‘Is Peckham the new Shoreditch?’ The correct answer, of course, is ‘who cares?’ You just have to spend a day in the area to see how much it’s got to offer. Highlights include a bargain cinema, Thai street food, one of the best clubs in London, a tantalizing chocolate shop and plenty more besides. Put the hype to one side and get to know our favourite places in the neighbourhood.
The best bits of Peckham
13 reasons to go to Bellenden Road in Peckham, SE15
So what if its name sounds a bit rude? This is the posh bit of Peckham, so the less said about that the better. Away from the edgy art car parks, chicken shops and all-night pool halls, Bellenden Road has become the jewel in the weave of now-trendy Peckham. It should be called Peckham Village, really, for its fancy dining spots, boutiques selling gifts and homewares, and indie grocery shops. Even its convenience store and offie now has a fancy awning that proudly reads ‘Village Grocer’. Community is king here: taped up on windows along the residential end of the road are home-printed post-Brexit signs reading ‘Bellenden Road is a racism-free zone’ and ‘Bellenden Road is proud to be diverse’. If Rye Lane is for art students fuelled by handbag-stashed Red Stripe, then Bellenden Road is for their older siblings who just want a decent flat white with their Sunday papers. But don’t think that means it’s not as creative as the rest of Peckers: the ‘We Love Peckham’ mosaic murals were created by artist Tom Phillips, as were the lampposts. Antony Gormley had a studio here in the 2000s, and he designed the cast-iron bollards still standing along the road, which caused quite the stir when people said they looked like something rude. Really? What a bunch of juvenile bell… Drink this A photo posted by Sundays Cycle Insurance UK (@sundays_cc) on Jul 8, 2016 at 8:31am PDT Local ales at the intricately carved dark-wood bar at the Victoria Inn. The polished-up ninet
12 reasons to go to Peckham Rye & Rye Lane, SE15
Few roads in London smell quite like Rye Lane. It’s one of the few streets in the city where you can truly experience sensory overload; a great place to overwhelm a labrador. There’s raw meat and fish from the markets; fruit from the street traders; chemicals from the nail salons that never seem to close. Most of these businesses are run or frequented by members of the UK’s largest overseas Nigerian community – this is the beating heart of Little Lagos. Back in the day it just stank of horse shit. In the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, Rye Lane was the Oxford Street of south London, home to department stores Jones & Higgins and Holdron’s, to which moneyed Victorians would flock in horse-drawn cabs and carriages. In recent years, new scents have joined the aromatic miasma: craft beer, pulled pork and whatever brogues smell like. Among other things, gentrification has brought Rye Lane a huge pub run by the Antic group, while the Peckham Rye end is home to a cluster of cafés and modish restaurants, the only part of the area where avocados outnumber yams. The result is one of the most aesthetically varied, culturally mixed and unique streets in London. Gird your nostrils. Drink this For a thrifty thirst-quenching, head straight to the source: Brick Brewery, housed in the arches under Peckham Rye station. The drinking area is all outdoors, but it’s covered and heated. Even if it wasn’t, a pint of Pioneer pale ale is well worth shivering for. For the short
Restaurants in Peckham
Peckham Farmers Market
Serving the residents of Peckham, Dulwich and Camberwell for 14 years, Peckham Farmers Market is a FARMA certified weekly affair. Run by the Urban Farmers Market and offering fresh, home grown produce all under a covered roof, traders include Flour Power City Organic Bakery, Burscombe Cliffe Farm and Alham Wood Cheeses. The majority of vendors are organic, biodynamic or otherwise, and although such phrases often imply that you’ll be paying through the nose, we’re promised that all produce is fairly priced.
Bars and pubs in Peckham
The perfect weekend in Peckham
Love London Awards: last year's winners
The Rooftop St James
A slick rooftop bar at the summit of The Trafalgar St. James. There's also an enclosed glass room up there for private dining.
Venue says: “London’s newest rooftop bar is now open; serving up artisan cocktails and pan-Asian small plates. Breath-taking views come as standard.”