Bedford Gardens is one of the prime residential streets in Kensington.
The street runs between Campden Hill
Road and Kensington Church Street
. It is wider than most of the neighbouring roads and the houses are mainly Victorian terraced houses of three-storeys, with stucco up to first floor level. They are well set back from the road with large front gardens. There are many trees and shrubs in the front gardens giving the street a particularly ‘green’ feel. The street is on a slight slope and all the front gardens are different many with attractive small box hedges. Many houses have off-street parking and at the western end are some substantial semi-detached houses on the north side with front gardens hidden behind high walls and hedges, giving an almost Edwardian suburban feel to the street.
William Hall borrowed money to develop this area which he had purchased, but he must have over-extended himself because creditors then sued and he had to sell his land in Bedford Garden by auction in 97 lots. Most of the land was bought by William Bromley, a solicitor who then entered into an agreement with Hall, under which Hall was to build a terrace of 51 houses. Possibly they were working together and sharing the profits, because the agreement provided for 99 year leases to be granted to Hall once the houses were built.
The Bedford Gardens development was carried out by William Hall and his sons. Starting at the eastern end of the street, they built 23 houses on the north side and 22 on the south side. Most of them still survive. The development stopped in 1830 when William Hall the younger died and William Hall the elder was again in financial difficulties. Another builder, Robert Paton of Paddington, may have completed Nos. 36-46 (even).
In 1831 Bromley sold land further west on the north side of Bedford Gardens to Walter Urquhart, a merchant in the City, who had also bought the land it backed on to in Campden Street
. Urquhart used Robert and Charles Jearrad and Charles Duncan, builders from Oxford Street, to build seven pairs of semi detached houses in Bedford Gardens, which were completed by 1836. These were two-storey brick-faced houses, Nos. 48-74 (even) Bedford Gardens. On the remaining land on the south side of the street, Nos. 85-91 (odd) were built around 1830 by various builders.
At the eastern end there is an attractive Edwardian mansion block – Bedford Gardens House – which is seven storeys high and was constructed in 1909. At the western end of the street there is a 1960s-style block of flats, consisting of five storeys painted entirely in white with glass balconies.