One Way to Choose a School Site

 A small part of the Bombing Map has been imposed on a modern map for clarity. The bombed houses to the south of Marylands Road were replaced by blocks of 1960s flats, while the area to the north became the site of a new school. This was first Paddington Lower House, part of North Westminster Community School, and is now the site of Paddington Academy.

Of all the houses at this end of the Neeld Estate, only a few in Thorngate Road are still standing.

1935 OS Whole Map Full Size Full Size Map in New Window
Bomb Damage Map Whole Map Full Size Full Size Map in New Window
1955 OS Whole Map Full Size Full Size Map in New Window

Uses of the Bombing Map on this website


The school site in 1953. Two little girls wait for their school to be built.

At the back of the playground, in a steep dip, is the culveted River Westbourne which marked the border of the Neeld Estate.


The Geological Displays

There were two Geological Displays in the playground. The first included pieces of the old Moberly School, Edgware Road, which was one of the schools which were combined to form Paddington School and later became North Westminster School. It was unveiled by the Duchess of Kent.

The second was The Rio Tinto Geological Garden, which was unveiled by Sir Anthony Hopkins.1

The RTZ Geological Garden

We built this Geological Garden in the Paddington Lower House playground. Rio Tinto Zinc, the mining firm, paid for it and Eric Robinson, the geologist, directed it. The Garden was an interesting concept, with granites, marbles, slates, and other stones all displayed for easy examination and teaching, in a pleasant playground feature. It could be copied elsewhere.

Paddington Academy later built over the site, I do not know what happened to the stones of the Garden and fear that everything is lost. Several Councilors have told me over the years that everything is safe but I cannot trace it and know no more.

A copy of "The RTZ Geological Garden", a booklet I wrote to describe the project, is available separately in the website.


  1. This was just before his Portcullis House was opened opposite the House of Commons.
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