Highbury has been named one of the 10 best places to live in London by The Sunday Times for having, “Islington’s good looks,” while being “far from the madding crowds of Upper Street.” 

The newspaper’s annual round-up of the UK’s best neighbourhoods is often regarded as the definitive guide to where to live now. 

According to the guide, Highbury Fields is, “the loveliest residential square in London,” thanks to its Georgian townhouses and 29-acre green space with tennis courts, adventure playground and leisure centre. The Sunday Times also highlights Highbury Fields School; a girls’ state secondary rated outstanding by Ofsted. 

Highbury Park, with its range of independent shops including hardware store, greengrocer and fishmonger, gets a mention as does the Highbury Barn Tavern for its locallysourced meats. The family-run Highness Cafe and Tea Room is recommended for its sourdough with smashed avocado. 

The area’s Blackstock Road is liked for its cool-factor – including Ink@84, a bookshop serving artisan gin, and reclaimed furniture emporium, Gathering Moss. 

Topping London’s best places to live 2020 is nearby Victoria Park Village in Hackney, described by the guide as, “simply a lovely place to live”. The area is praised for its proximity to green-flag Victoria Park (home, in normal circumstances, to All Points East festival). It has its own selection of independent shops – there’s a fishmonger, greengrocer and cheesemaker here too – and a real community feel. 

Joining Victoria Park Village and Highbury in the top 10 are Muswell Hill, Walthamstow and previous winner, Bermondsey.   

If you’re contemplating a house move, but not sure where is right for you, The Times’ property editor, Helen Davies has sound advice. “Think about everything you love and everything you hate, then make sure that you have access to the good things while minimising exposure to the bad ones.”