Oscar Wilde’s former street named the most expensive in England

Oscar Wilde’s former street named the most expensive in England

It was once home to literary and artistic greats including Oscar Wilde, but now Tite Street in west London has a new claim to fame after Halifax named it the most expensive street in England and Wales, with an average house price of £28.9m.

The mortgage lender said the top 10 priciest streets in 2021 were all in the capital, mainly in Westminster or the borough of Kensington and Chelsea, where Tite Street is situated.

However, its £28.9m average property price is 5% lower than the £30.5m recorded for the most expensive street a year ago – Avenue Road in London’s St John’s Wood.

Halifax added that desirable roads outside the capital had seen prices increase at a faster rate. London has typically not experienced the same property boom as other regions this year, as pandemic-fuelled desires for a new lifestyle led many to quit big cities for homes elsewhere with more space and bigger gardens.

The average price of a home on one of the 10 most expensive streets in the north of England and the West Midlands increased by 11% in a year, making them the two best-performing regions, said the Halifax. In the north-west, prices have typically increased by 5%, followed by the East Midlands at 4%. London, by contrast, experienced just a 1% rise.

Tite Street, lined with red brick mansion blocks and set between the banks of the River Thames to the south and Kings Road to the north, has risen from No 2 on the list last year to the top spot. However, you do not need to spend close to £30m to own a slice of this prime real estate: a two-bedroom flat in the street is currently for sale and has been reduced to £1.65m, according to property website Rightmove.

Wilde was the street’s most famous resident, reaching the height of his fame while living at No 34, where he wrote The Picture of Dorian Gray and The Importance of Being Earnest. Other notable residents included the American artists James McNeill Whistler and John Singer Sargent.

On 27 November 1974, the IRA carried out two bomb attacks in Tite Street. A small bomb exploded in a post box and was followed by a larger one that went off behind a hedge, injuring 20, including six police officers and two ambulance workers. Twenty years later, Diana, Princess of Wales posed for a portrait at No 33.

Last week, Halifax forecast that the boom in UK house prices was likely to end next year as household finances become increasingly stretched. Rightmove said earlier this month that the UK’s housing market was likely to return to more normal levels of activity in 2022 but would still be “busy”.

Halifax said its latest data was based on transactions between January 2016 and September 2021 recorded on the Land Registry database and compiled from more than 1.78m postcodes. Only locations where there have been at least two transactions over the period are included.

The most expensive street in each region

Greater London – Tite Street, Chelsea: average price of a home £28,902,000

South-east England – South Ridge, Weybridge, Surrey: £7,125,000

North-west England – Barrow Lane, Hale, Altrincham, Greater Manchester: £3,706,000

East Anglia – Chaucer Road, Cambridge: £3,610,000

South-west England – Pearce Avenue, Poole, Dorset: £3,478,000

East Midlands – Benscliffe Road, Newtown Linford, Leicester: £3,288,000

West Midlands – Carpenter Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham: £3,088,000

North of England – Old Hall Road, Windermere, Cumbria: £2,508,000

Wales – Benar Headland, Pwllheli, Gwynedd: £2,152,000

Yorkshire and the Humber – Fulwith Mill Lane, Harrogate, North Yorkshire: £1,797,000