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Photograph: Joy Crookes
Photograph: Joy Crookes

The best of Elephant & Castle, picked by Joy Crookes

The 'You & Me' singer (and lifelong Elephant & Castle resident) chooses her favourite spots in town

By Niellah Arboine
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From an incredible coffee shop to a peaceful park, these are Joy Crookes’s top restaurants, shops and spaces in her neighbourhood. 

1. Bagel King

‘This is a legendary spot in our community. You will catch every person you ever grew up with here at stupid o’clock. Order your favourite type of bagel followed by a slush. Thank me later.’ 280 Walworth Rd. Open for takeaway.

2. East Street Market

‘Anything you need – food, fish, clothes, bits for the house – this is where you go. As a native Elephant girl, this is a staple market and place in my upbringing.’ East St.

3. Casa Colombia

‘One of my favourite Colombian spots in Elephant. They sell empanadas and great coffee and have the loveliest customer service. Elephant wouldn’t be Elephant without its Latin community and it’s important to spend in our local economy.’ Eagle Yard Arch, 141 Walworth Rd. Open for takeaway.

Photograph: Andy Parsons
Photograph: Andy Parsons

4. Black Cowboy Coffee

‘The best coffee in Elephant & Castle. John is a legend – full of stories. If you’re having a bad day, I promise his drinks and aura will make you feel much, much better.’ Elephant Arcade, 50 London Rd. Open for takeaway.

5. G Cafe

‘I love this café so much. There is a lovely Indian auntie who sells biryani in tupperware for £4: big portions and homemade. I always go there for a quick and homely bite.’ 70 London Rd. Open for takeaway.

6. Hoa Phuong

‘This is a go-to takeaway Vietnamese spot. I love it! My big brother is Vietnamese and took me here in my teens – after a long day, all you want is their three-bean dessert.’ 4 Hampton St. Open for takeaway.

7. Laughland Communications

‘Kevin is the man you need for any technical issues. A local, a man with a million stories, the biggest smile and my most trusted tech whizz.’ Unit 17 Castle Square.

8. Tibetan Peace Garden

‘Where do I start? I always spent my Sundays after church sitting in the Peace Garden with my dad. The Dalai Lama opened it years ago and he left a piece of his peacefulness here. I took my current partner here on our first date and I think it set the tone of our relationship.’ 107a St George’s Rd.

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