Barking: Up and coming

Barking: Up and comingNestled in the historic heart of the borough of Barking and

Location and transport

As it is only 8.8 miles to the east of Charing Cross, Barking is an ideal place for commuters. It’s just to the north of the A13, and is well-served by a number of bus routes. Barking station is a stopping point for both National Rail, London Underground and Overground trains.

It is the eastern terminus of the Overground line from Gospel Oak, and also of the Hammersmith and City line. District line services can be caught towards both Upminster and the western branches, including Ealing Broadway, Richmond, Wimbledon and Edgware Road. Fenchurch Street station is only 15 minutes away by train.

History

While not well-known for its history and architecture, Barking was in fact founded in the seventh century. Barking Abbey dates from this period, and what remains after Viking raids and Henry VIII’s Dissolution of the Monasteries is exceptionally beautiful.

Many people will know the area from the film Made in Dagenham, which depicts the struggle of female workers at the nearby Ford factory to obtain equal pay for equal work. However, the factory’s workforce is now 90 per cent lower than at its peak, and the area sometimes seems to have lost direction on account of this.

At present, there is a major redevelopment of the disused industrial lands in the south of the area underway, meaning that further regeneration is likely. The Barking Riverside is also an area with much ongoing investment, and is set for completion in 2025.

Amenities

For families, there are plenty of good schools to choose from. Woodlands Junior School and Upden Primary School are rated good by Ofsted. A remarkable number of secondary schools have outstanding ratings, including Little Ilford School, Plashet School and the Isaac Newton Academy.

If you have your heart set on a particular school, check borough boundaries before you make a move, as some of those listed above are in Newham or Redbridge, due to mid-century changes to the local authorities.Newham or Redbridge, due to mid-century changes to the local authorities.

One of Barking’s recent success stories is Eastbrookend, which was transformed from wasteland into a 208-acre nature reserve. This is a great place for family days out. In addition to this, the town centre is currently undergoing a series of major renovations, with the potential to be a popular and trendy hub in the near future.

Housing

The single biggest advantage of housing in Barking is its affordability, which will come as a relief to anyone who has been overstretched by London house prices and rents. Much of the available property is current or ex-social housing from the early to mid-20th century, meaning that there is an abundance of cheap and cheerful living options with a focus on community spirit.
Overall, Barking offers a cheap and functional for those who are hoping to save for the future. However, the numerous investments and building projects in the area suggest that perhaps its biggest strength of all is its future potential, making it a shrewd move for those who like to be on the cusp.

Published 16th March, 2015

© 2015 Estates IT Limited

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Barking: Up and coming

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