If you’re strolling along the Turnpike Lane end of Green Lanes, be careful not to walk past the unassuming glass shopfront of Harringay Local Store. Pop in and you’ll discover one of the area’s coolest and most eclectic shops.
As the sign outside says, this is definitely ‘not another Tesco’. Focusing on organic produce, Harringay Local Store offers a wide range of high-quality consumables. They cater for vegans, meat eaters, craft beer lovers, wine experts, cheese aficionados, and fans of free-range and Fairtrade goods.
Not only can you pick up your fruit and veg here but also artisan bread, homemade pies and multigrain arepas from local companies. Affordable everyday staples sit alongside special products, ideal for gifts or treats. And to keep the kids (big and small) quiet, there’s even a 1980s video game cabinet in the corner, offering 60 classic arcade games for free.
I spoke to Ebony who co-owns the shop with her partner. “I’m from Western Australia, and Paul and I moved over here in 2003. We started to get a bit homesick and re-evaluate our reasons for being away from our family back in Oz, so decided to do something we were interested in – food.”
Green Lanes was the obvious choice of location. “We moved to Harringay around nine years ago. In the last couple of years we began to get a bit more involved in the local community.
“We always shopped in other areas like Crouch End, Stoke Newington and Dalston so we had a hunch that a shop selling some finer products, organic produce and British meat would go down well here. Luckily, we were right.”
Has Ebony seen any changes in the local area since they started? “For sure, this end of Green Lanes has seen a fantastic growth of new businesses open up, away from the sometimes overwhelming Turkish restaurant and off licence-dominated other end. I think people have really wanted something different in the area for a while, so most new places seem to be doing well.”
So who comes to the store? “All sorts!” laughed Ebony. “We get a lot of young mothers buying staples for their families. We get the dads coming in on a Friday buying beer and snacks. There is the young ‘hip’ crowd who come in for the craft beer, wine and St John doughnuts on a Saturday. Some people get all their groceries here, but some use us as a top-up to their weekly shop.”
Adding to the store’s quirky charm, there is a section selling vinyl records – definitely not something you find in a supermarket.
“Paul is a musician, and has a huge collection at home,” Ebony explained. “He always talked about opening a record store, so it made perfect sense to us to combine that with the food here. Some people find it a bit amusing, but to us we couldn’t have imagined doing one without the other. Our two true loves.”
And future plans for Harringay Local Store?
“We are always changing our products, seeing what works, what doesn’t… looking for what is new, fresh and exciting. I think once people come in and see that we really are quite accessible, they will continue to shop here. In the not-so-near future, we are keen to open another, maybe with a smaller focus than the ‘everything goes’ we have going on here.”