This is a short mews in Holland Park a short walk from the tube station, and another architectural gem for the area, the Cosmic House.

It was originally called Alfred Mews, and was lined on the west with small stables and on the eastern side was the backs of gardens for the houses facing Clarendon Road. It was renamed Ladbroke Mews at some point in the 1930s.

As with many mews, the stables were turned into housing, but slightly less usual was the decision in the 1970s of every single house on the opposite side to give up half their back gardens to build small flats on. You’d have thought one of them would have said no, but they all said yes. So now the mews is lined on both sides with small flats.

All the mews have double-garages because this was the age of the car, and you can’t expect people to have just one car, even though Holland Park tube station is just a few minutes walk away.

The mews gained unexpected fame and notoriety in 1978 when one of the residents of the mews, Emile Fleischman went on trial with four other men accused of a fraud which was claimed could have undermined the entire banking system. The five men were forging bank drafts and passports which were swindling companies out of millions of dollars. Fleischman eventually pleaded guilty while the other four were found guilty at a trial which was featured in most of the newspapers at the time.

More recently, a rather more dramatic building has appeared in the mews, at the far end in 2002/3. Replacing the old commercial building are some strikingly modern mews flats with very clever use of a curved wall over the garage to deliver something few mews flats ever have – a view along the mews instead of just straight in front of it.


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