April 23, 2015

Tufnell Park: From Milk Provider to Upward Mobility

A long time ago, Tufnell Park in North London played a mothering role to the rest of London, providing the city with its milk supply via an abundance of dairy farms.  It clung onto its milky, rural roots well into the 19th Century but the farmers gradually moved on as the area was transformed from milk-provider to middle-class residential area.

Lord of the manor


Tufnell Park adopted its name when William Tufnell inherited the land in 1753.The only things remaining of the landowner’s manor (on the site of the Holloway Odeon) are the gateposts which can still be seen towards the west end of Tufnell Park Road.


The true urbanisation of the town really began in 1845. Back then, the area was known for its posh residents, who, according to a survey of London Life and Labour were even, “rich enough to travel abroad in the winter”.


Tufnell Park’s ‘pinky up’ reputation went somewhat downhill in the 1980’s but that didn’t last long. Rocketing property prices in the popular neighbouring villages of Highgate and Hampstead over recent years began to seep into Tufnell Park as middle-class families looked to acquire more space for their money in the Islington and Camden area.


The reintroduction of the bourgeoisie


Tufnell Park is full of beautiful, tall and spacious Victorian houses, perfect for growing families. And, thanks to the two architects who were responsible for developing Tufnell Park back in the 1800’s, even the terraced houses are not in identical rows but each have their own unique design features and ornate detailing.


Walk around the leafy cul-de-sacs of Tufnell Park and you’ll see nannies chatting in the park as children play, family street parties and residents meeting to debate the latest local issues.  Whilst Tufnell might not have the bustling shops and markets of nearby Camden, it is becoming known for its strong community spirit and neighbourhood networking groups.


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With one of the standout primary schools in Islington, professional couples and middle class families are queuing up to claim their space in this area that is building its brand as an idyllic, family-friendly locale.


Of course, no middle-class community would be complete without its gastro pub. Neighbourhood hangout, the Tufnell Park Tavern, does the job nicely, serving expensive but beautifully prepared food and real ales.


And for those young parents not quite ready to leave behind the gritty, London social scene and night life, it is the perfect compromise between family life and city living, with nearby hotspots like Camden Town just minutes away on the Northern Line.


Looking to settle down in Tufnell Park? Our Kentish Town team will be more than happy to help!

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