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The Secret History Of Our Streets - Portland Road

Updated Thursday, 11th December 2014

A street which sees the archetypes of the 1% living alongside those in the lowest income brackets of British society.

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Portland Road Creative commons image Icon Derek Harper under CC-BY-SA licence under Creative-Commons license Portland Road Charles Booth’s vast 1886 Survey of London ranks each one of London streets according to the class of their residents. Now in a major television series for BBC Two, The Secret History of Our Streets will return to six archetypal London streets visited by Booth, to discover how their fortunes have ebbed and flowed over the last 125 years.

The fourth episode features Portland Road, Notting Hill, the archetypal London banker street, with six million pound homes for hedge fund managers. But when Booth visited in 1899 it was the worse slum in London and still today, living on the same street, are the top 1% in Britain by income, and the bottom 5%.

Told through the personal stories of Portland road’s remarkably diverse range of residents, past and present, including Lords, bankers and slum dwellers, this film tells the story of one of the most divided streets in Britain.

The Secrets History of Our Streets: Portland Road was first broadcast Wednesday 27th June, 2012 on BBC Two. For further broadcast details, and to watch online where available, please visit




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