Sainsbury's Ladbroke Grove site next to Kensal Green Cemetery and Grand Union Canal set for thousands of homes

A new canalside neighbourhood is proposed for Ladbroke Grove. (Photo by Ballymore and Sainsbury’s)
A new canalside neighbourhood is proposed for Ladbroke Grove. (Photo by Ballymore and Sainsbury’s)

More than two and a half thousand new homes could be built in a proposed canalside development in west London.

Sainsbury’s and the developer Ballymore have submitted a planning application for the supermarket's Ladbroke Grove site, across the Grand Union Canal from Kensal Green Cemetery.

The proposed new neighbourhood would have 2,519 homes, of which at least 500 would be affordable, as well as two parks.

The Ladbroke Grove Sainsbury's site. (Photo by Google Maps)
The Ladbroke Grove Sainsbury's site. (Photo by Google Maps)

The plans include over 90,000 sq ft of high street shops, cafes and restaurants, as well as a new 130,000 sq ft Sainsbury's. The current supermarket would remain operational until the new store opens.

The 19-acre site is one of the largest remaining brownfield sites in Kensington and Chelsea, and a large proportion of the site has been closed to the public for more than 40 years as a former gasworks site. Other parts of the site have had industrial uses, including a scrap metal processing facility and commercial storage.

Bordering the canal to the north and railway tracks to the south, the site is part of the Kensal Canalside Opportunity Area, identified in the Mayor’s London Plan.

John Mulryan, group managing director, Ballymore, said: “There are over 3,000 households on RBKC’s housing waiting list. Our proposals will make a positive and significant contribution towards reducing that figure. Kensal Canalside will provide a significant number of much-needed homes, plus a variety of retail spaces as well as open green spaces and a community leisure and amenity space that our residents and the local people can enjoy.”

A new canalside neighbourhood is proposed for Ladbroke Grove. (Photo by Ballymore and Sainsbury’s)
A new canalside neighbourhood is proposed for Ladbroke Grove. (Photo by Ballymore and Sainsbury’s)

The masterplan by FaulknerBrowns Architects has been shaped over the last three years. The developer says it has been put together in consultation with the local community, local councillors, planning officers and the Greater London Authority.

Ballymore says the architectural approach takes its inspiration from local Regency and Victorian design, as well as its setting close to Kensal Green Cemetery, the Grand Union Canal and the "wider area’s rich cultural mix".

The plan includes two public parks, as well as play spaces, designed by landscape architecture and design practice Spacehub.

Ballymore says the proposals include "diverse natural habitats and interventions to support urban wildlife and biodiversity net gain". These include 8.5 acres of public open space, taking in grassland, woodland, wetland and canal basin habitats.

The site is around 15 minutes’ walk from four tube stations - Kensal Green, Kensal Rise, Ladbroke Grove and Westbourne Park. The plans included new bus stops, pedestrian links and cycle routes and access to the canalside path.

Signalised junctions for cyclists would be introduced on Ladbroke Grove and Kensal Road.


The developer said: "A comprehensive sustainability strategy aims to maximise renewable generation and green infrastructure to produce zero emissions on site. Heating and cooling will be provided by air source heat pumps and the development will feature solar panels and sustainable urban drainage systems. The scheme has been based on sustainable design and construction practices, adopting circular economy principles by considering the lifecycle of materials and minimising waste."

Patrick Dunne, group property and procurement director for Sainsbury’s, said: “The development of the Kensal Canalside Opportunity Area will revitalise a key brownfield site in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, delivering places for people to live, work, shop and relax, and providing a significant boost to the local economy.

“The plans will allow us to deliver a brand-new, state-of-the-art Sainsbury’s supermarket for the local community to enjoy, and we’re proud that we are providing continuity to our customers by keeping our existing store open until the new one arrives. The larger, more modern and more spacious superstore will stock a wider range of our great value, high-quality food and non-food products and will build on our track record of offering fantastic service to our customers in Ladbroke Grove.”

FaulknerBrowns Architects

Ben Sykes, partner at FaulknerBrowns Architects, said: "The masterplan is inspired by its characterful setting, where Ladbroke Grove meets the sweeping Grand Union Canal and the open space at Kensal Green. In response, our design has been built around public spaces, including a restored canal basin, play spaces and adding gardens and groves to the borough, to create a series of smaller neighbourhoods with a rich mix of uses and a strong sense of personality and place.

“We are delighted to see the proposals submitted, after working with local residents, the local council, Ballymore, Sainsbury’s and the entire project team for almost four years, to research, design and develop the masterplan.”


The developers say the plan will create a minimum of 2,000 permanent long-term jobs and provide a significant boost to the local economy, amounting to approximately £37 million annually.

They say the scheme will deliver funding for social infrastructure in the local community such as healthcare and schools.

Ballymore pledged that Notting Hill Carnival, which launches from the site, will be preserved as a close and long-term partner, and said plans to create a new family-friendly Carnival experience are being explored.

If the planning application is successful, the 11-year construction programme is estimated to start in 2025. The first homes would be delivered in 2030, along with the new Sainsbury’s store and the neighbourhood centre around the restored canal basin.