Saturday, 14 May 2011

A Wander through West London

West London is a wonderful place. It is a nice alternative to the centre of town, and to be honest, it is pretty easy to get to.

Shepherd's Bush is dominated by the green that is nothing more than an elongated traffic gyratory. Splitting into two major West London roads from Notting Hill, the Goldhawk Road (which goes to Chiswick) and the famous Uxbridge (which leads to Uxbridge), it also receives traffic from Hammersmith, Acton and the Westway. Essentially, if you are a West London resident, there is a pretty good chance that many of your journeys will take you through Shepherd's Bush.

Shepherd's Bush is a weird place, a real collision of rich and poor. Essentially it is a great case in social study and how much of London operates to day - a city of two halves. On one side of the green, you have the bright lights of the Westfield Shopping Centre. It attracts scores of people from across London who take in the rich air and the fancy qualities of boutique shopping and to be honest it looks like any other shopping mall on the planet. It is a magnet for those who have money to spend or debt levels to increase. And despite the fact it has been around for 18 months, Shepherd's Bush is not the death zone that I thought it would end up as...

And that is because Westfield does not attract the local shopper for their everyday needs. If it was not for the transport hub that Shepherd's Bush has become, Westfield would have failed. And that is due to the fact that the local residents do not shop there. For why do you need to go to Westfield, when Shepherd's Bush is one of London's most electic neighbourhoods. As I said before, rich and poor, legal and illegal reside in Shepherd's Bush and for the local people, the thought of shopping in Westfield is unnecessary as there are plenty of better and cheaper places nearby.

Take a look at the shops! Why do you need to go anywhere else. With some of the finest eateries you can find in all of London, you do not need to go to a plastic shopping centre when visiting Shepherd's Bush...

But the area is also one of London's most diverse neighbourhoods. Look at the languages on the shop. Arabic, Turkish, Abyssinian, this is a part of London where there are people from throughout the world. Hey, diversity may be a dirty word in much of the British press, but it is a fact of life in many parts of the capital.

Oh, and tomorrow. Well, I head altogether to a very different part of the Capital...

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