Saturday, January 15, 2011

London through its charity shops #5: King's Road, Chelsea

We start the King's Road in, er, the New King's Road, just by Putney Bridge Station (which is actually in Fulham). Here, on our right about half a mile along, is a very nice FARA, with vintage clothes on the ground floor and reasonably priced books and music in the basement.

Then there's nothing till King's Road proper, where, in the district known as World's End (named after a pub, but more appropriately because of the huge sink estate there), near the famous Vivienne Westwood boutique (now called World's End, but in the 1970s it was called SEX and run by Vivienne and Malcolm, selling torn clothes – and calling them punk – for lots of money. Sid Vicious worked there for a while) with the large clock whizzing backwards on its facade, are three pretty good charity shops.

Just a few doors down from the World's End boutique is an Oxfam with good music and books. Barngain of the Day: Robert Wyatt, Shleep CD, £2.99.*

On the opposite side of the road is an okay Cancer Research and a Trinity Hospice, which has some interesting bric-a-brac. A little further up is an unspectacular Octavia, with hardly any books, music or DVDs. Just off the King's Road, on Old Church Street, are two British Red Cross shops next to each other. One has clothes and the other has plenty of books (reasonable), music (cheap) and pictures (pricey). There's a (black) Oxfam boutique a bit further on; mostly vintage clothes, a few books, very small and pricey.

*I've been getting into Robert Wyatt and Soft Machine recently partly because of my mum's friend, Pat. In the 1970s, she was living on a beach in the South of France, working as a go-go dancer and living with the band members of Soft Machine. You'd never tell by looking at her.

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