London History: The History of Notting Hill Gate

This article gives a detailed history of Notting Hill Gate. Besides, readers get to know its location, amenities and attractions that are close to it.

Notting Hill Gate was the location of toll gates near Notting Hill and hence the name. It is located in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. Most visitors confuse the Notting Hill Gate with Notting Hill. However, the gate is to the south of the hill at A402. The location is at the junction of the Kensington Park Gardens and Ladbroke Grove. Here, you will find cafes, clubs, bars, antique shops, rare record shops and hotels. Therefore, visitors who want to explore the area can stay near Notting Hill.

The History of the Gate

In the mid-18th century, a road cut through a few cottages across the Kensington gravel pits. Authorities built a tollgate at the junction between the road and Portobello Lane (now called Pembridge Road). The gate was rebuilt twice in the next century. Then, neighbouring streets were well-laid out and bars put across all alternative roads to prevent travellers from evading the toll station.

New buildings cropped up at the location. However, a good number was demolished when London built a railway and expanded the road in the 1860s. After the expansion of the road, buses and coaches started plying the route. Consequently, most of the inns in the location were replaced with stores and high-rise buildings. Down the main road, several terrace houses were developed in what became the Hillgate Village. However, the place was so crammed with people that it had poor infrastructure and amenities.

A new railway line called Central Line arrived at the location in 1900 and by 1950s, the area around the gate was redeveloped, and the road widened. Today, it is a long road stretch that bears little resemblance to the place it was during its heyday. However, there is plenty to explore in the area.

Attractions at Notting Hill Gate

There is a Coronet theatre opened in 1898 and converted to a cinema during the First World War. It later became a print room. A coffee palace opened in the late 1800s but was converted to an Electric cinema in 1911. The cinema changed its name to ‘The Gate’ in 1985. There are other theatres and arts clubs in the area. Visitors who stay near Notting Hill can also visit the Kensington Palace for a history of the royalty.

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