A Guide Hackney Wick, East London’s Vibrant Entertainment Hotspot
Hackney Wick, popularly known as The Wick, is a neighborhood on the south-eastern part of Hackney, near the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. Formerly an industrial hub, Hackney Wick is now one of the region’s most vibrant places.
The once dilapidated industrial warehouses have been transformed into giant hip venues, and the area is home to over 600 art studios and venues. Check out how the transformation took place and some interesting things to do in Hackney Wick.
Hackney Wick Historical Background
Hackney Wick was a historically flood-prone area, but the construction of canals and relief channels led by Alfred the Great in the 1890s allowed the area to thrive. The establishment of a silk factory by the end of the 18th century catalyzed the growth of Hackney Wick, turning it into a thriving industrial zone by the beginning of the 20th century.
It was characterized by silk mills, plastic factories, and other production facilities. It was here, and during this time, that the term petrol was pioneered by Carless, Capel, and Leonard, the only oil distiller in Hackney Wick during the 19th century.
But while the industrial growth helped strengthen East London’s economy, it took away from the area’s social life as most residents would turn to the more vibrant areas nearby like Shoreditch for entertainment. To change this, Hackney Wick’s municipal authorities replaced slums with modern blocks of flats and set up public baths, a library, and other amenities that would help revive the area’s social life. As a result, Hackney Wick is one of the best places to stop by for recreation in East London today.
Fun and Interesting Things to do in Hackney Wick
If you’re visiting Hackney Wick, make sure you do the following:
Explore Street Art
Hackney Wick’s backstreets are a work of art ( literally). The area is known for its iconic street graffiti and murals, which is no surprise as it has a significantly high concentration of artists. The Busk mural on Echo Building in Hackney Bridge is the most notable. It features an artist with a paintbrush in front of classic graffiti as a nod to The Wick’s industrial past and artistic future.
Catch a Drink at Hackney Wick Horseshoe
The Hackney Wick Horseshoe close to Hackney Wick Station is a must-visit if you’re in Hackney Wick overnight. The Horseshoe features a string of hip raving joints, and is one of the best spots for nightlife in Hackney Wick.
Start the night at Grow, a canal-side joint with a floating music stage, and if in the mood for some comedy, head to Studio 9294. Check out the Beer Merchants Tap if you enjoy getting drunk on beer. Besides the mentioned, many other cool restaurants, pubs, and cocktail bars open until midnight around the Hackney Horseshoe.
Other interesting things to do in Hackney Wick:
- Visit the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
- Check out Tank Bar, one of the first brewpubs in the UK to serve beer straight from tanks
- Stroll Hackney Wick’s canal-side community paths
- Head over to the Hackney Wick Boulder Project for indoor climbing challenges
Discover Hackney Wick
Hackney Wick might have been once a sleepy industrial area, but it’s now a vibrant neighborhood adorned with street art. It teems with fantastic eateries, microbreweries, and raving joints housed in former warehouses. If you don’t know where to start, our brief guide above includes some of the hottest and must-see spots in Hackney Wick.