Author Archives: BRA Admin

HS2: Further works on Adelaide Road

Works are continuing to set up the Adelaide Road site. HS2 wrote last month to let you know that the traffic management on Adelaide Road would last until the end of September. However, due to the ongoing impact of Covid-19 on the supply chain, current temporary lane closures and traffic lights on Adelaide Road will now remain in place until late October.
Please see details as attached here or visit for more information.
Previous notification: Works planned to repair the road surface and kerbs on Adelaide Road
Please  see full details and maps here

Camden Planning Guidance; new drafts and updates

Camden is consulting on two new drafts for Home Improvements and Housing plus updates on Amenities (air quality; basements; community, leisure and pub uses; design; employment, energy efficiency and adaptation; planning for health and wellbeing; town centres; transport).
To see what is being proposed and comment, please go to
They would like your views by 09.10.20.

A Celebration of Robert Stephenson

Peter Darley of the Camden Railway Heritage Trail introduces us to local industrial heritage.

There had never been a project approaching the size and complexity of the London & Birmingham Railway (L&BR), the first railway authorised to extend into London as far as the New Road (now the Euston Road) for passenger services. Yet Robert Stephenson (1803-1859) was appointed engineer-in-chief for the whole line in September 1833, when not yet thirty.
Continue reading

Planning Matters

100 Avenue Road: Pause in Construction

Many will have noticed the removal of cranes from the 100 Avenue Road site. The developers – Essential Living – held a Construction Working Group meeting in July to update local groups and councillors about plans. The phase removing the old building and putting in place foundations has ended and work at the site has been paused. Continue reading

Tradesman You Can Trust 2020

Thank you for patiently awaiting the 2020 TYCT which accompanies the printed version of this newsletter, and extra thanks to all members who contributed recommendations of new and existing tradesmen. The booklet still covers 20 pages, but some categories are well spaced out, as one way and another, there are fewer entries than for some years, including a number caused by non-payment of the membership fee. Continue reading

In Memoriam: Consuelo Phelan

It is with considerable sadness that the Belsize Society has learnt of the death of Consuelo Phelan. Many members will remember her as a very longstanding committee member who especially loved and cared for the trees and plants of Belsize. She kept a very close eye on all planning applications related to trees, and it is certainly thanks to her efforts that some of our beautiful trees were spared the axe. Members also often saw her at the gates of the garden party or the AGM; she only stood down from the committee at the most recent AGM last March after many years of service. Continue reading

New Book about Belsize: The Harlots of Haverstock Hill 

The drama series “Harlots” features Georgian London’s most valuable commercial activity – sex. Series one and two will be aired back to back on BBC Two from August. Significantly, Belsize had its own Harlots in the 18th century, and this fascinating story is told in the new book by David S Percy, The Harlots of Haverstock Hill.

The Harlots of Haverstock Hill is an account of the remarkable life of “Moll” King, an 18th century madam or brothel-keeper, an ambitious and opportunistic woman who rose from humble beginnings in the streets of London to become one of the first settlers in  Belsize Park. Moll became a wealthy landowner with several properties on Haverstock Hill in the days when there were no more than a handful of houses along this country road to Hampstead. Her legacy remains there to this day.

Bold and opportunistic, Moll King was a woman who mixed with harlots, courtesans and lords of the land, who was painted by Hogarth and defied the norms and restrictions of the day to pursue wealth and success on her own terms. This account of her life, written in part in the first person as she might have recorded it, includes new information and facts which have never before come to light regarding what happened to Moll King’s Belsize houses – especially her villa.

“Moll” King and her Belsize Houses by David S Percy, with a foreword by Dan Cruickshank, will be out on 1 September and available in all Daunt bookshops plus Waterstones, Hampstead, £10.99.

Society Business: Donations and Gift Aid

Donations made by the Society
As members will know, every year BelSoc makes donations to causes that the Committee believes, on your behalf, to be worthy of our financial support. This year’s events, of course, have meant that a huge number of organisations, large and small, have been unable to engage in their usual fundraising activities and so have faced financial difficulty. With this in mind, we have already made substantial donations to the Chalk Farm Food Bank, Marie Curie, and to Camden Giving. This last is a charity that has set up a dedicated Covid-19 fund to help address the challenges the pandemic has thrown up in the borough to charities, social enterprises and community groups (more information can be found at We have asked that our contribution be aimed particularly at supporting the charity’s adult care activities. Continue reading