To follow along from yesterday's theme where I "stole" from one of the Classroom Canada teacher's blogs, here is another steal. Jodi & Tyson are from Winnipeg and they're planning their upcoming adventure into teaching in London with us in the fall.
I really like their blog so far. They post regularly and share their insights into everything involved in preparing to depart for London. Here, they share their insights into neighbourhoods in London:
"Compared to Winnipeg, London is a HUGE city, with a population of over 7 million and a Population density of 4,761/km²Thanks to Jodi & Tyson for allowing me to steal this blog post & share with you here. I really enjoyed the 2 minute video clips as well.
According to UK National Statistics:
"In Inner London the population density (people per square kilometre) was highest in Kensington and Chelsea with 14,676 in 2006, and lowest in the City of London with 2,678."
However, in Winnipeg we have a population of under 700,000 and a population density of 1365/km². This is a stark contrast to the city of London, and I often try to imagine what a city with a population density of 14,676 would look like compared to what we know in Winnipeg.
Then I found this website that has short (2 min) videos of about 20 different areas/neighbourhoods in London. These were great for seeing what London looks like, besides the usual -Big Ben, London Eye, London Bridge stuff....
One thing that seems daunting about moving to London is finding a place (area and flat) to live. Everyone has an opinion about this, some about where they have lived or where they have visited, and areas they would never walk after dark. Often in online forums and discussions there is conflicting advice about which areas to live. Overall, the areas of Chelsea, Notting Hill, and Kensington seem to stand out as the most liked, most expensive and safest (? conflicting evidence on this as well, I read one post that stated there was no safe place in London, anywhere...!) The same could be said about Winnipeg, or any city for that matter. But, I am sure we will find a safe, affordable and likable place to live and explore. Somewhere near the Camden Markets would be cool!"
A couple of my thoughts re: neighbourhoods to live in London.
- It's more important what tube line you are on than particular neighbourhood. For example, I avoid the Northern Line at all costs as it is the most unreliable line. Most Londoners will tell you this, except those that are die-hard Northern Line supporters. If you are living near the Northern Line, but there are other lines to take, then that is fine. I lived in Finsbury Park area and had 3 options for tube lines. That was fine. I also avoid living in South West London (Parsons Green is very popular for example) on the District Line because when it's down, it's really down. Also, that line goes through Earl's Court, which is like a bottle neck tube station - you're almost guaranteed to be stuck there a few times a week, waiting for the trains to pass so your train can get through. While the neighbourhoods are lovely along that line, the trouble with the tube hardly makes up for it. SO, which line should you live near? Ideally, more than 1 line and ideally the Central Line. That's why Notting Hill is so popular - you have 3 lines there, Central, Circle & District. It's in Zone 1, so close to "downtown", close to Hyde Park, and all round a good neighbourhood by Canadian standards. But, yes, pricey! So, many go to Shephard's Bush, a couple of stops over (and where Ewen McGregar crashed his motorbike in Long Way Down).
- It's also important which zone you live in. London is broken down into 6 zones, with zone 1 in the middle, and it goes out ring by ring til you hit Zone 6. Classroom is in Zone 1, at Oxford Circus, which is where our accommodations are as well. This means that most of our schools are in zones 1-3. So, don't live in zone 6, even though you think it is cheaper! You'll pay more on the transportation, and be miserable with the travel you have to do. We always recommend that you live in zones 1-3 for that reason. Realistically, most of our teachers live in Oxford Circus (zone 1, right downtown), or anywhere in zone 2.
If you'd like to become part of the Classroom Canada team, please sign up for our newsletters & apply through our website. Be sure to read the Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians to help you understand everything you need to know about teaching in London.