In Celebration of World Book Day; A History Of Our Favourite Library

Happy World Book Day the perfect chance to celebrate two of our favourite things, Kensal Rise Library and History. What better time to share with you the story of how this unique part of London's literary history came to be.

Kensal Rise Library

Kensal Rise Library was built in 1900 as a Public Reading Room, as part of an effort to improve a predominantly poor area. Following the building boom in London at the end of the previous century, the housing and population in Kensal Green had become much denser. The land was donated to Willesden Council by All Souls College, Oxford, under a restricted covenant stating that it could only be used as a free public reading room and library. Cricklewood architects Done, Hunter & Co. designed the building and it was built by a firm from Exeter.

 

Mark Twain, who was staying at nearby Dollis Hill House that summer, and had educated himself in public libraries, was invited to openthe public reading room and donated five of his own books. The building would have been gas lit, with open coal fires, and it made newspapers available for everyone in the local area to read.

 

In 1903, Scottish philanthropist Andrew Carnegie donated £3,000 to extend the building, and the following year the public reading room became a library. In 1922, it became the first library in Willesden to allow people to choose their own books from the shelves. In 1934, a Children’s Library and study room were created upstairs. 


During the war, the library suffered some minor bomb damage, and firewatchers spent nights in the attic, making use of its views across London. With the arrival of TV in the 1960s, the reading room became less popular and was closed, and major structural changes were made to update the building. The library passed from the Borough of Willesden to the new Borough of Brent.    


Threatened with closure more than once over the years, the library was closed by Brent Council in 2010. The local community, led by The Friends of Kensal Rise Library, mounted a campaign to save the library, which was supported by high-profile writers such as Alan Bennett and Phillip Pullman, and received a lot of national press coverage. Resisting council plans and rejecting proposals from developers, they took their case to the high court and won. And they created a pop-up library outside the building in the meantime. 


As the result of a dedicated five-year campaign, the library will re open this year. Uplift Property has worked with The Friends of Kensal Rise Library to agree a restoration of the building that is sensitive and sympathetic. The ground floor will be a public library once again, while the upstairs is converted into new housing. On 6th June 2015, members of the community celebrated reclaiming their public space at an open day, along with team Uplift and The Friends of Kensal Rise Library. 

If you would like to find out more about The Friends of Kensal Rise Library, take a look at their website here. And if this story has got you intrigued about the beautiful apartments, The Reading Rooms, above the library, great news they are now available to buy off plan. Just email team@upliftproperty.co.uk to find out more.

Happy Hoarding in Worthing

If you've been to Worthing and taken a stroll along Marine Parade recently, you may have spotted something exciting happening outside the old Cavendish Hotel. Whilst our construction team get to work on the inside, this amazing hoarding has gone up outside. Inspired by Worthing's history and featuring lots of facts about the local area, it brings a pop of colour to the seafront on a grey February day. We love it and we hope you do too.

If you have any interesting stories about Marine Parade and the Cavendish Hotel, we'd love to hear them, drop us a line at team@upliftproperty.co.uk.

Cavendish hotel worthing
Cavendish hotel worthing
Cavendish hotel worthing

Interiors Inspiration Part Two: The Bedroom

In the second part of our series, our creative team share where they go to deck out their bedrooms. If you missed Part One, catch up here.

Textiles and accessories - Darkroom London

A concept store nestled on Lambs Conduit Street in London, championing emerging artists and designers from all over the world. Perfect for bold bedspreads and ethnic patterns.
- www.darkroomlondon.com

Get some Midcentury Modern - The Peanut Vendor

The Peanut Vendor is a vintage furniture shop in East London, perfect for getting some Bauhaus into your bedroom. 
www.thepeanutvendor.co.uk

For a dose of offline inspiration - Apartmento Magazine

Interiors and lifestyle magazine from Barcelona, with an ethos of slow consumerism. Every issue provides a peek in to real-life homes of artists from around the world, with stories and essays on design, architecture and culture.
www.apartamentomagazine.com

Art for your walls - Toby Neilan

Toby is a London based graphic artist, creating bold and colourful images of architecture and furniture. His prints bring a stunning urban edge and plenty of colour.
- www.tobyneilan.com

Feeling inspired? Head to our available properties page and check out our range of apartments, now available to buy off plan, including this stunning victorian conversion on Grove Road in Acton.

Come join our team

We are looking for a Studio Manager who will be responsible for looking after our Ealing office Monday-Friday. If you are friendly and organised with an interest in properties, interiors and design. And also bright, unflappable and super-organised with an eye for detail, please email recruitment@upliftproperty.co.uk

Team Uplift

The Basics:

- Hours: Monday to Friday. 9-5pm. Core hours 9-3pm. 

- Salary: c. £18,000 –based on available hours and experience

Main duties and responsibilities: 

Day to day responsibility for the studio, including: 

  • First point of contact - for telephone enquiries, deliveries and people who pop in
  • General office duties – filing documents, printing architectural drawings, watering plants, keeping things ordered and tidy
  • Database management - inputting information into CRM system and assigning responsibilities after 1st point of contact
  • Diary management – for Ealing team meetings and offsite appointments 
  • Meeting preparation – making sure the studio is tidy, well stocked and all necessary documents and equipment are available
  • Organising and distributing marketing content – ensuring sales particulars, interior specs, welcome packs and all customer communications are ready for agents and potential buyers
  • Printing marketing materials and sourcing products given as gifts on completion day
  • Co-ordinating site visits – organising access for any essential services e.g. meter readings, 
  • Updating our website – essential duties include updating sales copy and images to promote new properties. 
  • Contributing to our social media channels – if interested and able
  • Organising stock – cataloguing furniture, products and props from photo shoots and making sure they are stored securely


A Brief History Of 187 Kentish Town Road

If you are local to Kentish Town you will have probably seen the amazing, Victorian building stood on the corner of Prince of Wales Road and will probably know it as 'The Old Pizza Express Building'. But we had a feeling its past was a lot more exciting than that, so Sophie did some research and discovered that its history links with its future.

"187 Kentish Town Road, also known as ‘the old Pizza Express building’, is a well-loved local landmark with a colourful history. 

The site where the building now stands was originally in the grounds of a large house called Grafton Lodge, which had multiple uses over the years. In 1841, Eliza King ran a Dame School here, and after the passing of the Great Reform Bill, the St Pancras Reform club often used the Lodge as a meeting place. 

After the turn of the century, as working people found themselves with more leisure time, and the railway station made the area more accessible, Ernest Mansell started an open-air cinema here. The Coronation Gardens Cinema operated from 1911 to 1913, until the grander Palace Cinema opened on the corner of Prince of Wales Road from 1913 to 1959.

In October 1929 the North Western Polytechnic opened on this site, in the impressive Georgian brick and stone building designed by W.E. Riley that survives today. The college was chaired by Sir William Job Collins, a renowned eye surgeon who went on to become MP for West St Pancras. Over 2,000 students enrolled on courses in social sciences, humanities and the arts. The grand opening attracted one of the largest crowds ever seen in Kentish Town and cinema audiences across the country watched the event on Pathé News.

127 Kentish Town Road was the main assembly hall for the college, with a stage at the back. A separate women’s entrance led to a women’s department on the top floor and a girls’ day trade school. By 1967, it had become the capital’s largest polytechnic, and in 1992 it became the University of North London. By 1996 the university had moved away from Kentish Town, leaving the building empty. Despite local campaigning, it was turned into apartments.

Fortunately, the beautiful assembly hall was preserved as a Grade II-listed building. It became a Pizza Express from 1998 to 2013. Throughout the beginning of this century, the building has been a home to squatters, a venue for diverse cultural events, and the subject of local campaigns both to preserve the façade and to bring a cinema and arts centre back to the space, honouring its roots as a local cultural hub."

Amazing. Thanks Sophie and also to the residents of One Prince of Wales and their super interesting website, where you can find lots of interesting, historical photos of the building and a tonne of information.

Work has now begun to transform the building in to a new cultural hub on the ground floor, with stylish new apartments above. We can't wait to tell you more soon but it in meantime, if you have any questions, drop us a line at sales@upliftproperty.co.uk.

A Brief History Of Alexandra House

You may have spotted that we recently acquired this amazing Victorian industrial building on Oldham Terrace in Acton. It's such a unique building, we thought it must have a special history, so we set Sophie on the case to find out more. And here's what she discovered...

In 1815, a special vestry meeting of St Mary’s Church, Acton considered building a National school for 50 boys and 50 girls. The school was set up and housed in a newly-built schoolroom next to the church. By 1819 it had 110 pupils taught by a salaried mistress and supported by subscriptions. The school remained on the site of St Mary’s Church until Mrs Mary White of Acton Hill House donated land for a new school building on Oldham Terrace. 

 

Alexandra House was built on Oldham’s Terrace in 1853 as St Mary’s National School for boys and girls (also known as St Mary’s Church of England School). Financed by The National Society (Church of England) and parliamentary building grants, the school building was accompanied by a master’s house. In 1854, St Mary’s had 119 pupils: 78 boys and 41 girls. The girls moved into a new extension in 1862, and by 1919 the school had a total of 439 pupils. 

Oldham Terrace, Acton. 1961 and 2012. With thanks to 'Smart Set' on Flickr

In 1926, the main school building was sold to the Urban District Council and St Mary’s National School went on to close in 1932. The school building was subsequently demolished and a labour exchange was built on the site. Introduced in 1909, labour exchanges were set up to provide an easy way for employers to advertise their jobs and for unemployed people to find work. They proved popular, and still exist today in the form of job centres. 

In the mid-twentieth century, Alexandra House was taken over by the National Childbirth Trust (NCT), an organisation established by Prunella Briance and Grantly Dick-Read in 1956 as ‘The Natural Childbirth Association’ to promote and better understand natural childbirth. The organisation taught the first antenatal class in 1959. In 1968 the organisation gained charitable status and was renamed the National Childbirth Trust. It has gone on to pioneer thought leadership in research and information on pregnancy, birth and early parenthood. 

When Uplift acquired the building in 2015, it was in need of a lot of love. Work is currently underway to carefully bring the building back to life as a range of contemporary warehouse apartments, with echoes of it's industrial past.

If all this history has got you intrigued about the buildings future, drop our sales team a line at sales@upliftproperty.co.uk to find out more.

Coming soon...

As you may have noticed, we love Worthing. And if you pop over to our work in progress page, you'll see we are hard at work on two beautiful old Victorian hotels, very soon to be given a new lease of life as a range of sea view apartments.

We can hardly wait, so in the meantime here's a sneak peak of what's to come.

10 Reasons to Move to Acton

1. The shops

We like The Village Stores (not your average Village Stores) for gifts and decorations, like these paper fans, the English Butcher for fresh, local meat. And The Antiques shop for lots of lovely bits which you probably don't need, but will instantly love.

2. Cheese and Wine

And champage and olives. And craft ales and chorizo.... We could go on but instead we are going to urge you to check out Park and Bridge for yourself.

3. Famous Friends

Acton has a great musical history, it's where M.I.A grew up and The Who went to school. It was also home to Richard Titmuss, a pioneering British social researcher who went on to become one of the architects of the NHS. A blue plaque can be found where he once lived at 32 Twyford Avenue.

4. Location

With 7 stations in Acton across zones 2 and 3, it's possible to hop into town in as little as 20 minutes on the central line. And for a weekend escape, the Chilterns AONB is less than an hours drive away. Ideal.

5. Pastries and Coffee

Ideally freshly baked, from Laveli Bakery. Yum.

6. Film History

With it's beautiful tree-lined streets and stunning Victorian architecture, it's no wonder that Acton is often used as the location for many films, including this hooter from Monty Python, which was filmed on Churchfield Road.

7. Pubs

Proper pub grub, traditional ales and live music down at The Rocket.

8. The Market

Head down to Acton Town Centre on Saturday mornings for the weekly farmers market, or on Sunday mornings for the handicrafts market. And the rest of the week there's a great selection of fresh fruit and veg on sale, every day.

9. Flowers

Thank you to Garden Flowers for the lovely roses currently sat in our Churchfied property.

10. Architecture

If all this talk of Acton has got you inspired, head over to our available properties page where we have 3 stunning properties to buy off-plan. 

Interiors Inspiration Part One: The Kids

People have started asking where we source our interiors and although the list of our favourite stores and vintage finds would be too long we thought we'd share a few creative and design blogs that inspire us. Starting with the kids!

Ideas to steal - Handmade Charlotte 

For genius DIY's like 'Make a Stellar Solar System Necklace' and these quirky leaf friends.

 

Paper products to print - Oh Happy Day 

Oh Happy Day's printables make craft projects a dream. Just print, cut and stick. 

Things to buy - Molly Meg

For everything from bedbunks, to socks and bunting to toys. And of course not forgetting these incredible tee pees!

Feeling inspired? Pop over to our available properties page where you'll find this stunning 3 bedroom house.

Hooray and a big congratulations

This week has started with some excellent news. The London Borough of Brent has announced Margaret Bailey, chair of The Friends Of Kensal Rise Library, as one of it's 2015 Community Champions for her work in bringing the library back to life. After working closely with her over the last few months, we can honestly say that we couldn't think of anyone who deserves it more. Working tirelessly to give the community back its library, she has championed its values and has been absolute pleasure to work with.

We would just like to say hooray and a huge congratulations to Margaret and all the Friends of Kensal Rise Library.

We can't wait to get the library open for you all.

An interview with our favourite graphic artist Alex Green aka MSTR Gringo

Alex creates colourful, bold graphic illustrations, with handmade touches and sometimes found objects. We love his work so much, we have commissioned him to brighten up the hoarding outside our developments. You might recognise him from the amazing hoarding outside Kensal Rise library, or most recently, the William Morris inspired piece outside The Red House on Elers Road, Ealing.

Alex Green for FWD magazine

We are so inspired we wanted to know more. So last week Naomi caught up with Alex to find out more about what inspires him.

Hey Alex, I know you've been really busy working on some new commissions for Uplift, but what else have you been up to?

I'm currently working with Breddos Tacos on their restaurant fit outs which has been great. It's allowed me to explore different areas of design, which for me is super important. 

Menu designs for Breddos Taccos by Alex Green

Love those - you've got a great eye for colour. Where do you find inspiration for your work?

I come from up North near Bradford, so growing up David Hockney was definitely a big influence of mine. Exploring his work on a rainy Sunday at the mills, is one of the first memories I have when I really connected with art. Not only his use of colours but also of different mediums inspired me. Other early influences were Kadinsky and M.C Escher

Hollywood Pool by David Hockney

Hockney's paintings have some great textures in them, I can definitely see that influence in your work. Can you tell us a little about the creative process you go through?

This is something that always seems to be evolving, but I try to use my computer as little as possible. Good advice I was given was to use the computer as a tool rather then a solution. It should never be a starting point. I love using found imagery, little pieces scrap paper and rubbish, which people may disregard. These little things are triggers in my design process. And I always look to the environment of the project and use it to inform the design. It's a big part of why I love doing the hoarding projects so much.

Yeah the hoarding projects are pretty unique. What else do you enjoy about working on them?

Getting to know a new part of the country that I would most likely never see. Trying to get my teeth into that area through documenting local people, architecture, history etc...

The Hoarding outside Kensal Rise Library by Alex Green

So nice to catch up with you Alex, thanks for popping round. Where can people go to see more of your work?

www. mstrgringo.com

mstrgringo.tumblr.com

Our new studio

We've had a busy few months. With over 12 site developments in progress and an ever growing team working across London, we decided it was time to get another studio so that the team can be based both sides of town at the same time.

The new studio is in Ealing on The Broadway. It has big, light windows and an open door so you can pop in and have a nose around. And we love it. 

We're hiring!

We're looking for an Assistant Legal Counsel. If this is you and you're looking for a new job check out the job spec below and get in touch with a covering letter and CV.

Job Specification

We're looking to recruit a technically capable, diligent and motivated real estate finance / property development lawyer to act as an assistant solicitor to our Legal Counsel. This role will have a strong focus on real estate finance and property law, although the candidate will also be required to assist with a variety of general counsel duties. 

This position would suit a candidate with 1-2 years’ PQE in real estate finance, having managed their own caseload ideally for property developer/lender clients. Seats and / or paralegal experience in commercial property and construction law would also be highly beneficial. 

We are a London based residential property developer and the successful candidate will be joining us at a time of fast growth and a widening portfolio. Since the Company was established in 2013, we have acquired approximately £56m worth of property for development into over 210 flats, with a GDV of around £125m.  We have ambitions to grow significantly over the coming few years, and our portfolio is broadening in scope, geography and size of properties under acquisition - so this is a really exciting time to be joining us. 

 

Key duties and responsibilities: 

  • Working closely with and assisting our Legal Counsel with our property acquisitions, focussing specifically on the organisation and administration of development finance
  • Preparing, drafting and negotiating relevant finance documentation including facility agreements and security documents 
  • Monitoring and reporting internally on the practical operation of the finance documents e.g., drawdown mechanisms, conditions precedent, interest, re-financing, representations and warranties, events of default
  • Liaising with lenders and other relevant third parties including contractors, sub-contractors, architects, structural engineers and other professional consultants in order to assist with the production of development documents 
  • Reviewing and negotiating JCT design and build contracts and professional appointments
  • Assisting with risk and compliance matters 
  • Assisting with company administration tasks such as company board  minutes and resolutions (although please note that you will not be expected to undertake full company secretary duties) 
  • Assisting with onward plot sales as necessary 
  • Assisting with general internal legal queries as necessary 
  • Liaising with our external legal providers as and when appropriate 

Essential criteria

  • Minimum 1-2 years’ PQE in real estate finance / banking law 
  • Excellent academics (minimum 2:1 degree) 
  • Training contract completed at city or large regional law firm 
  • Seats and / or paralegal experience also completed in corporate commercial, commercial property and construction law not essential but highly desirable
  • Excellent technical skills coupled with a wider understanding of what makes a deal commercially viable
  • Proactive and “can do” attitude, with a readiness to take responsibility and use own initiative 
  • Problem solving ability and creative mindset 
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and positive team ethos 
  • Strong communication skills, verbal and written

 

Reporting to: Legal Counsel 

Pay Scale: TBC, depending on candidate

Working hours: Full-time, permanent position working Mondays to Fridays. 

Contact: recruitment@upliftproperty.co.uk 

DIRECT APPLICATIONS ONLY - NO AGENCIES PLEASE 

October 2015

Pure Design

We had a great day on Sunday wandering around the Pure Design exhibition at the Truman Brewery. Tickets were free and for a double bonus we got to see two exhibitions in one go - Super Brands and Tent London.

There was so much to see and too much to want. But we think these were our two new favourite brands:

&New powder-coated steel furniture that looks (and feels) super cool. Created by British-Finnish design duo Jo Wilton and Mirka Grohn &New has been tipped by the The Architectural Digest as one of 'five UK based brands and design studios worth keeping an eye on' and we definitely agree. See their website: http://www.andnew.co.uk/

Feathr produces a range of wallpaper designed by independent artist types. Beautiful bold patterns and colours, a good sense of humour, easy to hang and just about affordable at £150 a roll (and only paper a small section of your room. Check them out here: https://www.feathr.com/shop/






An interview with our favourite photographer Naomi Wood

We love Naomi's photographic style which is why we use her to shoot our gorgeous homes every time we finish a project. Readers of our blog will have seen lots of her interior shots across our site, but we wanted to know a bit more about her work. So last week we grabbed a coffee with her and had a good chat about what she loves

One from our first shoot with Naomi

So other than Uplift....what have been your favourite shoots recently?

I've just finished a shoot with a really cool new fashion brand called Soon The Sun. We did an amazing shoot in a midcentury style house in Greenwich and the light that day was incredible, which just makes a day. And I've also been working with another new company called Ways of Eating. They asked me to shoot a variety of women and ask them how they feel about their bodies. Which was a great chance to meet some really inspiring women and have a peek inside their homes.

© Naomi Wood for Soon The Sun

© Naomi Wood for Ways of Eating

We love the way you use light in your work, who are the photographers that inspire you?

Ah there are obviously tonnes and I am constantly finding new influences, but in terms of light, it would have to be Lilo Raymond. A friend pointed me to her work years ago and I've been obsessed ever since. I just love the way she records the movement of light around a building. The lines from shows in her work create the most beautiful abstract images.

Some of Naomi's favourite images by Lilo Raymond

What do you enjoy most about interior photography?

Well I love interior design and I'm always looking for new pieces for my own home, but actually when I'm shooting it's more about the connection between people and their space and always about light. I'm constantly watching the sun at home and trying to document the shadows it creates. The way the light moves across your home can really affect how you use it. At home it's always really light in our hallway first thing in the morning, so I'll always be there, but then by the evening it's normally moved round to our bedroom. I love to read in my room and watch the patterns across the walls as the sun sets. I pretty much spend all my free time collecting photographs of light now, which is an odd thing to do, but I love it.

A few from Naomi's personal work

Thanks Naomi, look forward to working with you again soon.

In the meantime if you want to check out more of Naomi's work have a look at her website here or give her a follow on twitter and instagram @naomiswood 

 

A Brief History of The Red House

We are super excited to have acquired this beautiful Arts and Crafts style property on Elers Road in Ealing. Built in 1898, it’s a pretty special looking building, so whilst work begins on the renovation, we decided to do a bit of research into it’s history. Thanks to Carole Langley who lives at Number 16 Elers Road who got in touch with some fond memories of the building and also Ealing Local History department for helping us dig through the archives.

The Red House as it is today.

We discovered that originally the building was named after the famous Arts and Crafts home of Sir William Morris in Bexleyheath; The Red House and was one of only two houses on the street at that time. Newly opened Lammas Park provided beautiful, leafy views from the elegant house - unchanged to this day. Although at the time the property would have boasted a larger garden, direct access to the park and a coach house for horses.

The 1901 census tells us the first owner of the property was Andre Aron, a shipping merchant’s clerk. He moved in with his wife Madeline from their native France with two servants. The improved public transport links from the ‘green and leafy’ suburb of Ealing to The City of London where Andre worked would have made it the perfect home for the young couple. Until they moved to New York in 1905.

In 1911 Thomas William Cole bought The Red House and moved in with his wife, two children and five servants. As an Artist and head of Ealing School of Art he presumably appreciated its contemporary Arts & Crafts style. His young family would have enjoyed many a sunny afternoon in Lammas Park with its new bandstand and bowling green. 

Thanks to Ealing Council for this image from WW2. See more in their online archive here

As this map shows, the road has remaining largely unchanged since 1914

In the 1930’s the owners of the house change again and another wealthy family move in. Harry Ross, a surgeon from colonial India, returns to his ancestral country with his wife, daughter Teresa Mary Ross, and several servants. Sadly, his time in the house is brief and in 1938 he passes away aged 69.

10 years pass before the next electoral roll shows Teresa Mary Ross now living as Mrs Mary Mohammed with her husband Ahmed Mohammed at the address having met him on her travels to India. It was quite revolutionary in 1948 for a British woman to marry a Muslim man and probably caused some twitching curtains. But we’re pleased to say the couple spent many happy years in the home, during which time they have two sons who go on to inherit the house.

It looks as though the house was divided into flats during the 60s and for the next 20 years becomes home to multiple families occupying the property on short term contracts and living in what look like bedsits until the 1990s when The Red House is sold again and converted into Lammas Park Nursing Home. 

We are carefully restoring the building, reusing part of the original brickwork.

Empty since 2007, when Uplift acquired the building in 2015 it was in need of a lot of love and attention. So we are carefully restoring it to its former glory and giving The Red House a new lease of life and a range of light, contemporary apartments. 

If all this history has got you intrigued about The Red House, drop our team a line on sales@upliftproperty.co.uk.

Plans in Kentish Town

We are really excited to have acquired the old Northwestern Polytechnic building in Kentish Town. While investigative work begins, we are enjoying initial conversations with the residents of One Prince of Wales about plans for the community space. It's been great to discover so much about the history of the building and hear how passionate they are about it's history. If you are interested to learn more, the group have a great website here .

We can't wait to share more about the project with you very soon.

A happy home story

Yiota had had a difficult year looking for the perfect home for her, her puppy and her collection of family furniture. She had encountered her fair share of tricky developers and not-so-great workmanship and was beginning to feel like she would never find a property up to her standard. She wanted a newly renovated period property, which still managed to retain its original charm. So she was thrilled to discover the Uplift flats on Montpelier Avenue in Ealing and excitedly moved in last month. “it’s in a fantastic location and has been renovated beautifully.” 

She says the sash windows, exposed brick work, little fireplaces and wooden floors give the space character and loves that it’s all new. But best of all for her was the standard of the renovation “ I could see there was integrity in the work. I hate it when a developer does a hit and run job for profit, but when you look closer you notice the work is no good. Uplift isn’t like that, they take pride in good business which I like”

Now she’s settling in, Yiota is using her eye for style to make her new flat feel like a home. Like us she likes to mix the old with the new. “Internally, it was a modern, clean, blank canvas for me to build on. I found that 'newness' exciting ” She has a beautiful old oak dresser and a huge oak dining table that she inherited, which she says she will combine with some new pieces, a bright rug or an Eames chair to make the space her own. As a practitioner of Chinese medicine her lifestyle is deeply influenced by Taoist and Buddhist philosophies, which she hopes to also bring into her home, with Eastern inspired artwork and furnishings.

Most importantly she says it’s important to make your home personal and offered some useful advice to anyone moving into a new home:  

"I think it's important for people to follow their intuition rather than what's been sold out there. Good style happens naturally. We're drawn to certain colours, textures, and styles for a  reason. Go with that, if you love it you'll never get rid of it, like me and my dining table! Lastly, all homes should be shared - with flowers, plants, animals, children, friends and family in them”

Thanks for sharing your story with us Yiota. We hope you, your doggy and your furniture will be happy in your new home for many years to come. 

Vibrant piers and palm-lined beaches: Worthing by artist Angela Lyons

We've fallen in love with these beautiful paintings of our favourite seaside town by local artist Angela Lyons. Turns out Angela is a pretty big fan of Worthing herself, so luckily she was happy to spare a few minutes last week to tell us more about the town and her incredible work.

Hi Angela, we love your paintings of Worthing, the colours are stunning. What inspired you to paint them and why Worthing in particular?

I work exclusively in oils on canvas, using bright, vibrant colours and a photorealist technique. Having grown up in Newcastle, I moved down to the south coast, living first in Brighton and then moving across to Worthing when my two children were little.

Living in Worthing, by the sea, means I don’t have to go too far for inspiration. The light here is beautiful, be it in summer or winter, and the seafront is generally quieter and less spoilt than Brighton. I’m a firm believer that it’s the simple things in life that make for the most pleasure, so I like to capture the beauty of every day life, from deckchairs on the beach, to a beautiful sunset to tempting, tasty treats. 

I'm really interested to know a little bit more about your practise and how you like to work? Do you paint on the spot or from memory?

I work from a studio in my house and I capture all the images for my paintings on camera, but I also have the memory of being there. For my food paintings, I set the scene in my studio, but still take photos, as cakes, eggs and toast can't sit around too long!

We love Worthing, the pier, the people and the sea. What drew you here and what do you love about the town?

Worthing Pier is just stunning in its simplicity and design, it features heavily in my recent work which you can see in the local Cloud Gallery and online here: http://www.cloudgalleryfineart.co.uk/artists/119/angela-lyons.

What drew me to Worthing is its proximity to Brighton and London (as well as the stunning South Downs), but it has a more peaceful and relaxed atmosphere. I love that I can walk out of my house and be on a quiet and palm-lined beach in five minutes.

Thank you Angela. 

To see more of Angela’s work check out her website where you can find links to purchase her paintings and grab a little slice of Worthing for yourself
 
http://www.angelalyonsart.co.uk/

And if all that talk of palm-lined beaches has got you inspired, get in touch with the Uplift team to find out about our most recent development: team@upliftproperty.co.uk

Happy hoarding

Thanks to lots of hard work from brilliant Alex (www.mstrgringo.com),  the hoarding outside Kensal Rise Library is finished and looking pretty sharp.

We've had a great reaction from the local community. This poem by 7 year old Darshan has moved people to tears.

And these stunning photos of the work in progress, were sent to us by local photographer Fausto, who said the project has inspired him to get involved in the community group. See more of his brilliant work here: www.flickr.com/photos/benkaruan/

So if you are in the area, go check it out and let us know what you think @UpliftProperty