Looking for somewhere quirky and unique but close to Central London? You’ll love the latest development to hit NW3 – Belsize Park Firehouse. As the name suggests, this captivating and iconic London landmark has been converted into a selection of extremely high quality apartments, ranging from one, two and four bedrooms.
Below, you’ll be able to see what the firehouse has to offer for its select group of residents. If after reading you decide you also want to be part of this select group then act fast, there are twenty units available, and with the character and finesse this development has, they won’t hang around for long.
A Smoking History
Officially opened in 1915 and designed by Charles Canning Windmill, a London County Council architect, the fire station was awarded its English Heritage Grade II* listing 40 years ago. Described as ‘one of the most distinctive and original of a remarkable series of fire stations built’, the character it oozes is immeasurable. It was created as an interpretation of an Arts and Craft-Style house, and is set on a generous plot that seamlessly blends into the leafy residential location of Victoria and Edwardian homes.
Throughout its varied history, the fire station was never quiet, with crews working tirelessly during the two World Wars, The London Blitz of 1940-1941 and crews from the station also attended the 1987 King’s Cross Fire and the 7/7 bombings in 2005. Crews completed almost 100 years of service before the station was decommissioned in 2014.
The building that was left behind was elevated at Eton Avenue and now resembles a row of terraced cottages with its tiled roof and tall chimneys. The exterior also features a stone clad bay frontage, huge glazed doors, steeply pitched roof and tall hipped dormer windows. The character of this building oozes from every corner.
Wondering about the name Belsize Park? The etymology comes from the French ‘bel assis’ meaning well-situated’. The name can be found as far back as 1300 referring to the Manor of Belsize. Much of the rural land was owned by King Henry VI who founded Eton Collage over 600 years ago, which then commissioned a number of properties to be built in the area, hence the references to Eton in many of the surrounding road names.
During the 18th Century, the area began to attract wealthy Londoners looking for larger homes on the edge of the city, many of these still stand today. But what makes this area and development so special? A lot. In the piece below you’ll be taken through what life would be like living in the Firehouse and the wider NW3 area.
The interiors of the fire station are split into the sections that would have housed the various parts of the original fire station. That being the basement (radio), ground floor (appliance), first floor (dormitory), second floor (training) and then finally subject to planning, The Tower. These sections mean that wherever you decide to call home, you’ll be buying a property steeped in character and history.
As mentioned, these homes range from one, two and four bedrooms. Each apartment has been fitted to the highest specification, to deliver the upmost in contemporary living whilst maintaining comfort, safety and high energy efficiency. Using long-lasting materials throughout, the essence of the Firehouse has been preserved to create a set of homes like no other.
Throughout all of the reception areas you can find heaps of original features including the tiled walls and bay doors. The inclusion of industrial lighting and concrete floors keeps to the utilitarian feel.
Moving into the Italian-made kitchens, you can expect stone worktops, mixer taps, and under mounted sinks alongside premium branded integrated appliances and feature lighting, perfect for hosting your first dinner party.
Not forgetting the bathrooms, which feature porcelain natural wall and floor tiles with a glazed finish to wet areas. Steel inset baths compliment wet room style shower areas, with stainless steel slot drains. Never step out of the shower feeling chilly ever again with dual heated towel rails and underfloor heating, and enjoy getting ready for the day with the bespoke vanity units with provide further storage.
Interiors include original or engineered wood flooring, mezzanine floors in selected units, polished stainless steel ironmongery, dimmable mood lighting, low energy LED downlights with pendant lighting and of course extraordinary floor to ceiling heights. There’s a 10-year warranty cover on all of the homes here and multi stage access system for peace of mind.
Outside you can enjoy a sunny stroll around landscaped garden spaces that are allocated to selected apartments, paved terraces and decked balconies and a communal south facing landscaped garden with outdoor furniture, the most idyllic place to grab a glass of wine and enjoy the summer sun after work. An onsite gardener means there will never be a stray flower out of place.
For those who have cars, there is limited secure parking behind the original electric gates and off street parking too. For the eco-conscious, bicycle storage is available.
Only a short walk from the firehouse is two of London’s most outstanding green spaces, Hampstead Heath to the north and Primrose Hill to the south, offering residents idyllic escapes for running, dog walking, picnics with friends and family and the opportunity to enjoy nature in the city. Primrose Hill has some of the best skyline views of London and Hampstead Heath has tennis courts, walking routes and of course wild swimming ponds which have grew exponentially in popularity. The development is only moments from Belsize Park and Swiss Cottage Underground Stations, both in Zone 2, and both on the Night Tube offering short journey times into Central London.
Belsize Park is located on the Charing Cross branch of the Northern Line meaning just over 10-minutes to Leicester Square and only 15-minutes to Waterloo for the South Bank and National Rail. Swiss Cottage is on the Jubilee Line and will have you in Bond Street in only 8-minutes, perfect for shopping trips, theatre visits and dinners out.
The surrounding area is filled with wide streets, well-preserved period properties dating from the 1700s alongside luxurious contemporary apartments.
Now the area is known to be a hotspot for celebrities, most notably the Primrose Hill set that now are looking for somewhere to settle with families. These include Sean Bean, Kate Hudson and Jude Law. Historical past residents of Belsize Park include the world-famous psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud, whose museum is nearby, and revolutionary socialist Karl Marx buried in Highgate cemetery, while writer George Orwell lived for a time nearby in Primrose Hill.
The area is steeped in local shops, restaurants and independent cafes, eateries and bars. The unique Belsize Village along Haverstock Hill is a great place to spend a sunny Sunday afternoon. Among the many shops is the classic London bookseller Daunt Books as well as convenient high street stores such as Marks And Spencer and Frank’s Superstore.
For restaurants head to Artigiano, a popular Italian restaurant which is just calling out for summer alfresco dining with an aperol spritz and bruschetta in hand. Jamon Jamon has been championed by the locals for its superior selection of Spanish tapas and Asian-inspired dishes.
Steels Village, located at the southern end of Haverstock Hill and a mere 8-minute walk away, has a village pub, the former cottage of writer Sir Richard Steele himself and more cafés, delis and a family butcher. Swiss Cottage hosts a weekly Farmers’ Market as does Primrose Hill, so if fresh produce and a community vibe is your thing, you’ll be spoilt for choice in NW3.
Of course, Camden Town is only a 20-minute stroll down Haverstock Hill, offering an even broader collection of boutique shops, food markets, night life and of course the infamous Camden Lock Market.
For families or young professionals looking to wind down and relax there’s an independent Everyman Cinema close to Haverstock Hill and the Hampstead Theatre showing many UK premieres. For a vast gym, furniture shops, garden centre, restaurants and a large multiplex cinema, there’s the O2 Centre in Finchley Road next to Waitrose’s flagship store and cookery school.
Families come to Belsize Park for the incredible independent and state schools that are in the area. These include the University College School for Boys and South Hampstead High School for Girls. The renowned University of London’s Royal Central School of Speech and Drama is within a few minutes’ walk of Belsize Park Firehouse. Alumni include Vanessa Redgrave, Rupert Everett and Rufus Sewell.
Want to make Belsize Park your forever home?
Of course you do! Don’t delay, give our team a call today to book your viewing to start your new life in NW3 today!
Whether you are looking to sell, rent, buy or invest our friendly team at JOHNS&CO are on hand to help you every step of the way.