Webheath Estate is a large housing estate between West Hampstead and Kilburn currently being filled with street art murals. Running along Netherwood Street it has become one of the key locations for the 2020 London Mural Festival. Among the new murals on display, a giant image of local resident June Barber. From Australian artist SMUG it’s the only place to see his work in London. That in itself is worth the trip.
First opened in 1970 building had only started two years before. Replacing what had been described as ‘damp and decaying houses‘. It had been built to regenerate an area which had been long run down. Webheath represented a new hope. ‘The slime used to get up to the mantelpieces in some places’ said Florence Hayward, a long time campaigner for improving conditions before the estate was built.
Art for Estates
Now the Webheath estate is at the heart of a new mural explosion. It’s not the first time either. Part of the Art for Estates programme from Global Street Art the first murals appeared in 2018. For the London Mural Festival they’ve gone back. SMUG is the centrepiece of course but during September plenty of other street artists have produced work.
There are a number of residents groups and estates which have been involved in the festival. Partnering with Webheath but also the Tybalds and Blashford Housing Estates. Community input has been important. That’s where the giant mural of June Barber came in. At 86 years old she is the longest remaining tenant at Webheath. Though by all accounts the size came as quite a surprise. She never imagined it to be that big.
Murals of the Webheath Estate in Kilburn
Amongst the other artists taking part, the likes of Envol, SNUB and Mr Christa who we’ve featured a number of times before. They were joined by a selection of other artists from different backgrounds. From graffiti and illustration to the abstract and the fine. A selection of the work on show can be seen in this gallery.
The Webheath estate was visited on 19th and 26th September 2020. For articles similar to this one have a look at: