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Trellik Tower, North Kensington

I've always been interested in the Hungarian Brutalist architect, Ernő Goldfinger.

His last significant building was the Trellik Tower, a landmark in my neighbourhood of North Kensington, up near the top of Portobello Road and which is now seen as a highly desirable by many who have chosen to make it their home.

However this was not always the case and almost as soon as it was completed in 1972, it seemed doomed to failure and something from which Goldfinger never recovered.

A humourless man given to notorious rages, his reputation was not helped when Ian Fleming, the creator of James Bond, used his name as the arch villain in his 3rd Bond outing of the same name. Fleming was angry that Goldfinger had knocked down some cottages in leafy Hampstead where he grew up, to replace them with a something he felt was out of character of the neighbourhood.

Brutalism is that style of architecture you see around the place, popular from the 1950s - 1970s and recognisable by the stark, minimalist buildings using tons of concrete and steel with jutting angles and few if any, decorative design elements. A bit grim and foreboding to some, perfection to others - Ernő Goldfinger was a poster boy and leading proponent of the movement. This is a classic shot of Trellik, with its access tower on the right separated from the main body of the building by corridors or 'walkways in the sky'

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