Does London End Where Toby Carvery Begins?

By Jordan Waite Last edited 69 months ago
Does London End Where Toby Carvery Begins?
There are better places to eat.

Ah, the old 'do you live in London?' debate.

The capital's real border, as any outer 'Londoner' will tell you, is pretty nuanced compared to the one laid down by City Hall. Those on the city's periphery are used to stretching the definition of what it means to live in The Big Smoke — with 020 dialling codes and the M25 topping the imaginary-boundary list.

But here's one we've not heard of before, courtesy of Londonist reader Ian Wood:

The Toby-Free Territory

His premise is simple: perhaps London, city of good food and culture, ends where the land of Toby Carvery begins...

Plot a ring around the chain's innermost venues, and you've got yourself a new city boundary — a sort of cultural safe-zone, if you will. Live within the ring? Congratulations, you're a Londoner.

It's a revelation that had us wondering: what other food chains does this work with?

The Harvester Hoop

Harvester seems to fit the bill, with everyone living beyond zone 3 relegated to non-Londoner status.

The chain has done a better job at infiltrating the city than Toby Carvery has, mind you — just look at that pesky eastern indent, courtesy of the chain's O2 venue.

The Brewers Fayre Boundary

By this definition, we see London shift decidedly to the west. The chain's presence east London means that the city loses places like Dagenham and Romford — but hey, on the other hand, Slough has joined the ranks.  

So there we have it — three new definitions of London. Can you think of any other chains this works with? Let us know in the comments.

Last Updated 26 March 2018