What’s it got that we love?
Along with its reputation for cool, the London borough of Hackney, within shouting distance of the City and Canary Wharf, also has some surprisingly bucolic areas: most notably the neighbourhood known as Victoria Park Village. It’s full of life, with independent shops, a thriving cafe and bar society, lovely pubs and, in Lauriston Road, a thoroughfare tempting walkers to leafy Victoria Park, created in 1845.
The largely Victorian housing in the surrounding streets is good, solid stock, and walks on the towpath of the nearby Hertford Union Canal feel almost rustic. Cyclists abound and Hackney’s once poor public transport links have vastly improved.
Denizens of what is affectionately known as “Vicky Park Village” include a version of east London’s fabled hipsters – albeit slightly more grown-up. They have turned the area into a child-friendly zone, helped by the popularity of Lauriston Primary School and the independent Gatehouse School. The adults let their hair down at the All Points East festival, held in the park in August: free tickets are available to residents in a lottery. “The festival is a big draw,” says James Marshall of Savills Victoria Park and Hackney. “Stormzy and the Strokes played last year, and it really adds to the area’s cool atmosphere.”