Paddington is a safe London area in the City of Westminster borough of London. The area is known for its diversity. As with all big cities, it is necessary to take reasonable precautions to protect yourself, stay safe, and not do anything silly.
Around Paddington there are numerous facilities that many students will enjoy.
There are a wide variety of supermarkets (big and small), and corner stores within walking distance from the Hall.
London is alive with restaurants, and you will be spoiled for choice - whatever you fancy. If you go out often, you may benefit from a Tastecard, but more than likely you will also be always able to find a good offer on websites such as BookATable or OpenTable.
There are many restaurants on Edgware Road, around Paddington Station, around Padington Basin (the canal) and towards Central London. In Central London itself, popular streets include Wardour street and the Leicster Square/Covent Garden area.
There are quite a few pubs in the area hidden in the backstreets, and there are a few bars around Paddington Basin (The Grand Union, The Union [not to be confused with the actual Imperial College Union], and more).
Beware that drinks can be quite pricey; heading to the actual Union may be more appealing for your debit card...
Paddington is connected. Buses to Central London (South Kensington/Victoria area from one stop, and Oxford Street/Piccadilly from another) are frequent on Edgware Road. Edgware Road tube, Marble Arch, Paddington and Lancaster Gate tubes are all very close to Wilson.
Remember to register your Oyster card online in case you need to cancel it (if lost) and transfer the credit. You can also manage auto-top ups online to stop having to go to the machines all the time..
Hyde Park is one of London's largest parks, and is arguably its nicest. We have the Italian Gardens upon entering the park from Sussex Gardens, the Serpentine, Albert Memorial, Physical Energy (the horse statue you will see every day walking to uni...). Don't worry: although the UK has a horrific reputation for bad weather, London is normally actually not bad. It doesn't rain that often and the walk through the park is very enjoyable.
There's a long list of things on and off the beaten-tourist path. We'll try take you on some of them in Freshers' Fortnight. Here's just a few of the things we thought you could do...