We Are Cally
Caledonian Road, more locally known as “The Cally”, stretches from Holloway Road in the north to King’s Cross in the South and, at its centre, is the Cally bridge, an iconic and much-loved focal point for the area that dates back to 1852.
Caledonian Road opened in 1826 to link King’s Cross with Holloway Road to provide a new route to the centre of London. Originally known as Chalk Road, its name was changed after the Royal Caledonian Asylum opened in 1828 for the orphans of Scottish soldiers killed in the Napoleonic Wars.
The road is full history: Cally baths (1892/1985), the railway (1852) and tube (1906) stations, Regent’s Canal (1820), Pentonville Prison (1842). Cally Road even had its own cinema – the Mayfair, later Essoldo, (1937-65).
To the west is Caledonian Park, which has been a playground, sports field, meeting point (including for the Tolpuddle March), cattle market and is home to the recently renovated Cally Clock Tower which has one of the best views in London.
Traditionally, the Cally is transformed once a year into the biggest annual festival in Islington with nearly 10,000 people descending on to the street enjoying the food stalls, music and local wares. The essence of the area is truly summed up whilst bringing the community, businesses and visitors together to celebrate all that is good and great about the Cally.
We are Cally
The Cally has distinct communities and an extraordinary past and is now the focus of the ‘We are Cally’ programme, a £1.6million project to create new opportunities, improve local facilities and unlock the potential in the Cally area for thousands of residents.
It includes the We are Cally Residents Grant scheme which is a small grants scheme for local people to help the Cally area be an even better place to work, play and live in.
Islington Council have also recently completed consulting on improvements to the Jean Stokes Community Centre, creating an employment hub in the West Library and improvements to Bingfield Park. You can also read our blog about designing the new Youth Employment Hub for West Library
What’s happening in the local community?
- Help on your Cally Doorstep
- Have some fun at the Cally Festival on 27 June,2021
- Find out about Copenhagen Food Bank
- Meet Friends of Cally Park
- Creating a new green space in the Cally
- Discover craft, planting and cooking events is just for you!
Meet some Cally people
- Attracta of the Copenhagen Street Food Bank
- Doreen, a local resident and volunteer
- Mubanga who volunteers at Copenhagen Food Bank
- Paul, co-chair of the Caledonian Traders Association
- Safia, local resident and volunteer
- Sarah of Barnsbury and Cally Mutual Aid Group
- Sue of the Greening Cally Group
- Syeda of the Islington Bangladesh Association
We are Cally Resident Grants
- Helping children and families – Bang Bang Drum
- Monica of Greening the Cally at Bemerton Corner
- Gladys of the Black Women’s Link Project
Meet some local businesses
- Eleni of So Fab
- Paul, the owner of Sunflour Bakery
- the owners of Caledonian Pharmacy
- Piers of Background Props
- Vishal of Clockwork Pharmacy
- Find out more about Caledonian Road shops in our Shop Local section.
Discover more about the Cally
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- We Are Cally
- Shop local Islington: Nag’s Head and Holloway
- Shop local Islington: Finsbury Park
- Shop local Islington: Clerkenwell
- Shop local Islington: Angel
- Shop local Islington: Archway
- Shop local Islington: Newington Green and Essex Road
- Shop local Islington: Caledonian Road
- Shop local Islington: Old Street
- Shop local Islington: Highbury
- Islington’s Markets