Hammersmith and Fulham

The London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham was formed in 1965 when the old metropolitan boroughs of Hammersmith and Fulham were merged. The borough lies to the west of the City of London and to the north of the River Thames.

Population change

1966: 213,770 people
1998: 156,900 people

Hammersmith grew up around the coaching inns on the main roads leading out of London to Brentford and Uxbridge. Hammersmith Broadway is the point at which these roads met. As with many other London suburbs, Hammersmith experienced further growth in the mid-19th century following the arrival of the railways.

During the 20th century Hammersmith continued to grow as a site for housing and industry. The vast food-processing complex owned by Jo Lyons stood in the borough until 1986. Here, Lyons made ice cream and packed preserves, tea and chocolates. The Osram lamp factory stood at Brook Green. Residential developments include the Old Oak Estate, one of the first London County Council estates to be built after the First World War. The White City estate was built in the 1930s.

The White City exhibition ground was one of the borough's landmarks. Its name came from the building materials used during construction. Used for large outdoor exhibitions before the First World War, the complex included a stadium, which in 1908 hosted the Olympic Games. The 1908 games had been due to be held in Italy, but the eruption of Mount Vesuvius caused the event to be relocated to White City. After 1908, the stadium continued as a sporting venue, particularly for greyhound racing. It was demolished in 1984.

The B.B.C.'s Television Centre was built at White City in the 1960s. The distinctive large circular main building, designed by Graham Dawbarn, covers 3 acres. A colonnade flanks the front entrance and there is a large central court with a fountain and 40-foot obelisk with the figure of Helios, the all-seeing Greek Sun God.

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