A little bit of history
The vibrant Shoreditch we know and love today has enjoyed a colourful past to say the least. In the 16th century, it was home to London's first theatres, (helped by the fact that as a suburb of the City of London, it was out of reach of the city's puritanical law-makers). Come the 17th century Huguenot silk weavers and wealthy traders moved in, creating a booming textile and furniture industry. But, this industry declined and by the end of the 19th century the area was known for poverty, crime and prostitution, setting the scene for Jack the Ripper's infamous murders. Bombing during WWII left the area further disadvantaged and the 20th Century saw the rein of the notorious Kray Twins. Today however, the area is once more an entertainment hotspot and is becoming world renowned for its rich cultural mix and booming creative and digital industries.
Need to know
There are numerous new developments springing up all over Shoreditch, including the Avant-Garde Building by Telford Homes, a 320 apartment block on Bethnal Green Road with a mix of retail units including boutiques and a supermarket.
When it's time for the weekly shop, Shoreditch boasts all the usual supermarkets but there's much more to our shopping scene than that. Shoreditch is peppered with quirky independent boutiques to discover, from Maiden, for unqiue gifts including Bunny Sucides books and apple-shaped post-its, to leading menswear store Present, where they won't just kit you out with the latest threads, coolest stationary and hippest comics, you can also have a coffee made by the World Barista Champion 2009. Head to Brick Lane's Sunday market for fruit and veg, unique arts and crafts and vintage clothes and furniture, the daily Bethnal Green Road Market for fruit, veg and household goods, or, for a visual feast, Columbia Road's spectacular Sunday Flower Market. When it's time to kit your new home out, there's lots on offer here too, from Squint who specialise in traditional furnishings upholstered in their trademark patchwork of vintage and contemporary textiles, and modernist mavens SPC, to übercool Milk, to countless cool and quirky small independents in Spitalfields market. For something out of the ordinary, check out Boxpark, a shopping centre made entirely of refitted shipping containers that features brands such as Nike, Evisu, Marimekko, Chopped, Crussh and Foxcroft & Ginger. The area is also famous for pop-up shops and restaurants. Keep an ear to the ground and an eye on Timeout for the latest here today gone tomorrow experience.
WE THINK SHOREDITCH IS EASILY THE MOST INTERESTING, CREATIVE AND VIBRANT PLACE TO LIVE IN LONDON TODAY.
Local stations include Aldgate East (District, Hammersmith & City Line), Bethnal Green (Central Line) and Liverpool Street (Central, Circle, Hammersmith & City, Metropolitan) By Overground: Shoreditch High Street and Hoxton are served by London Overground's newly extended East London Line.
Liverpool Street offers interconnections with national rail routes.
Catch the Stansted express, a fast link to London Stansted Airport from Liverpool Street.
We recommend City link, Liberty cars, Hoxton taxis. Black cabs are also plentiful.