Hornsey High Street of old
“People who live here will probably say they live in Crouch End or Stroud Green, partly because it sounds better and partly because most people have no idea where Hornsey is. It’s an area bullied on all sides by bigger, brasher neighbourhoods like middle class Crouch End and gritty Green Lanes.”
Locals have defended the dignity of their manor, citing the award-winning restaurants and the impressive, 13th-century church tower as highlights. To be sure, there are many pleasant parts of Hornsey, but despite the guidebook’s snarky tones the writers are quite accurate in pointing out that locals will say Crouch End before anything else when asked where they live. Since Hornsey Borough was absorbed into Haringey in the Sixties, the N8 postcode has increasingly come to mean Crouch End, and the growing gentrification of “Crew-Shorned” plus the modified geographic lexicon of estate agents has seen the name Hornsey gradually drop out of use.
No identity loss need be permanent, though: perhaps the re-vamp of Hornsey Town Hall — bang in the middle of Crouch End, with a large name plate proudly boasting its heritage — will see Hornsey regain its lost pride.