You can follow Sophie's tips: SophieMitchellIf you start South, you stay South ...
I grew up in the beautiful but dreary Cotswolds and couldn’t wait to escape at the tender age of 18. After a month travelling in Belize and Guatemala I embarked on my undergraduate degree in English and American Literature at the University of Manchester. Upon graduating, and after a thoroughly depressing eight months updating databases for an electrical appliance company, I went to Seville, Spain to learn some Spanish before travelling in Mexico and visiting NYC. Upon my return to England it seemed that all of my friends were now in London and I followed suit. I have now lived in London for almost four years. My first London home was an attractive, albeit mouldy, four story Victorian house in Brixton, then a flat next to Brixton prison, then I moved to Brockley and I now reside in the leafy and hilly Telegraph Hill, New Cross Gate. They say that if you start South you stay South and this seems to be true for me. The perfect place for a wander
At the moment I’m juggling lots of new ventures. I am studying for a diploma in Practical Photography at the London College of Communications, doing an intense additional Photojournalism course and doing a diploma in Script Development with the NFTS and Script Factory. I am also involved with programming a film festival specialising in adaptations. My interests are travel/film/theatre/literature/photography/wandering and I love above all things chilling out in cafes. London happens to be a perfect place for all these things. Oh to be rich and unemployed in London ...
I have a passionate tumultuous relationship with London. Some days it really angers me (normally a broken down train is involved, or rain) but most days I find it exhilarating. It is a fact that if you love cities you can never get bored of London. It’s big, bold and bursting with cultural and historical hot spots. I love the feeling of history you can never escape; it’s both totally modern and romantically old. My local hang outs are the under-looked Brockley, Deptford, Peckham and East Dulwich. At the weekend I love being by the river; London Bridge and Southbank are areas always alive with people. I enjoy Colombia Road flower market and London Fields in the summer and Brick Lane is always great for people watching and photo taking. And there are so many parks each with their own character. My constant frustration with London is that there is not enough time to do all the amazing things on offer, I think to be rich and unemployed in London must be a fantastic thing.My ideal day
First, breakfast at Brown’s of Brockley
, then a look around the V&A
followed by lunch in its extremely elegant café. In the afternoon I’ll do some window shopping in the boutiques around the Covent Garden Needle and buy some design books in Magma Books
. I’d have a glass of wine in Canela
before seeing a performance at the Donmar Warehouse
theatre. I would probably decide to walk back to Charing Cross taking in the scenes of London at night; hundreds of people eating out, seeing the sights, laughing with friends. Three tips to get you startedThe Deptford Project
Situated within an old train carriage this café is truly individual. Its exterior is regularly up-dated with brilliant local graffiti art and there’s a great outdoor terrace in the summer. Inside it’s bright and airy with interesting art hanging about. The menu is great value and everything is freshly made. It’s got a buzzy atmosphere and friendly staff. It’s run by a local art collective and in the community space surrounding the café there are often special events and craft markets. Visit on a Saturday morning and combine your trip with a visit to the Deptford junk market.thedeptfordproject.com
123 Deptford High Street, London, SE8 4NS
Closest tube: New Cross (Overground) Closest station: Deptford (National rail) Open everyday 9 -4. Google map
: http://bit.ly/g8H352Wilton’s Music Hall
Wilton’s is old. In fact it’s the oldest music hall of its kind in the world. If that isn’t enough reason to visit it’s totally charming and has a programme of delightful theatrical events to entertain us all. I have seen short films of London before the Second World War (there is a cinema club) and I have seen a Victorian styled cabaret show which was both frightening and hilarious. They have also had award winning plays with top notch actors. If you’re not into theatrical experiences then you could just stay in the bar, there’s a piano, low lighting, many alcoholic drinks and a feel of gay Paris. wiltons.org.uk
1 Graces Alley, London, E1 8JB
Closest tube: Shadwell (Overground), Tower Hill (District and Circle lines)
Open at various times: Check the website before you visit and print a map. Google map
In its current form this characterful café has been around for six years but before that it was a Vespa repair shop. When the repair shop moved to a new location they kept some of the old bikes and put them on the walls. Now the café is a busy trendy spot in Waterloo with wine and beer and a huge range of teas. They even have a cat. While in the area why not check out the designated graffiti tunnel.
132 Lower Marsh, Lambeth, London, SE1 7AE
Closest tube: Waterloo (Northern, Bakerloo and Jubilee lines), Lambeth North (Bakerloo) Google map
: http://bit.ly/hVPURqBrixton Market
Brixton Market is a place of two halves. It is full of its famous multi-cultural food stalls which never fail to make me feel like I’ve been transported far from London with their smells and noises. Yet it is also developing into a bohemian hub. Next to the fish and vegetable stalls you can now find quirky independent vintage shops, cafes and restaurants. There is something for everyone here and it’s a real experience. While in the area why not see a film at the Ritzy cinema or visit the Viewfinder photography gallery. www.brixtonmarket.net
Electric Avenue, Brixton, London, SW9 8JX
Not open Sundays, late night opening on Thursdays – check the website for exact times.
Closest tube: Brixton (Victoria Line) Closest station: Brixton (National rail) Google map
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