London's local tribes
From rock wannabes in Lewisham to Russian billionaires in Chelsea and buddhists in Deptford, London's a city of tribes, each laying claim to their own portion of the capital. Time Out casts a territorial eye over the Smoke's contemporary clans.
Posted: Tue Aug 15 2006
1 The Borscht Belt
Where is it? Next toRavenscourt Park tube. Who lives there? Poles and other Eastern Europeans.What’s it like? Eastern Europeans gather daily in their hundreds outside a local newsagents, known as the Wailing Wall, to scour the job ads for foreign workers: fruit picking, cleaning, and factory jobs are all advertised. Where do they hang out?The Polish Church, as well as the Pickle Barrel, a Polish grocers.
2 Snappy ValleyWhere is it? Around Queens Park and bordering Ladbroke Grove.Who lives there? A growing community of photographers. It’s home to the Queens Park Photography group, as well as rising star Richard Blandy, who has snapped one tree in Queens Park 375 times. What’s it like? A more down-to-earth version of Notting Hill. Where do they hang out?The William IV pub on Harrow Road and at the monthly Gobble and Gabble Supper Club.
3 ChelskiWhere is it? Runs from Chelsea Bridge, past the King’s Road and up Fulham Road. Stretches into Knightsbridge.Who lives there? The area has been a magnet for Russians since 1993. Residents include billionaire bankers, PR managers, entrepreneurs – and football club owners. What’s it like? Think opulence: Bentleys and Beluga caviar.Where do they hang out?Swanky restaurants like Nikita in Kensington, Harvey Nicks, or events like the Russian Charity Ball.
4 Green AcresWhere is it? Around the environmentally friendly BedZED estate in Beddington, Sutton borough.Who lives there? Well-meaning professionals and passionate advocates of alternative living. What’s it like? Plenty of cycle paths and recycling banks. The geometric BedZED estate adds colour to the dull suburban surrounds. Where do they hang out?The BedZED bar and the health food stores on Morden High Street.
5 The Stroud Green RivieraWhere is it? Stroud Green Road and around Finsbury Park.Who lives there? Young media and music PR-types. What’s it like? Lined by trees, bars and cafés, Stroud Green Road is surprisingly reminiscent of a Paris street. Though it’s likely to get a bit rowdy when the crowds spill out of the new Arsenal ground.Where do they hang out? At any of the new cafés, restaurants and DJ bars seemingly opening daily – pub quizzes are all the rage.
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