Ordnance Survey of 1867–72.


Built by the developer Thomas Allen in the early 1820s, 197 KHS formed part of a terrace of townhouses known as Allen Terrace, which were originally set back from the High Street to allow for front gardens.

1868 View inside Kensington (now High Street Kensington) Station.


The first station on Kensington High Street was built in 1867 and covered by a large iron and glass roof. Demolished in 1906, it was rebuilt to include a new shopping arcade.


An artist’s impression of Barker’s in 1955. In 1957 House of Fraser bought the Barkers Group, eventually opening a much condensed Barkers, including an arcade. In 2006, the 135-year-old department store closed for good. Part of the Barker premises has now been taken over by American Whole Foods Market.


The Commonwealth Institute moved to Kensington High Street in 1962–2004. Following £80 million redevelopment, the site became the home of the Design Museum, opening in late 2016.

197 KHS through the years

Nos. 197–217 Kensington High Street in c. 1905.

Nos. 197–217 Kensington High Street in c. 1963. Businesses included Pettits and Woolworth.

Buildings at the junction of Kensington High Street and Allen Street c.1983.

2020 till now

Kensington High Street remains one of London’s most popular, best known shopping streets and there is significant redevelopment in the area.

2021 – The delivery of No.197

L.M. Stern redeveloped 197, creating a state-of-the-art office building and improving the built environment of Kensington High Street.