NEED TO KNOW | AREA INSIGHT

Commuting: First-rate connectivity. Liverpool Street is just five minutes away on the central line, while the jubilee line can transport you to Canary Wharf in a quarter of an hour.

Crime: Crime rates are higher than national averages, but regeneration projects (most notably – the Olympics) should encourage these to fall.

Education: Stratford might not boast the most rarefied selection of schools, but St. Angela’s (for girls) and St. Bonaventure’s (for boys) are decent comprehensives. If you’re opting to go private, expect to travel further afield.

Restaurants and bars: Hidden amongst the fast-food outlets is Circus Eats – a budget eatery that fuses Caribbean and East End cuisine. Particularly novel are their “school dinners”: meat and two veg followed by a sponge and custard for a snip at £4.50.

Leisure: The biggest urban mall in Europe – Westfield Stratford City– will open in 2011. Cultural stimulation can be found at The Theatre Royal.