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A cultural guide to Maida Vale

Posted on Monday, July 15, 2019

Right by the Regent’s Canal, Maida Vale is an attractive and affluent residential area of tree-lined streets, cosy pubs and elegant Georgian and Victorian period properties.

While close to the West End, Maida Vale manages to retain a truly peaceful feel, which has a lot to do with its canal-side location.

The area has a special place in music history – thanks to the BBC’s influential Maida Vale studios.

But there’s much more to the area’s culture just waiting to be explored...

 

 

Little Venice

Little Venice, which borders the Regent's Canal, is striking for the number of gorgeous, white-washed Regency properties set back from the quiet streets. It’s a picturesque area, thanks to the narrowboats, which line the popular stretch of canal between Little Venice and Camden Lock. Little Venice is a great place for a wander, or to relax in one of the local pavement cafes and restaurants that give the area a truly Italian feel.



Canal Café Theatre

In the heart of Little Venice is the Canal Café Theatre; a renowned fringe theatre specialising in comedy. The venue has been the long-time home of NewsRevue, also known as the world's longest running live comedy show. During a 40-year history, the Canal Café Theatre has played host to comedy luminaries including The Mighty Boosh, The League of Gentlemen, and Shappi Khorsandi.  You’ll find the theatre above the Bridge House pub on the corner of Westbourne Terrace Road and Delamere Terrace.


 
The Puppet Theatre Barge

Nearby is the Puppet Theatre Barge, the moored home of a well-loved marionette theatre. This converted Thames barge has been putting on innovative puppet shows since 1982 and is still going strong. With Michael Palin for a patron, the ever-changing programme of performances makes a trip to the Puppet Theatre Barge a treat for children and adults alike.   



A place in music history

Maida Vale has a significant place in the story of rock and pop music. In 2018 The BBC announced the closure of its Maida Vale studios on Delaware Road after a long and illustrious history. Comprising multiple sound studios, the venue has hosted sessions by music’s biggest names from Adele, Beyonce and Girls Aloud to Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, and David Bowie.   
 

Green spaces

Paddington Recreation Ground, beside Maida Vale station, has a gym, group exercise classes and tennis courts. Regent’s Park, with its cafes, open air theatre, boating lake and sports facilities is just a 20-minute walk – as are all the wonders of London Zoo.   

 


History of Maida Vale

The name Maida Vale comes from the pub, the Hero of Maida, named after General Sir John Stuart who triumphed at the battle of Maida, Italy in 1806 during the Napoleonic Wars.

Computer pioneer, Alan Turing, who was instrumental in breaking the German Enigma code, leading to Allied victory over Nazi Germany was born in Warrington Crescent.

 

Architecture

Maida Vale is distinguished by the large number of mansion blocks and stuccoed terraces along its main thoroughfares including Blomfield Road, Maida Avenue and Elgin Avenue. You’ll also find plenty of delightful mews houses and period conversions as well as 1930s flats on Maida Vale itself. Many properties in the area offer access to attractive communal gardens.



Transport

Maida Vale and Warwick Avenue Tube stations are in Zone 2 on the Bakerloo Line, a few minutes from Paddington station, 10 minutes from Oxford Circus and 16 minutes from Waterloo.

 

If you're looking to sell, buy, rent or let property in Maida Vale or the surrounding areas of St John's Wood, Camden or Marylebone, contact our agents today.