Let's move to… the home of hipster wankers and yuppies. This week: Shoreditch

What’s it about?

Shoreditch endured pre-war decline and developed a reputation for crime, until it became a byword for ‘gentrification’ in the 90s. Nowadays residents are more likely to be arrested for not eating organically, with on-the-spot fines for men without bushy beards and skinny jeans. 

The former theatre and manufacturing hub, located in the East End borough of Hackney, is also known for its innovative use of space, from rooftop bars to squeezing four 20-something professionals into a two-bedroom flat, each chipping in £800 a month. 

Any good points? 

Shoreditch High Street offers a range of organic and ethical grocery stores for those who place high importance on being kind to carrots. 

For nightlife, spend an evening at The Queen of Hoxton, a self-proclaimed hipster paradise bar and club. Chill on the sofas or go to the rooftop bar to take in stunning views of the city and soak up the vibe of the dying hipster subculture that was pretty naff in the first place.

Old Spitalfields Market, the original Victorian East End marketplace, is now home to a wide variety of yoga classes, art fairs, sustainable fashion events and street food vendors. On Thursdays there’s a special antiques market and a bi-monthly vinyl sale, so make sure you remember which days they’re on to avoid those wankers. 

Beautiful landscape?

Not really, but you have got Brick Lane Vintage Market, a hustling, bustling jamboree of second-hand goods, vinyl records and kitsch ‘collectables’. Young arty types on the hunt for clothing most charitably described as ‘quirky’ will definitely find it here. The fun of the market is you never know what you’re going to get. Could be cholera, could be scabies, could be flea bites.

For flora try Columbia Road Flower Market, held every Sunday come rain or rain and invariably packed with hordes of hyacinth-clutching tourists. Turn up just before it closes to snap up a bargain and pay only 50 per cent more than you would have done at a regular garden centre. 

Hang out at…

Take your pick. The area is awash with pop-ups, cocktail bars and ‘speakeasies’. Well, who doesn’t long for a return to the gangland murders and alcohol blindness of the Prohibition era?

There’s a surfeit of theme bars like Trapeze and trendyish clubs like Lighthouse, but if you fancy something more highbrow try Shoreditch Town Hall, where you can see small, innovative, arty performances by people who are a disappointment to their parents. 

BOXPARK, so important it’s in capitals, is a pop-up venue turned Shoreditch institution, an eclectic fusion of trendy clothing brands, up-and-coming retailers and vegan, gourmet, artisan and global street food sellers – all in converted shipping containers. Great if you’re ever wondered what it’s like to be a box of imported Chinese plastic goods.

And don’t forget Instagram-friendly hipster hang-outs like Ballie Ballerson, the idiotically named bar where drinkers can frolic in ball pits, and the London Shuffle Club, where young people play a game more usually associated with cruise ships and retirement homes, yet inexplicably believe this makes them #cool and #blessed. Would-be entrepreneurs should get in now before someone opens up a hipster brunch and bowls venue.  

Where to buy…

There’s plenty of choice, from grand period buildings if you’re rich, to more modest new-builds if you’re also rich. 

With the area catering to both artistic types and young, upwardly mobile professionals working in corporate jobs nearby in The City, the area provides an unprecedented opportunity to live alongside both nutters and bastards. 

From the streets:

Gideon Jones, 27, organic kaftan artisan: “See you for after-work drinks in a ball pit?”

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This week in Mash History: Whiny peasant becomes first person to declare he doesn't 'get' Shakespeare, 1601

WILLIAM Shakespeare is the most renowned playwright in history, inspiring generations of actors and middle-class ponces to wank on about him like they’re dead clever.

But did you know that the first whiny, pissed-off criticisms of the Bard’s work came during his own lifetime, from a plebeian audience member referred to in historical records only as ‘Maurice the Privy Scooper’? 

While many today regard Hamlet as Shakespeare’s magnum opus, Maurice disagreed, demanding a refund and only shutting up when his wife told him to stop being embarrassing. His outburst, as recorded by the theatre’s clerks, is as follows: 

“Sorry, but I just don’t get what all the fuss is about. Four hours of gaylords in tights talking at each other, then suddenly everyone’s dead. And I risked getting plague for that?

“The wife dragged me along to The Globe because one of her mates was raving about this William Shakespeare guy. Course, when one of my mates suggests watching a pack of dogs fight a bear to the death, she wants a night in. Typical bloody shrew.

“So I put on my best lice-infested shirt, coughed up a bloody extortionate quarter of a penny, and what did we get? Just a Danish guy having rich person problems. Same as the comedies and histories: rich kids depressed because they can’t shag each other or rich kids happy because they do shag each other. Then a rubbish sword fight. The only decent joke in Shakespeare is a bloke called Bottom.

“Haha. Bottom.”

Maurice continued: “Whatever happened to proper plays like in the good old days? Christopher Marlowe, he could write a show. Doctor Faustus, with the devil popping up all the time. There’s a good bit of gore in that, with ‘live quarters broiling on coals’ and some sex if you imagine it. Now everyone’s so sensitive it’s all ‘subtext’ this and ‘subtext’ that.

“If he wants my advice he should make them shorter and jazz them up a bit. Magic, maybe a witch or three, women being played by actual women, that might be popular. I’m just spitballing here.”

And so a mere commoner began the tradition of being a reductive whiner about Shakespeare, a tradition that lives on with GCSE students who’ve had ample time to get the general gist and memorise a few quotes, but left it to two days before the exam, the twats.

Next week: Sputnik, 1957. Was it a bit shit?