With thousands of new homes, increasingly good amenities and great transport links, the rapidly transforming town of Colindale, north London, is fast becoming a new hotspot for first time buyers
The north London town of Colindale is one undergoing great change. Located approximately seven miles from central London and the same distance from the Hertfordshire countryside, the town has been identified as an ‘opportunity area’, and thousands of new homes are being built, bringing new life and business with them. Located in travel Zone 4, leafy Colindale is a dream for commuters, with journey times into central London of around 20 minutes. For those seeking green spaces, it’s also a great spot; there are numerous parks in the local area, while rolling hills are never far by car.
So, with first time buyers heading to the area, attracted by more affordable homes, lively local towns and increasingly good amenities, Colindale is certainly set to become a north London hotspot.
Homes and residents
Several impressive new developments are currently underway in the area and first time buyers – mainly young professionals and young families – are choosing Colindale for the comparatively lower house prices and good commuting times. These new homes, many of which are just a few minutes from the tube station, mix with a real variety of existing house types; large 1930’s semi-detached homes line the wide streets that wind away from Edgware Road, and there are also many late 20th century apartment buildings and Edwardian terraces.
With the new homes and location of Colindale in mind, it’s no surprise that the population is a young one: the last census revealed an average age in the area of just 33. The demographic is culturally varied, too, with a wide range of languages spoken by its residents.
Out and about
Colindale (and nearby Kingsbury) is great for grabbing a coffee and indulging in food from around the globe – there are plenty of welcoming cafes and restaurants to choose from. Try Spaccanapoli, a popular Italian serving a homemade menu, or Jakarta on Sheaveshill Parade for Thai.
With the development of so many new homes, there are also several new restaurants coming to the area. An entire new parade of eateries will form part of the Colindale Gardens development, and is set to include popular names such as Yo Sushi, Carluccios and Prezzo as well as bars and cafes.
Just a few miles south, Kilburn is a popular choice for a lively evening out. Join the queue for the locally famous Spicy Basil and enjoy well-priced, superb Thai, or cosy Little Bay for cheerful service and European cuisine. The Tricycle Theatre runs a great schedule of plays and shows, and you can get post-show cocktails in the Kilburn Ironworks. Leafy Mill Hill, just three miles from Colindale, also has several good gastropubs, where you can enjoy a hearty meal after exploring the very pretty local area.
There are several large and lovely parks in the immediate area – and the raised location of Colindale means that you get amazing views over London from most of them. In Colindale, Silkstream Park is a great green space to enjoy in the summer, while Fryent Country Park is set over 250 acres of rolling hills and parkland – perfect for exploring on foot, or bike and for spotting wildlife with the kids. For tennis and sports – as well as an ample playground – try Roe Green Park in Kingsbury, while if you’re looking for country walks and quaint villages, you only need to travel a few miles north, where you’ll find leafy Hertfordshire.
You can also get acquainted with Colindale’s historical aviation ties, which are celebrated at the RAF Museum. Hendon aerodrome, which was located in Colindale until the late 1960s, was an important site as an airfield and for manufacturing during the two World Wars. The museum is a popular attraction, and features exhibitions, tours, a 4D theatre and many planes on display, including the iconic Vulcan bomber.
Colindale and the surrounding areas are very good for shopping, be it small or big-ticket items. There are some great, busy high streets in the local area as well as several shopping malls. The two huge supermarkets in Colindale will take care of your weekly food shop, while you can stock up on more unusual items in many smaller independent stores along the Edgware Road.
Head just a few miles down the road to Cricklewood for the market on Fridays and Saturdays. Here you’ll find great quality food and products, including vegan cakes, delicious Caribbean and Portugese food as well as designer jewellery and flowers.
Brent Cross shopping centre – the only mall in London with free parking – is also just a short drive away and houses hundreds of the big name high street stores under one roof. The Broadwalk Shopping centre in nearby Edgware is also a popular choice with locals. For bigger items, visit Colindale’s retail park, or head to Ikea in Wembley, while label lovers should try the London Designer Outlet, also in Wembley, where you can get your hands on designer labels at discounted prices.
Colindale is only around seven miles from central London. From the Zone 4 Underground station, Northern Line Tube services will get you to Euston in just 20 minutes. From Hendon rail station (two miles from Colindale), you’ll reach south London in around 30 minutes, or head north to Luton Airport in the same time. Several bus routes run to surrounding areas (including to the big supermarkets and shopping centres) as well as towards central London. Cyclists have a direct route into central London via the Edgware Road, which runs from Colindale to Marble Arch. Travel out of London is made convenient by the M1, which can be accessed within just a few minutes.