Moving to London, whether for relationships, family, or work can always be a daunting prospect, especially if you are a young professional. I was in exactly the same situation as many others, and researched into Clapham as I had heard it was a good place to ease me into London living.
Clapham is South West London within the Borough of Lambeth. Local tube stops include Clapham Common, Clapham North, and Clapham South, all of which are located on the Northern line. There are also two main railway stations; Clapham High street and Clapham Junction. You can get into the city within 15mins from all stations.
Clapham used to be home to a lot of the residential facilities of the University of London. Because of this, Clapham is well adverse and suited to young professionals. With a population of over 70,000, Clapham and Stockwell is extremely diverse, ensuring there is plenty for everyone and anyone to do to stay occupied including restaurants, bars and sporting activities. Clapham is a major hub for recent Uni graduates due to its proximity to the city, allowing for easy job commutes and ease of access to zone 1.
Clapham boasts Clapham Common, allowing for countless sports and activities to take place, including football and rugby. As well as the common, there is the fantastic Clapham Leisure Centre and Lambeth Academy which hosts the best adult Ladies and Mixed Netball Leagues in Clapham in London. In addition to Netball in london, Clapham plays host to some of the craziest London Dodgeball leagues. I joined both a Netball and a London Dodgeball league when I first moved to Clapham and made loads of new friends. Many other area’s are not as lucky to have such up to date facilities as Clapham. Thousands of people flock to Clapham Common on a sunny day. It is great to chuck a ball around, get a big bag of iced beverages, stick tunes on, and socialise with other people doing the same thing. Keep an eye out for the Windmill pub. It is very useful for toilets when on the common, and also gets pretty busy in the summer with a great outdoor space and DJ’s at special events over the summer (i.e SW4).
There is certainly a buzz around Clapham nightlife, with nearly 50 pubs/clubs in the area.
For daytime/summer drinking I would head to The Falcon, The Sun, or Gigalum, all with great outside areas and perfect atmospheres to completely chill. Catching a bite to eat is always easy at the Pizzeria on the Green. This is always busy as it is right next to the tube, and offers decent Italian food at good prices.
Fancy watching the game, eating and pre-drinking? Then head straight to Bodeans. It is spot on to watch sport with mates, and eat at the same time in a fun atmosphere. Grab your group a booth, beers, spicy wings, ribs, chips and coleslaw for £15 each. In my opinion, when it’s down to sport, the Alexandra is undeniably the best pub for literally any sport that’s being shown anywhere in the world.
Heading out afterwards there are plenty of bars/clubs including The Loft, Vodka Revolution and Inferno’s (the local cattlemarket club!!). For free entry and pretty well priced drinks, start at Byson and Bird on the high street, or for a good mix of music, and a pub full of like minded people that are all there for a good time, make sure you check out Artesian Well.
To end the night, hit Chatkhara. Some of the best after pub fast food I have found, far superior to a standard kebab. You could actually eat this sober.
Clapham has everything I needed as a young professional. House prices do vary, so keep an eye out. You could get ripped off because of the location and end up paying a lot of money for a very busy commute into the City. Make sure you appreciate the London lifestyle, hit the common, join some London Sports Leagues, try out the different bars and restaurants and make the most of what Clapham has to offer.