Portobello Road Market in Notting Hill (located on Portobello Road itself) is unique, vibrant and the hub of Notting Hill's community and its close neighbouring districts. The market's distinctive feel owes something, not only to the buildings and street-scape but also to the shops lining the road-side and of course the wide variety of communities and individuals who choose to frequent the area. All of these elements combine to give Portobello Market (sometimes called Notting Hill Market) the international reputation it deserves, which in turn adds to its overwhelming commercial success today.
Portobello Road Market is divided into three main sections which enables the market to have a broad appeal to a wide ranging group of people.
- The first part, best described if you are entering from the south side i.e. Notting Hill Gate will introduce you to a magical world full of antiques and collectable items. Here, it is possible to stumble upona huge number of treasures from days gone by. To name but a few, you can find stalls that are specilized in jewellery, furniture and first edition books.
- After this first section of the market comes to an end you might fancy a little something to nibble on in preparation for the third and last part of Portobello market. Specializing in food you’ll be able to find some amazing local food, as well as global classics such as Paella, Churros, Crepes, Sandwiches, Falafel and lots more prepared and un-prepared food products.
Experience Portobello Market with local fashion designer Alice from Alice Temperley
- Last but by no means least is the third section of Notting Hill market where anybody that has a great sense of style and a passion for fashion will surely love. The stalls are packed full of new trendy and innovative designs as well as second hand clothing and accessories making it possible to create the ultimate outfit during one single shopping spree.
But where is Notting Hill and Portobello Road Market?
Notting Hill is located on the North West side of Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens and is easily reachable by tube. The best tube stations to travel to are Notting Hill Gate on Central Line, District Line and Circle Line or Ladbroke Grove on Hammersmith & City Line, these are located at the top and bottom sides of the market which make these stations most suitable when visiting the Notting Hill market.
History of Portobello Road
Portobello Road (previously thought to have been called Green Lanes) appears to have been born from a small footpath that linked Notting Hill Gate to an area two miles North West of Notting Hill calledKensal Green. The exact date the footpath was created is likely to remain unknown (possibly around the 1400's) but it became a much more popular thoroughfare with the advent of Porto Bello Farm, built half way down the lane around 1740. The farm itself was named so to commemorate Admiral Vernon capturing the coastal city of Puerto Bello, Panama in 1739 (a town favoured by the Spanish for Silver and other treasure trading) and to follow suit the footpath itself was renamed Porto Bello Lane which in turn became Portobello Road during the 1850's as roads, homes and businesses were developed along its route.
Portobello Road Market itself started life in the late 1860's, early 1870's when many houses on the road were still under construction. Market traders were primarily selling food (known locally as "costermongers") and were being driven by the ever expanding neighbourhood, inturn attracting many other traders to start selling medicines and general "bric-a-brac" goods. Side shows and street perfomers were also reported to have been getting in on the act setting up opposite the food stalls themselves. Up until the end the of 1920's traders were only operating on Saturday's, mainly due to the restrictions levied upon them by the local council, but after a lengthy battle they finally managed to approve opening on many other days and the market flourished.
By the end of the Second World War, around 1945, many "Rag and Bone" men started setting up stalls and selling second hand household items and antiques. The men were renown for selling high quality items for low prices and word started to spread, which in turn lead to more knowledgable buyers moving in to make a profit from the deals. This kick-started the Antiques section of the market postioned near the top end of Portobello Road between Lonsdale Road & Chepstow Villas (towards Notting Hill Gate). Then 10-15 years later, during the late 1960's fashion traders gradually started to appear and Portobello Road
The main and by far the busiest market day for Portobello Road is Saturday, however the full Portobello Market opening times are:
Mon-Wed & Fri: 8:00am- 6.30pm
Thu is a half day closing at 1.00pm
Sat 8:00am- 6:30pm
Setting up a Market Stall
If you would like to set up a market stall and rent a pitch on Portobello Road market then we have created the following guide to help you get started. All new traders start on a casual basis with an option to become permanant at later date.
1. You will need to gain approval from a market officer to sell your commoditys. The council actively encourages traders to sell a diverse range of items. Too many similar product being sold on the market is counter productive, both for the traders and for the visitors.
Portobello Market Office contact details are-
The Market Office
72 Tavistock Road
London W11 1AN
Telephone: 020 7727 7684
2. Once your proposed commoditys have been approved for sale by the market office, you will need to obtain Third Party Public Liabilty Insurance up to the standard value of £5M. The council equests that the insurance should be taken out in your own name, not your trading name.
3. You will need to register as a market trader (in person only) using at the above address. The council will charge you £ 9.00 as an administrative fee. Check the councils website direct for which other items you will need to brig with you to complete the process.
5. Portobello Road Market will now let you start trading! Just turn up on the day and follow the allocation procdure. The costs to rent the pitch (per day) to allow you to set up your market stall are as follows-
Monday-Thursday from 8am: £ 12.00
Friday from 7am: £ 22.00
Saturday from 7am:
£ 47.00 (new goods)
£ 45.00 (2nd hand goods)
£ 22.00 (Tavistock Piazza - Arts & Crafts only)
E&O exempt, further information may be found by visiting www.rbkc.gov.uk
Portobello Road Facts:
In 1739 Admiral Vernon captured the
city of Puerto Bello in the Caribbean and Portobello Road was named as a tribute.
Portobello Road is famous for its Notting Hill Market (started around 1860).
The Road is host to the first UK electric cinema which opened it doors first in 1910.
There are as many shops as market stalls.
The Road has many music festivals not just the
Ntting Hill Carnival.