Written by Anonymous Visitor and posted in London, United Kingdom

Ah, London, known across the world as being prestigious and cultured. Indeed, the streets of Mayfair give a sense of classic England, Old Victorian houses on tree lined streets.

Take a half an hour drive east though and you’ll see a different side of London all together.

Hackney is a desolate sprawl of grotty council blocks, with endless amounts of winding alleys for the ‘yout’s’ of the area to run down after mugging an innocent person in a pathetic attempt to appear  ‘hard’ to their peers.

On a Friday night, Mare Street is packed with roaming gangs of youths in baggy adidas hoodies, smoking super strong weed, blasting grime music out of their phones. Some of these groups are massaive, literally 30 teenagers in a run down chicken shop shouting at each other, while older, hard faced ex convincts are sat down in the cheap plastic seats, grimly discussing drug dealing.

Walk east from Mare Street and you’ll find the Trelawny Estate, the worst part of Hackney. Trash litters the grass around the tower blocks, the bottom floor windows are either smashed or have burgalar bars on them. As you go further east, all you find is a semminly endless maze of council flats, ranging from two story low rises to twelve story, grotesque towerblocks that blot out the sun Hackney so desperatly needs. Hooded drug dealers hang around on the street corners, selling crack and heroin to gaunt faced junkies in broad daylight.

As the night turns darker, Hackney becomes even more frightening. sirens wail, police helicopters circle above, cars with blacked out windows drive by, blasting hip hop. Sometimes, gunshots ring out, leaving a young man slowly bleeding to death as he tries to run into his block of flats. Wether it’s kids trying to be ‘badman’ or drug dealers fighting over business, who knows.

Hackney was once known as murder mile, due to amount of gun related murders that happened here. Theres just a strange culture of violence in the place, everyone walks around with a ‘screwface’, everyone wants to be hard. I saw a man get knocked out cold from one punch on Mare Street, seemingly randomly.

I lived there in 2005-2006 and I never want to go back.



By: hackney resident

  • London Betch

    This whole comment lacks any sort of class.

  • D

    @Isette I know exactly what it was like and what it is like now

  • D

    @Isette I am from the area… ffs how many times do i have to state this o.O

  • D

    @hackneygirl just because you don’t have much money, doesn’t mean you need to join a gang, and anyway your parents should prevent you from doing so and be keeping you out of trouble. This isn’t Somalia.

  • D

    @Keeping It Real I’m from the East End, I know exactly what it was like back then and what it is like now. You are probably 13.

  • MadCritic

    As long as Hackney is run by the useless Labour Council and its 2 useless MPs (including Diane ‘Race-Baiting’ Abbott), Hackney will continue to become a degenerate, sub-human, materialistic, welfare dependent, gang cultured borough run by corrupt self-serving Councillors, and race-baiting activists.

    I urge the most economically & socially productive people to leave Hackney and save their health & sanity,

  • D

    ‘in another part of the same borough, someone’s dodging bullets’ – give me a break – 10-15 years back, maybe that was true on occasion, but not in 2014.

    • Keeping It Real

      I hope that’s the case in your cosy boutique, but in other parts of Hackney things is still unsafe. I’ve mixed feelings about gentfication; it excludes those born & bred in an area, but there’s no doubting that the murder rate goes down.

  • i woz ere

    Hackney is a borough as well as a town. The borough covers a wider area than a town. The point is, you may all be talking about Hackney, but one part can be quite different from another. So while one of you is artisticly waddling along in chinos, skinny jeans, flairs or whatever the trendily uncool thing is now, blabbering on about what public school you went to, in one part of Hackney, in another part of the same borough, someone’s dodging bullets. All those degrees, & you couldnt figure that out. Still, if you’ve never seen bad stuff, cept in films, you aint gonna know are ya.
    My experience of Hackney is limited, but I’ve seen various sides. Yep, I’ve seen the gangs, & I’ve seen the posh coffee lot. Funny thing is, you dont seem to be aware of each other. Probably best.
    It would appear that Hackney, like London as a whole, is a mixed bag.


  • luci

    I must say, this is truly terrible journalism. If you can call it that.

    • One must conclude that this assertion is most veracious…….

      NEWSFLASH: Everyone can write and/or talk pompous if they wish. No need to be a w****r…….

  • Lorenzo

    The average price of property is hackney is £500k – because the average salary is £55-60k pa.
    I was born and brought up here have seen it change over 28 years. Come to Broadway market on a saturday and see how it is nowadays.

    Ignorant stupid idiot

  • hackney boy 4 life

    Hackney is a bad place to live I have lived hir all my life seen and heard everything a boy my age should of seen and defoley not heard in now all the gangs all the things tht go down it is a bad area @hackney for life

    • Croyden boys on top, hackney boys are mad gay fam. Suckin dick everyday blood.

  • Em

    This is hilarious! Was only earlier today helping a friend try to find a family house in Hackney for less than half a million quid… tall order nowadays.

    Perhaps you should go to Victoria Park, order a latte and an almond croissant in one of the cafes, then buy yourself some rare breed pork from the Ginger Pig butcher. Then you’ll see how hard life is in Hackney.

    PS Site owner, please take Hackney (NEVER heard it called H-Town) off the top ten list of chavtowns. This is so completely out of date it’s absurd. Maybe top 10 hipstertowns.

    • hackneygirl

      err your batley chatting s**t yh your obviously never been round stokey or any normal part of hackney you jus went to the rich bit I bet you don’t live in hackney coz I lived here all my life yh im 14 and no one has no money everyones in gangs and dealing and s**t so don’t try say hackneys a posh place when it isn’t.

      • yo famalam, why you wantin’ to portray your ends as s**t? Peace in the middle east. wag wan.

    • OldcockneyinSaffronWalden

      You are definately chatting middle class bolloxs..Hackney is a Borough and it has many sides, Hommerton, Clapton, Stoke Newington, Shoreditch, Dalston….And not all of them are the same to live in – Depends who ya are and who ya mates are as to how well you get on.

  • jedijake

    This made me laugh, Its obviously the views of a Slone Ranger or Kensingtonite.

    I lived in Hackney for 8 years and I still Miss Hackney too this day, The reason…
    The people, Look beyond you missconceptions you might just be suppressed.

    For a start a hoodi doesn’t make you a criminal, just warmer.
    And as others have highlighted your views are out dated. You are more likely to be run over by a Yum Mummy’s push chair than mugged in hackney.
    Hackneys council under Jules Pipe has done wonders in promoting education in the most difficult environment, it turned out you can polish a turd.
    Tower blocks were a necessity of clearing the slums created by Blitz they maybe out dated but they are communities and seam to know every one who lives on there block unlike many other places I know.
    We need a mix of housing for healthy and un polarised communities which is what Hackney is

  • unknown (Z)

    There are many amazing and worst places to live in north london, One area i would advice you stay from is Myddleton Road, Woodgreen, London. Its not just the chavs or gangs you need to worry about.

    Look out for the crude men standing on the streets, sadly the young as well as older generation who i suspect are Sxxxxlly frustrated and feel they need to quench their pathetic egos by insulting and disrespecting any woman who seems to be on their own.

    I would advice any woman student or professional who is single to avoid this area. This Neanderthals and cowards only love to attack the women who seem to be living on their own in that area. My partner is looking another property after convincing her to move.

  • D

    Yep – totally out-of-date I’m afraid – still a couple of rough spots and gangs but much of the borough is very gentrified / hipster kid now. Parts of Hackney have also been trendy for years (Stoke Newington and near Victoria Park for example, as well as the obvious Hoxton).

    • Isette

      What an utter bollocks. Hackney is gentrified? You´re definetely an advertising victim like a lot of other peeps too.
      You know how this works? Ok, I´ll tell you. Run down areas with high crime rates have low property prices. So property developers buy a lot of property in such areas. Then they start “advertising campaigns” telling people how a former sh*thole is about to transform into a very nice gentrified ultra hip area without crime etc…….. They do that in order to be able to sell their properties at a high price and make loads of cash.

      In some cases former sh*thole areas change into quite reasonable areas but more often than not the former sh*thole remains a sh*thole with a few nice streets surrounded by sh*t.

      And believe me, I am a Londoner (currently Expat), I know that Hackney is still a sh*thole and it will never be a new “Fulham or Chelsea or Kensington”. Hackney will always be a sh*thole with some idiots who believe the hype made up by the property developers very own media and investor friends. This hype of a gentrified Hackney is similar to the Brixton hype. Brixton also has the reputation to be gentrified by now but it´s still the same sh*thole it used to be with a few decent people now living there.
      You could give me a house for free in Brixton I still wouldn´t want to live there. It still has no class, tons of low lifes, tons of drug dealers and it is very dangerous. The Brixton tube station is a nightmare even early in the evening – low lifes await people at the tube station´s exit to see if it´s worth mugging them…………and I could go on and on.

      So to all peeps who think Hackney is safe, gentrifed and hip and love the thrill of having a very good chance of getting mugged, raped or killed………go on then, live there, have fun but don´t try to convince people with a brain that this sh*thole is worth living in. We use our brains and we can see through the false hypes created by rich property developers. Believe me – these guys give a sh*t about you and your lives. It´s all about their money.

  • Edward

    Overall. The London Riots said it all. I predicted that after Tottenham, riots would occur at the other areas in London which unfortunately consist of high gang/chav/want to be an American gangster rap culture.

    Its not being racist, there are a lot of council population and generally whilst these areas may have a ‘wealty and no so ‘wealty side’ they are still not great places to live in.

    It could be due to a lot of issues, ‘people/teens wanting stuff ‘now now now’, MTV gangster rap or generally as is the case no respectable role model and people not prepared to put effort in to get out of the situation they are in.

    I do find that alot of places that are ‘dives’ seem to be labelled as ‘hip or trendy’ that’s a tell tale sign.

    • Isette

      Edward, finally someone who can see through all the bull. You´re absolutely spot on.

  • M and M

    God I wish the Chavs would come back, but I’m glad tossers like you have left. I was born and raised in Hackney and agreed back in the day it was a pretty sh*t place to live, but always had crusties and illegal party vibe. Hackney today 2013, is a Hoxton (which is part of the borough of Hackney) overspill and most of the poor have moved further east, priced out by a white middle, nay upper middle and upper classed twats (i.e the orignal shoreditch twats) to become a playground for designers and city bankers.

    Honestly, original poster, take a trip to Mare Street today at any time and you’ll be lucky to see anyone who doesn’t earn over 50K a year or who at least parents earn more than that. A quarter of million is the price you’ll have to pay to buy a 1 bed flat in the very estates that terrified you…..

    • Isette

      Yeah……..and only the biggest morons will pay one million for such a dump.

  • Never heard it called H- Town before but it is pretty low on chavs as it happens. Instead it is a dumping ground for every foreigner the world has ever known. Places of interest include Pownall Road where PC plod was murdered, Sylvester Road where Eli Hall carried out his seige and burnt the flat down, Ryder Mews where someone’s body was found dumped in a car and the notorious Pembury Estate, the borough’s number one sh*thole. Best advice when visiting Hackney is to keep your eyes down and don’t look at anybody, but be sure not to trip over the pan-handler proped up against the wall with his dog under a blanket. P.S. Murder mile is not all of Hackney just the bit along Lower and Upper Clapton Roads.

  • Patrice

    what a ridiculous, hateful,ignorant, out-of-date and borderline racist article. Hackney is lucky to have lost you, please don’t come back. People like you should be locked in villages altogether and far away from diverse cities. Who the hell do you think you are? Clearly you are some middle-class w**ker who sees anybody poorer than you as a mindless criminal. I really pity you.

    • original poster

      I don’t see how this article is racist- I saw just as many white kids as black/ asian kids causing havoc. The absolute worst places i’ve seen in the UK were in Glasgow, were it was all white kids.

      Of course there were positives about Hackney. I met some amazing people from there. But overall, the place just scared me. Prehaps your right, it is because i’m a sheltered middle class w**ker, but I can’t help how I felt.

      • OldcockneyinSaffronWalden


        • Take A Hike Sucker!

          Oi, creampuff, shut it. You couldn’t handle it in the rum & coke, & slunk off to some pansified village, Saffron Walden or somewhere. So you are in no position to talk ’bout life in da trenches.

    • Isette

      Patrice some of us would love to be locked up in our villages so that w**kers like you wouldn´t have the chance to come near us since you seem to be full of anger.

      Stay within your diversity as you call it and enjoy.

      It´s not about being poor by the way. It is about decency and intelligence. Poor as well as not so poor people can be decent people or not so decent people.
      It´s not about money at all. Most rich people are w**kers.

      Fact is though – Hackney is a sh*thole full of not so decent people regardless of money.

    • OldcockneyinSaffronWalden


  • weLLiSay

    Despite the date of your post, i can’t help but think your write up on Hackney stems from your time in the area nearly 7 years ago? Before it’s lightning speed gentrification from murder mile, to hipster haven. These days your more likely to bump into a gang of artist/musician/fashionista wannabes armed with freshly baked croissants and skinny lattes.

    • Isette

      Yeah right …….dream on.