Crouch end area guide: schools, vintage shops, cinema and pubs
- Credit: Polly Hancock
Your guide to all the things to do in Crouch End, including the best shops, cafes, pubs and schools. PLUS our guide to property in N8
Welcome to Crouch End
Crouch End is a hub for independent shopping and cafe life with a plethora of vintage and second hand boutiques and quiet residential streets lined with period property. No wonder it’s so popular with artists and their children.
For a time, Crouch End paled in desirability in comparison to some of its more affluent surrounding areas – particularly Highgate – but as its image has changed in recent years, so have its house prices, and buyers are now snapping up many of its period Victorian and Edwardian designs
The famous clock tower on the Broadway was built to honour Henry Reader Williams, who was Chairman of the Hornsey Local Board for 10 years in the 19th century and was instrumental in securing funding to improve the area’s architecture and greenery.
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Crouch End has a noted artistic heritage and is home to several music recording studios.
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Crouch End is something of a vintage and second hand hub with an afternoon browsing the area’s independent outlets a retro fiend’s paradise.
Best for vintage clothes… shoppers should head to Painted Black for hand picked designer gems and quirky taxidermy. Rose, the shop dog, loves visitors.
Best for vinyl lovers…check out independent Flashback Records for a comprehensive stock of second hand vinyl.
Specialist food and drink spots also abound, hardly surprising in an area renowned for its old time pleasures. Dunns bakery, Walter Purkis & Sons fishmongers and Morley’s Butchers are long-standing, family-run establishments. More recent additions include Best for wine lovers… Bottle Apostle is perfect for those looking for something more than whatever’s on offer for a fiver at the corner shop.
Best for flowers… Urban Flowers is an Instagram-friendly botanical flower and plant studio that delivers across north London.
Cafes and pubs
The Haberdashery is a charming cafe and restaurant which has won numerous awards for its fresh meals and excellent coffee and has a second branch in Stoke Newington.
Best for tea and cake… pop round to Edith’s House, a wonderfully retro celebration of all things grannies. There’s a whole menu dedicated to scones, plus cocktails and fondue served in the evenings.
An array of pubs services those after a decent pint. The King’s Head serves good pub grub and real ale and hosts regular comedy nights, whilst Queens pub and dining room dates from the turn of the century and retains much of its original Art Nouveau glass.
Best for a beer in the sunshine… the Maynard Arms is a gastropub with a large beer garden housed in an old Victorian bulding.
The annual Crouch End Festival is a renowned showcase of the area’s talents and lovers of choral music will no doubt have heard of the associated and world-famous Crouch End Festival Chorus.
Best for comedy… said to be London’s oldest comedy club, the King’s Head pub counts Robin Williams and Rowan Atkinson as alumni.
Best for film lovers… set in the former Salvation Army Hall, the Arthouse Cinema is committed to attracting a diverse audience and forging connections between the arts.
Things to do with children
Stationers Park is a Green Flag award winning site nestled between a Victorian housed community, local school and community centre. Children love the newly expanded wooden play fort
Banners is a longstanding Crouch End favourite operating as an all day family restaurant with a dedicated children’s menu and drawing materials and books on hand and turning into a casual dinner spot later in the evening.
Niddle Noddle on Topsfield Parade is a children’s emporium selling clothes, toys, books and party accessories.
Every Thursday you’ll find Baby Jazz sessions on at Earl Haig Hall. The first session is free.
Best for budding bookworms… Pickled Pepper Books is a specialist children’s bookshop, café and events space with pre-school activities and an after school group with illustration, creative writing and book group activities and occasional author visits.
Crouch End has an excellent selection of local schools with Coleridge Primary School rated Outstanding and St Gilda’s RC Junior School both rated Good by Ofsted.
For secondary education, Highgate Wood Secondary School is a large mixed gender school with a Good rating from Ofsted.
Greig City Academy and Hornsey School for Girls are based in nearby Hornsey and both have been rated Good by Oftsted.
Outdoors and sports facilities
Crouch End is spoilt for choice regarding its surrounding woodlands, with Highgate Woods, Alexandra Park, Queens Park and the popular Priory Park all nearby. The area is disproportionately well served for cricket facilities too, with Crouch End Cricket Club, Highgate Cricket Club and North Middlesex Cricket Club all based at the playing fields. Keen fans may even get the chance to watch national cricketers standing in on the odd occasion.
Crouch End is in zone 3 of the transport network but has retained its community feel in part due to the lack of a local tube or train station. The nearest London Underground stations are Highgate and Archway on the Northern line; Turnpike Lane on the Piccadilly line; and Finsbury Park on the Victoria and Piccadilly lines. Overground services can be picked up at Crouch Hill, Hornsey and Alexandra Palace, as well as Finsbury Park. Buses are a popular option for commuting locals with routes heading to King’s Cross, Finsbury Park, Tottenham and Archway.
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Crouch End is a district within the London borough of Haringey and has the N8 postcode. Its parliamentary constituency is Hornsey and Wood Green. Council tax ranges from £986.23 for a Band A property to £2,958.65 for a Band H property. Band D properties would pay £1,479.32.
Homes in the area were built in swathes by local developers and industrialists, many of whom called the streets they built home (look out for houses with special details or surprising pockets of extra space to guess which ones they lived in). The Victorian and Edwardian red brick architecture is highly evocative of this era of rapid urbanisation and many of the homes still boast at least some original features.
Local buyers love the turn-of-the-century tiling, iron work and fireplaces and businesses abound in the area to help people restore or replace these features.
Two-bedroom flat – £547,201
Terraced house – £1,176,895
Semi-detached house – £1,473,333