Historic Kilburn in North London

If you are planning to visit London you may find this interesting and informative. Kilburn is situated on a historic site dating back to Roman Times. It has several iconic buildings, a busy cultural community and is excellent for public transport into central London and out into the rural counties of South East England. If you are planning a break to London then this is THE place to stay for high quality accommodation as a lower price than some of its higher priced neighbours.

Kilburn is a bustling small town, which is steeped in history, close to Maida Vale, Willesden and West Hampstead. The centre of Kilburn is Kilburn High Road, which is part of an ancient roman road, which runs from the north-east side of Hyde Park to St. Albans, where it was regarded as an important Roman settlement.

The name Kilburn is thought to be derived from the old Anglo-Saxon name of Cuneburna,Cyebourne or Kelebourne which was a stream flowing from Hampstead.

On the corner of Belsize Road and Kilburn High Road was Kilburn Priory, established in 1130. Before the dissolution of monasteries in 1536 by King Henry the Eight it gave food and shelter to pilgrims en route to local shrines. On the same site in around 1600 The Bell Inn was constructed. The tea gardens at The Bell Inn became a popular healing spa after a chalybeate spring was discovered at Kilburn Wells.

Kilburn is home to London’s largest Irish community, and is therefore affectionately known as County Kilburn. After the great potato famine large numbers of Irish Immigrants arrived and settle in Kilburn. Historians are divided as to why they chose Kilburn. The St. Patrick’s Days parade is a colourful and important event in Kilburn.

Kilburn is also famous for the Gaumont State Cinema, which is a grade 2 listed building and built in 1937. It was the biggest cinema in Europe when it opened before World War 2, seating over 4000 people. A large dome tops the huge auditorium.

In the reception foyer are two chandeliers which are larger replicas of those at Buckingham Palace. The State is now a bingo hall but due to having the largest working Wurlitzer Organ in the UK they occasionally host Wurlitzer concerts.

103 foot high landmark tower, lit up in neon red at night. The State has hosted The Beatles and Louis Armstrong to name just a couple of many.

First known as the Kilburn National Ballroom, then Kilburn National Club, and later The National, has hosted literally hundred of artists from The Smiths in the 1980′s to Nirvana. There was a music TV programme broadcast live from The National in the ’80s. The place has since been closed down, and is going to become a new venue.

The Tricycle Theatre was founded in 1980, and was refurbished in the same decade after a fire. The Triangle has become one of London’s most popular theatres. It houses work shops, recording studios, and a café bar.

Kilburn is one of the best served communities in Greater London for public transport. There are two tube stations on the High Road which are both in zone 2; Kilburn Station and Kilburn Park Station. Kilburn is also served by London’s over ground rail network. Kilburn High Road station is two stops from London Euston. There are also many bus routes which pass through Kilburn.

If you are travelling by car, then Kilburn High Road is one of the main arterial roads out of London, going north towards Junction 1 of the M1.

Plenty of famous people have inhabited Kilburn over the years: Dusty Springfield, AA Milne, Evelyn Waugh, Joan and Jackie Collins, and Dirk Bogarde. Ian Dury lived in Kilburn and six years before he hit the UK charts with “hit me with your Rhythm Stick” his band was known and “Kilburn and the High Roads”.

The Black Lion Hotel and Guest House is actually located on the Kilburn High Road and can be recommended as a great place to stay. Rooms were recently refurbished and boast wireless internet connectivity, free view TV, en-suite bathrooms, full central heating and excellent top quality fresh food – typically with a Mediterranean influence at the restaurant and gastro pub.

  • The ideal spot for any occasion, The Black Lion serves dinner seven nights a week, and serves lunch Monday through Friday, when the room is awash in sunlight.

    Athens Square
  • The menu, organized by category, and complemented with corresponding savory sauces, guides diners to steakhouse bliss. Definitely the best choice!

    Steakhouse Bliss
  • A charmingly original restaurant in a neighborhood starved for good fare. The Black Lion cuisine with drop-dead delicious ingredients making every entree an experience.

    Farm House