There are various shops sprinkled all over Clapham, with five main shopping areas to be aware of (although some are so close to each other, they’re practically the same place). This page explains each shopping area in Clapham and what they contain.
- Clapham High Street
- Clapham Old Town
- Clapham Junction
- Northcote Road (and Lavender Hill)
- Abbeville Road (and Clapham South)
Clapham High Street is marked by a bizarrely fronted Sainsbury’s supermarket. It’s not often a supermarket leaves a lasting impression, but this futuristic looking facade certainly does. Love it or hate it, it’s one of the main landmarks on Clapham High Street, and its biggest shop.
On top of two further supermarkets in the form of a Tesco Metro and Sainsbury’s Local, Clapham High Street has some decent shops on it including an excellent florist, book shop and card shop. Other than that, there’s a tiny amount of known high street shops like Superdrug and the high street is pretty much unremarkable as a shopping street.
Clapham Old Town is actually so close though, with its boutique shops, that it may as well be the same place – around the corner at the west end of the high street. All is not lost for Clapham High Street, however. It’s primary draw is its plethora of cafes, restaurants, bars, pubs and clubs.
Esca, Breads Etc, Brewers, Revolution, Infernos, The Clapham North, The Falcon and the brilliant, if expensive, Clapham Picture House Cinema are havens for socialites. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays can feel like an exclusive holiday resort in the summer months with people spilling out onto the streets.
Literally around the corner from the West end of Clapham High Street is the old market part of Clapham, Clapham Old Town. It’s immediately obvious that this area of Clapham is old because the buildings are grander, the shops are more boutique and everything feels like a little market town outside of London.
There aren’t hundreds of things to do here, but you can experience some of the best local shops, cafes and pubs. Notably, a fantastic local butcher is situated here, surrounded by trendy little gift and clothes shops. A couple of good shops that stock furniture, flowers and other household items with style are worth a look too.
Obviously, you couldn’t and wouldn’t want to spend an entire day here, but it compliments the High Street well and is a particularly good place to while away a quiet afternoon.
Clapham Junction, proudly home to the busiest overground train station in Britain, may initially appear like a busy and off-putting part of Clapham, but give it a chance. It is home to Clapham’s big stores like Debenhams, TK Maxx, Lidl, Waitrose, Marks & Spencer, Asda, JD Sports, Currys, Waterstones, Jessops and a warehouse sized Boots. To name but a handful.
It also houses Jamie Oliver’s Recipease shop, like a giant kitchen that sells things! Clapham Junction is locally famous for the amount of charity shops it has too, which is many – and they’re all ace. There are a few cafes, restaurants and bars, but to experience the social part of Clapham Junction, you need to head to the south end of the High Street and the crossroads to Lavender Hill and Northcote Road for Yummy Mummy land (aka a great place to socialise, relax and shop).
Married? Just about to start a family? Then move near Northcote Road, everyone else does! Who can blame them, with its lovely surrounding houses, closeness to the trains and its overwhelming array of high quality restaurants, cafes, boutique shops and high end DIY stores. It’s perfectly equipped for young professional parents seeking a little bit of luxury in between the hard slog of raising a family and managing work life.
People that live near or enjoy going to Northcote Road will understand its quaint appeal. Like everywhere in Clapham, when the sun comes out, so do the people with Northcote road bustling on the weekend. This is largely thanks to an incredible weekend market with top notch snacks, meals, cakes, flowers, art and more – this isn’t your ordinary market.
On top of all of this there are some fantastic little cafes and restaurants to be found here, The Bread and Soldiers being a notable cafe. A bar called Babel sets the tone for other watering holes along the road with its classy atmosphere and excellent drinks.
Abbeville Road and the surrounding area of Clapham South is as close to suburbia as you are going to get in Clapham. Abbeville Road must be the most sought after area of Clapham, with its quaint village life feel (its nickname is Abbeville village).
Shop wise, Abbeville Road has a couple of excellent villagey shops including Treohans which seems to stock everything you could ever possibly need – I’ve bought picture hooks, water colour paints, DVDs and jam from here. It’s all good quality too.
You’ll also find an antiques shop, a high-tech TV centre, pet shop, cafes, gift shops, the excellent Abbeville pub and our pick of the bunch, Cook. Cook is a shop that sells frozen homemade ready meals. Only marginally more expensive than a supermarket ready meal, Cook’s meals are well worth the money and one of the best things about Abbeville. You’ll also find some known names like Starbucks and Pizza Express strangely tucked away here.
We have to mention Clapham South and the area around the tube station. Right next to Clapham South tube is a Marks & Spencer, Sainsbury Local, a medium sized Tesco and best yet, a florist and fresh fish monger. Clapham South and the Abbeville Road area really does have it all without the busy London crowds. Fancy living here? There are plenty of estate agents to help you out.