The Great North London Kinks Tour
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Follow the Kinks through the dark alleyways and passages of

L O N D O N

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This is a recommended route to take in all the Kinks locations in Muswell Hill and surrounding area, as described on the Jim Smart / Geoff Lewis Big Black Smoke site. Suggestions for improvements would be greatly appreciated. If you are short of time, you may prefer to attempt the Little North London Kinks Tour.

Thanks are due to Peter Ølgaard, Olga Ruocco and Jayne Morgan for much of the research which has led to this route.

You will need this map. First, buy a London Transport One Day Travelcard from any tube station. (You can buy them in advance of the day you are travelling, if it is more convenient.) This will give you a day’s unlimited travel on the underground and the red buses. Alternatively, get an Oyster card for economical travel for your entire stay in London.

Wherever you are starting from, get onto the Northern Line of the underground, and travel to Angel (1). Turn right out of the station, walk up Islington High Street, past numerous antique shops and “Lola’s Restaurant” (I don’t think it’s her/him, though). Turn right into Camden Walk and go into the Camden Head pub. A pint of bitter in this excellent pub would be a good way to start the tour. Ask to see the function room, where the Kinks rehearsed and where Mick was auditioned.

Camden Head
Holloway jaIL

Get back on the Northern Line northbound and ride to Camden Town (2)

Take the number 29 or 253 bus to Finsbury Park, stopping off at Holloway Jail (3) to see where they took my baby. .

rainbow

Alight at Finsbury Park, where you can see the old Rainbow Theatre (4) (now used by a religious organisation), which staged one of the first of the Kinks big shows in the early 70s.

emirates_stadium

You could take the underground (Piccadilly Line) to Arsenal (5) and have a quick look at the Ray and Dave’s favourite Football Ground. Sing “Sitting In The Stands”, shout "Come on, the Gunners", then travel back on the tube to Finsbury Park (4).

college2

Next, from Finsbury park bus station, behind the tube station, take a number W7 bus to Crouch End. Walk back up Crouch End Hill where you can see the TUC college, formerly Hornsey Art College (6), attended by Ray. Sing “Art School Babe”, if you know the words, or shout out “Arty Farty!”

konk

Take a number 41 bus from Crouch End Broadway to Hornsey station. Walk up the hill to Konk Studios (7), on your right, where you can try to bluff your way in.

wmc

Having failed to get into Konk, walk a little further up Tottenham Lane. A few doors along, at the last of the row of shops around the corner with Church Lane, you will see the shop whose window was used on the sleeve of “Working Man’s Café”. Unfortunately it has been modernised now.

You can also see the back of Konk near here on Church Lane.

At number 55 Tottenham Lane, opposite the police station, you will find the Lane Café (7a) – the original “Working Man’s Café”. Have a cuppa tea and sing WMC. In fact you might want to have more than a cuppa – the prices are amazingly low, so it’s a good place to be hungry.

ellie's

Now walk down Church Lane to Hornsey High Street and turn left. Walk along the High Street to the junction with Hillfield Avenue. Here you will find Ellie’s Studio, which used to be Keevan’s, (7b) seen in the exterior shots in the Come Dancing video. (Leaded windows at the top still say “Outfitters“.) The Great Northern Railway Tavern, opposite, was also seen in that video.

great northern2
phone boxes

Take a number 144 bus to Muswell Hill Broadway (8). As the bus climbs Muswell Hill, take a look back at the splendid view over London. Yes, you are now a Muswell Hillbilly - sing the song, you are really getting into the heart of Kinkdom. Get off the bus near the island the Broadway. Look out for the telephone boxes (8a) used in the “State Of Confusion” video, on Queens Avenue.

sainsbury

Walk south west along Muswell Hill Broadway and bear right into Fortis Green Road. Almost immediately on your right, by Sainsbury’s supermarket, is Athenaeum Place (8c), location of the site that used to be the local palais, mentioned in “Come Dancing”.

st james school

If you continue down Muswell Hill Road, (or ride a 134 bus if you prefer) you come to Woodside Avenue on your right. In this road is St James’ Church of England Primary School (9), which was attended by the young Davies brothers. Unfortunately, the school has moved from the site on Fortis Green, (opposite Fortismere Avenue) where it stood in Ray and Dave’s day.

onslow gardens

Further down Muswell Hill Road, turn left into Onslow Gardens (9a), location of Mike and Peg's home. Continuing along Onslow Gardens, you will come to Connaught Gardens – number 30A is the house shared by Dave and Mick (9b). 

steeds

Back to Muswell Hill Broadway, take the 234 bus to Coppetts Road and get off near Everington Road. Walk along Everington Road and turn right into Steeds Road. Pete Quaife's family home (10) was number 59.

fortismere

Back along Everington Road, turn right onto Coppets Road and on into Tetherdown. Turn right into Creighton Avenue and see Fortismere School, formerly William Grimshaw School (11) on your left.  Don't make your confession to the headmaster, but remember the happiest days of your life

4 Tetherdown

Back to Tetherdown, walk down to number 4, which was Ray and Rasa's first home.

fortis1

.Walk on to Fortis Green, sing the song and turn right.

midhurst

As you walk along Fortis Green, you will see Midhurst Avenue, where Ray and Rasa had their second home (anyone know which number?)

denmark terrace

After a while, you will come to Denmark Terrace. Number 6 was the Davies family home (12). Please don’t try to peer into the famous "front room", as it upsets the current residents.

clissold

It is now time to visit the famous Clissold Arms (13), where the Davies brothers first performed in public, directly opposite 6 Denmark Terrace, to take some well-deserved refreshment and look at the Kinks exhibits on display there. Several pints later, you may feel up to continuing the tour.

alex

 (If the Clissold happens to be closed, get your pints in the pub almost opposite, the Alexandra, which was frequented by Ray and Dave in their youth.)

rayhome2

Continuing along Fortis Green, you pass number 87, which was Ray and Rasa's third home (14)

lynton

On the opposite side of the road is Lynton Grange (14a), a block of flats where Pete Quaife once lived.

East_Finchley

Carry on to East Finchley (15) (take a 102 bus if you can't walk properly). Finchley is the former constituency of Dear Margaret, so try singing that

Yeatman Road

From East Finchley, take the 143 bus in the direction of Highgate. You will pass near Yeatman Road (off North Hill into Storey Road, left on Gaskell Road, into Yeatman Road), where Arthur and Rosie lived, but again we have no house number at present. Nevertheless, to sing both "Arthur" and "Rosie Won't You Please Come Home" would be appropriate

island

Stay on the 143 route down North Hill until you come to Castle Yard on the left. Alight and walk through Castle Yard into Southwood Lane. You will see the island in the middle of the road (16) (might as well sing a bit of "State of Confusion" while you're here) where the Kinks were photographed for the cover of Muswell Hillbillies. Unfortunately the direction sign has recently been removed. Make sure there are five of you (by grabbing unsuspecting passers-by, if necessary) and have your photograph taken on the island. Sing "I'm On An Island".

Highgate High st

Walk down Southwood Lane to Highgate High Street (17), and decide if you are up to the trek across Hampstead Heath to Kenwood.

kenwood-house

If so, take the 210 towards Hampstead, singing "Young Conservatives" as you go. Get off near Kenwood House on the north side of the Heath and march purposefully south until you reach the wood (18), singing "Village Green Preservation Society". 

flask

Then walk east to come off the Heath at Merton Lane and walk on to Highgate West Hill. You now deserve to "Have Another Drink" (cue for the song), so visit The Flask (19), near the top of West Hill, at the junction with South Grove and have your picture taken outside, lounging about or picking one another up. (If there are only one or two of you, you will have to enlist the help of some locals for this operation.)

Those who ducked out of the Ken Wood safari can walk straight down Highgate West Hill to The Flask (19), but you don't deserve this extra drink. I expect you will have one, though.

retcar

Now back to Highgate High Street (17), onto the 143 bus towards Archway. Get off at Dartmouth Park Hill, on the right. Walk down Dartmouth Park Hill to see Retcar Place (20) on the right.  Imagine the way it used to be, as Retcar Street, with "Cats On Holiday", and sing "Demolition"

marx

If you feel like a digression, go on down Dartmouth Park Hill, right into Raydon Street and into Highgate cemetery and have a chat with Karl Marx. He might enjoy a rendition of “Uncle Son”

Highgate Hill

Back onto Dartmouth Park Hill and turn left into Magdala Avenue. Walk up here until you come to Highgate Hill (21). If you haven't sung "London" so far, now is the time.

archwaytavern

Turn right and you will soon come to the Archway Tavern (22). Eventually, you will work out how to get across the roads to get onto the island on which the pub stands. It’s not the place it was, sadly, but walk in, have a beer and sing "Alcohol".

Boston_Arms

Now take a number 134 bus, or the tube, down Junction Road to Tuffnell Park. Cross the road from the tube station to the Boston pub (23), where recent annual “Kinks Konventions“, starring the Kast Off Kinks, have been held. Too soon for another beer?

littlegreenst
littlegreenst2

Walk up Dartmouth Park Hill, first left into Burghley Road, first right into Ingestre Road, through the estate to the end, where there are steps down to Little Green Street (24), where the Dead End Street promo was filmed. You can still see the mourners’ house (No. 4) and the tunnel. If you happen to have a coffin with you, you could re-enact the promo!

From Highgate road, take the 214 bus to Angel, Islington (1) – and now we’re back where we started! Sing “Do It Again” and pop back into the Camden Head for another beer, then travel back to your hotel for a good rest, because tomorrow we're doing the Great Central London Kinks tour!

(*)Numbers in brackets refer to locations on the bus map.