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The Slumflower’s London: Peckham, Pride and petrol smells

Written by
Katie McCabe

The award-winning Peckham blogger, self-love advocate and all-round millennial mastermind, aka Chidera Eggerue, shares her view of the city

Where do you live in London?
‘Peckham. I’ve lived there my entire life, and I don’t feel like moving. I’m just so comfortable there, everything is so convenient. I’ve got a cinema in walking distance, hair shops within walking distance. The ones in Peckham sell all the natural haircare products and hair extensions that I use. Paks hair salon has everything, it’s massive. My favourite thing about Peckham is the accessibility to people who look like me, that’s really it.’

What do you love about London?
‘I love London because it’s one of the most multicultural cities in the world, but aside from that, London is a place where there’s truly something for everyone. I think there’s more inclusion here. There are so many mosques, so many synagogues, so many churches and they’re not far from each other, so it feels more inclusive.’

What’s your favourite hidden gem?
‘The CitizenM Hotel. I go there to do my work all the time; the playlists are always amazing, the tea is cheap and you’ll always meet someone cool. And I think the Peckham Plex cinema deserves a shout-out: everyone needs to make sure we keep the cinema alive. It’s £5 tickets and it’s brilliant. I don’t want it to get knocked down and turned into a Sainsbury’s or something.’

What’s your favourite memory of London?
‘This year’s Pride. It was my first one, and I loved it so much because I felt safe, that’s the best word I can use to describe it, as opposed to Carnival, which is a very, very different experience. It was the one day in the year where it was just about focusing on the marginalised. I hugged so many people.’

What smell do you associate with London?
‘Petrol smells. In London you can wash your face, leave the house for five minutes, then come back and your face can be grey by the time you come in. It’s so polluted.’

What’s your favourite new spot in London?
‘A bar called John the Unicorn in Peckham, it’s really cool.’


Spend a tenner?
‘Ten pound can’t get you anything in London! I would get myself a burrito at Benito’s Hat.’

Go for brunch?
‘I don’t really brunch, not gonna lie. I’m not fancy yet, that’s a fancy activity. Maybe a cheeky McDonald’s, which is so bad, but when you’ve only !10 to get a Travelcard and a meal in London, McDonald’s hits the spot, OK?’

For a caffeine fix?
‘I don’t drink coffee, but I do love going to Costa.’

Go to feel inspired?
‘There’s this place called Nomadic Community Gardens in Shoreditch. It’s weird to explain, but it’s made from replaced wood and old car parts. It’s a genuine community garden where you can just go, hang out and talk. It’s a nice place to think and observe.’

Go dancing?
‘Visions in Dalston. They have awesome DJs, and know the sounds for each themed night. Or Miranda at Ace Hotel.’

Go on a shopping spree?
‘Monki, a store on Carnaby Street. They care about stripes, and they are always ahead of the trend. Whereas places like Topshop and H&M can feel really overdone.’

To absorb nature?
‘Peckham Rye Park. It’s huge, and has a quiet section with water and ducks. And I don’t know if you know this, but there’s a golf course in Peckham: Aquarius Golf Club.’

For a birthday meal?
‘Nando’s. You just can’t go wrong with a Nando’s.’

The Slumflower will lead a panel talk on the politics and beauty of natural hair at the UK’s first Black Girl Festival. Kachette. Old St. Sun Oct 29. Free, register in advance. Check out her blog here.

Get out and explore the city. Here are the best things to do in London this week

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