Over the gate...

Designed in 1913 by Victorian/Edwardian/other architect Theophilus A Allen; John Lennon's house between 1964 and 1968; sunroom, attic and prisco stripe hibernice; Mellotron and caravan; Babidji and Mimi; mortar and pestle; Wubbleyoo Dubbleyoo; curios and curiosity; remnants and residue; testimonials and traces; (Cavendish Avenue, Sunny Heights and Kinfauns); Montagu Square; mock Tudor: Brown House: *KENWOOD*.

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Friday, 26 December 2014

Kenwood: January, 1995 video footage.

To recap: Andrew Hawkins (plus all important buddy, pal and mate) visited Kenwood at the beginning of 1995, just as the first major renovation (ie demolition) since the Lennon-era was getting underway.
Here is the footage shot that day, together with the usual inserts.
Bear in mind that, whilst the place is a building site, the layout is precisely as it was back in the 1964-68 era. To all intents and purposes, this is the house as John would have known it.
Many thanks once again to Andrew for allowing me to post this here (and for paying to having the video transferred to a digital format). If you see him, buy him a pint.


  1. So this video pre-dates the Joe Baiardi videos, correct? Did you ever post any videos that pre-date 1995? How many owners since Lennon?

  2. Correct. Shortly after this was filmed, large parts of the house (including all the bits that John had been responsible for) were demolished and re-built. The attic was gutted and the rooms completely redesigned. This film is, therefore, a final glimpse of Kenwood as John would have known it.
    As for pre-1995 films, the only ones that have come to light have been some of John's own home movies (of which there are around 20 minutes in his archive).
    By my reckoning, there have been at least 6 owners post-Lennon: a London underworld figure (!) about whom little is known, the songwriter Bill Martin, The Hallenius family, a banker and his American wife (their renovation dates from the time of this video), someone else from the City of London, and the current owner who is a Russian businessman. It wouldn't surprise me if some home movie footage from one or other of these exists, but I wouldn't bet on it coming into the public domain.
    Equally, there may be more material from fans out there - do please get in touch if you are reading this and know of anything!

  3. PS I forgot - there is also the Thames At 6 news report from the Hallenius era, detailing the removal of the pool mural. This is up on the blog somewhere...

  4. Interesting video! It sure brought back memories. When I saw that long driveway leading to the front door, it made me realize you HAD to be 15 like I was at the time to have the guts to walk up and knock on the front door! And walk all over the gardens too! Fans... It was also interesting to see that photo of my friend's family by the garage, holding up Beatle photos! That's what you did when your family was going to London without you in the late 60"s: you gave them John Lennon's address and made them go to his house and take pictures all over!

  5. Great video. What is the book they're flicking through to compare photos and locations? It looks good.

  6. It's the book that accompanied the Imagine: John Lennon documentary from 1988... and yes, worth picking a copy up for the photos. (Apparently the foreman bagged that one as payment for letting them see the house; not a bad deal, really.)

  7. INCREDIBLE VIDEO. Thank you for posting it. Cheers! - Joe Baiardi

  8. Fascinating video, thank you! I recall reading in Beatles Monthly that fans often camped out in the garden of Kenwood, which must have been great fun but John was not pleased!

  9. How long was John there with Yoko? I saw a Life With The Lions album cover in one shot and that came out in May 1969. I assumed John moved out when he and Cynthia got divorced.