London is famed for its creative arts scene, with all manner of musical, artistic and dramatic works being created across the capital. But it has traditionally been inner city areas such as Shoreditch and Camden that have been at the epicentre of such creativity.
However, some say that rapidly increasing London rents are pushing out these creative talents, in favour of the very rich. Most of these extremely wealthy individuals hail from the banking sector – one of the few industries that offer the kind of salaries needed to live in central London.
While this is good news for those who work in banks, how does it affect the creative output of the capital? The creative leanings of many inner London areas have contributed largely to their popularity, but it seems that the painters, bands, filmmakers and actors simply cannot afford the rents – let alone the purchase prices.
The issue perhaps comes into even sharper focus when we realise how many properties are not lived in at all. Take up of unoccupied property insurance is high in these areas, as buyers use London flats and houses as a way of storing wealth. But of course, no one lives in these properties.
What is the answer?
While the banking sector and overseas buyers are undeniably highly valued contributors to the UK economy, the issue of losing our inner city creatives is not going away anytime soon. The fact that creative arts in fact add to the desirability of an area (and therefore boost property prices) should perhaps not be forgotten. There appears to be no immediate answer to the question, but it arguably deserves some thought.