London areas dominate list of fastest growing economies as Croydon – the Silicon Valley of South London – takes the crown

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Croydon – like much of London – has been going through a construction boom recently (Source: Getty)

Croydon's burgeoning reputation as a tech hub has made it the UK’s fastest growing economy, new research has found. 

Croydon topped the list of 173 areas as the fastest growing UK region with an annual growth rate of 9.3 per cent in gross value added (GVA), according to accountancy group UHY Hacker Young.

GVA is a measure of an area’s contribution to the UK economy based on the value of the goods and services it produces per capita.

Croydon's GVA rose to £19,800 in the last year, from £18,120 the previous year.

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London dominates the top ten, with six out of the ten fastest-growing economies in the UK located in the capital.

London’s average GVA increased five per cent in the past year to £52,880 from £50,360 in the previous year, far outstripping the UK average of 3.4 per cent. 

Croydon topped the national list, though Camden & the City of London and Bromley were also in the top five areas for fastest growth rates, with 8.9 per cent and 8.1 per cent respectively.

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Croydon stands out as the UK economic success story however, now home to over a thousand digital, creative, and technology companies alone.

Colin Jones, Partner at UHY Hacker Young, said:

Croydon’s regeneration is going from strength to strength and it is no longer a joke that it is beginning to rival Shoreditch in attracting technology companies. Croydon has reinvented itself over the last ten years and is attracting a wide range of businesses to the area and is quickly becoming a commuter hotspot. 

Over the last two decades, significant resources have gone into Croydon’s regeneration including improving its transport connections with the rest of London and the UK. With such close proximity to Gatwick, Croydon is perfectly located for both international trade and European-based companies looking to open a UK base.

Property developers and estate agents now believe Croydon real estate is poised to explode due to the increasing expenses of living more centrally. 

As London’s housing stock becomes more valuable, the capital has pushed outwards and its furthest districts have started to attract interest from young people priced out of Zone Two and families looking for value for money within commuting distance.

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Earlier this year minister of state responsible for digital policy at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport Matthew Hancock visited Croydon Tech City and described it as a “blueprint for the future”.