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The Tabernacle, London

4.2
#120 of 220 in Museums in London
The Tabernacle is a Grade II*-listed building in Powis Square, Notting Hill, west London, England, built in 1887 as a church. The building boasts a Curved Romanesque facade of red brick and terracotta, and towers with broach spires on either side. Today the Tabernacle serves as a cultural arts and entertainment venue, including a theatre, meeting rooms, music studio, art gallery, bar and kitchen, conservatory and a garden courtyard.HistoryOriginally known as The Talbot Tabernacle, the Tabernacle was founded as an evangelical Christian church in 1869 by the former barrister Gordon Forlong 1819-1908, in order to serve as a "non-sectarian Church of Christ". Forlong had been a preacher at the Victoria Hall in Archer St, and was soon able to raise the capital to build a temporary iron church, with a capacity of around 1,000 people.The iron church was larger than most similar buildings in Kensington, and had an end gallery, the total capacity being for over a thousand people. The present building, featuring a Romanesque façade of red brick and terracotta was constructed in 1887, during the ministry of Frank Henry White, and was designed by architects Habershon and Fawckner.In the 1970s The Tabernacle became a community arts centre, leased on a peppercorn rent from Kensington and Chelsea Council by a management committee made up of local enthusiasts. The committee hired the Tabernacle's only complete hall to local community groups to raise funds for further development of the building and to run basic services, for example employing a youth worker to coordinate programmes for the children of local residents in what was at the time an extremely disadvantaged neighbourhood. The rival Carnival Arts Committee and Carnival Development Committee both made use of the venue each year in the weeks leading up to the Notting Hill Carnival featuring bands such as the Mangrove steel band.
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The Tabernacle Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
32 reviews
Google
4.3
TripAdvisor
  • I attended the recording of two shows of series 6 of Dave Gorman's Modern Life is Good...ish here. A fairly easy walk from Westbourne Park tube station brought me to this very pleasant venue with outd...  more »
  • Really pleased with the lunch food today. Visited with my mother and we shared s large plate of vegetable fritters and the pumpkin and curried vegetables with rice. The seasoning was really good even ...  more »
  • Went to the Tabernacle for lunch on Saturday. We had a lovely table, the service was friendly and efficient. The food was delicious and reasonably priced  more »
Google
  • Have been here a few times for swing dance nights (Lindy hop). Lovely intimate venue (for ~100 dancers). The bar downstairs serves good. I've not eaten mains (the cake was good) bit friends have & enjoyed it. Bar serves a mix of the usual ,& seem to offer freshly made cocktails too. Not 5 stars because in one occasion when we visited the toilets were in a terrible state, bit I think this was a plumbing issue & accidents can happen to the best of us. I would definitely go back to this quirky, characterful venue & I do recommend it to my friends.
  • The quality of be the food has improved by leaps and bounds. Had a lovely chicken meal. Lovely Caribbean beers. Definitely going back for more
  • Beautiful venue with loads of rooms and things going on, however some of the staff can be very rude! Has a nice front garden. Worth checking what’s on.
  • A stalwart of Caribbean culture in London. Loads of vibes and decent food. Grab a Carib or Red Stripe beer at the bar and enjoy the patio to the sounds of steel pan, calypso, reggae and West Indian accents young and old.
  • A beautiful hidden gem. The food and drink, although limited in options, is excellent quality and very reasonably priced for the area. The building itself is beautiful and peaceful and we enjoyed our time there shielded from the rush.

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Many of London's main attractions are spread out, so nearby public transportation is key. There is no downtown area as such in London, and some of the least expensive hotels have more convenient access to tourist sites than the costlier ones. For a quintessential London experience, consider staying in the West End. This part of town offers excellent theaters, historical sites, and eating and shopping options for every taste. Lodging won’t be cheap, but you’ll have the colorful variety of London life right at your doorstep. Look at Notting Hill or Chelsea for charming and less expensive boutique hotels and B&Bs.
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