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Shadwell London Guide

Shadwell London Guide

6 August 2020 Simon Banks Read time: 3 min
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Simon Banks

One of the original East London regeneration areas, Shadwell knows a thing or two about combining old with new. Shiny converted warehouse apartments mix nicely with cobblestone streets and waterside views to create an in-demand neighbourhood.

In fact, it's the riverside setting that makes Shadwell shine. This little enclave in the east of the capital has plenty of character and a offers a nod to maritime history everywhere you look, whether it's famous watering holes or local docks.

In our latest London guide, we're bringing you everything you need to know about living in Shadwell. So, read on and discover its history, who lives there, the best places to eat and explore.

On a map

Shadwell Google Map

Shadwell is located in East London and has E1 and E1W postcodes. It falls under the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, which it shares with Whitechapel, Canary Wharf and Limehouse. Shadwell is located about three miles from Charing Cross.

History of Shadwell

Shadwell has a history that dates as far back as the Roman Times, with archaeologists discovering evidence of a port complex that was used in 3rd Century AD. These links cement Shadwell's reputation as an area with strong maritime roots.

By the 17th century, Shadwell had a population of around 8,000 and was a maritime settlement with roperies, tanneries, breweries, wharves, smiths, and many taverns, some of which remain to this day.

In the mid-18th century, the neighbourhood established the Shadwell Spa, which produced sulphurous waters and was used for medicinal purposes and extracted for sea salts.

Who lives there?

Today, the population of Shadwell is around 15,000, which is an increase of about 7,000 in 400 years. The median age is one of the youngest in London at 29-years-old. More than three-quarters of residents in Shadwell rent their home.

Renting in Shadwell

Shadwell home

You will find a variety of property types in Shadwell, such as converted warehouse apartments, period homes from the Georgian and Victorian era and a smattering of Build-to-Rent communities and new builds in neighbouring Wapping.

Expect to pay around £1,300 per month for a one-bedroom property in Shadwell, with a two-bedroom home costing in the region of £1,800 per month. A three-bed-plus home starts from around £2,200.

Shadwell travel

Shadwell Overground station

Shadwell is well connected, especially when it comes to navigating East London. An Overground Line and DLR station offer direct links into Canary Wharf and Bank, meaning you're well placed for both of London's financial districts.

Shadwell eateries

George Tavern

George Tavern interior

Set in a Grade II listed building, the George Tavern is a historic pub in Shadwell. There's a large selection of ales to choose from, as well as your typical pub grub. The premises also doubles up as a music venue, just in case you feel like shaking a leg. 


Head to Grounded for some fresh coffee and a top-notch breakfast. Enjoy a good ol' traditional English with freshly sourced ingredients. Then wash it down with a hot cup of freshly roasted coffee.


Motley interior

Dine, drink and hang out at Motley, a casual eatery in a Whitechapel hotel. There's plenty of character at this hotspot, not to mention delicious food. It's located in the heart of the Qbic hotel and serves everything from tasty burgers to signature cocktails.

Things to do in Shadwell

Tobacco Dock

Get yourself down to Tobacco Dock, whether it's for business or pleasure. The unique space has played host to plenty of business events, acting as the temporary home for many leading brands. There are also regular social events that include street food vendors and more.

St. Katherine's Docks

St . Katherine's Dock

Enjoy the scenery of a quaint dockside while eating a top-notch meal or simply enjoying a pleasant walk. St. Katherine's Docks is one of the standout attractions in this section of East London, and it'll be right on your doorstep should you move to Shadwell.

Whitechapel Gallery

Discover a range of exhibitions at Whitechapel Gallery, a public art gallery that displays works of temporary artists as well as organising retrospective exhibitions. Whitechapel Gallery was one of the first publicly funded galleries for temporary exhibitions in London.

Moving to Shadwell

Shadwell is a neighbourhood for you if you're looking for East-End charm mixed in with waterside settings. It's full of vibrancy and offers residents plenty of places to eat, drink and play while being well connected to some of East London's most popular areas.


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