Discover Redbridge’s hidden gems at Open House London

PUBLISHED: 13:00 03 September 2016

The Temple in Wanstead Park

The Temple in Wanstead Park


From stark concrete structures to ornate period properties, our streets are lined and interwoven with buildings filled with stories from those who have gone before us. Instead of walking past without a second thought, for one weekend only discover the hidden treasures which lie inside. Ellena Cruse takes a look at how you can make the most of Open House London 2016.

Open House London 2015 at Woodford County High SchoolOpen House London 2015 at Woodford County High School

Woodford County High School

High Road, Woodford Green. Sunday September 18, 1-5pm.

Former manor house – complete with ballroom, library and servant quarters – to First World War hospital and eventually school. The building has been used in a number of capacities and you can explore the elegant Georgian structure and grounds.

The Temple

Open House London 2015 at Woodford County High SchoolOpen House London 2015 at Woodford County High School

Wanstead Park Avenue, Wanstead Park. Sunday September 18, noon-5pm.

Situated in the magnificent grounds of Palladian Wanstead House, the temple is a garden feature from the 18th century.

The history of the temple and house can be read in the on-site museum.

Valentines Mansion

Valentines Mansion, Ilford. Picture: Paul RiddleValentines Mansion, Ilford. Picture: Paul Riddle

Emerson Road, Ilford. Sunday September 18, 10am-4pm.

If walls could talk, the rooms at the mansion would definitely have something to say. Not only has the property housed Belgium refugees, a public health department and a council housing unit in its time, but it is now home to artists and day functions. If venetian windows and fine staircases are your thing, then the Grade II property will appeal.

Redbridge Town Hall council chambers.

High Road, Ilford. Saturday September 17, 10.30am-2.30pm.

The council chamber in Redbridge Town HallThe council chamber in Redbridge Town Hall

Redbridge Town Hall is an impressive Grade II-listed structure built in the eclectic renaissance style. With Sienna marble fluted columns, parquet flooring and Indian Laurel wood panels, the chamber is captivating to behold.

Ilford Hospital Chapel

Ilford Hill, Ilford. Saturday September 17, 10am-4pm, and Sunday September 18, 1-4.30pm.

With deep tiled roofs and projecting eaves emphasised by diamond-paned windows and a small bell turret, the chapel could be mistaken for a dwelling in northern Europe. But the structure was built in 1145 as a leper hospital for 13 men by Barking Abbey.

The historic Ilford Hospital ChapelThe historic Ilford Hospital Chapel

Ilford War Memorial Gardens

Eastern Avenue, Newbury Park. Saturday September 17 and Sunday September 18, 11am-4.30pm.

Grade II-listed tribute to those from Ilford killed in the First World War. It served as the entrance to the now-demolished children’s ward of Ilford Emergency Hospital.

Fullwell Cross Library

Fullwell Cross LibraryFullwell Cross Library

High Street, Barkingside. Saturday September 17, 9.30am-4pm.

The formation of the London borough of Redbridge in 1965 created a new geographical base at Barkingside. An undeveloped site south of the Fullwell Cross roundabout was chosen for a new regional town centre, with a proposed new library and swimming baths. Taking inspiration from the roundabout, the library has a distinctive circular shape with raised central dome and large clerestory windows. Single-storey offices and reading rooms form an outer ring around the heart of the building.

Dangan Road

42 Dangan Road, Wanstead.

Interior of a remodelled Victorian house in WansteadInterior of a remodelled Victorian house in Wanstead

Saturday September 17, 1-5pm.

With awkwardly-sized rooms and a garden that was hard to access, the Victorian terrace on Dangan Road, Wanstead, made cooking a lonely chore.Architect Tom Kaneko saw the light at the end of the tunnel – and indeed light at the end of the kitchen – and added an extension to open up the ground floor and give a house built in the 1900s a 21st century twist. Since the amount of space created by the extension is limited, no space is wasted.

Sukkat Shalom Reform Synagogue

Victory Road, Wanstead. Sunday September 18, 10am-5pm

Sukkat Shalom Reform Synagogue, WansteadSukkat Shalom Reform Synagogue, Wanstead

The red-brick, Grade II-listed building has a sumptuous interior and stained-glass windows. The property was originally the Merchant Seaman’s Orphan Asylum Chapel. In 1995, it was acquired by the synagogue and restored with a Heritage Lottery Fund grant.

For the weekend’s full programme, see

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