London's "best kept secret" has come top in the Sunday Times Best Places to Live guide for its green spaces, independent shops and "plenty of celebrities".

Crouch End, which has no tube station, beat Kings Cross, Hackney, Notting Hill and Beckenham to win the crown of Best Place to Live in London. 

The Sunday Times judges praised Crouch End for its distinctive cultural scene, supermarkets and independent stores, excellent cafés, bars and restaurants, green spaces and lido, attractive Victorian and Edwardian houses and its "remote" location.  

“It’s all about the green spaces and the independent shops in this lively north London suburb," said Helen Davies, the editor of Best Places to Live 2023.

"There’s a vibrant market-town feel to the streets that radiate out from the clock tower, where you’ll find dozens of cafes, bars and restaurants. The grand Victorian and Edwardian houses draw in plenty of celebrities, there are parks galore, two cinemas, sports clubs and a swimming pool. 

"Best of all, there’s a friendliness here that’s often absent in the capital – people say hello to each other on the street.”

Ham & High: Comedian Alan Carr is one of several celebrities with a home in Crouch EndComedian Alan Carr is one of several celebrities with a home in Crouch End (Image: PA Archive/PA Images) 

Local celebrities include comedians Alan Carr and Katherine Ryan, Doctor Who actor David Tennant, and Run Fatboy Run star Simon Pegg.

Former Crouch End councillor and man about village David Winskill said: "This extraordinarily well merited Crouch End is one of the nicest places in the country, not just London.

"It's a great place for families, has some excellent parks and open spaces, the schools are fabulous and the pubs, cafes and restaurants are second to none.

Ham & High: Dunn's Bakery is among the oldest independent stores in Crouch EndDunn's Bakery is among the oldest independent stores in Crouch End (Image: Google)

"It also has a wonderful community support with people taking an extraordinarily deep interest in what happens to the area and how it can be improved."

He added: "It hasn't got the bustle like Archway or Wood Green and in that sense, it's a blessing. For a long time it was one of London's best kept secrets."

Six other neighbourhoods in London are featured in the comprehensive guide which includes 72 locations across the UK and is released online today (March 24). 

In alphabetical order these neighbourhoods are: Beckenham, Hackney Borders, Earlsfield, Kings Cross, Notting Hill and Woolwich.

Helen added: “When times are tough, where we live matters more than ever. 

"Attractive surroundings, good neighbours and a comfortable home are the best defences when the stresses of modern life seem overwhelming."

The guide is sponsored by Halifax and includes the average house price for each area.