The History of Blackstock Road
The old name of Blackstock Road was Boarded River Lane. There were not many houses there, just some small cottages. There was a small river there called the Hackney Brook. There was a gate in the river where the Arsenal Tavern is now. People fished there.
There was also a café called Eel Pie House, where they made pies from eels from the Hackney Brook. This café was roughly where 57 Wilberforce Road is today.
The Islington side of Blackstock Road was built in the 1850’s . The other side was just fields and bushes over to Clissold Park. Rich people lived at the top of the hill, but Blackstock Road was a dangerous place. Hurlock Street, opposite the police station now, was a bad place at night time. Robbers hid in the bushes there and jumped out to steal money from people.
Blackstock Road Today
There are a lot of independent shops, cafes and restaurants in Blackstock Road today. There are a lot of pubs, and at the north end there are Algerian cafés. Some people call the road “Little Algiers”. There are also many restaurants and shops all the way to Highbury Park. The pubs here include the Twelve Pins, Blackstock, The Kings Head, the Arsenal Tavern, the Woodbine, the Gunners and the Bank of Friendship.
There are four buses on Blackstock road, the 4, 19, 106 and 236. They go to to Battersea, Waterloo or Archway, Hackney Wick and Whitechapel. Blackstock Road is also very near to Finsbury Park station at its northern end, with the Victoria line and Piccadilly line. Arsenal Station on Gillespie Road is five minutes walk from Blackstock Road.