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A Tart’s Photo Diary: Trellick Tower

Trellick Tower in London

Goldborne Road, W10, London

Completed 1972, 31 Floors, Grade II Listed Since 1998, Architect: Erno Goldfinger

As well as being a FIRM and FIERCE London Dominatrix, I don’t half like to take a photo or two. I am fascinated by social history, and this is the first in a series of London photo diaries that will be dotted in amongst my Femdom erotica.

London Tower Block
Welcome to Trellick Tower

Beauty is definitely in the eye of the beholder when it comes to Trellick Tower. To me, this tower block – designed in the brutalist style – takes my mind happily back to growing up in 1980s Britain. Brutalism favoured angular, geometric shapes with exposed concrete or brick. In the UK, this architectural style was used en-mass for social housing and institutional buildings when the country was rebuilt after the Second World War. Trellick Tower – a vertical city and social housing project dreamed up in the 1960s – was by all accounts a very scary place to live during its first 15 or so years of occupation, owing to the crime and anti-social behaviour that went on inside.

32 floors of Concrete in West London
Nicknamed: The Tower of Terror

Trellick Tower’s architect Erno Goldfinger (allegedly a cantankerous old goat) had moved into Poplar’s Balfron Tower while designing Trellick in the 1960s, so he could get a feel for what had worked well and what hadn’t. He would die in 1987 before Trellick’s reputation would improve. To Goldfinger in his last years, Trellick was a place where drug addicts congregated, prostitutes lingered and the disenfranchised vandalised. Not at all what he had in mind when he first put pencil to paper on behalf of Greater London Council.

living in London

In the 1980s, along came Thatcher’s ‘right to buy’ and fortunes did indeed change for the Tower of Terror: a resident’s committee was created, a concierge was employed, and an intercom system was installed. Crime reduced and Trellick, with far reaching views across the greatest city in the world (that’s right New Yorkers, London IS better), became a desirable place to live. Today, a one bedroom flat on a lower floor will set you back nearly £350,000, while a 2 bed nearer the top is going to be over £600,000.

Chelsea London

I spent a fair few hours wandering around Trellick on a chilly Sunday in April. There was never a moment without a plane overhead on its descent to Heathrow, while the main rail lines from the west pass right by into London Paddington. Despite this, it was an oddly peaceful place to wander, especially on the north side of the tower which is bounded by the Grand Union canal.

Canal next to Trellick Tower
The canal next to Trellick Tower

Would I buy a flat in Trellick Tower? Since the long-suffering residents went to such great lengths to get prostitutes out, it hardly seems right for me to move in and annoy everyone. That said, I would love a personal tour of the building, should anyone who lives there be up for a damn good thrashing.

A photo from the 1970s with Trellick Tower in the background
Photo Colin Ward's: A Child in the City 1978

All images above, except the one by Colin Ward which I nicked off Google, are copyrighted to me, Amanda Jones. I am happy for you to use them on your website provided you link back to this website as credit. As you can imagine, I have many lawyers and even a few judges in my client list, and I won’t hesitate to sue.