St John’s Wood

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St Johns Wood – what’s it all about?

A grand and tranquil village in the heart of London, St John’s Wood is one of the city’s most upmarket residential locations. With elegant villa style family housing that sweeps along the side of Regent’s Park, and an attractive high street filled with boutiques, it’s a neighbourhood professionals flock to; there is also the added bonus that it is one of the capital’s property hotspots, where house prices regularly hit new highs.

 

From St John’s Wood it’s a brisk, beautiful walk into town, or just two tube stops into Bond Street. Although just moments from the West End, at weekends there is little reason to leave this delightful enclave, with bars and restaurants aplenty. Picturesque Little Venice along the canal to the west, the stunning rose gardens and outdoor sports areas of Regent’s Park on its doorstep, and gorgeous views from Primrose Hill for those undaunted by the climb.

Young professionals who start London life here can rarely be persuaded to leave: once drawn by its bars and busy high street, later in life they stay for the good schools and strong multi-cultural community and the area’s village like feel which is protected by the St John’s Wood Society.

Fact file

St John’s Wood was the favoured place for Victorian gentlemen to keep their mistresses. Close enough to town but far enough from their Mayfair and Knightsbridge homes to avoid suspicion. The exiled Napoleon III kept Elizabeth Anne Howard at a residence in Circus Road.

Architecture and property

Once part of the Great Forest of Middlesex, St John’s Wood inherited its name from the medieval owners, the Knights of the Order of St John of Jerusalem. The way of life here remained pastoral until the early 19th century, when building began. The architects wanted to maintain the air of rural charm, abandoning traditional terraces in favour of grand Italianate villas, Cottage Ornés and Victorian Gothic pairs. This rural retreat, so close to London, attracted artists and philosophers, who were later joined by craftsmen and wealthy merchants, whose shops and outlets gave the area the village feel it retains to this day. In the 1960s St John’s Wood was designated a Conservation Area, and many of the houses are protected by English Heritage. Modern luxury blocks, complete with porters and private leisure facilities, thrive here too.
House hunters will find a mix of mansion flats, contemporary apartments and detached villa style housing here, the most exclusive examples of which are on Avenue Road

Going out

Whether locals are looking for a cosy fireplace, or a glass of wine and some tasty treats, St John’s Wood has an array of pubs and gastropubs to suit every taste. The Duke of York is warm and welcoming with a bar and casual dining area usually full of well heeled locals. Just a stone’s throw from the West End and Soho, residents don’t need to leave St John’s Wood for an excellent night out. The famous Oslo Court on Charlbert Street and The Ivy Cafe on St John’s Wood High Street are reliable and always busy.  The Winery on nearby Clifton Road in Little Venice is one of west London’s best independent wine shops and hosts regular tastings for locals.

Local amenities

  • Home to over 12,000 animals, London Zoo opened in 1828, and is the world’s oldest scientific zoo.
    • St John’s Wood is also home to the world renowned, Lord’s Cricket Ground. This historic English landmark hosts matches from county sides to international tests. Tours of the grounds are held daily.
    • St John’s High Streethas an excellent range of unique and more familiar shops, with a special emphasis on family.
    • The St John’s Wood libraryhas two monthly books clubs, one specifically for crime fiction fans.
    • There are Sainsbury’sand Waitrose stores about a mile away on Finchley Road, but great local delis abound. Harry Morgan’s is a must visit: what was once a tiny takeaway deli is now the largest and most famous New York style deli restaurant in London. Panzer’s Deli perfectly serves the needs of international residents, stocking foods from all over the world.
    • For those St John’s Wood families too busy to pop to the shops, the butcher Kent & Sonswill deliver any order placed before 11am by 1pm on the same day.

    and is always busy.

Green spaces – so much to choose from!

Stroll to the top of Primrose Hill and take in the dramatic views of London. It’s a favourite celebrity haunt in summer, so keep your eyes peeled for Jamie and Jools Oliver, Daniel Craig and Harry Styles. Nearby Regent’s Park boasts 410 acres of beautiful green space, with the largest outdoor sports centre in Central London, boating lakes and stunning rose gardens. A disused graveyard, St John’s Wood Church Grounds is the only Local Nature Reserve in the City of Westminster. The attractive park regularly wins prizes and has received the Green Flag Award for excellent green spaces since 2004. Facilities include a playground, formal gardens and a wildlife area.

Transport 

There are great transport links with the tube, overland rail services and bus options aplenty:

Tube: St John’s Wood underground station in Zone 2 is on the Jubilee Line and links with Bond Street in just 5 minutes. Nearby South Hampstead station is on the well connected Overground line.

Rail: Overland services from nearby Paddington and Marylebone stations provide links with Heathrow, Birmingham, Bristol, the West Country and Wales.

Bus: There are several local bus routes connecting in all directions, including the 13 (to Aldwych), the 46 (to Farringdon), the 82 (to Victoria), the 139 (to Waterloo) and the 274 (to Islington). There are also two night buses – the N13 and the N113.

Education

St Johns Wood has strong ties in education with a number of universities close by. There are many good primary schools to choose from, as well as two well regarded state secondaries. Arnold HouseAbercorn PlaceSt Christina’sSt John’s Wood Pre Prep and Francis Holland are further options for those interested in private education. The American School and the French Lycée both offer alternatives to the traditional British education system.













Barrow Hill Junior School

Bridgeman Street
St John’s Wood, London
NW8 7AL

Tel: 02076415005
www.bhjs.co.uk

Type: Community school
Religious Character: Does not apply
Age range: 7 to 11 years
Gender: Mixed
Gateway Academy

Capland Street
London
NW8 8LN

Tel: 0207234977
www.gateway-academy.co.uk

Type: Academy converter
Religious Character: Church of England
Age range: 3 to 11 years
Gender: Mixed
George Eliot Primary School

Marlborough Hill
St Johns Wood, London
NW8 0NH

Tel: 02077222000
www.georgeeliotschool.co.uk

Type: Community school
Religious Character: Does not apply
Age range: 3 to 11 years
Gender: Mixed
Robinsfield Infant School

Mazenod Avenue
London
NW6 4LS

Tel: 02076244837
www.steugene.camden.sch.uk

Type: Voluntary aided school
Religious Character: Roman Catholic
Age range: 4 to 11 years
Gender: Mixed
Harris Academy St John’s Wood

Marlborough Hill
London
NW8 0NL
Tel: 02077228141

Type: Academy sponsor ledl
Religious Character: None
Age range: 11 to 18 years
Gender: Mixed
Portman Early Childhood Centre

4 Lilestone Street
London
NW8 8SU

Tel: 02076415436

Type: Local authority nursery
Religious Character: None
Age range: 2 to 5 years
Gender: Mixed
7 Abbey Road and Regents Park Children’s Centre Information Point

St John’s Wood Library
20 Circus Road, London
NW8 6PD

Tel: 0207-641-6488

Type:  Children’s centre linked site
Abercorn School

28 Abercorn Place
London
NW8 9XP

Tel: 02072864785

Type: Children’s centre
Arnold House School

1-3 Loudoun Rd
St John’s Wood, London
NW8 0LH

Tel: 02072664840
www.arnoldhouse.co.uk

Type: Other independent school
Religious Character: None
Age range: 5 to 13 years
Gender: Mixed
Beachcroft AP Academy

35 Finchley Road
London
NW8 0NW

Tel: 02031080345
www.tbap.org.uk/beachcroft

Type: Academy alternative provision converter
Religious Character: None
Age range: 5 to 16 years
Gender: Mixed
North East Locality Hub Lead – Portman Early Childhood Centre

Church Street Children Centre
The Portman Early Childhood Centre, London
NW8 8DE

Tel: 020-7641-5435/6
www.westminster.gov.uk/childrenscentre

Type: Children’s centre
St Christina’s School

25 St Edmund’s Terrace
Primrose Hill, London
NW8 7PY

Tel: 02077228784
www.saintchristinas.org.uk

Type: Other independent school
Religious Character: Roman Catholic
Age range: 3 to 11 years
Gender: Mixed
St John’s Wood Pre-Preparatory School

Lord’s Roundabout
London
NW8 7NE

Tel: 02077227149
www.sjwpre-prep.org.uk

Type: Other independent school
Religious Character: None
Age range: 3 to 7 years
Gender: Mixed
The American School in London

1 Waverley Place
London
NW8 0NP

Tel: 02074491200
www.asl.org

Type: Other independent school
Religious Character: None
Age range: 4 to 18 years
Gender: Mixed