Spot­light on Holborn

This his­toric le­gal quar­ter is a fab­u­lous cen­tral lo­ca­tion be­ing re­born for fam­i­lies with new homes, schools and cul­ture, says

Evening Standard - West End Final Extra - ES Homes and Property - - Property Searching -

WIGS and gowns are a com­mon sight in the streets of Holborn, Lon­don’s le­gal quar­ter. Ra­di­at­ing out from the an­cient Royal Courts of Jus­tice in Strand, Holborn is home to two of the cap­i­tal’s four Inns of Court — Lin­coln’s Inn and Gray’s Inn — where some of the coun­try’s top le­gal brains prac­tice in quaint suites of rooms known as cham­bers.

These peace­ful green oases con­trast with the brash new of­fices that have trans­formed the tri­an­gle north of Fleet Street be­tween Chancery Lane and Fet­ter Lane over the last 10 years. The area is now home to mod­ern of­fices for top le­gal firms and the head­quar­ters of su­per­mar­ket gi­ant Sains­bury’s, and there are new shops, cafés and restau­rants where once there were none.

Holborn used to be able to add in­sur­ance to its list of ma­jor em­ploy­ers but since Pearl and Pru­den­tial moved out, their two fa­mous land­mark build­ings in High Holborn have found new uses. There is a Rose­wood five-star ho­tel in the Pearl build­ing, while English Her­itage moved to the High Vic­to­rian Gothic Pru­den­tial build­ing, de­signed by Al­fred Water­house.

The cen­tre of the coun­try’s di­a­mond trade, Holborn’s Hatton Gar­den hit the head­lines in dra­matic fash­ion at Easter two years ago when a gang of mainly el­derly thieves drilled through 20 inches of con­crete and stole an es­ti­mated £25 mil­lion from the Hatton Gar­den Safe De­posit com­pany. Most of the gang are now be­hind bars al­though much of their haul is still un­re­cov­ered and one gang mem­ber, nick­named Basil, re­mains at large.

Estate agent Guy Passey, from the local branch of CBRE Res­i­den­tial, says that Holborn is now seen as an ex­ten­sion to the prime cen­tral Lon­don prop­erty mar­ket.

“It is well placed halfway be­tween the City and the West End but re­mains about 20 per cent cheaper than nearby Covent Gar­den and Fitzrovia.

“It is pop­u­lar with bar­ris­ters and so­lic­i­tors and the area is be­com­ing more res­i­den­tial. And whereas it used to be dead at week­ends, now more shops, cafés and restau­rants re­main open.”

Holborn is in travel Zone 1 with St Pan­cras and King’s Cross to the north; Clerken­well to the east; Fleet Street to the south and Covent Gar­den and Blooms­bury to the west.

Holborn, a great cen­tral lo­ca­tion, is be­com­ing more res­i­den­tial

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