Wanstead: ‘Too Towie to be hipster’

With our apologies for not paying sufficient attention, we are happy to report Wanstead’s reappearance on one of those “best places to live” lists, this time in last weekend’s Sunday Times.

In the kind of barbed review that we used to indulge in, the paper says:

Before you flee London for the country, check out Wanstead. Just three stops beyond Stratford on the Central line, it has a village green and a gothic-revival church, cricket and golf clubs, and rowing boats for hire at Hollow Ponds. The high street supports a butcher, a baker and a fishmonger, and bustles with cafe tables in summer.

The population used to be a bit older, but there’s a baby boom as families are priced out of the East End. It’s getting downright trendy, too, with a Gail’s bakery and a Ginger Pig butcher’s. Bare Brew coffee has cute dogs and bearded guys; the Duke pub hosts co-working mornings. But it’s a bit too Towie to be hipster — it’s on the Essex borders.

The paper assesses property prices as being

  • £287,000 for a starter home
  • £652,000 for mid-market
  • £966,000 for a family home


18 thoughts on “Wanstead: ‘Too Towie to be hipster’”

  1. Too Towie? Wow, they didn’t spend much time here or look at Wansteadium and the negative attitude to any change that oozes out of the ‘oldies’

  2. I am disappointed and not a little offended by Wanstead being considered “too Towie to be hipster”. If the criteria are what is seen in the TV program, then I dont recognise the description and think you are pointing at the wrong place. My Wanstead generally has a quiet village atmosphere of gentle restraint and middle class politeness. It is not a place of over-indulgence and poor manners. Of course, I could just be seeing what I want to see.

  3. Should we form a committee and sue the Murdoch rag for slander and defamation? Think of the effect on house prices of this outrageous slur, it is a stain on the good character of Wanstead!!!

    1. I would offer it’s not so much “offended” as finding the claim strangely mistaken, like someone saying how full of poverty Mayfair is. Just…”Um…have you been there?” type of thing. Not much “glam” in Wanstead among all the sincere beardeds, elderly East End retirees and Tarquin-pushing yummy mummies. . .lol.

  4. The interesting thing about Wanstead is that it’s a mixture of TOWIE types, academics, professionals, artists, politics, Yummy Mummies etc. It probably is too leafy for Hippsters – they tend to live in Leytonstone or Forest Gate. The article said there’s a village green, but actually, there’s two. As for the starter home, that’s not much more than I paid for my one bed flat ten years ago. If there really were houses going at that price, I’d sell my flat and buy one!

    1. I agree there’s a mixture of academic types, professionals, artists, yummy mummies, and I would add the retired population also, but I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen a Towie type of person around Wanstead. Further up the line in Debden and such, yes, but not really around here. Makes me wonder if the writer of the article was thinking more about the stops up the central line, Buckhurst Hill, Loughton and Debden — close enough to get mistaken for all the same thing.

      There are actually three village greens: George, Christchurch, and Tarzy with the war memorial.

  5. Relax, who cares what the Sunday Times says? But clearly the ‘Hyacinth Bouquets’ do!! And yes I know I’m showing my age by this reference!!

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