London has been getting a lot of bad press. Grayson Perry recently warned us that the capital is on the verge of becoming a cultural desert because rich people (soon the only ones who can afford London prices) don’t create culture. Shoreditchification hasn’t only lead to overpriced quinoa, as annoying as that might be, but to a gentrification that leaves single mums having to fight for affordable homes. And even born and bred Telegraph journalists seem to think London is, well basically, over. We spoke to a bunch of fellow creatives and friends of Cooler to find out if it’s time to finally follow the sun, the snow, or at least cheap rents.
Hannah Logic, who among a lot of other stuff introduced Dasha Love to the Cooler team by casting her for this rooftop story, went to report from melt festival in Germany for Cooler and was last year’s face of Volcomunity with her band, has lived in London for 8 years, initially to work in fashion. The pictures below are some examples of her styling work for Vice.
I moved to London when I was 18, which is 8 years ago now!? I moved here partially to look cool to all my old friends, but mostly because I wanted to work in fashion. The rent then was a lot compared to my home town but nothing compared to what a kid can expect to have to pay now. Back then my rent was £70 a week and I still ended up having to squat. But they’ve made that nearly impossible now too.
Do you feel like your artist/creative friends are struggling with how expensive it’s become?
Anyone in my circles is struggling right now, creative or not. They’re either leaving London, spending so much money on their rent they can’t afford to live anymore, or maybe doing something illegal. And we need these people, they are the ones who know about life, that shit we go through, all those struggles make us interesting, give us stories and teach us lessons, without these people London’s getting stale.
Creative people tend to live as cheap as possible, to leave time to find inspiration. I know a lot of people whose inspiration has suffered from having to get ‘real’ jobs. That’s all well and that, everyone has to work, but without creative people making these ‘creative hubs’ for the rich to take over, where will the rich go?
And maybe if we put this question forward someone might listen, because let’s be honest no one’s listening to the families who have lived in London for generations and are being sent to live in Manchester to make room for the rich. Sadly they don’t tend to have as many friends in the media to speak up for them. #FOCUS E15
Has that had an impact on how creative and fun London is?
Once the rich do move in, they buy your local pub and make it into a bistro so a pint is now a fiver, and that greasy spoons you go to the morning after is now selling a builders tea for £2.50 in a plant pot. You can forget house parties too, if you’re lucky enough to find one it’ll be unrecogniseable, reasonably civilised, music at a responsible level, maybe shoes off at the door, but worst of all they’ll probably be talking about veganism and beards. What happend to smashing walls down to make rooms bigger and throwing stuff out the window for fun. Boring.
What are the alternatives to London?
I have a couple of ideas but I’m not going to tell you and I beg no one else does because blatantly the rich will ruin it if they find out.