The other week I cycled up to Hampstead to Willow Road to see three houses, 1- 3 Willow Road designed by Erno Goldfinger completed in 1939. At the time the building, comprising three dwellings, encountered much local opposition*something that characterised the architect’s career.
Goldfinger, born in Budapest, he came to the UK in 1934, married Ursula Blackwell (as in Crosse & Blackwell) and so was financially set up.
The National Trust acquired 2 Willow Road after Goldfinger’s wife died in 1995. It is now open to the public for guided tours – current conditions permitting.
Even from the outside 1-3 Willow Road looks exciting. Made from concrete with a red brick facing (to keep the planners happy) concrete columns, part of the building’s frame carries the weight and a run of continuous windows across the first floor makes an intriguing invitation to enter.
Next up, I hope, as part of my Modernist architectural tour is another Goldfinger goody; the Trellick Tower, West London (1968-1972) seen as something of a last stand by Modernist high-risers like Erno.
*Including Ian Fleming, James Bond novelist.
Visit here for stunning interior photographs of Willow Road https://www.designingbuildings.co.uk/wiki/2_Willow_Road