Portobello Square – the regeneration of Wornington Green

Architect: Conran and Partners, PRP (Phase 1)

Contractor: Bouygues (Phase 2b)

Number of homes: Around 1,000 across three phases

Location: North Kensington

Our Portobello Square regeneration project at the Wornington Green estate in Kensington will deliver approximately 1,000 mixed tenure new homes for social rent, private sale, and shared ownership.


Wornington Green Estate is owned and managed by Catalyst. The estate originally comprised 538 flats and houses (accommodating approximately 1,700 residents) which were constructed between 1964 and 1985 in predominantly large deck-blocks, typical of public housing of the period. The estate in its original form had, over several decades, undergone exponential changes in an attempt to address problems arising from both its design and construction methodology; but these had failed to resolve inherent problems with access, security, poor design and layout of homes. The 2006 options appraisal concluded that the complete redevelopment of the estate was the only realistic option to ensure the delivery of better housing for residents.

Our plans

Catalyst is regenerating and remodelling the estate creating a sustainable, mixed tenure community. Portobello Square will be built in three phases delivering approximately 1,000 new homes. The key benefits of the project are:

· No loss of social housing – all current tenants will be offered new homes in the development

· New homes for private sale and shared ownership

· Social housing is seamlessly integrated with the private to create a truly tenure blind development

· Creation of shops and community facilities and improved public realm · Reintegrating the new neighbourhood into the surrounding street pattern

· Re-providing the existing council-owned park in the heart of the new neighbourhood

What’s happened so far?

Phase 1 – Completed in 2015

· 324 homes (174 social rent, 9 shared ownership, 141 private sale)

· 6 commercial units

· Completed 2016

Of the 174 homes for social rent, 171 are occupied by existing households on Wornington Green. The other three were RBKC nominations for specially built homes for wheelchair users. 25 of the 171 are new tenancies for adult members of existing Wornington Green households (i.e. grown-up children) who have opted to move into a separate new home.

Phase 2a – Completed in 2020

· 89 homes (58 social rent, 31 private sale)

· Completed March 2020

· Phase 1 of Athlone Gardens

Of the 58 homes for social rent, 55 are occupied by original households on Wornington Green; 15 of these are new tenancies for adult household members. Two homes were offered to RBKC, and one was used for an internal Catalyst customer move from another area.

Phase 2b – Demolition started in late 2021

· 230 homes (108 social rent, 11 shared ownership, 111 private sale)

· Commercial space – 668sqm

· Start on site – winter/spring 2021

· Completion of Phase 2b North – winter/spring 2023

· Completion of Phase 2b South – winter 2024

Phase 3

A planning application was submitted to the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in December 2021. Consultation on the proposals for Portobello Square Phase 3 began in autumn 2018. The proposals for Phase 3 will:

· Deliver up to 377 new homes, of which up to 213 will be for social rent, 157 for private sale and 7 for shared ownership. 20 more home than the outline application

· Create new public spaces and flexible commercial spaces · Reprovide the Community Centre and adventure playground

· Reinstate the historical street pattern, a key part of the original masterplan, which will help people to find their way round the area more easily

· Include a space for the community kitchen garden

You can find out more about the plans for Phase 3 on our website.