Fulham is in Southwest London, in the borough of Hammersmith and Fulham. Fulham is located between the north bank of the River Thames, between Hammersmith and Kensington and Chelsea, facing Wandsworth, Putney and Barn Elms and the London Wetland Centre in Barnes. Between 1900 and 1965, it was the Metropolitan Borough of Fulham, before its merger with the Metropolitan Borough of Hammersmith, creating the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham.
HISTORY OF FULHAM
Fulham is steeped in history of industry and enterprise, dating back to the 15th century, with pottery, tapestry-weaving, paper making and brewing in the 17th and 18th centuries in present-day Fulham High Street, and later involvement in the automotive industry, early aviation, food production, and laundries. In the 19th-century there was glass-blowing and this resurged in the 21st century with the Aronson-Noon studio and Zest gallery in Rickett Street that fell victim to the so-called "Earl's Court Regeneration" scheme in 2012.
Lillie Bridge Depot, a railway engineering depot opened in 1872, is associated with the building and extension of the London Underground, and the electrification of Tube lines from the nearby Lots Road Power Station.
Two football clubs, Fulham and Chelsea, play in Fulham. There are two exclusive members only sporting clubs, the Hurlingham Club, known for polo, and the Queen's tennis club, known for its annual pre-Wimbledon tennis tournament.
Fulham has several parks, cemeteries and open spaces, of which Bishop's Park, Fulham Palace Gardens, Hurlingham Park, South Park, Eel Brook Common and Parsons Green are the largest.
PROPERTY IN FULHAM
Before prolific builders William Gilbert Allen, Henry Norris and Irishman Jimmy Nichols were responsible for the majority of the period homes that make the area so desirable today, the Moore Park district between King’s Road and Fulham Road became the first large residential development in this corner of south-west London. Dating from 1850, the average value of the classic townhouses in these roads now tops £1m.
Some of the most desirable roads in Fulham are on the Peterborough Estate – a conservation area south of New Kings Road between Parson’s Green and Walham Green. These red-brick properties are known as Lion houses because Nichols’ trademark terracotta lions are still visible on the gables of the buildings. Nichols built the first houses on the Peterborough Estate in 1888 when modest two storey terraces in Peterborough and Coniger Roads were advertised for sale at £300. The houses sold quickly, and his financial success encouraged Nichols to turn more of the adjoining fields into housing. The majority of street names on the Peterborough Estate are named after the towns in Kent that the labourers who built the homes originated from.
Other sought-after areas of Fulham include the Hurlingham and Bishops Park, where substantial semi-detached houses can be found. Development of the Bishops Park Estate, which is often referred to as the Alphabet Streets due to its street names running in alphabetical sequence, started between 1899 and 1908 after Allen offered Norris – who was to become a director of Fulham FC – a partnership in his building firm. Allen & Norris concentrated on two types of building for which there was a desperate need in London. Most of the homes they built were small houses in terraced rows, occasionally with a semi-detached property or a double-fronted one on the end of a row. However, they were also responsible for Fulham’s distinctive maisonettes, which at first glance look like a terraced house but are actually two flats.
Most of the period housing stock in the SW6 postcode area has a uniformity not found in other parts of London. This is because it was built in a 35-year period when Fulham’s prosperity turned from market gardening to housing when the District Line arrived in 1880. The rows of Victorian and Edwardian terraced houses remain popular because of their width and the size of gardens, although many of the larger properties have now been converted into flats.
Fulham’s impressive riverside developments are attracting families who have been priced out of neighbouring Kensington & Chelsea homes are the first large-scale housing developments in this part of London since the end of the 19th century. Since the start of the 21st century, luxury flats, townhouses and penthouses, ranging from one to six bedrooms, have been built on old industrial sites on the south Fulham riverside. The regeneration of Fulham’s industrial heritage got underway in 2000 when developer St George launched Imperial Wharf, a scheme that saw 1,400 homes built on a former British Gas site next to Chelsea Harbour.
LIVING IN FULHAM
Fulham has shops along most of its main roads. The town centre is clustered around Fulham Broadway where there is a shopping centre. The newly opened Market Hall has food stalls arranged around a central eating area in the setting of the former Edwardian Underground station entrance.
North End Road is Fulham’s down-to-earth local shopping street with a street market, a fishmonger and butcher and branches of Argos, Poundland, Iceland and the Co-op.
The highlights along Fulham Road include Nomad Books independent bookshop, Emma Bridgewater kitchen lifestyle shop and Parson’s Nose, a butchers shop.
Around Parsons Green Underground station in Parsons Green Lane there is Megan’s restaurant, now with four London branches, and a branch of Le Pain Quotidien — both good for brunch — plus branches of fashion chains Whistles and Jigsaw.
The White Horse pub, nicknamed the Sloaney Pony, a comment on its perceived clientele, overlooks Parsons Green.
Residents of the Peterborough Estate have shops along both New King’s Road and Wandsworth Bridge Road.
In Wandsworth Bridge Road find Randalls Butchers and the always-packed Italian restaurant, Il Pagliaccio. The Harwood Arms in Walham Grove is currently the only Michelin-star pub in London.
SCHOOLS IN FULHAM
Fulham has a choice of state and private schools. There are two state primary schools with an “outstanding” Ofsted rating: Langford in Gilstead Road and St Augustine’s RC in Disbrowe Road, W6.
The private primary and preparatory schools are: L’Ecole des Petits in Hazlebury Road and Thomas’s Fulham in Hugon Road; Kensington Prep in Fulham Road; Al Muntada, an Islamic school in Bridges Place; Sinclair House in Fulham High Street, and Parsons Green Prep in Fulham Park Road.
The private all-through school is Fulham School in Greyhound Road. Chelsea Independent College in Fulham Broadway is a day and boarding GCSE and A-level college.
The “outstanding” state comprehensive schools are: Lady Margaret CofE in Parsons Green; London Oratory RC in Seagrave Road; Fulham Cross in Munster Road; Chelsea Academy CofE.