Hackney Central is the central district of the London Borough of Hackney in London, England. It comprises the area roughly surrounding, and extending north from Mare Street. It is situated north east of Charing Cross. It is also the name of Hackney Central ward, an electoral division for Hackney Council.
Hackney Central is the area that once would have been known as Hackney Village. This was a place that flourished from the Tudor period, when principal members of the Court had their houses in the surrounding area, and King Henry VIII of England had a palace (located near the modern Lee Bridge Road roundabout). Hackney Central remained a popular resort for Londoners until the end of the Georgian era, when this suburb of London began to be completely built up. Railways, trams and factories brought an end to Hackney's rural atmosphere during the Victorian era, and its fortunes declined.
The industries of nearby Homerton and the Lee Valley have largely disappeared, leaving the NHS and local council as the largest employers. Successive waves of immigrants, both from abroad and within the United Kingdom, make modern Hackney a culturally vibrant part of inner London, with both the benefits and challenges that this brings.
Extensive post-war redevelopment has replaced much of the housing stock, but the Georgian housing and Victorian terraces that remain have become popular again.