Open day this Saturday at West London's 5-star Buddhist centre
On Wed, 4 March, 2015 - 17:24
West London has a very striking new Buddhist centre, with an open day this Saturday 7th March(culminating in a piano recital) to which all are welcome.
Yashobodhi writes (with pictures by Peter Baker): “Early this year our West London sangha moved out of a Victorian villa in an expensive residential area close to Notting Hill, and into our new centre: the ground floor and basement of a brand-new building on a busy road five minutes away, close to Royal Oak, Bayswater, Queensway and Paddington Underground stations.
With just one shrine room, holding a maximum of 30, the old building didn’t allow us to expand our classes. The Centre council had decided years ago to look for a bigger building but it was extremely difficult to find anything; property prices in our area of London are huge!
We were so lucky when former town planner Vajrasadhu put us in contact with a property developer offering a space with planning permission for educational use in Porchester Road.
What we bought was an empty concrete shell which had to be fitted out from scratch. For that we found an amazing team of architects: Ralph Buschow and David Basak. (David is a mitra who’s asked for ordination, connected to the London Buddhist Centre - in east London). What a pair of stars! They’ve been great throughout the two-year process, from the “brief”, through the design, to all the snags that turned up after it was all finished.
The new building has a large reception area with tea point and bookshop, two shrine rooms, a dedicated bodywork space, a library, a treatment room, an office and a spacious kitchen.
Looking back, the whole process has been a true inspiration; a massive achievement for the team. It hasn’t been easy and we have had to transform ourselves in order to keep pace with all the decisions and actions involved in our project.
Every day people come in and tell us how beautiful the space looks; and there is still a lot to do. Someone remarked that the new Centre looks like a 5-star hotel; now we have to come up with 5-star teaching, publicity and programming. Do come and visit!”