Renting in Camden
Vibrant, artistic and the most musical place in London, Camden Town is first choice for many renters. It’s truly a feast for the senses, offering an electric atmosphere, a rock-star nightlife, an awesome live music scene, a treasure trove of shops and markets, picturesque parks and canals and food stalls and restaurants to satisfy every taste imaginable. You only have to step outside the station and you can literally feel the buzz - and it’s not just from the market stalls’ speakers – the bohemian borough really has an atmosphere like no other. But it’s not just Goths, tourists and tattooed teenagers that are attracted to the creative and cultural heart of London; Camden breeds diversity and its wide range of properties attract everyone from creative young professionals and City types, to families and celebrities.
Camden Town came into its own existence in the 1790s. Until then, the area was vast and green. It may come as a surprise to locals that drinking venues in Camden were once sparse and the area offered just two inns: "Mother's Cap" (today known as "World's End") and "Southampton" (now known as "Edwards"). Camden has been largely residential since the 1790s, but the development of the Grand Union Canal and the improved railway transport really brought the borough to life.
Camden is being revived and its regeneration plans will only further attract renters. There is a wider development plan for the creation of Canal Lock Village, which will include flats and a covered market with rooftop pavilions; the council has agreed a renovation of Camden High Street; and the overcrowded Camden Town Tube station is set to get a £200m makeover. As well as through regeneration, Camden’s popularity has also been given a boost by infrastructure investment. For years the fact Camden Town was so close to King’s Cross was a negative for prospective buyers, but today living so close to an international station is hugely attractive. Money has been spent regenerating and smartening up the canal, while the Eurostar terminal has put Paris a couple of hours away.
Camden breeds diversity and everyone from successful professionals and lawyers, to students and City types who can’t afford Primrose Hill rent in the area. It is also becoming popular with Italian, German and French renters and when walking through the high street you can expect to hear a babble of different languages. The area’s liberal reputation also attracts those in the arts and creative industries, but increasing rental prices do mean that these days renters tend to be older or sharers. The prized properties in Camden are four-storey Georgian terraces in Arlington Road and handsome Victorian houses along Gloucester Crescent. In the Camden conservation area there are modern, architect-designed houses as well as loft-style flats around the canal.
The available rental stock is 79% 1 or 2 bedroom properties - ideal for single professionals or sharers. Renters can expect to pay an average price of £35 a week for a 1 bedroom property, and £550 a week for a 2 bedroom property. Camden is home to some great schools and most local secondary schools performed better than average in the latest league tables. Holy Trinity is a popular primary school and local parents are desperate to get their daughters into comprehensive secondary Camden Schools for Girls. North Bridge House and South Hampstead High are great private alternatives.
Camden Town is a major shopping centre and international tourist attraction. With its colourful shop fronts decorated with giant dragons and angels it’s a magnet for younger shoppers looking for something a little different. Camden homes a treasure trove of indoor and outdoor markets, offering everything from vintage fashion and ethnic jewellery, to antique furniture and street food. The area also houses Waitrose, M&S, Wholefoods and popular high street shops Urban Outfitters and American Apparel. Shoppers looking for more sophisticated boutiques can make their way to Regent’s Park road.
As a place that revolves around music, Camden is unsurprisingly home to some of the best bars and clubs in the capital. Electric Ballroom has showcased some of the biggest names in music, the restored Roundhouse has live music, theatre, dance and circus and Camden is gig heaven, with bands playing every night of the week.
Foodies are well looked after, too. Shaka Zulu is London’s largest South African restaurant that offers food, drinks, live music, dancing and daytime entertainment, set over an impressive 27,000 sq ft in The Stables Market; Gilgamesh is also in The Stables Market, and serves delicious pan-Asian food. The Engineer is a popular gastro-pub on Gloucester Avenue that also serves great food.
For an urban area, Camden is surprisingly close to green space; Primrose Hill and Regent’s Park are a stone’s throw away and Hampstead is just a 10 minute bus ride. Along the Regent’s Canal there are lovely serene walks to the zoo in Regent’s Park and culture wise there’s a five-screen Odeon cinema on Parkway.
As with most areas close to the West End, Camden benefits from excellent transport links. Camden Town is conveniently on both branches of the Northern line and there are several bus routes running directly into London. Both Euston and King’s Cross mainline stations are within walking distance.
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