West London’s Brentford is a historic county town in Middlesex – within the London Borough of Hounslow and part of Greater London since the Sixties. The town is found at the point where the River Brent and the Thames meet, some eight miles west-by-southwest of Charing Cross.
A more affordable alternative to riverfront London hotspots like Richmond, Brentford has all the appeal of a cosmopolitan waterside hub but without such a hefty price tag. The aforementioned river duo flows into the Grand Union Canal – lined with historical pubs and cheerful family-run cafes, it’s just the place for weekend strolls.
Brentford has a mix of charming period properties – most notably from the Georgian and Victorian eras. In recent years, however, a multi-billion-pound transformation has welcomed a huge choice of new-build developments to the area, along with new shops, restaurants and an all-new stadium for Brentford FC (still in the works).
Those seeking a waterfront spot should consider Brentford Lock West, an award-winning collection of one to three-bedroom apartments with a contemporary, industrial look and feel. Property giant St James, meanwhile, has catered to residents who want a rural outlook in a central location. Its Kew Bridge West development enjoys a privileged location between the famous Kew Gardens and Syon Park. Also nearby is Gunnersbury Park, a leafy expanse home to listed mansions and the annual Lovebox festival. Residents at Apt Living’s ultra-modern Apt Gunnersbury Park enjoy the best view of this one – this colossal development is home to 292 units. For something more intimate, there’s St James’ Heritage Walk, which features 74 luxury suites.
“I really do feel safe in this building. My favourite thing about my apartment is the massive windows – we get a lot of sunshine.” – Anon, verified resident of Brentford Lock West
“I like living here, as the flat and the buildings themselves are designed really well, and the placement of the flats is really great, as it’s really convenient for work as it’s so well connected around here.” – Bazbantom, private tenant at Brentford Lock West
“The development is very spacious. Nice place to walk around and admire the greenery. The property is nice and family friendly, schools are also nearby which is great for couples with children. Petrol station which is literally great for people with cars.” – Anonymous, private tenant at Kew Bridge West
Travel around Brentford and beyond
This Zone 4 postcode is a brilliant springboard. Brentford railway station has direct trains to Waterloo, with a journey time of just 30 minutes. Northfields, South Ealing and Boston Manor tube stations are all on the Piccadilly line, and serve up easy access to major capital districts such as Covent Garden, Leicester Square and King’s Cross. Those commuting by road will love Barratt London’s Great West Quarter – just a stone’s throw from the M4 and A4.
“Renting the apartment with massive balcony from July and love everything about that estate. It’s safe, quiet and clean! Also, we do have private gym, not the biggest one but still we can use it with our home fob only. Moreover, location and transport is very good. Kew Bridge, Brentford, South Ealing and Gunnersbury Station is literally 10 minutes away from the Estate.” – Karolina S, private tenant at Great West Quarter
Jetting off by air for business or pleasure? Heathrow Airport is just over a 15-minute drive away via the Great West Road.
Shopping & culture
The Watermans Arts Centre is a multi-purpose site down by the waterfront. Head here for theatre, cinema and exhibitions. Its Friday night cabaret performances are highly recommended, as are its children’s workshops. Elsewhere, there’s Johnson Island, an exclusive neighbourhood for creatives. There are bi-annual open events where you can view the work of the photographers, artists and sculptors.
Brentford Market dates back to 1306, and it reopened as a new and improved community space in 2013. Every Sunday from 10am to 2pm, the stalls overflow with fresh and affordable local produce. Stock up on meat and vegetables for your Sunday roast, or pop down to sample spectacular street food – from mouth-watering pies to delectable chocolate truffles, there’s a brilliant variety on offer. Check out the official website for info on who’s-who of the traders each week.
For more high street and designer names than you can shake a stick at, Westfield Shepherds Bush is less than a 20-minute drive away.