THERE IS SOMETHING curious about a small building on Kensington Park Road (near to London’s Portobello Road). Above its centrally located, west-facing front door, there are three tall windows topped with semi-circular arches. In each of these windows, there is a circular pane of glass painted white.
If you look at the circular panes carefully, you will notice that, almost obscured by the paint, there is a six-pointed star, the Jewish Magen David. Inside the building, there is a large hall flanked by galleries at the first-floor level. The galleries are supported by metal columns topped with decorative capitals. High up on the east wall of the building, there is a circular stained-glass window. The glass depicts a Magen David: it has not been concealed by paint.
Did you know that this building, now much modified, was one of two synagogues in the Bayswater/Notting Hill area of west London? The other, still functioning, is on St Petersburgh Place near Bayswater Road.
I will not tell you any more about these two synagogues, one defunct and the other working, and west London Jewish communities, because you can read about them ( and much more) in my book “Beyond Marylebone and Mayfair: Exploring West London”. You can buy the book from Amazon (https://www.amazon.co.uk/BEYOND-MARYLEBONE-MAYFAIR-EXPLORING-LONDON/dp/B0B7CR679W/), or if you prefer to support independent bookshops, you can order a copy from a lovely bookshop near the former synagogue on Kensington Park Road: Lutyens & Rubinstein (21 Kensington Park Rd, London W11 2EU).