AUTHOR Charlotte Mendelson pretty much provided the definitive explanation of Kentish Town’s charm when she was asked to talk about her favourite high street in the Telegraph last month. She said: “It may be a bit scruffy, and even have the odd ‘sauna’, but it has plenty of independent shops and is full of character – and characters”, adding: “Our old-style ladies’ outfitters, Blustons, has had the same red-spotted, Forties halter-neck dress in the window for months, if not years. All the other stock changes regularly, but it remains unmoved.”
In the same piece, and it really does sum K-Town up to a tee, she adds the area has “a mumbling philosopher, several famous writers and someone known as ‘The Victorian Lady’, a woman in her thirties, in full costume, complete with basket, hat and gloves.”
How nice that the ‘Victorian Lady’ should get a mention in the nationals.
Sometimes she is described in pub conversations as ‘that Suffragette’ or ‘Mary Poppins walking around’, but she’s a pretty important part of any game of Kentish Town bingo, a mobile phone-papped enigma, the star of a hundred Twitpics. It’s local characters like this who unwittingly create a shared neighbourhood familiarity for all of us. You don’t need to know who she is, what she’s doing, just that there’s that woman in Victorian clothes doing her own thing… and if you spot her, you know you’re back in Kentish Town.
These latest housey-housey sightings above come from intrigued local councillor Paul Braithwaite.