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Food & Shopping

Croydon is the shopping capital of south London, a status set to be reinforced by the £1.4billion regeneration of the Whitgift Shopping Centre by the Croydon Partnership – an alliance of retail giants Westfield and Hammerson.

There is a cluster of food and drink establishments to the south of the town centre, with a heady mix of fine-dining restaurants, chains, fast-food outlets, bars and pubs forming what has been rebranded the “Croydon Restaurant Quarter”.

A separate dining community has been created next to East Croydon station with Boxpark Croydon capitalising on the street food revolution by opening in 2016.

Facts and figures:

  • Whitgift Centre was a pioneering shopping centre when it was built in the late 1960s and remained the largest covered shopping development in London until Westfield London opened in 2008.
  • On the other side of North End is Centrale, including House of Fraser and Debenhams – opened in 2004.
  • £1.4billion Westfield and Hammerson project will make the town one of the UK’s top-ten shopping destinations. Work is due to commence in 2019.
  • Surrey Street Market has traded since 1236, making it the oldest known street market in the UK. Croydon Council is committing £500,000 for a programme of improvements to the market including improved lighting and paving.
  • Croydon’s Restaurant Quarter, in South End, offers an outstanding range of eating options including a Michelin-rated restaurant and cuisine from around the globe, including: Italian, Chinese, French, Greek, Indian, Japanese, Mexican, Persian, Spanish, Thai and, of course, British.
  • Purley Way boasts probably the largest out-of-town shopping experience in the UK across several business parks stretching along the A23. The most famous landmark in the area is at Scandinavian furniture store IKEA, built on the site of a former power station, with two of the chimneys still intact. Other big-name stores include: DFS, Sports Direct, Next, Boots, B&Q, Currys, PC World and John Lewis.