Angel is an area close to central London that is well-known for its vibrant night life. There are a number of theatres, galleries and cinemas to choose from together with a large number of restaurants, bars and clubs. Angel is located in the London boroughs of Islington, close to the boroughs of Hackney and Finsbury which have many fine examples of early Victorian and Georgian architecture which stand side by side with a plethora of 21st Century apartment blocks. Buying or renting in Angel has become very popular due to its close proximity to central London and The City.
Many residents of Angel go to fashionable Upper Street where they can browse through well-known high street brands and a number of trendy independent boutiques and antique shops. They can also visit a number of specialist bakeries and a selection of cafes and coffee houses. Upper Street is famous for its wine bars pubs and gastropubs and is home to the popular Kings Head and Almeida theatres. For relaxing on the weekends, Highbury Fields is close by and strolling along Regent’s Canal is always popular with the locals.
What is it like to live in Angel? This area guide to Angel will attempt to provide a brief insight to why people move to Angel generally stay for a long time.
Some interesting facts about Angel
- Angel Underground Tube Station has the third-longest escalator in Europe at 197 ft. (60 m) in length.
- The Angel Islington features on the British version of Monopoly thanks to the fact that the board licensees used to meet up at the Angel Inn – which is where the name of the area originates.
- Angel Islington is one of the most restaurant-dense areas of London.
- Angel has a massive shopping centre called Angel Central (formerly known as the N1 Centre) that has shops, restaurants, a cinema, and music venues.
- Douglas Adams, author of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, lived in the area and after seeking permission from proprietor Geoffrey Hotblack, based his character Hotblack Desiato on this very company, putting us firmly on the Sci Fi map!
Properties in Angel
Angel contains many fine examples of Victorian and Georgian properties which provide some exceptional family houses of terraced, semi-detached and detached design. A large number of properties have been converted into flats and maisonettes and recently the area has seen a number of luxury apartment blocks built.
This diverse selection of properties, including ‘affordable’ and ‘local authority’ housing, provides and eclectic mix of cultures that adds to Angel’s charm and popularity.
There are a variety of options to travel by public transport if you live in Angel. Angel tube station is on the Northern Line. From here it takes about 10 minutes to get to Leicester Square or London Bridge. It is only 1 stop from Kings Cross and 2 stops from Euston going North and Southbound it is only 1 stop from Old Street and 2 stops from Moorgate. At the opposite end of Upper Street is Highbury and Islington station on the Overground and Victoria Line.
Angel is also served by a large number of bus routes.
Green spaces in Angel
Living in Angel means that you are very close to some large green spaces and open areas in London. The most popular green space is Highbury Fields which is within walking distance and offers nearly 30 acres of recreational space. Children can play in the well-appointed play areas and there is also the Highbury Pool and Gym in the park. Barnard Park Shoreditch Park and Islington Green are also nearby as are a number of well-known garden squares, such as Thornhill Square and Gibson Square
What’s to do in Angel
There is certainly plenty to do for local residents in Angel. You can enjoy fine dining, local traditional pubs, or take in a theatre production without having to travel to the West End. The Almeida and Sadlers Wells theatres are only a short walk from Angel tube station. The fashionable hotpots of Shoreditch, Hoxton and Kings Cross are all neighbours of Angel, and are within easy reach. If markets are your thing you could visit the famous antique shops and stalls at Camden Passage and the equally well known Chapel Market where you can buy fresh produce and home-ware, as well as sample a variety of street food.
Most of the bars and dining establishments in Angel are found on Upper Street though there are some superb establishments on the quieter back streets. Upper Street is home to many independent bakeries, restaurants, and gastropubs. Here you can enjoy foods from all around the world including French, Turkish, Middle Eastern, Mexican, Chinese, Italian, Japanese and Vietnamese.
Pubs and bars
It is not difficult to find trendy pubs and bars in Angel. In fact, Angel is home to some of the best and trendiest bars in North London. So, if you are looking for a laid-back drink in a traditional pub or you want a cocktail in an upmarket bar, you will find what you are looking for in Angel.
Schools in Angel
The Islington Borough Council is responsible for primary and secondary education in Angel. Parents who choose to live in Angel can choose from a good range of primary schools, secondary schools, and academies. In fact, most of the schools in Angel have been ranked as “good” to “outstanding” by Ofsted.
Local amenities in Angel
The Angel area of central London has fantastic amenities for local residents. There are great local markets in Islington that sell local and exotic world foods.
The biggest shopping complex is the Angel Central Shopping Centre. There you can find the major High Street brands like H&M, Monsoon, Gap, and Argos. There are also large restaurant chains like Pret A Manger as well as fast food places and gourmet dining.