Finchley Central Area Guide
Finchley is located in Northwest London, in the Borough of Barnet on high ground, 6.8 mi north of Charing Cross.
Finchley residents enjoy a calm and soothing environment made up of quiet leafy streets lined and picturesque period homes. Its well positioned location allows access to several beautiful woodlands, a far cry from the landscaped parks of central London. Finchley is the perfect location for those who commute by car, as several major roads pass through the area, linking to the M1 and North Circular Road. Even those who don’t drive are rarely short of transport options, as the area is served by the Northern Line and is the nexus of many bus routes.
Finchley has attracted artistic and intellectual luminaries for centuries, with such diverse talents as Charles Darwin and Spike Milligan writing some of their greatest works from secluded homes in Finchley. It is as popular as ever with the people working in the arts, but Finchley residents are an increasingly mixed bunch, varying from families who are looking to join a stable community to young singles and professional couples who come both to rent and buy. The area also attracts older couples who have sold their family homes and downscaled to the area's luxury flats. There is also a strong Jewish community with a number of synagogues and a cultural centre in the area.
Naked lady welcomes you to Finchley. Known affectionately by locals as Dirty Gertie or the Wicked Lady, the 16ft bronze statue, with a sword held aloft, stands at Henlys Corner where the A1, North Circular and Regent’s Park Roads meet.
Gertie’s real name is La Délivrance. Made by French sculptor Emile Guillaume to mark the Allied victory over Germany in the First Battle of the Marne in 1914, she was unveiled in Finchley in 1927, a gift to the council from the 1st Viscount Rothermere, of the Associated Newspapers dynasty.
Another distinctive landmark in this north London suburb celebrates the late comedian Spike Milligan. The much-loved Goon Show star, Finchley’s favourite celebrity, lived there 19 years and was president and later patron of The Finchley Society. His contribution is marked with a life-size bronze statue of him by John Somerville, sitting on a park bench in the public gardens at Avenue House in East End Road.
Finchley spreads itself out along the length of Regent’s Park Road, Ballards Lane and the High Road, all the way from the North Circular in the south to Whetstone in the north. Friern Barnet lies to the east, Golders Green to the south and Mill Hill to the west, and it is eight miles from central London to Finchley’s busy Tally Ho Corner crossroads, where the Twenties mock Tudor Tally Ho pub is named after the coaching company that stabled its horses nearby in the 1830s.