Nestled in the heart of north London, only just in zone 3. East Finchley is often made to feel like Muswell Hill’s ugly little sister, but people who grew up there know that it’s so much more than that!
1. We think East Finchley is the best place to live
East Finchley is better than Muswell Hill. We may have less stuff, but we have more fun. Fact.
2. The East Finchley festival was an important date in the calendar
We all know that time of year, when the hoards flock to Cherry Tree Wood for the East Finchley Festival. It has everything from food stalls to music from legends like Antigua Joe. Your summer just isn’t the same without it.
3. The Phoenix Cinema was the best place to see films
You saw films at the Phoenix Cinema, and it felt like you were stepping back in time. Their double bills are still the best way to spend a rainy day.
4. We were blessed with great takeaways
Whether it was Poseidon for fish and chips, Top Pizza, or Majjo’s for Indian, East Finchley had the best places to get a takeaway.
5. Chorak was THE place to drink coffee
You hated it when Costa opened. Chorak was where to go for a coffee, those people sitting in Costa are just wrong.
6. The Northern Line was your connection to the world
If the Northern Line didn’t go there, or you had to change tubes more than once, you wondered if it was really worth going to.
7. South of the river was another world
You rarely ventured south of the river, and when you did, it felt a bit like you were on holiday.
8. The N20 was your night-time entertainment
Chatting to randoms on the N20 was a north London experience you’ll never forget.
9. There was no McDonalds
You hated the fact that there was a massive McDonalds headquarters building right next to the station but the closest place you could actually get a McDonalds was North Finchley.
10. You are a north Londoner through and through
You are a proper north Londoner and you don’t ever want to live anywhere else.
11. Horace was a local celebrity
Wishing everyone he met the ‘best of luck’, Horace will never be forgotten.
12. The Archer will always remind you of home
The famous kneeling archer by Eric Aumonier at East Finchley station will always make you think of home. It’s no surprise that our local newspaper was named after it too.
13. Sunny days were spent in Cherry Tree Wood
As soon as the sun shone you were in Cherry Tree Wood with all of your friends.
14. Our pubs are great, but they used to be better
You loved Maddens with its hidiculous hanging baskets that reminded you of your grandma’s window boxes. You still miss the way The White Lion used to be before it became a gastro pub. Lastly you are still mourning the loss of the Alexandra on Fortis Green Road that closed in January 2014. The local pubs were definitely more fun before.
15. Camden was your hangout
You LOVED Camden. It was the place to go on the weekend. You’d head to the lock to meet up with mates, until The Ice Wharf ruined you fave spot. You still like Camden, but it’s just not the same…
16. Vid Biz was the best
Back when people actually rented films from a video shop, Vid Biz was the place to go. Their eclectic collection of new releases, world films and cult classics was unrivalled. You were devastated when they closed down.
17. You still love Alan’s Records
The treasure trove of bargain tunes is still well worth a visit. You remember all of those great finds you made there over the years, and the hours you spend browsing though their ever-changing collection.
18. Kenwood concerts were a family outing
You always went to Kenwood concerts with your family. You insisted on going to the nights with firework displays regardless of what music they were playing.
19. Budgens was your supermarket
Budgens was the only local place to do your food shopping. East Finchley has managed to resist the arrival of huge supermarkets, so Budgens is still the closest thing.
20. You had to go further afield to get your shopping fix
Unless you were buying shoes in Kokos, you had to venture out to do your shopping. You had two choices… go to the few select shops in Muswell Hill or make the short 143 bus ride to Brent Cross.
21. Hollywood Bowl was a great night out
You often headed to the Lido’s Hollywood Bowl for a game or two with your mates. You didn’t like going to the then Warner Bros cinema though… it felt like you were cheating on the Phoenix.
22. Our slang was different
North London slang was it’s own language. We all loved our parents’ baffled faces when we spoke to our friends with words like long, nang, boug and jokes.
23. All of your friends went to the same schools
Almost everyone you know went to Fortismere, Christ’s College or Compton.
24. You made sure you didn’t miss Alexandra Palace fireworks
You always went to Parkland Walk to watch the Alexandra Palace fireworks. Yes it’s in neighbouring Muswell Hill, but the fireworks were too brilliant to ignore.
25. You remember when there was a 7-Eleven
Remember back when they were in the UK? After the 7-Eleven, the shop became a short lived B2 before it closed its doors for good.
26. Don’t forget the Local Cafe!
It was THE place to get your fast food fix or early morning fry up.
Did these bring back your fond memories of growing up in East Finchley?