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The 12 Coolest Businesses of Hackney


By Mersa Auda

Hackney is known for its diversity in culture, food, and shopping. But what truly makes it a standout town are the businesses that bring its innovative and entrepreneurial spirit to life. From the first crowdfunded cat cafe in the world to an independent games developer to an artisan globe makers, here are 12 of Hackney’s coolest businesses:


A project conceived to introduce farming into the city and, in doing so, cut carbon and reduce waste. FARM is the go- to company for urban farming of any kind, for businesses
and individuals alike. It aims to inspire city dwellers to grow their own food and assist them in that task. farmlondon.weebly.com


A haven for the imagination, this is the first and perhaps only supply store for monsters. Open three days a week, here you can purchase Vague Unease or Escalating Panic in a tin, but all their inventive products are worth checking out. 100 percent of proceeds go to Ministry of Stories, Hackney’s creative-writing charity for children. monstersupplies.org


An easy, straight-forward way to make investments, Seedrs enables people to discover emerging businesses, invest in the projects they believe in, and then share in their success. Fees are fair and transparent, and only payable when and if profits are made. seedrs.com


After discovering how expensive sending money abroad can be due to hidden charges, two Estonian friends decided to devise a transparent system that lets people make transfers at the lowest possible cost. Giving users the real exchange rate, TransferWise is simple to use and considerably cheaper than high-street banks. transferwise.com


Wool and The Gang is a global fashion brand powered by the maker movement, with a unique Fashion In a Kit offering that has gained them thousands of loyal fans worldwide. Knitting and crochet kits for all levels, inspiring fashion lovers to hone their knitting skills. Kits contain everything you need to make scarves, jumpers, bags, and much more, in many different styles. Wool and the Gang has collaborated with Giles Deacon for his LFW show, the British Fashion Council, Mini, Veuve Clicquot, Christopher Raeburn, and many more to date. woolandthegang.com


Offering one of the quirkiest afternoon-tea experiences in London, High Tea at this venue is enjoyed in the company of some adorable cats. All felines here are rescues and may well be up for playing and cuddling. The first crowdfunded cat cafe in the world, its popularity means that it is usually fully booked for weeks in advance. ladydinahs.com


An independent games developer creating original
and innovative games, there is a passionate team behind Bossa taking inspiration from the feedback of real players, who are made to feel part of the development process. They strive to make mind-blowing games; that challenge the status quo.


Artisan globe makers making personalised, handcrafted pieces in various styles and sizes. All globes are bespoke and one can choose every single detail according to one’s taste, from the shading to the base materials and the finish. Makes for a unique and valuable gift. bellerbyandco.com


This is the UK’s only Fair-trade, farmer-owned nut company. They buy their nuts from the cooperatives of small-scale farmers who own a 49% share of the business. Farmers are located all over the world’ may work better and feel empowered to be actively involved in the whole supply chain. chooseliberation.com


A platform used by many known businesses for collecting Direct Debit payments in a hassle-free way. It is simple
to set up and payments are collected automatically on the pre-scheduled dates. It can be used for invoice payments or subscriptions, for instance, and is perfect for monitoring recurring payments. gocardless.com


A board game cafe with an impressive library of over 900 games to choose from. Friends and families can spend hours here playing classic games or discovering exciting new ones. A food menu and rotating craft beers complete the experience. A game lover’s paradise! draughtslondon.com


Creating custom-made lingerie and swimwear in their Hackney workshops, these passionate tailors challenge the fast fashion phenomenon by only making what is ordered. This means no unnecessary waste and no work overload — only quality craftsmanship and happy customers who truly value the products and work involved. buttressandsnatch.co.uk

Buttress & Snatch