Calls to rename London’s Russian embassy street ‘Zelensky Avenue’ after Ukraine president

The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea has been urged to rename Kensington Palace Gardens after the president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky.

A London council has been urged to rename the street housing the Russian embassy ‘Zelensky Avenue’ following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea (RBKC) has been urged to rename Kensington Palace Gardens after the president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky.

Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran said: “Everyone visiting or writing to the embassy should be reminded of Putin’s murderous and destructive invasion of Ukraine.”

LondonWorld understands, while anyone can apply to the local authority to rename a street, the council has not received any applications to change the street name.

The area outside the town hall is available for groups to hold peaceful vigils and prayers.

A person wearing a Russia 2018 World Cup bag looks at the graffiti-covered wall of the Russian embassy on February 26, 2022 in London. Photo: Getty

The move comes as several European cities are set to rename the streets where Russian embassies are located, in solidarity with the Ukrainian government and the country’s people.

Vilnius, in Lithuania, will change the name of the street its Russian embassy is on to ‘Heroes of Ukraine Street’.

While Tirana, in Albania, will also rechristen its embassy’s street ‘Free Ukraine Street’, and Riga, in Latvia, is due to rename its street ‘Independent Ukraine Street’.

And protesters at the Russian embassy in Washington, D.C., have posted a sign unofficially renaming the street ‘President Zelensky Way’.

Lib Dem foreign affairs spokesperson Layla Moran MP said: “Britain must shame Putin at every possible opportunity.

A street sign displays direction to Egerton Crescent in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. Photo: Getty

“This small but meaningful gesture would match the outpouring of support from Londoners.

“Their offers to help refugees fleeing the horror of war has been truly inspiring and shown the capital to be a beacon of solidarity with Ukrainian people.”

She also urged the home office to do more to welcome Ukrainian refugees, after it emerged just 300 people have been given sanctuary in Britain, despite two million fleeing the warzone.

“By changing this road name we are showing yet again that London stands with Ukraine,” she said.

“I hope now the government will do their part and ensure refugees from Ukraine are given safety here in Britain.”

Layla Moran MP. Photo: UK Parliament

Mr Zelensky, a former comedian who was elected president of Ukraine after playing the president on a TV show, has garnered immense international support for his bravery during the Russian incursion into his country.

He made an impassioned address to British MPs in the UK House of Commons yesterday afternoon.

Last year, Tower Hamlet Lib Dem councillors called for the areas around the proposed new Chinese Embassy to be renamed ‘Tiananmen Square’ and ‘Hong Kong Road’.

A Kensington and Chelsea council spokesperson said: “We share the world’s anger at Putin’s assault on Ukraine and are horrified at the plight of the men, women and children caught up in the conflict. It is actions rather than symbolism that they desperately need now.

“Kensington and Chelsea already shares a special bond with the people of Ukraine, with the country’s rich culture and history represented on our streets through the likes of the Ukrainian Social Club and Statue of Saint Volodymyr on Holland Park Avenue.

“Our borough is also home to the Ukrainian embassy and we have written to the Ambassador to offer any support we might be able to provide. Just like we did for Afghanistan last summer, this council stands ready to support people fleeing conflict and persecution.”