poplar full area guide

Complete Area Guide To London’s Poplar Area

Living in Poplar

A central, up-and-coming, and affordable neighbourhood you won’t want to miss


The Poplar neighbourhood of East London is rapidly gaining more and more popularity among young professionals and students. And for good reason.

With its proximity to the business district of Canary Wharf and being the home of the largest campus of the Tower Hamlets College, Poplar’s location is hard to beat. To top that off, it also offers some of the most affordable properties in Zone 2 and great links to the rest of the city. You can easily see why the area is becoming so popular.

Historically, Poplar has been a tight-knit community, home to the hard workers of the nearby Docklands. Recently, it has become the focal point of several regeneration schemes that have revived the area’s housing market and started attracting many young families, investors, and tech start-ups.

The property scene used to be dominated by council estates available through social housing schemes. It is now peppered with newer builds boasting modern architecture and great amenities. Those looking to call Poplar their home will have plenty of housing options to choose from.

Poplar is the ideal location for young professionals and young families or singles looking for a well-connected, reasonably priced, and thriving neighbourhood located in one of London’s best Zones.

About the Area – Poplar

Poplar is the administrative centre of the London Borough of Tower Hamlets and incorporates the areas of Poplar Baths, Blackwall Yard, Trinity Buoy Wharf, and Blackwall. Part of London’s East End, Poplar is located only 5 miles from Charing Cross. Its centre is proudly represented by Chrisp Street Market, a large commercial area surrounded by residential developments.

With a history dating back to 1327, Poplar takes its name from the Black Poplar tree. The urbanisation of the area began around 1654, when the East India Company built the St Matthias Old Church on Poplar High Street. It went on to attract more people to the area and reinforce the local settlement.

In 1951 Poplar hosted the Festival of Britain. The Lansbury Housing Estate on East India Dock Road, which includes Chrisp Street Market, was built for this special occasion. Soon after, in the 1960s, more properties were built in the area, such as the Robin Hood Gardens, Balfron Tower, Carradale, and Glenkerry House.

Following the closure of the Docks in the 1980s, massive regeneration programs were initiated by the British Government in the area. Poplar’s most notable landmarks include Poplar Town Hall, the Poplar Bowls Club, the Workhouse sports centre, and Poplar Baths.

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Poplar – Know the Area

Entertainment options are widely available for Poplar residents. This dynamic area hosts many restaurants, pubs, cafes, and shops along Poplar High Street and East India Dock Road. It has a famous market – Chrisp Street, as well as two nature reserves.

Some of the most popular attractions in Poplar are:


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New builds are starting to replace older housing in Poplar. The property scene here was once dominated by 19th century buildings built in an “economic neo-Georgian” style. However, Poplar is no stranger to modern architecture. The trend for building high-rises here began in the 1960s, with landmarks such as the Balfron Tower.


Poplar is home to a few very popular open spaces and wildlife reserves. The most famous one is Mudchute Park and Farm – a large urban park and nature reserve south of Canary Wharf. The area also hosts Bartlett Park and the Bow Creek Ecology Park.

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The Poplar area is home to around 7,000 residents. Its population is ethnically diverse and made up of young families, young professionals, and students, as well as local families of former docking workers.


Residents of Poplar have many great shopping options. From cheap goods sold at Chrisp Street Market to a wide range of local shops. The area has its own shopping centre – The Retail Place, and it is very close to the Canary Wharf Shopping Centre, as well as Churchill Place Shopping Mall.

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Poplar Property Prices

Properties in Poplar are still affordable. Especially when you consider its central location and the wide range of properties the housing market here offers. The are many options for terrace houses, older estate homes, as well as modern high-rises.

The rental market is very active since students are very attracted to the area given its proximity to the largest campus of the Tower Hamlets College. Poplar is still a buyer’s market as it attracts increasingly more young professionals looking to be closer to the Canary Wharf business centre. There is very good potential for profit for private buyers, as well as buy-to-let investors.

New Developments in Poplar

The Poplar housing market is being revived through several modern residential developments delivering luxury apartments with a wide range of contemporary amenities. Properties are still inexpensive as the area is continuing its regeneration so buyers can still secure a good price and return on investment. Here are some of the new developments available in Poplar:

Schools in Poplar

Young families have plenty of good nurseries, primary, secondary schools, and colleges to choose from in Poplar. Here is a shortlist of the more popular educational facilities in Poplar:

Medical Care Facilities in Poplar

Residents in Poplar have access to many well-ranked medical facilities. Here is a shortlist of the most notable hospitals and medical centres in the area:

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Saint Pauls Medical Centre

126 St Paul’s Way, London E34AD, UK

hospital - East London

RejuvenceMedical Centre

797 Commercial Rd, Poplar, London E147HG, UK

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BMI The London Independent Hospital

1 Beaumont Square, Stepney Green, London E14NL, UK

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The Royal London Hospital

Whitechapel Road, Whitechapel, London E11FR, UK

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Barts Health NHS Trust Children’s hospital

Whitechapel Rd, London E11BB, UK

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Mile End Hospital

via A104, Bancroft Rd, London E14DG, UK

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Saint Pauls Medical Centre

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RejuvenceMedical Center

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BMI The London Independent Hospital

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The Royal London Hospital

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Barts Health NHS Trust Children’s hospital

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Mile End Hospital

Medical Care Facilities in Poplar

Residents in Poplar have access to many well-ranked medical facilities. Here is a shortlist of the most notable hospitals and medical centres in the area:


Saint Pauls Medical Centre


RejuvenceMedical Center


BMI The London Independent Hospital


The Royal London Hospital


Barts Health NHS Trust Children’s hospital


Mile End Hospital

Poplar Commute Times

Poplar’s most attractive feature is its proximity to the city centre and great links to the rest of the city. If you choose to live in Poplar, you will have the City only 5.3 miles away. It will take you 30 minutes to reach it by car, transit, or bike.

Many Poplar residents choose the area for its proximity to the business district of Canary Wharf. It is located only 2 miles away. That means a 5-minute commute by car or 15 minutes by transit or bike.

You can also access Southwark from Poplar since it sits just 5.4 miles away. It will take you about 30 minutes to get there by car or 35 minutes by transit or bike.

Westminster is located 7.5 miles away from Poplar, and Shoreditch is 5.8 miles away. You can easily reach them both by transit in 45 minutes.

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Why You Should Invest in a Poplar Property

Poplar is a great alternative for house hunters wanting to live close to Canary Wharf but not spend a fortune on a property. It also offers short commutes to most other London areas and great housing options at affordable prices. Rental yields for Poplar properties are as high as 6%, compared to the 3% London average.

The new Crossrail connection will shorten commute times even more and is bound to attract even more residents to Poplar. The area is also the focus of other community investments and investments in social housing that will increase its appeal.

Poplar offers inexpensive riverside properties, a young and dynamic community, plenty of restaurants and bars, and proximity to some of the most famous London landmarks. It should come as no surprise that property prices in the area are estimated to rise by at least 30% in the coming years. Securing a property now rather than later can still ensure a high-profit margin for investors.

Poplar Living Conditions

Transport and accessibility is the category in which Poplar wins the most points. It has several DLR routes and access to the Underground Jubilee Line. Bus and road links are also very good and the new Crossrail connection will make commutes even shorter.

The Poplar community is made up of families living here for many years and it is ethnically diverse. They are proud of their Docklands heritage and are engaged in community development plans. Newer residents are young professionals working in Canary Wharf.

The property scene is dominated by high-rise buildings, council estate homes, and some period houses.

Safety is not an issue in Poplar, its crime rate is average. Parking, however, is a little expensive.

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Poplar Restaurants & Cafes

Here is a list of eateries every foodie should try out in Poplar:

⦁ One Canada Square (One Canada Square, Canary Wharf) is an Art Deco restaurant that serves glamorous cocktails and fine seasonal cuisine
⦁ Sri Nam (10 Cabot Square, Canary Wharf) is an Oriental restaurant in the location of London’s Docklands
⦁ Bella Cosa (South Quay, Drewry House, Marsh Wall) offers great Italian cuisine in a glass-fronted location with amazing cityscape views of Canary Wharf
⦁ Biagio Pizzeria (3 Clove Crescent, Leamouth) is home to authentic pizzas and fresh pasta dishes
⦁ Browns Brasserie & Bar (West India Quay, Hertsmere Road) offers a blend of European brasserie dishes and an informal yet refined concept
⦁ Café Rouge (29-35 Mackenzie Walk, 10 Cabot Square) serves delicious foods, great wines, and a pleasant ambience the French way.

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