The A to Z of whether your area is about to go “upmarket”

Brixton today, Croydon tomorrow?

It's Grim UP North London... the Private Eye cartoon strip, by Kerber and Black, has found a lot of easy targets in Yuppiefied Camden and Islington. Is Brixton, or Croydon, following suit?

It’s Grim UP North London… the Private Eye cartoon strip, has found a lot of easy targets in Camden and Islington. Is Brixton, or Croydon, following suit?

Esiah Levy, who Tweets as @croydon_oldtown, has come up with a very handy little guide to how to judge whether a neighbourhood is being gentrified.

Levy’s “A to Z of signs that your area is about to move ‘upmarket'” includes:

A: Artists everywhere, Apple MacBooks being used on the trams, Antique stores

B: Barratt Homes, Boutiques, Buy to Let signs, bicycles with a basket and bread

C: cupcake shops, Costa coffee, council sell offs…

For more, visit Levy’s Twitter feed here.

It has taken more than 30 years since their area’s riots of 1981, but as this short Guardian video hosted by the award-winning novelist Alex Wheatle demonstrates, the once notorious Brixton has been utterly gentrified and has embraced cafe society as thoroughly as the likes of Camden or Islington.

Some of the “village people” of Broad Green may see PR agencies conducting rebranding exercises and Brixton’s transformation as a template for progress in Croydon, but Wheatle reasonably poses some important questions about the costs of such change, as local people are priced out of the housing market, and local traders see their long-established businesses by-passed and eventually struggle for survival in the changing marketplace.

It is not unreasonable to ask, after Croydon’s own 8/8 riots in 2011, whether denying local businesses and residents their compensation for more than two years just might be a deliberate policy of malign neglect, to speed up the “clearance” process to allow in the developers and buy-to-let investors?


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About insidecroydon

News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email inside.croydon@btinternet.com
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