Saturday, 12 March 2011

You better shop around

London Shop Fronts is a blog that I have long followed and loved. Project creator and owner Emily Webber has a passion and a great eye for the too-often forgotten independent shops in London and their sometimes fading facades. Though she is a loyal resident of Hackney (which is manifested in her hyper local knowledge sharing site) she has featured pictures of many of Shepherd's Bush's finest (and oddest) shop fronts on her blog.

Here are some of my favourites:

Tesco's distant Uxbridge Road cousin.
Can you spot the happy chappy inside waiting to welcome you?
I am strangely drawn to this picture and I have no idea why...
Time 4 a Wash? Always...
Brilliantly and no doubt unintentionally retro

Emily also has some Shepherd's Bush favourites and specifically referred me to the two shop fronts below; Cafe Rest, a Goldhawk Road greasy spoon and pre-match QPR favourite that features in the film Quadrophenia*) and this Washeteria which apart from that ADT alarm is a snap shot of the 1960s.

Going to the laundrette with a beehive in my hair and a super 60s skinny pencil skirt has never been more tempting...
Cafe Rest (before a recent refurb - am glad it has been captured like this, net curtains et al.)

There are many more Shepherd's Bush shop fronts to be seen and enjoyed on London Shop Fronts, and it's certainly worth delving into other boroughs to see so many other uniquely charming fronts that Emily has captured. 

As for W12, in this age of Westfield and not one but two Tesco Express' we would do well to look out for and enjoy the independent shops that brighten up our streets. Goldhawk Road, Uxbridge Road, Shepherd's Bush Road and Shepherd's Bush Market host numerous colourful, fiercely proud and (sometimes slightly strange) small businesses and I personally would like to thank Emily, her camera and London Shop Fronts for reminding me.

DISCLAIMER: All photos were used with Emily Webber's kind permission. You can see more of Emily's excellent photos on her Flickr and you can follow her on Twitter.

* Speaking of which, is this Goldhawk Road captured in the Quadraphenia screen shot? I think so...



  1. Excellent. Particularly love Cafe Rest and it's net curtains! One of the few places you could still see an LV sticker in the window (luncheon vouchers accepted).

    I've got some photos somewhere of one of the last remaining original orange happy shopper shops on Galloway Rd. Will try and find....

  2. I always thought that it was the interior of the pie & mash shop next to Shepherd's Bush Market that was in Quadrophenia.

    The screenshot from the movie is indeed Goldhawk Road, looking east towards the station near the junction of Richford Street (where the chip shop and Charlie's hair products is today!). Even thought the movie was set in the mid-1960s, I love spotting the very late-70s shop signage in that scene!

  3. I thought so - just know there are those more qualified than I to confirm, thank you Steven!

    Bird x

  4. it says 'stationary' on the front window of Tesca (top pic), which I always find reassuring.