Our friends in the north

Proving that northerners with chips on their shoulder are also a London phenomenon comes this travelogue from Euston-resident Skip.

In a recent article, he describes a visit to Brockley:

"I once had a friend who lived somewhere far-flung that began with B. You could reach him via an exhausting combination of tube, train and DLR. At the station were trees, fields and cows. This is not South London. This is simply a way of letting the good folk of Kent see Les Mis.

"Brockley was lovely. It has a few streets of Very Nice Houses that have been lovingly done up by people Who Wish They'd Bought In Kentish Town When They Had The Chance. It had a lot of trees (each decorated with a picture of a different lost cat), and a variety of 50s utility furniture and Christmas trees lining the pavements.

"It also has a Tesco. As Tescos go, it looked like those lonely outposts in Star Trek that are casually wiped out by marauding Klingons. Nervous staff stood behind a counter, ready to beam out at the first sign of trouble. The stock was almost entirely crisps and nappies. "It's really changed the area," said my friend Joe, "There's even a gay couple who shop in here sometimes. You never saw them at the 24-hour corner shop.""

Brockley Jon sent us this link in the hope that we'd pick a fight with Skip. But while it is news to us that anyone, anywhere wishes they'd bought in Kentish Town and it is worth pointing out that you only need an "exhausting combination of tube, train and DLR" if you start in the wrong place and come the wrong way, we don't think this article is worth a row. After all, Skip does skewer some of Brockley's best and worst qualities fairly neatly and living in a shoebox in soulless Euston is surely punishment enough.

Instead, this article prompts an interesting question. Many months after the furore that greeted Tesco's arrival on Lewisham Way - has it "really changed the area" for good or ill? No shops have been put out of business, we probably have a new Chinese Restaurant and a new step for a homeless guy to sit, but other than that, we can't see any of the ripple effect that we were warned about.

Have we missed something?