The most expensive street in the UK is Kensington Palace Gardens, with an average property value in 2018 of £35,696.711 (according to the property website Zoopla). This is more than 165 times the value of the average UK home (£248,863).
In fact all of the top 10 most expensive properties in the UK are in London.
Among those who live on Kensington Palace Gardens are Roman Abramovich, Leonard Blavatnik and Lakshmi Mittal.
There are armed police officers at both ends of the street, and security huts, where Crown Estate officials control bollards that sink into the ground allowing cars to enter or leave once they have been cleared. It is hard to think of another road in London protected in this way. The need for security is intensified by the presence, just behind the street, of Kensington Palace – home to Prince William, Kate and their family.
Construction of the street, which runs between Notting Hill and Kensington, began in the 1840s; even then the scale and grandeur of the properties bankrupted one of the first developers, John Blashfield. By 1860 it was already known as “millionaires’ row” and was occupied by merchants, landowners and fund managers. These huge houses required large numbers of staff to maintain them; in 1871, the census shows, one house was occupied by a team of 20 servants, tending to their two employers.
Gradually, throughout the 20th century, the houses became unaffordable to run as family homes, even for bankers, and the buildings were sold off as ambassadors’ residences. It
is only in the last couple of decades, as oligarchs and industrialists have accumulated new extremes of wealth, that the buildings have been transferred gradually back into private hands.
Even if you won the lottery, it still wouldn’t be enough to move in here!