The Estate attracts many families because the lack of through traffic means that it is simply a great place for children and teenagers. There is a strong community and occasional events such as street parties mean that families get to know each other well. Children spend much of their time at each others’ houses. Activities for children abound: music, sport, theatre, dance, shows … pretty much anything you could want within a couple of miles.
The Estate Community Centre has a variety of social events, trips and courses. It also houses IT facilities that are available to residents for either no charge, or just the cost of printing.
Local sports facilities include tennis, bowls, open air swimming (pool or pond) jogging on the Heath or running track and, recently in the winter, an ice rink.
If all that seems too exhausting, the most popular local pastime is sitting outside one of the many local cafés chatting.
Parents can choose between a variety of outstanding schools within walking distance of the Estate. There is a popular nursery on the Estate, Holly Lodge Nursery, as well as a play group, and the excellent York Rise Nursery nearby. Two local state primary schools, Brookfield and St Michael’s, both have good reputations. Ofsted starts it report with the rare accolade: “St Michael’s school provides its pupils with an outstanding quality of education”.
Four nearby state secondary schools William Ellis (boys), Parliament Hill (girls), La Santa Union (catholic girls) and Acland Burghley (mixed) are all rated by Ofsted as “good” or “very good”; they join to form La SWAP sixth form college.
Two independent schools, Highgate (mixed) and Channing (girls), are great if you can pass the entry exams (and afford the fees).
It is easy to see why many residents of nearby Islington send their children to Camden schools.