As a reminder that the capital’s cultural heart does not stop beating outside of Zone 1, Mayor Sadiq Khan has introduced the London Borough of Culture project, celebrating areas that contribute to the city’s famous cultural landscape.
Waltham Forest is well deserving of the project’s inaugural title, with the world-class William Morris Gallery, annual Jazz Festival and historic Vestry House Museum all within the boundaries of the ‘Stow.
The London Borough of Culture 2019 kicked off with a three-day festival “Welcome to the Forest”, featuring a high-energy audio-visual film projected onto the Town Hall and an epic light show in the William Morris Gallery grounds. Find out more about upcoming events throughout the year on their website.
2. Walthamstow Village: Old Meets New
Visiting the attractive conservation area of Walthamstow Village feels like stepping back in time. The aptly-named Ancient House dates back to the 15th Century, while the quaint Orford Road has been a popular thoroughfare since the early 19th Century.
Fast-forward to 2019 and Orford Road is now home to dozens of independent cafes, cosy gastropubs and what is probably the fanciest Spar supermarket in all of London – complete with its own pizzeria.
Just around the corner you can also find the neon treasure trove God’s Own Junkyard, microbrewery-cum-bar Wildcard Brewery and gin distillery Mother’s Ruin in the trendy Ravenswood Industrial Estate.
Walthamstow High Street has been shown some love in recent years too, with a £3 million facelift from the council. The regeneration project has helped to restore historic features on the High Street’s buildings and improve road crossings.
3. A market for any taste or persuasion
Did you know that the longest outdoor street market in Europe has been commanding the centre of Walthamstow for over 130 years?
Flogging everything from bric-and-brac to antiques, fresh fruit and veg to household goods, the Walthamstow Market is an East End institution brimming with character. It runs the length of the High Street every Tuesday – Saturday.
If you prefer to do your shopping protected from the elements, Wood Street Indoor Market also runs Tuesday – Saturday from the old Crown Cinema. The thirty unique shops make up an eclectic bunch; walk in with an open mind and you could leave with a bag of vinyl records, your next Halloween costume or a second-hand Dutch bike.
Sunday mornings, however, are for the farmer’s market on the Town Square, where you’ll find stalls selling free-range eggs, organic meats, fresh fruit and veg, local honey and artisanal bread.
4. Plenty of open space
You don’t need to move out of the city to get a breath of smog-free air; first-time buyers are drawn to the end of the Victoria Line because of the bountiful open spaces on offer.
With Walthamstow Wetlands, Lea Valley nature parks and Epping Forest all within close proximity, buying in Walthamstow grants you easy access to some of East London’s most unique nature reserves.
Perfect for kids and adults alike, these well-preserved marshes and forests make for a great weekend day out.
5. Excellent transport links
Of course, one of the top priorities for house hunters is a simple, speedy commute and buying in Walthamstow means you’re almost guaranteed a seat in the rush-hour.
It may be Zone 3, but from Walthamstow Central you can get into Oxford Circus via the Victoria Line or to Liverpool Street via the Overground in only 20 minutes. Overall, an annual Zones 1-3 travelcard will set you back £1,648.
You’re also right next to the North Circular, making for quick escapes from the city on the M11.
So, are you thinking of buying in Walthamstow?
Well then you wouldn’t be alone. According to Which?, first-time buyers made up 69% of all home purchases in Walthamstow in 2017, spending an average of £419,520.
We can’t say we’re surprised. For those looking to put down roots in East London, buying in Walthamstow comes with the added bonuses of a thriving culture scene, local history, green spaces and easy access to central London.
Get in touch with our Wanstead office to find out about properties available in Walthamstow.