WHO'S WHO: actor and shop owner Tyrone Coogan
Tyrone Coogan is an actor and trader at the Casa Catalan gift shop on Heath Street, Hampstead. He has lived in England s Lane, Belsize Park, for the past 19 years. WHAT DO YOU MOST LIKE BEST ABOUT THE AREA? You can get to anything from around here, all
Tyrone Coogan is an actor and trader at the Casa Catalan gift shop on Heath Street, Hampstead. He has lived in England's Lane, Belsize Park, for the past 19 years.
WHAT DO YOU MOST LIKE BEST ABOUT THE AREA?
You can get to anything from around here, all you have to do is walk. There are shops, restaurants, delicatessens, art galleries, cinemas, the theatre in Swiss Cottage and even the Heath nearby. You don't really have to drive anywhere. It is like the centre of the world!
WHAT'S THE WORST THING?
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The recent increase in traffic. It gives the area a frantic energy, and it makes it more difficult to relax when you're here.
WHich is YOUR FAVOURITE LOCAL BUILDING?
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The Holly Bush pub. It's an 18th Century eatery with a warmth that really makes you feel like you're entering a different time period. You should really go and try the Sunday dinners up there. It's lovely, they make their own bread and everything.
WHERE ARE YOUR FAVOURITE PLACES TO SHOP IN THE AREA?
I like to go to Waitrose and the delicatessens around here. I also go to Carluccio's whenever I need some parmigiana or olive oil. They have fantastic Italian food.
WHere ARE YOUR FAVOURITE PLACES TO EAT AND DRINK IN THE AREA?
It really depends because there is such a wide variety of things available around here. I like to get Middle Eastern food, and I often go to the Moonlight Chinese restaurant on England's Lane. To drink I usually go to the Washington or the Holly Bush.
IF YOU WERE MAYOR FOR A DAY, WHAT WOULD YOU DO?
I would ban traffic for a day. I'd make everyone use a bike, the bus, or the tube to get anywhere. But of course, that could hurt the businesses trying to get supplies.
WHO WAS THE LAST CELEBRITY YOU SPOTTED IN THE AREA?
I saw Derrick Jacoby on England's Lane. I've also seen the playwright David Hare. These are people whom I admire, rather than celebrities who are famous for doing nothing.
IF YOU HAD A MILLION POUNDS TO SPEND IN ONE DAY, how WOULD YOU SPEND IT?
I would buy a big flat on England's Lane and use the rest of the money to furnish it as nicely as I could, with a good kitchen and everything I need. I would really just like to stay here, but with a bigger place. I know I'm making this area sound like it's some kind of paradise, but I guess that it is when compared to the rest of London.
INTERVIEW: Ed Thomas