Prince William visits White City to see new H&F-funded youth centre

HRH The Prince of Wales paid a special visit to WEST, the new OnSide Youth Zone in White City, on Thursday 14 March.

 HRH The Prince of Wales visits WEST in White City

HRH The Prince of Wales paid a special visit to WEST, the new OnSide Youth Zone in White City, on Thursday (14 March).

WEST is part of Hammersmith & Fulham Council’s ambitious new £150million EdCity development, located close to QPR’s Loftus Road stadium.

Prince William met with H&F Leader Stephen Cowan and H&F Mayor Patricia Quigley, as well as WEST’s chief executive Elanor Gunn and chair Mark Davies.  

Cllr Cowan said: “Our £150m investment in these amazing state-of-the-art youth and educational facilities is indicative of our most fundamental belief that every young person in our Borough should have the best possible start in life. We chose the charity OnSide as our partner in our EdCity project and gifted them the land because they have an excellent record and share our mission to change and improve young people’s lives.

“HRH Prince William is genuinely interested in this amazing project and was keen to understand the work we’re doing to link the opportunities of the Innovation District  to the life chances of local young people.”

Cllr Stephen Cowan, Leader of Hammersmith & Fulham (pictured right) talking to HRH The Prince of Wales


Our innovative partnership with national charity OnSide has brought this new state-of-the art Youth Zone to White City. It will provide sporting, creative and social activities and opportunities for local young people.

Our EdCity development also includes:

  • a new Ark White City Primary Academy, opened in November last year
  • 132 new homes – all of which are affordable for local people
  • a new building for Harmony Nursery to increase capacity to 75 children
  • an expanded H&F Adult Learning and Skills Centre providing training and life-long learning opportunities for local residents
  • a new 100,000sqft office space for up to 1,000 jobs and other organisations and businesses.

Young people and plaque

During his visit, Prince William also met pupils from the Ark White City primary and members of WEST’s young people development group – both of which were involved in shaping the design and facilities in the new centre.

His Royal Highness toured the Youth Zone, meeting young people using the four-court indoor sports hall, before seeing the teaching kitchen and unveiling a commemorative plaque. He also invited to join in a game of basketball.

Prince William’s visit marked the first time that local young people have had access to the Youth Zone. It will open to the public seven days a week from Sunday 21 April.  

“We can’t wait to open our doors to thousands of young people from across West London,” said WEST CEO Elanor Gunn. “We are so grateful to our supporters for making this a reality."

The Youth Zone also includes an indoor climbing wall, performing arts studio, fitness studio, and a café that will serve hot nutritious meals costing no more than £1.

Young people from across H&F will have access to all the fantastic facilities for a cost of £5 for an annual membership and 50p per visit.

HRH Prince of Wales was received in White City by Kevin McGrath, Deputy Lieutenant for Hammersmith & Fulham.

Industrial Strategy

We launched our Industrial Strategy in partnership with Imperial College London in 2017.

It’s designed to support the development of a world-class innovation ecosystem, fuelled by close collaboration between academics, businesses, entrepreneurs and residents.

We’ve now attracted more than £6billion of investment in White City from some of the world’s hottest science, tech, education, media and medicine companies.”

This investment has helped us create more than 8,000 local jobs in exciting new tech-driven industries to this new global economic hotspot in White City – which is now home to major global companies such as Novartis, L’Oréal and Publicis.

For more details, visit the EdCity website.

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