The Organic Stall and the new demographic

This is Kay. He's opened a deli where Hornsey Road meets Tollington Way, i.e. across the road from Tesco's and down a bit. 

Kay, smiling

The shop (called Organic Stall) is a delight. There are tables by the window where you can have a coffee and watch the world or at least the subset of it that hangs out on the Hornsey Road go by. There are wooden crates of fruit and veg stacked up in the middle of the floor (I can recommend the apples) and the shelves are full of what mumsnet would call 'naice' things: posh apple and carrot juice, fancy chocolate, upmarket tea, good tomato sauce, healthy baby food and so on. 

I can also recommend the brownies.

In other words, it sells the kind of stuff that you had to schlep down to Waitrose on the Holloway Road for, and that's only worth doing during a zombie invasion.

Kay's looking for feedback on what to stock, so go tell him if you want to be able to buy spelt flour or ginger jam locally. 

I really want this place to do well because the Hornsey Road needs some luck, but also because its success would prove a theory of mine right. 

The theory is that when high streets struggle it is often (or at least sometimes) because the shops are too downmarket.

You'd never guess it from the shuttered shops, or from the scruffy takeaways and newsagents, but there is money near here. Within a half-mile radius there are two bed flats on sale for over £500k and a house to rent at £925 a week. There is also a hell of a lot of poverty and gentrification is a mixed blessing, but it's been frustrating to see shops struggle because they aren't pitched to attract the new demographic. I don't know why this happens (perhaps because posh people don't tend to open shops?) but it is bloody annoying.

More on this theme in the aspirational Luton blog 

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