre was no. 37 Belsize Park Gardens, meeting place of MARS, an architectural group, and home of Jack Pritchard, who founded Isokon, a firm making modern furniture designed by people like Walter Gropius and Marcel Breuer, refugees who brought a European dimension to the abstract design movement in the arts. Others included Piet Mondrian, the Dutch painter, who stayed with the Pritchards before moving to no. 60 Parkhill Road (1938-41). Pritchard also commissioned Wells Coates in 1934 to build the Isokon or Lawn Road flats, partly to house artistic refugees, on a site which he owned. Built in concrete in a functional style, the flats came to be recognized as 'a milestone in the introduction of the modern idiom into London'.

In World War II, a large underground air-raid shelter was built here and its entrance can still be seen near the tube station at Downside Crescent. The area on Haverstock Hill north of Belsize Park underground station up to Hampstead Town Hall and including part of a primary school near the Royal Free Hospital was heavily bombed.

Belsize Park these days is a lively area with many restaurants, pubs and cafés along Haverstock Hill and also England's Lane.

Glossary: A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 9, edited by C R Elrington.

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South End Green
TUM image id: 1450539049
Licence: CC BY 2.0
Royal Free Hospital
TUM image id: 1469364080
Licence: CC BY 2.0
Belsize Avenue in Belsize Park
TUM image id: 1550088979
Licence: CC BY 2.0
Wedderburn Road, NW3
TUM image id: 1452676133
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In the neighbourhood...

Click an image below for a better view...
West Country class loco 34010 'Sidmouth' has strayed onto the London Midland region on a special to Wembley Stadium and has been sent onto the Hampstead Junction line to turn. It is seen here at Hampstead Heath station on 15 May 1956.
Credit: Neil Clifton
Licence: CC BY 2.0

South End Green
Licence: CC BY 2.0

Royal Free Hospital
Licence: CC BY 2.0

Agincourt Road (2007) An Archway-bound C11 stops to collect a passenger. View taken from the junction with Cressy Road
Credit: Geograph/Martin Addison

Belsize Avenue in Belsize Park
Licence: CC BY 2.0

South Hill Park from Hampstead Ponds
Credit: Julian Osley/Geograph
Licence: CC BY 2.0

Many of the roads around NW3 and NW5 were built with a particular lack of naming imagination. Many an x Mews North matches a near-identical x Mews South

View of a House and its Estate in Belsize, Middlesex (1696) London and its smoke is visible on the left horizon
Credit: Jan Siberechts/Tate Britain

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