Originally called "Gisla's hill" from the Old English, it finally became Islington in the 17th century. The area formed part of the Great North Road from Aldersgate, along what’s now Upper Street to the toll road up Highgate Hill.
In 16th century, Islington was the rural bolt-hole for the rich & famous from the City & Westminster and famed for its delicious fresh vegetables. Whereas, the many Inns in the area became refuge for highwaymen. Among the more notorious was the Angel Inn, which now has an area named after it.
A century later, Islington became the supplier of clean water to London carrying water from Sadlers Wells and Clerkenwell. This connection with water continued with the Building of the Regent’s Canal in 1828, that passes through Islington.
Islington’s main landmark was The Royal Agricultural Hall built in 1862 on Liverpool Road and is now called the ‘Business Design Centre’. The hall was constructed for the annual Smithfield Show & remained London’s main exhibition centre until Earl’s Court took over. Many music halls and theatres were established around Islington Green. One such was Collins' Music Hall, where all the greats trod the boards such as Marie Lloyd, George Formby and Norman Wisdom. Also of note is the Screen on the Green art-house cinema which opened in 1913 and it is one of the UK’s oldest continuously running cinemas.
Clustered around Upper Street, the stylish area offers a great mix of independent shops, cafes and foodie restaurants including celebrity chef, Ottelengi’s middle Eastern-inspired eaterie.
Known for antiques & collectables , Upper Street is home to Camden Passage which holds a regular market as well as permanent antiques shops. There is also an open-air food market at the Angel call Chapel Market. The area also has an active theatre & stand-up comedy scene, centred around he Almeida and the Old King’s Head pub.
Transport in Islington is book-ended by Angel tube & Highbury and Islington tube stations along Upper Street. Buses run constantly along the main arterial routes ; Upper Street, Essex Road and City Road.
Celebrities have made Islington their home : Kit Harrington, John Snow from Game of Thrones fame, Lilly Allen, singer, Tony Blair, former Prime Minister, Jimmy Car, comedian, Colin Firth, Actor, Tony Hadley, lead singer Spandau Ballet.
Famous for its elegant Georgian houses and Victorian squares, Islington is a bustling, upmarket, urban area. It attracts City executives, media and entertainment folk, along with London’s intelligentsia and unsurprisingly, prices are at a premium compared with average London average. Despite the current slowdown, they are still increasing at around +x% this year.
If you’re thinking of buying in Islington, expect to dig deep. Aside from this, you will be in good company and enjoy the delights of living in one of London’s most the most desirable areas, just a stone’s throw from the City and the West End.
Homes in Islington still sell quickly and prices have remained resilient despite the recent slowdown. In fact, flats and Houses in Islington have bucked the recent trends and are still increasing year on year. People will always pay for quality and Islington certainly delivers in spades.
For those looking to rent property in Islington, there’s lots to choose from. With flats for sharers and couples, along with homes for families and corporate Relocation properties to Let. Young professionals in particular love the urban vibe, along with the excellent tube & public transport links into the City, Central and East London. With cafes and restaurant everywhere and a relaxed night life, renters in the area delight in the holistic Islington package. Landlords also continue to Islington’s property investment potential and many have built-up successful rental portfolios in the area.
Drivers & Norris is an independent Chartered Surveyors and Estate Agency that has been helping sellers, buyers, renters and landlords in Islington, and across North London since 1852. We are experts in selling and letting residential property to buyers and tenants locally, around the UK and Overseas. Our experienced Team of property professionals love working in Islington and they have exceptional local knowledge & property know-how to provide a Top quality service, whilst also delivering the best possible results for clients. We’re proud of our reputation and that’s why we’d be pleased to show you how Drivers & Norris will make a difference in Islington.