Thursday, March 22, 2012

Broadway Market Hackney London Markets - retaining East London spirit

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Broadway Market
Official website
Nearest Train station:
London Fields
We made our almost weekly pilgrimage to Broadway Market over the weekend. With the weather getting milder as spring sets in, a short stroll along the bank of Regent's Canal due east from Angel can be rather pleasant. Sharing the path with some joggers with a couple of longboats sailing up and down the Regent's Canal, coupled with a burst of sunshine with a constant cool breeze, it was the perfect weekend outing.

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Devoid of high street shops, Broadway Market is perhaps one of the last market street that consists wholly of independent businesses (well, almost). There was a fruit and vegetable market dated back to the late 20th century but that has been replaced by a farmers' food market that has a whiff of the major one at Borough Market opens every Saturday from 7.30am till 6pm since 2004.

How to get to Broadway Market?

Broadway Market is a good half an hour stroll from Angel, Islington along Regent's Canal. After ducking our heads under a couple of bridges (seven on the last count), two river locks and over two bridges, we finally reached the market. With Towpath Café and the newly opened Waterline serving as pitstops and shelters when the weather turns bad, the walk is way more pleasant than it sounds.


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So what's there?

Like Columbia Road Flower Market, the temporary food market at Broadway Market is just half the story. What's more interesting is the permanent shops along the street. Other than Market Café (south end of Broadway Market) that serves a mean steak pudding and Cat & Mutton (north end of the market) that we normally lunch at, there is also the renowned F.Cooke Pie & Mash, which has been there forever. Buen Ayre, an Argentinian grill restaurant comes highly recommended by Luiz at London Foodie as one of the his top Latin American restaurants in London is located there as well. To rest our weary legs, we would head to Gossip for a relaxing cup of tea.

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To complete the picture, Broadway Market even come with its own independent bookstores (Broadway Bookshop and Donlon Books) film rental shop (Film Shop) and even a fishmonger (Fin & Flounder).

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Wait, is that all?

The bit that I like best is that 31 acres London Fields that sits just north of Broadway Market (across the road from Cat & Mutton). There's a sizable children's playground, table tennis (with built in net no less), a bicycle path and ample grounds and shade. Expect sunbathers to flock to the area come summer.

Have you been to the Broadway Market? What's your favourite shop over there?

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