They say they conduct a "monthly analysis of the most popular searched for borough". And in this morning's "study" they are claiming that Hackney has proven to be one of the most popular searched for boroughs among home seekers between 28 and 35 years.
These guys are selling a service of course, and good luck to them. But nonetheless the points about Hackney are very well made. It is an amazing turnaround in two decades. You know, when I first worked with Hackney in the late 1980s on Stanhope's 199 Bishopsgate project (when Stuart Lipton had embarked upon his mighty pull of the City to the north and east) it was nothing short of a complete basket case, really.
It had it all: megalomaniac councillors and nuclear free zones, trade union tyranny, squatting, off-the-wall racial harassment disputes, sit-ins and demonstrations. It was almost impossible to get anything done, and economic growth was an evil filthy suggestion on the part of the capitalist conspiracy. Now it seems that Dalston, Hackney Central, Hackney Wick and even Manor House are all benefiting from regeneration activity and "will add value to this bustling and promising borough". It is a place transformed.
Even back in my day, Hackney was considered a thriving hotspot for creatives and start-up businesses, and was in receipt of funding by the Arts Council to boost and support creativity in the region. This is an excellent case of how, if you plug away at a theme for the best part of 20 years, it eventually becomes a self-fulfilling prophesy.
Juice PR say that 70% of Hackney residents (2,540 residents surveyed) said that they were proud of living in Hackney with Shoreditch and Stoke Newington as the most favourite areas. And apparently it was voted the "coolest place in Britain" in Italian Vogue, while according to Halifax research, property prices in Hackney rose by 320% between 1996 and 2006 - the biggest rise in London. Since the Olympics, the average price of a Dalston property is just over £303,000 compared to £249,000 in 2002.
And sooner or later Hackney had to come good. You can walk to Liverpool Street from large chunks of the borough and it's public transport connections continue to improve. Successful places need to work on their own terms of course and not just as a start point to get to somewhere else (something the property industry would do well to remember more often).
But I commend Hackney on its turnaround (compare and contrast with Tower Hamlets) and Jules Pipe and Guy Nicholson in particular, for their determined civic leadership. And I commend Juice PR on their "Property Property Property" service. I wish them well with the venture and I thank them for allowing me a moment's nostalgia for my days in Hackney with Mike New and Peter Padden and Kevin Sugrue and Richard Simmons and the glorious, glorious partnership that was... Dalston City Challenge. It may have taken a bit longer than we'd planned guys, but it got there in the end.