A new poll is sure to stir up dissent, having crowned an unheralded spot the best place to live in London.
It’s the question that we never ask, simply because we try to love all of London, and would never divide you by declaring one area top of the pile. The Sunday Times had no such qualms, however, as they’ve just compiled their annual list of the best places to live in London. In a coup for Tower Hamlets, 2019’s best place to live in London has been revealed as… the Isle of Dogs.
Hands up if you saw that one coming? The Isle of Dogs’ triumph ends two straight years of South London dominance, taking the crown from Bermondsey (2018), who in turn had usurped Peckham (2017) as London’s best place to live. Though the list won’t officially be released until Sunday, multiple outlets are reporting that the Sunday Times praised the Isle of Dogs for its transport links, riverside location, and affordable house prices for Zone 2.
Of course, the average house price in the Isle of Dogs is still well north of £500,000, and that – combined with last year’s infamous assessment of Bermondsey’s residents as “typically young, affluent and often [residing] in photogenic lofts in converted warehouses” – simply confirms the widely-suspected ‘man of the people’ vibe the Sunday Times aims to cultivate.
Indeed, being a Sunday Times poll, previous places have been all over the shop in terms of a) affordability, and b) coolness. Witness 2019’s bronze medal winner: the easily-achievable Belgravia, which tells you pretty much all you need to know about this poll. And whilst the Isle of Dogs is admittedly well-connected and cheaper than most other Zone 2 spots, there isn’t exactly a huge amount to do there once you’ve exhausted Mudchute Farm and… erm, I guess Asda?
Going further down the list, South London maintains a strong presence, with Battersea storming into second place, and dethroned champion Bermondsey coming in fourth. To be fair, the usual triumvirate of ‘entirely-unsurprising-for-the-Sunday-Times’ spots – Chelsea, Notting Hill, and Hampstead – are nowhere to be seen this year, with new entries including Crystal Palace, East Finchley, and a ninth-place finish for up-and-coming Leyton.
Given that only one of 2018’s top ten featured this year, I wouldn’t worry too much about upping and moving to the Isle of Dogs though, because there will no doubt be a new champion in 2020. My guess is it’ll be somewhere charmingly grubby and up-and-coming – perhaps Mayfair?
Also published on Medium.