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Hammersmith is just to the west of central London on the north bank of the River Thames. It is a key transport centre with the Broadway home of a key bus station serving West London and Hammersmith Tube with three good underground lines serving it.. It has a mix of residential and commercial properties, being the centre for Disney and other multinationals. Its postal code of W6 covers all Hammersmith.
It has a number of good dog walks along the Thames, Ravenscroft Park and Brook Green.
Hammersmith’s pedestrian friendly riverside is a good walk for dogs. It has a number of pubs with outside seating, so it’s great for the dogs.
The local rowing clubs provide great interest for just stopping and watching. The riverside park of Furnival Gardens is worth a stop. Hammersmith’s largest municipal park, Ravenscourt Park, is located to the west of the centre. It has ponds, a basketball court, tennis courts and a creche.
You will see many dog walkers in Funival Gardens in West Hammersmith and this covers the site of the High Bridge and Hammersmith Creek. The original site of the creek is given by a mound near the Great West Road.
For those who want longer dog walking, you can go across the Thames into Barnes or head west to Chiswick or east to Fulham or West Kensington.
History and artifacts show occupation around Hammersmith near the River Thames as early as Roman and Saxon times and it was referred to in the Domesday Book. The origin of the name is believed to be from a shortening of “Hamoder’s Hythe”, the landing-place of a man named Hamoder.
The area flourished in the Industrial Age which included the large Osram lamp factory at Brook Green and the enormous J. Lyons factory, which at its peak employed thirty thousand people, and the largest British municipal power station. These have all been subsequently closed as the area has redeveloped from an industrial base to one focused on services and commerce.
Hammersmith’s history was based on its natural position on the river near to London and this then developed with the train, tube and roads. The A4, whilst cutting through Hammersmith, is also diverted over a large part with the Hammersmith Flyover. The Broadway is the modern centre with many shops, the bus station, Hammersmith tube station and some major offices such as Coca-Cola, Disney, L’Oreal, Sony, AOL and EMI.
Hammersmith has a number of entertainment venues, including the Lyric Theatre on Kings Street which dates back to the 19th Centruy.
There is also the “Hammersmith Apollo” concert hall and theatre where many large bands and comedy acts perform. It was known as the Carling Hammersmith Apollo and prior to that the Hammersmith Odeon, though it was originally named the Gaumont Cinema.
King street is the main shopping street in Hammersmith, which has many small shops, the Town Hall, a cinema and two hotels. There are other shops located in Fulham Palace Road, Shepherds Bush Road and Hammersmith Road.
The Ark, built in 1992 to the south and very visible from the A4 Flyover, is an architecturally-unique office designed by British architect Ralph Erskine and as the name suggests looks like a large ship.
Hammersmith has for a long time been a centre of the Polish community in London , being home to POSK, now known as the Polish Social and Cultural Centre with facilities including a library, a theatre, restaurants and cafes, and houses many other Polish organisations.
Hammersmith is also home to the famous Dove Pub, which is found in an alley that is the only surviving trace of the old Hammersmith Village, much of which was demolished in the thirties. It has reputedly the smallest bar in the world and is the oldest London riverside pub. It has been frequented in the past by many luminaries including Graham Greene and Ernest Hemingway.
Other famous locals include Gustav Holst who, in 1930, composed a military band work that was also turned into an orchestral piece entitled Hammersmith, having lived in nearby Barnes for forty years. It starts with a haunting musical interpretation of the River Thames meandering underneath Hammersmith Bridge. Holst was a music teacher at St Paul’s Girls’ School, where he composed many of his famous works such as The Planets suite and the school’s music wing is now named after him.
Other notable inhabitants have centred on the arts with:
• Lily Allen (b 1985) English pop singer
• Bill Bailey, comedian, who often appears at the Hammersmith Apollo
• Sacha Baron Cohen, British comedian and actor, who found fame as Ali G (a pseudo ‘urban’ youth from suburban Staines), Borat Sagdiyev from the Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan, and Bruno a flamboyant homosexual Austrian fashion reporter
• Tina Barrett (b 1976), singer and dancer, formerly of S Club 7
• Roger Daltrey, British rock singer with The Who, not far from Freddie Mercury in Kensington
• Hugh Grant, actor, with one of his famous films being set in nearby Notting Hill.
• James May (b 1963), British TV presenter on BBCs Top Gear and writer
• William Morris (1834-1896) English artist, writer, socialist and activist
• Gary Numan (b 1958) singer, songwriter and musician – one of the pioneers of electronic music.
•Stuart Pearce, English footballer, was born in Hammersmith
Further on the artistic front, Hammersmith has been the location for many TV programmes, including Bottom, Channel 4′s TFI Friday, and the vampire drama Ultraviolet.
Hammersmith views are often being used, those of Bottom show the Hammersmith Broadway development or, as it was then called, Centre West. The Sweeney’s Flying Squad were Hammersmith-based in the 1970s. Dennis Potter’s The Singing Detective contains scenes that were shot under and around Hammersmith Bridge.
The popular series Minder was shot in nearby Putney and features black and white photographs of Blue Anchor pub and Hammersmith in the closing credits.
On a musical note, Hammersmith is also mentioned in The Pogues’ song Dark Streets of London.
In William Morris’s book from 1890, News from Nowhere, a utopian novel, he describes a journey upstream along the River Thames starting in Hammersmith towards Oxford. Is often quoted and used by contemporary Ecological and Socialist political groups.
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Some local Hammermsith Dogs
We where very happy with your cats sitting service. Our catsitter was Ploy and she is a lovely girl. She took very good care of our cat. Ms. P.W and Muis of Putney