Leon Fernando Del Canto is the founder of Del Canto Chambers, an international tax firm based in London with a country focus on Spain. He talks about moving to Primrose Hill, and the creativity he finds here.
Please allow me to introduce myself as a brand-new resident in this delightful area, this oasis in the heart of London.
After five years of contending with all the busyness and bustle of Covent Garden, I was ready for a more tranquil environment. Primrose Hill has surpassed all expectations. Not only have I found peace and quiet, but I have discovered an intellectual heritage much richer than anticipated. I discovered, for example, that it had been home to two of my favourite authors, Sylvia Plath and Friedrich Engels.
Primrose Hill also offers so many other attractions: proximity to the parks I love to stroll in, Regent’s and Primrose; the canal walk to Camden; the architecture of St John’s Wood; independent boutique shops and the delicious delis offering a cosmopolitan variety of temptations. So, there is in a way the best of country and town. You can breathe the air above the traffic fumes of the city as you admire the skyline of London from your hilltop view.
From a business point of view, I was very excited to discover that this was home to two important music studios, Abbey Road and RAK. My legal firm, Del Canto Chambers, is widely known as the sole providers of Spanish tax and legal advice, and we have a great interest in art and film. This is reflected in the many artists who are included within our portfolio of clients.
This is another reason why Primrose Hill feels so right. It continues to attract creative types of people who work in the media, arts and music. We love having the opportunity to socialise with these artistic people and look forward to more of it now we are finally allowed to mix in the many amazing pubs and coffee shops that the Hill provides.
There seems to be an energy connected to Primrose Hill which is very conducive to open-mindedness and creative thinking. The poet and mystic William Blake made reference to Primrose Hill as being in some way sacred to the sun. At the top of the hill is the York stone edging with the Blake inscription:
“I have conversed with the spiritual sun. I saw him on Primrose Hill.”
I don’t know whether it’s the fresh air and open spaces, the ability to just meander alongside the canal or sit on a park bench and contemplate the setting sun, but there seems to be less busyness in my head as well as my environment. There is the ability to just be present, breathe and be with the beauty of things, without being caught up in occupation all the time.
Maybe this is the true magic of Primrose Hill. It’s not only that you find yourself in a city and yet in a village, with all the benefits of nature, quiet and solitude that this provides. It’s that you can escape from the crowds – as well as your own over-thinking mind – whenever you need to find some peace and harmony within yourself. Then it seems that your mind becomes freer and more creative as you just sit and commune with the spiritual sun.
In terms of my business, we are looking forward to building long-standing relationships. Our barrister chambers works primarily with private clients and their families. Most of our work relates to UK clients with property or investments in Spain. We handle all elements from a tax and intellectual property perspective, and our aim is always to build partnerships of trust and longevity. Many of our clients have been working with us for decades and we are now also working with the second generation.
Leon Fernando Del Canto is an international tax barrister based in London. Del Canto Chambers has been advising numerous UK individuals and families on their tax and immigration status post Brexit. More details of the firm can be found here: https://delcantochambers.com/