A picturesque urban sanctuary in West London, Fulham is a beautiful getaway for those who want to reside in a metropolitan area while still enjoying peaceful scenery and plenty of engaging local activities. This quaint area is not only culturally diverse, but it’s also a wonderful choice for the sport-savvy and gourmands alike.
Whether you are looking to move or welcome new residents by selling or renting your home here, Fulham is a fantastic choice. You have dozens of places to go out for a memorable night on the town, but you also can enjoy tranquillity alongside the Thames. In our comprehensive guide to living in Fulham, we will walk you through all the benefits this delightful place has to offer, as well as what you need to know as a new resident.
During the past several years, the Fulham Archaeological Rescue Group has strived to unearth more of Fulham's history. Among their discoveries, the group has identified that roughly 5,000 years back, Neolithic people resided in this area. Moreover, they also found evidence of Roman settlements.
Moving forward to late 17th century, another fun fact about Fulham is botany-related. Fulham was the home to the first examples of Acacia, Maple, Tamarisk and Mahogany trees ever to be grown in Britain. The accomplishment belongs to Bishop Henry Compton, who grew them in the Fulham Palace gardens.
Another interesting fact about Fulham is that, in the 18th century, the area was surprisingly a hotspot for alcohol, gambling, and prostitution. Long gone are the days when these activities were on the rise, though. Nowadays, fun can be found at Stamford Bridge and Craven Cottage, the two large football stadiums in the area, as well as at the countless pubs and restaurants.
Speaking of football, the renowned Fulham FC was founded in this area in 1879. This makes it the oldest professional football team in London.
Several years before that, in 1867, Fulham was also part of another first in the sporting world. That year, the very first amateur boxing matches took place at the Lillie Bridge sports ground, pretty close to where Stamford Bridge is now.
These aren’t Fulham’s only historical achievements. In 1984, the very first speed bumps ever to be in Great Britain were built in Fulham.
After the Second World War, Fulham also experienced a transition from a working-class area to the upper-class environment we know today.
· Daniel Radcliffe, the world-famous actor who starred in the Harry Potter series, lived in Fulham.
· Sir Roger Moore, Brian May, Lily Allen, Toni Halliday and Example (Elliot John Gleave) are all notable residents of Fulham.
· In 2012, the only urban beach in London was opened in Bishops Park.
· Fulham was referenced in quite a few songs, by artists such as Jethro Tull, Generation X or Swervedriver.
· Until 1924, the Fulham Palace gardens were surrounded by the biggest moat in England.
Like in all areas of London, it’s fairly difficult to get around Fulham during rush hour, especially in the morning. However, Fulham offers plenty of alternatives for transport, both under and over the ground. First of all, it’s important to note that there are three tube stations in Fulham – Fulham Broadway, Parsons Green, and Putney Bridge.
All three of them can be found in Zone 2 on the District Line. It will take you between 20 and 30 minutes to get to locations like Monument or Victoria. If you prefer to take the train over the ground, you can get the West London Line from Imperial Wharf.
What makes Fulham shine is its bus network. If you want to go into the city, you can take 11, 13 or 295. You can also take 295, 391 or 424 to Clapham Junction, Richmond or Putney Heath.
If you want to drive your own vehicle, you are only fifteen minutes away from the M4. Those who love riding their bicycles can join the other numerous Fulham residents who commute to Victoria in just twenty minutes. If you need to get to Waterloo, it will just take you about thirty minutes via bicycle. If you fancy cycling, you can check out some great local shops like Gumtree, Evans Cycles or Cycle Junxion to get a bike in the area.
As far as real estate is concerned, the market in Fulham remains strong. If you are a homeowner and you either want to rent or sell your home, now is the perfect time to do it. The numbers have skyrocketed for Fulham homes in the past few years, and they are projected to increase even more in the future. More and more residences are being built each year, with almost 500 newly made buildings only in the past few years.
Aside from the fact that homes are absolutely stunning in Fulham, they are more than a pleasure to reside in. From an architectural viewpoint, buildings reflect Edwardian and Victorian styles, with breathtaking details that cater to refined tastes.
Renting in Fulham provides a wealth of options for professionals and families alike. There are many period conversion flats on offer from a studios to a three bedroom duplex, and family homes from smaller three bedroom terraces to grand five and six bedroom semi's.
The average price of a houses sold in Fulham so far in 2016 is £1.16m, but there are plenty of homes that below and above this figure. The average cost of an apartment currently stands at £806,856, but again, good entry level one bedroom apartments can be sought for circa £500,000.
Hot spots include Parsons Green, Munster Village, Walham Green/Eel Brook Common and the Hurlingham area west of Hurlingham Park and east of Putney Bridge tube station.
If you want to have a good time in Fulham, you should know that there is an abundance of activities that you can take part in. First and foremost, we have to discuss the opportunities available for sports enthusiasts. The football stadiums we mentioned in the first half of our guide are a must for anyone passionate about this sport.
In addition to this, the home of Chelsea is right on the Fulham border. While you’re at the Chelsea stadium, you can take a tour or visit the museum to learn more about the team and its history. Nevertheless, you should always be prepared when big games come around, especially when Chelsea has one. Individuals will travel from all over the UK to see the game live, so make sure that you get your tickets in time.
Fulham is also home to the Hurlingham Club, one of the most praised sports clubs worldwide. However, you can expect quite a few years of waiting to gain access to the same club as members of the British royal family. Some sources even claim that the waiting list now reaches about 15 years for a membership.
If you want to go out for a good swim, you can pay a visit to the public pool on Lillie Road, at Virgin Active. Tennis players can check out the courts on Eel Brook Common, the same place where you can engage in a rugby match.
To enjoy the great outdoors, you can take a stroll in Bishop’s Park. It’s right along the Thames, and you can find both a breathtaking floral collection and even a small beach. This is also where you can discover Fulham Palace, possibly the most notable building in the whole area.
Dubbed as the ‘historic home of the bishops of London’, the gorgeous palace and surrounding garden were built in the early 700s and are now one of the main attractions of the city. A great number of locals and tourists alike claim that it brings back a very Jane Austen-esque atmosphere that will fill you with awe. Another delightful green space is South Park, which hosts numerous sporting activities.
If you want to enjoy some eye candy, you can go to the Design Centre at Chelsea Harbour. It is highly celebrated in the design world and offers visitors inspiration for days after visiting. On this note, you can also go to the Fulham Library, which now has a myriad of services and resources for visitors. A few examples would be reading groups for children, free Wi-Fi and self-service, among many others. Zest Gallery is also a fantastic attraction, especially if you want to learn more about contemporary glass art.
As far as events go, you can check out the Grand Hall from the Fulham Town Hall for starters. Built in 1888, the extraordinary piece of architecture now hosts dances and concerts that are sure to spark your interest.
If you want your children to have fun and learn in the area, you can keep track of the Fulham Palace activities. Their programmes, like The Palace Explorers or the Young Archaeologists' Club, will keep them fascinated about discovering this beautiful place.
For concerts, you can always go to Shepherd’s Bush Empire nearby. They have loads of artists you will most likely be interested in listening to live. Another exceptional concert venue nearby is Bush Hall, which boasts brilliant architecture that will keep you both visually and audibly excited throughout your visit. The Hammersmith Odeon (now regarded as the Eventim Apollo) can be found on 45 Queen Caroline St. Even though it is a bit further away, it’s no less spectacular.
To stay up-to-date with events in the Hammersmith & Fulham area, you can bookmark their arts and parks event page from their official website here.
One of the main reasons why Fulham is becoming one of the most popular areas in London is its exceptional diversity with pubs and eateries. Not only do you have a multitude of places to choose from, but you also have some excellent restaurants that will lure you back to their dishes time and time again.
For tasty British cuisine, you can check out Claude's Kitchen, a great restaurant lead by Claude Compton that you can find right above Amuse Bouche. If you're in the mood for a fine Italian meal, you can dine at the River Cafe, while delicious Thai food can be found at Blue Elephant. Thai cuisine can also be found at Sukho, located at 855 Fulham Road.
With the cosy appearance of a pub, Harwood Arms is one of the most appreciated restaurants in the area for those with a craving for fine British cuisine. As a fun fact, Harwood Arms is the only pub in London ever to be awarded a Michelin star.
A similar eatery to Harwood Arms is the Malt House, yet another high-end location with a wonderful menu. Reviews on Yelp recommend the scotch eggs, pea puree, and steak, as well as booking in advance to make sure you get a table.
If you want a bit of genuine Italian gelato, tiramisu or key lime pie, you should definitely pay a visit to Luna Nuova. Some customers even mentioned that they got desserts on the house.
Regardless if you want to get a cold pint before the game, or you want to enjoy a refreshing drink after your meal, you have a lot of pubs to choose from in Fulham.
The most famous pub in all of Fulham is The White Horse. Regarded by locals as The Sloaney Pony, it was first recorded in 1712, but the site dates back to 1688 (at least). It has a fascinating story that you can discover in detail by just visiting. The Durell Arms is yet another exciting place you can look into, which also hosts nights with live music and quizzes.
If you want to have the opportunity to taste from about 40 types of champagne, Amuse Bouche is certainly the place to go. We mentioned it when talking about Claude’s kitchen earlier; you can find it directly under. If you also want to ditch the beer for a night, another splendid place on Fulham Broadway that you can enjoy some fine wine at is Vagabond Wines, an award-winning wine bar.
In addition to delicious food and fabulous drinks, Fulham is also a marvellous place to “shop ‘til you drop”. The area caters both to budget shoppers and high spenders, with a wide variety of stylish boutiques and day-to-day shops to enjoy.
Designer apparel can be bought from March, one of the high fashion boutiques on Fulham Road. David Fielden's designer pieces can also be found on Fulham Road, just like Claudia Sebire, Dolly Lloyd or Maharani.
The Fulham Broadway shopping centre is your place to go for your everyday shopping needs. This is a lovely alternative if you don't want to spend that much on the aforementioned boutiques. The best part about Fulham Broadway is that you can find all the items you require without going to any other places. You can find the shopping centre in the heart of Fulham.
Furthermore, there are dozens of options for grocery shopping in Fulham. Some farmer's markets you can visit are the Bishops Park Farmers' and Fine Foods Market or the Parsons Green Farmers' Market. For your everyday groceries, you can also go to Tesco, Budgens or Sainsbury's, to name a few. You also have a Whole Foods available near Fulham Broadway if you want organic produce.
Last but certainly not least, Fulham is renowned for its exceptional selection of schools. The London Oratory and the Fulham Prep School are two private schools that serve as perfect options for education, as well as the Fulham College Boys' School or the Lady Margaret School for girls. For primary education, you can look into Fulham Primary or Melcombe Primary. International children can go to L'Ecole des Petits and afterwards to the Marie D'Orliac Lycee.
All of these schools are widely regarded as excellent options for families who live in Fulham.
As you can see, Fulham is an amazing place to live. Not only is it recommended for families who want to reside permanently in a safe area, but it’s also a great place for young couples who want to start a new life. Families can also look into the highly appreciated schools in the area, both private and public. You can wine and dine all week long, owing to the multiple options available on Fulham Road.
Shopping will never be an issue with so many stores to explore, while fresh produce is always available in the numerous farmers’ markets and supermarkets in Fulham. You can listen to your favourite band live at one of the multiple concert halls in the city, or you can engage in sports activities at the two football stadiums or the parks. Homeowners have an exceptional business opportunity to rent or sell their homes, while future residents will love staying in this peaceful area in West London.