Don’t expect EastEnders come-to-life, however – it’s a little less dramatic than that. Instead, an eclectic mix of students, professionals, young families and ‘born-and-breds’ live alongside each other to create a bustling thoroughfare that connects the east to the rest of the city. 

Why Bow?

Bow offers affordable housing, such as the regenerated council blocks surrounding Roman Road, intertwined with tree-lined streets of Georgian terraced houses, such as those of the prestigious Tredegar Square.

“Bow is steeped in history and enjoys a varied mix of property,” says James Brough, property consultant at Butler & Stag. “Properties rarely stay empty and rents have seen steady growth in recent years.” 

The bustling Bow Road has an industrial feel, while a 10-minute walk will bring you to Victoria Park, with the pretty canal running alongside. Roman Road is also a hive of activity, with a market on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays offering clothes, accessories, furniture and food. 

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Who lives there?

“Bow enjoys a multi-cultural community,” Brough says. “Recently there’s been an influx of middle-class professionals seeking high-quality period and modern homes close to Victoria Park.”

The area’s close proximity to Canary Wharf makes it ideal for those working in the financial district, plus, with Queen Mary, University of London nearby, the area is popular with students. 

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Park life: rock out at festivals…

The connections

Bow has great transport links: Bow Road Tube serves both the Hammersmith & City and District lines, while the nearby Mile End Tube has those plus the Central and Circle lines connecting to central London. Bow Church DLR also gets you to Canary Wharf, Greenwich and Stratford. 

There’s a plethora of buses, with stops dotted along the stretch of Bow Road. A mere 10-minute drive to Blackwall Tunnel means you can easily jump onto the M25 too, linking you to the rest of the southeast and beyond.

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Don’t move here if…

You want bars and clubs on your doorstep. The high street is more practical than trendy, with supermarkets, car dealerships and kebab shops lining the streets rather than bars and clubs. But you will find a local that suits – it’s the East End after all. Plus, a night bus goes to Shoreditch and Oxford Circus, meaning there’s no need for early nights.

Where to hang out

Bow is a haven for neighbourhood pubs. The Morgan Arms is one of the best gastro pubs in east London, serving a top Sunday roast, while The Lord Tredegar (50 Lichfield Road, E3 5AL) has a pretty courtyard garden and gourmet grub.

Palm Tree (127 Grove Road, E3 5BH) is a classic corner pub where punters spill out onto the streets in the summer months, while Victoria Park Village houses cute cafés, posh restaurants and cool pubs. Plus, Victoria Park and the nearby Olympic Park host some of the biggest and best music fests in London (Lovebox and Hard Rock Calling to name a couple).


My area

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Kat Lee – Snake charmer, 25

“I’m a big fan of all the cottages in Bow. Particularly a place on Wellington Way called The Factory. Other than that I love the cheap rent, food and location.”

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James Travis – Musician, 22

“I like the music scene in east London. I also love the ghetto chicken shop just by my house. Rent’s cheap too – compared to the rest of London anyway.”

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Michael Steel – Porn actor, 26

“I love Bow because of all the hot chavvy boys at the station who shout at me, ‘Bloody hell, how come you’re always wearing hot pants mate?!’.”

E3 Info

Borough: Tower Hamlets

Council Tax Band: C: £1056.46

Travel time to London: 20 mins

Tube: Bow Road

Average rental 1 bed: £1235pcm

Average rental 2 bed: £1516pcm

Average rental 3 bed: £1820pcm

Photos: supplied