Seeing this little scene at the entrance to Clapton Passage earlier today underlined for me how routine it has become to see young people - mostly students, I assume - making films about the neighbourhood. See that woman behind a tripod outside the shop filming the man up the ladder cleaning stuff off the wall at the side of Danny's Motor Shop?
I'd guess that plenty of those film-makers live around here and that at least some of their films are about the way the area is changing. To me, this process of change seems to have greatly accelerated lately, although I'm probably noticing it more than than most because the sorts of change we're seeing has been predicted for so long - since I moved to the vicinity of Clapton Pond 20 years ago at least - without really, visibly taking hold. It seemed to stall at Dalston's eastern border.
But now, fairly suddenly, the area has become recognised as desirable to a certain sort of person in a way that it wasn't when I showed up in spring 1992. Today, it's almost as routine to encounter a young film-maker on the streets round here as it is to be accosted by a beggar. I'm happy to see the young film-makers, but also wonder what the social shift their increased presence indicates is doing for the beggars.