The sleepy north London neighbourhood of Crouch End is well and truly awake. Walking around the town, you wouldn’t know the N8 postcode was located just five miles from central London. Yet that is part of the charm of the leafy area – it’s a distinct town with a vibe that is all its own.
Crouch End mainly features under the N8 postcode, while a small part is in N19. The most popular section is, without doubt, N8, which features the Broadway, Crouch End’s shopping street. The area is highly sought after but provides affordable rental prices when compared to its neighbours, Highgate and Muswell Hill
While some desire to live in busy areas with plenty of buzz, Crouch End affords a relaxed atmosphere mixed with an artsy feel. It’s well known for cafes, has a host of good schools, and a growing artistic and entertainment scene.
On a map
Crouch End sits between Haringey in the east and Muswell Hill and Highgate in the north. It is located just 4.6 miles north of central London and 5.1 miles from the City of London.
The area was first governed as part of Hornsey, which became a parish in the 1300s. The name “Crouch End” was coined in 1593 when the area was initially mostly woods. It remained a rural area until around 1880.
Crouch End became a sought after middle-class town due to its proximity to central London. Many of the inhabitants worked as clerical workers, who could find fast transport into the city centre thanks to new railway infrastructure.
The Victorian era saw a focus on rebuilding and regeneration, with most of the newly constructed streets and houses still intact today. There is also a strong artistic connection thanks to many musicians taking advantage of the cheap rents in the 1980s.
Renting in Crouch End
There is a heavy influence of Victorian and Edwardian homes in Crouch End, many of which have been converted into flats. A smattering of new developments exists, with Smithfield Square on Crouch End Hill perhaps the most well known.
A good mix of families and working professionals make up the N8 postcode. Many of the professionals hold jobs in the media, arts and creative advertising – the area has kept its artistic reputation.
The average price of a one-bedroom property in Crouch End is around £1,270 per month. A two-bedroom property averages £1,580, while a three-bedroom home costs £2,420. As far as popular towns in London go, these prices are favourable when compared to nearby Highgate and Muswell Hill.
While there are travel options in Crouch End, its lack of a tube station isn’t ideal – especially as north London is well connected to the underground. The counter-argument, however, is that its lack of transport options is what gives the area its charm.
The W7 bus is the leading travel route in and out and runs between Muswell Hill and Finsbury Park. There are trains from nearby Hornsey, as well as Haringey, which go to Moorgate via Finsbury Park. The nearest tube station is 1.7 miles away at Finsbury Park, which is on the Piccadilly Line.
Crouch Hill Overground station is on the Gospel Oak and Barking line and is located on the Stroud Green side of Crouch End. The area is in Zone 3.
Restaurants in Crouch End
Even as a north London restaurant chain, Tootoomoo manages to capture the feel of Crouch End thanks to its quirky settings. The eatery serves fresh Pan Asian food and is well known for its Bottomless Brunch. For one-and-a-half hours every week, the restaurant offers all you can eat for £30 per person. Abandon the calories on Friday so that you can overindulge on the weekend.
We bet you’re saying, “Wait a minute. A chicken and burger restaurants rolled into one? It can’t be”. Oh but it is. The Chicken Shop and Dirty Burger are popular chains in their own right. But they’ve merged in Crouch End to offer the ultimate combo delight.
A hit with the locals for decades, the King’s Head is a Crouch End classic. The pub offers a laid-back drinking and dining experience and serves traditional British pub food as well as a selection of ales. It’s also home to one of the oldest comedy clubs in Britain.
The cafes in Crouch End have become part of the area’s folklore, and are known to be some of the best in London. The Haberdashery might be the best of the bunch. We could talk about what makes it so great, but let’s run down its list of awards instead. Grazia Magazine gave it the “Best Coffee Shop in London”, Timeout awarded it one of the best places for breakfast, while the Independent recognised it as one of the best cheap eats in the capital.
Bar Esteban brings a touch of Spanish flavour to N8 with delicious tapas and a range of Spanish wine and sherry. The vintage furniture keeps the vibe distinctly Crouch End, yet the atmosphere is very much of a welcoming local bar in Spain. The best of both worlds.
Crouch End attractions
ArtHouse Crouch End
Voted as London’s best Picturehouse by TimeOut readers in 2014, the ArtHouse Cinema has two screens for films and a live art space. The venue is so much more than a place to watch films; it’s a live music concert venue, comedy venue and a theatre. People flock from all over London to visit. Locals are lucky to have access straight from their doorstep.
The People’s Palace, Ally Pally, or, as it’s officially known, Alexandra Palace, covers 190 acres of ground. Initially built in 1873 as a ‘palace for the people’, it offers fantastic views across the capital. Ally Pally was the first place to broadcast regular public television, while today it has an indoor ice-skating rink, gig space where some of the biggest bands in the world perform, a boating lake and a deer enclosure.
The Broadway is a hub of Crouch End that is defined by its clock tower. On paper, there is nothing that particularly stands out in the Broadway, but wandering round captures the feel of the area. It is also the location of the Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre.
Living in Crouch End
Those who live in Crouch End are known as Crouch Enders because the N8 postcode isn’t merely somewhere to live. There is a community full of artistic and creative minds, pretty period property, good schools, and some of the finest cafes in town. It is easy to see why it has become such a hotspot for renters.