According to the Sunday Times 'Best Places' guide, Walthamstow is gaining in popularity and is now rubbing shoulders with the likes of Dulwich, Barnes and Teddington as an ideal location to set up home. The guide which references information provided by the Countrywide Group, is one of the best read supplements and includes practical information on communities, housing markets and local facilities.
Walthamstow itself, which is served by a prominent Bairstow Eves branch on Hoe Street, has graduated from an end-of-the-Tube line area famous for its dog track to an aspirational address where the “sourdough effect” is in full force. The hip pizza micro-chain Sodo opened an outpost here in 2016, and Yard Sale Pizza followed suit. So has Clapton Craft, which sells craft beer in refillable bottles and is aimed at middle-class parents who no longer have time to go to the pub. It joins Froth & Rind, an artisan cheesemonger and craft brewer that hosts pop-up shops such as the Mid Century Room (a furniture boutique), and Mother’s Ruin, a gin distiller that runs film nights, as well as the Wild Card Brewery, voted best bar in E17. In 2008, there were only two coffee shops in the area, but that figure had risen to 10 by the end of 2015, and is still growing.
No wonder prices have gone up by 54.8% since the 2008 crash. Walthamstow is still almost within reach — it’s the number-one spot for flats for first-time buyers — but likely not for long. There is now talk of buyers being priced out to Canning Town.
Young families try to get into the catchment areas for Hillyfield and Greenleaf primary schools, both rated outstanding by Ofsted; the secondaries that top the local league tables are Walthamstow School for Girls and Walthamstow Academy. The former is in smart Walthamstow Village, which feels like Midsomer Murders land, with an ancient church, quaint lanes and NCT classes, but homes here rarely come onto the market. Further west is Walthamstow Market, the longest street market in England, which still has a whiff of EastEnders about it. Prices fall the further north you go, beyond the William Morris Gallery or west towards Blackhorse Road.
The Victoria line whizzes you to Oxford Circus in 20 minutes. And with the opening this year of the 520-acre Walthamstow Wetlands, the Cockney answer to Hampstead Heath, E17 is now genuinely a best place to live, rather than simply a cheap one.
What the locals say Another neighbour from Hackney has moved in down the street.
Why we love it Diamond geezers and stone-baked pizzas — it’s a sexy combination.
Starter home (flat) £353,862 [£1,254 pcm]
Mid-market (semi) £585,250 [£1,926 pcm]
Family (detached) £672,309 [£2,215 pcm]
View our selection of properties currently available to buy in Walthamstow