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Waterstones are coming, not coming, were never here, are back again!

It appears that the 'Waterstones are coming to Crouch End' rumour died too soon. Apparently they're moving in to the three premises next to the new Superdrug. According to rumour.

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I also heard this rumour about a month ago, but have found nothing to substantiate it. It was in connection to this planning application, now approved, to convert the basement of these properties into a children's gym. But I can see nothing to link this application to Waterstones.

However, to add fuel to the rumour, I see that the middle unit has a closing down notice in the window, and I am reliably informed that Broadway is being obliged to move out.

I can't see anything in planning as yet, but the builders are there and they confirmed -

Waterstones is indeed moving in

The works to convert the 3 units to one will complete in March, so I'm going to move this from 'rumour' to 'under/construction' (Broadway boutique is apparently moving to the vacant ex-Daniel Field premises on Topsfield Parade).

Wouldn't you expect a planning consent is necessary to convert 3 units into one?

Yes they will need to apply for planning permission - certainly for the alteration to the existing shopfronts.

At one time we were reasonably  served for book shops including ????? Books - a sort of classical name which has now just vanished from my mind. There were also 2 good second hand bookshops, one of which is now a Pizza Take away on Crouch End Hill. The remaindered book shop on corner of Crouch Hall Road was pretty good, too. That of course was swallowed up by the Waitrose extension***.  I was pleased when House of Books opened recently on the old Cook premises. They have a tremendous selection of books. I hope Waterstones don't blow them out of the water. Of course Waterstones yet have to go through the planning stage... Having said that they are usually very well stocked. Borders was very good, that close down a couple of years ago. They had good branches in Islington and the Brent Cross Extension.

*** Don't know who does planning and design for Waitrose but the layout in the store since the extension is ridiculous, makes it very difficult to get to the tills. No doubt somebody sat in head office of Waitrose armed with Company Planning Compute and drew up that ridiculous design which has made shopping there very difficult, particularly at this time of year. Still I don't need to lose any sleep about Waitrose.

The name you were looking for is Prospero's Books. I remember the 2nd hand bookshop on Crouch End Hill. It turned into a vegetarian restaurant, suitably called Fiction, which didn't last long. I think you'll find that most of the books in House of Books are remaindered. The one swallowed by Waitrose was also called House of Books.

There are a bunch of stickers on the windows for a MyGym. Whether it is at street level or in the basements of 2 to 4 Broadway is not clear.

My Gym Children’s Fitness Centre provides age appropriate, structured classes, parties and camps for children between the ages of 6 weeks to 10 years old (some gyms operate until 13 years). My Gym operates in a state of the art, purpose built ultimate exercise and play structure. The unique program has been developed by through intensive physiological, psychological and sociological research, and enhances the physical, social and emotional development of the children.

I think to get to mygym you go through the archway.

Confirmation of the Waterstones story - an estate agent's advert this week:

The last wriggle in a very enjoyable saga perhaps?


If Waterstones are looking for an 'urban village' to test out their faux independent concept, Crouch End would just fit the bill - lots of leafy meeja yummy mummies. So look out for 'Crouch End Books' or ' Clocktower Books' . They might even provide a corner where you can have a Dunn's bun and a coffee from Coffee Circus (or should that be from Gails and Harris & Hoole, the other 'independents'?)


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