Harlesden is one of the must colourful and vibrant communities in London — there is an endless bustle of activity, with butchers, fish mongers and fruit and vegetable shops pouring out into the streets, and New Evangelists preaching on street corners. A trickle of city-commuting young professionals is becoming more of a deluge — period conversions on quiet tree-lined terraces are still available for a snip, and the transport links are excellent, especially to the city and now to Docklands on the Jubilee Line Extension.
The peaceful Victorian terraces are ubiquitous, and it is still possible to sniff out spacious properties with long-forgotten period fixtures at bargain prices.
Harlesden also benefits from cash-constrained buyers keen to be close to more established areas, such as Willesden Green, Kensal Rise and Queen's Park. Tipsters have been suggesting for a couple of years that Harlesden will eventually go the way of its newly-minted neighbours, marketing its tree-lined terraces and buzzing High Street as NW London's newest hip and fashionable neighbourhood.
Kensal Green is in the middle of just such a re-branding — it's a quiet area, next door to Queens Park and just above the achingly trendy Ladbroke Grove. You'll find attractive cottage terraces here, along with some more substantial properties and conversions.
Across NW10, which envelops Willesden Green, Queen's Park as well as Harlesden and Kensal Green, community spirit is strong, and there are plenty of local independent traders, often open late. The ethic diversity of the population is reflected in the vast array of restaurants, take aways and gastronomic delights on offer.
Transport links are excellent — you'll trip over bus stops going down any main street, the Jubilee Line and Bakerloo Line sweep through the area, and British Rail links can be found at Willesden Junction.