Adrienne Drury explains Why She Loves Thornton Heath.

Living in rural Lincolnshire, I had never heard of Thornton Heath until the start of 2018.

Since then I have been a frequent visitor to the area as Thornton Heath is home to my partner.

The differences between Thornton Heath and the rural market town where I live could not be more stark.

At home, the nearest train station is 12 miles away, the shops still have half day closing on a Wednesday and everyone is indoors by 6pm.

On a less superficial level, there is affordable full housing, a low crime rate and, on the surface, good opportunities for education and employment.

The fundamental difference though between my home town and my adopted home is one of diversity, in all its forms. Difference, of any kind, is not particularly celebrated, or understood, where I live.

Black Lives Matter is something that happens to Other People.

The local grammar school churns out kids with high grades in A levels and GCSEs.

Proud of its results rather than proud of its students (an astute observation made by my son when he was 12). Kids must fit in.

With the rich diversity in Thornton Heath comes a strong sense of acceptance.

Here there is no small town, middle England, narrow mentality. All are welcome here.

As a relative newcomer to Thornton Heath I love that I have always felt so welcomed by the local community.

Earlier today I read a Time Out review of the Steve McQueen Year 3 exhibition of future London. It feels like a perfect description of my newly adopted Thornton Heath.

“It’s not isolated, homogenous or insular, it’s wide open, diverse and brilliant.”