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Rise of the phoenix From dereliction to desired destinations: inspired uses for buildings brought back to life

Community chest Old Kent Road set for transformation, as appointed leaders set out the vision for the area

Something about Mary A milestone in plans for Elephant and Castle town centre is reached at St Mary’s Quarter

Trust in the estate A decade of help for the Aylesbury: active residents, healthier lives, ready for employment

Culinary matters Restaurants representing countries worldwide – India, via Italy to Mexico, Southwark has it all

southwark Issue 18 Winter 2017


Reinvigorating areas, forging communities and rooms with a view – blueprints for active living, ambitions achieved

Take your seats… One Tower Bridge offers a five star living experience on the South Bank, with one of the world’s most iconic landmarks as its backdrop. A plethora of exciting new retail and commercial signings will make it the most sought after destination in London. Welsh chef and ‘Masterchef’ finalist Tom Simmons was the first to open his restaurant along with The Ivy Brasserie this summer. Bridge Theatre, London’s largest new theatre in over 40 years, officially opened it’s doors in October and will be showing three plays per year as well as a series of diverse events and gigs. The Coal Shed, a steak and seafood restaurant originally hailing from Brighton, has also just opened. 2 and 3 bedroom apartments available. Prices from £3,650,000 For more information or to book your appointment call 020 3773 9158 or visit: www.onetowerbridge.co.uk

www.onetowerbridge.co.uk Proud to be a member of the Berkeley Group of companies

for your future


Our partnerships enhance our performance, spark innovation, sustain our communities and deliver lasting value. This has guided us to create successful partnerships based on trust and mutual understanding. At Elephant Park, Lendlease is proud to be Southwark Council’s regeneration partner as we re-establish Elephant & Castle’s status as a desirable and successful Central London destination.

Together at Elephant Park, over the next 10 years we are delivering:

11 acres 3000 of high quality public space

new tenureblind homes

6000 1 of 19 £125,000 40+

new jobs plus Construction Skills Centre Climate Positive developments worldwide

contributed to Elephant & Castle Community Fund

temporary business spaces at Artworks Elephant

For more info visit:



Zone 1 city living at its best Spacious, brand new homes available to rent now in the heart of Elephant & Castle

— Enjoy smarter renting With no tenancy deposit*, fees or admin charges to pay, making the move is easy. Choose from furnished and unfurnished homes with balconies or terraces. Visit getlivinglondon.com or call to find out more: 020 3874 1874 *T&Cs apply


contents 18 st mary’s quarter With two new residential towers, a leisure centre and improved public realm, St Mary’s Quarter is a milestone in Southwark Council’s plans for Elephant and Castle.

09 Introduction What’s served up in issue 18? 12 news Updates on development and investment plans for Southwark.

49 old kent road This famous part of London could become home to one of the largest regeneration projects the borough has ever witnessed.

27 map and projects Progress reports on the key areas and schemes in the borough.

54 creation trust At the Aylesbury estate, a local charity helps boost employment, keep residents active and fosters community spirit.

36 restaurants For diversity of cuisine, few places in the world rival the choice found in Southwark.

58 sitematch The council plans to extend an extra care facility on Cator Street to benefit its older residents.

41 reviving disused buildings From multi-storey car parks to a printworks: new leases of life.

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF James Renoux-Wood NEWS AND DIGITAL EDITOR Natalie Vincent DESIGN Smallfury PRODUCTION MANAGER Christopher Hazeldine EDITORIAL ASSISTANTS Tilly Shenstone, Mia Wicks BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR Paul Gussar PROJECT MANAGER Sue Mapara SUBSCRIPTIONS MANAGER Simon Maxwell MANAGING DIRECTOR Toby Fox PRINTED BY Tradewinds COVER IMAGE St Mary’s Quarter by Peter Durant IMAGES Peter Durant, Lydia Polzer, British Land, Hannah Maule-ffinch, © Tate and National Galleries of Scotland, Southwark Playhouse, Helen Murray, Robert Workman, Alex Brenner, Tom Leighton, Network Rail, LTS Architects on behalf of Science Gallery London, Haworth Tompkins Architects, Native Land, SE17 EastSt, Åsmund Berge Jenssen, John Sturrock, Helen Cathcart, Kev Williams, Niall Clutton, Camille Mack, Matt Clayton, UrbanBuzz / Shutterstock.com, Southwark Council, Tony Baggett / Shutterstock.com, Hannah Tappenden Sunley House, Bedford Park, Croydon CR0 2AP PUBLISHED BY T 020 7978 6840 W 3foxinternational.com SUBSCRIPTIONS AND FEEDBACK southwarkmagazine.com southwarkmagazine.com

©3Fox International Limited 2017 All material is strictly copyright and all rights are reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without the written permission of 3Fox International Ltd is strictly forbidden. The greatest care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of information in this magazine at time of going to press, but we accept no responsibility for omissions or errors. The views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of 3Fox International Ltd.


18 winter 2017 7

SOUTHWARK TALENT THRIVES THANKS TO ALUMNO A recent graduate from Goldsmiths, University of London has been awarded the revered ALUMNO/ SPACE award.

found materials, experiment with new methods, attend critical studies, gallery visits and make a final exhibition.

Djofry Makumbu, 21, was University at the age of School programme and has complete a BA in Fine Art been recognised for his project, ‘Dreams’.

Djofry was part of the programme in 2014 after meeting Goldsmiths staff at his foundation college, BSix in Hackney, and impressing with his stop motion animation about the New York Graffiti artist Jean-Michel Basquiat.

introduced to the 14 via its Summer since gone on to this year. He has 2017 final year

His award-winning degree show project was influenced by his upbringing in east London. The multimedia installation features digital and stop motion animation, video, sculpture, painting and performance. It tackles a range of subjects including street culture, hip hop and drug abuse. His prize is a year-long residency in a state of the art studio in Old Southwark Town Hall, Camberwell. The studio rental is supported with a year’s stipend from the Department of Art at Goldsmiths. The Goldsmiths Summer School aims to encourage local London teenagers with a talent for art to experience what it’s like to study at university. Students who would be the first in their family to attend Higher Education, like Djofry, are prioritised. Run over two weeks in the Goldsmiths art studios, the course encourages students to create work with

Alumno Developments Ltd 2nd Floor, 10 Frith Street London W1D 3JF T. 020 7434 2384 www.alumnodevelopments.com

He went on to study the BA Fine Art course, at Goldsmiths, specialising in animation, ceramics, painting, music and live performance. Djofry said: “It is a huge honour to win this award and I’m very pleased to have my work recognised in this way. When I started creating art I never dreamed that I would get the chance to study at Goldsmiths, and to receive this award so soon after graduating is a very nice bonus. I am very grateful to Goldsmiths for the opportunity to join the fantastic summer school, which started my incredible journey. I can’t wait to get started at the studio and it’s very exciting to know that I’ll be working in such a creative environment.” Alison Jones, Lecturer in Art Practice at Goldsmiths, said: “Djofry was one of the hardest working students we’ve ever had, and we are thrilled that he has won the ALUMNO/SPACE award. It is always inspiring to work with the teenagers who attend our Summer Schools, and to see them develop into the calibre of artist that Djofry has become is especially pleasing.”

southwark INTERNATIONAL FLAVOURS The first quarter of the Elephant and Castle town centre is nearing completion and exemplifies our original vision for a mixed-use, mixed-tenure town centre. In this edition, we focus on St Mary’s Quarter, with the state-of-the-art Castle leisure centre, a new home for Southwark Playhouse, and a range of over 600 homes, with retail, in two new developments. It is now a decade since The Creation Trust was established to focus on social regeneration in the Aylesbury estate and we focus on the array of community, youth and employment programmes that the team have successfully delivered for our residents. Real progress is being made to develop one of London’s most exciting new regeneration areas at the Old Kent Road. We introduce the new team which is now in place and update you on the latest development sites coming forward and our work to extend the Bakerloo line. In Southwark we are so proud of our rich history and we have a special feature on the re-use of buildings, highlighting our plans to re-purpose a multi-storey car park, printing works, biscuit factory and magistrates court. What better way to celebrate the amazing diversity of our communities by taking you on a tour of the world food on offer in our borough. We whisk you on a culinary trip around local restaurants from Mexican at London Bridge to West African on the Old Kent Road and beyond to Asian in Peckham. Brand new culture and leisure facilities, a strong partnership with charity partners helping to deliver social regeneration, creative and quirky re-use of old buildings and a global restaurant scene. It’s all happening in Southwark. Councillor Peter John OBE Leader of Southwark Council

CONTACT Dan Taylor / Chief Executive’s Department Southwark Council / 160 Tooley Street / SE1 2QH regeninfo@southwark.gov.uk / 020 7525 5450 southwarkmagazine.com


18 winter 2017 9

Working with the London Borough of Southwark to create an exciting mixed use development at Canada Water

Find out more at: www.canadawatermasterplan.com www.britishland.com www.surreyquays.co.uk


the news


CANADA WATER ‘HEADS OF TERMS’ AGREED Outline proposals for the 19-ha Canada Water masterplan have been revealed. The new urban centre will include the existing Surrey Quays Shopping Centre, as well as Surrey Quays Leisure Park, SE16 Printworks and the historical Dock Offices. The site, which is under the control and management of developer British Land, has been designated by Southwark Council and the Greater London Authority as an “opportunity area” and one of 30 housing zones in London, with thousands of new homes and jobs planned. Initial proposals would see 200,000sq m of office space, 100,000sq m for retail and leisure amenities 12 issue 18 winter 2017

and up to 3,500 homes developed across a range of prices and tenures. British Land chief executive Chris Grigg said: “Our active programme of engagement with the local community and other stakeholders includes our fourth public consultation, which started earlier this month. We are targeting submission of a planning application at the end of the financial year. “We will evaluate phasing of the project and potential funding structures as we move closer to securing planning.” Printworks at Harmsworth Quays, set over 11,500sq m including the area around the facility, was where the London Evening

Standard and Daily Mail were printed. It was re-opened as a temporary 6,000-capacity music and entertainment venue in January 2017, with events curated by Vibration Group. Since opening, it has been shortlisted for two awards; it was nominated by The Event Awards for Best New Event Space and the Hire Space Awards for Best Forward Thinking Venue, in its Best Newcomer category. The historical Dock Offices will be retained at Canada Water, with renovations in keeping with its original Victorian style. They were originally built in 1892 by the Surrey Commercial Dock Company, and are listed as Grade II for their architectural interest.


Read up-to-date news stories about Southwark’s regeneration online at southwarkmagazine.com

THOUSANDS OF NEW COUNCIL HOMES PLANNED By 2043, Southwark Council plans to build 11,000 homes in the London borough, with 1,600 to be underway by 2018, the local authority has said. The majority of the housing allocation has been approved in the planning stages, including 109 new homes, with 35 intermediate homes and 74 council homes along Commercial Way in Peckham. This was followed by two applications submitted for the Goschen estate in Camberwell and Rye Hill in Peckham Rye, which will include 17 and 23 new homes respectively. In addition, six other applications have been granted planning permission on Nunhead Lane, Tenda Road in Bermondsey, the Kinglake estate at Old Kent Road, Meeting House Lane in Peckham, Pelier Street in Walworth and at Haddonfield in Rotherhithe. Cabinet member for regeneration and new homes, Councillor Mark Williams, said: “Southwark Council continues to tackle the housing crisis head-on by delivering new homes of all kinds for our residents. A key part of this work is our groundbreaking programme to build 11,000 new council homes, the largest new council home build programme in the country.” “The new homes we are building are of the highest quality and the first of the new homes at Willow Walk were recognised by the national Local Authority Building Control Awards. We are ensuring that quality in delivery continues by using our Southwark Council Housing Design Guide which sets out clearly the standards that our architects and delivery partners must meet or exceed.”

ELEFEST AT ELEPHANT PARK A late summer festival took place for the first time in the newly opened Elephant Park on 2 September. The Elefest celebration featured concerts, film screenings, food markets and family friendly activities across the park, as well as neighbouring Castle Square and live music venue Lost Rivers. Highlights included a concert headlined by music legend Don Letts and Alabama 3 Acoustic. Director and founder Rob Wray said: “Elefest is more than a festival. It is the celebration of the area’s colourful past and cultural legacy, its present revival and hopes we hold for its future.” In addition to the concert, movie fans of all ages were treated to a sunset outdoor screening of MGM’s classic film, The Wizard of Oz. southwarkmagazine.com

CAMBERWELL TOWN CENTRE FACELIFT COMPLETED A £13 million regeneration of Camberwell Town Centre was completed in August. This follows a £1 million renovation of Camberwell Green, which was finished in June 2016. Improvements to the town centre also included a new library and plaza, and significant changes to improve safety and the appearance of various “pocket spaces” around the area. Existing historical features including the war memorial, the CoolTan Arts bench, the Sidney Bates VC memorial bench, butterfly gates and historic gateposts were restored to their former standard. issue

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NEWINGTON LIBRARY RE-OPENS AS ART GALLERY The grade-II listed Newington Library building in Elephant and Castle has been leased for two years by The Arts Academy from Southwark Council, until longerterm plans are finalised. Facilities for students of the independent arts school will be available at the site, which had been vacant since suffering water damage in 2013, when the adjacent Walworth Town Hall caught fire. Short courses and events for the public will also be provided and charity CoolTan Arts will offer creative activities for people with mental health conditions. The Arts Academy will invite artists and community groups to use the gallery space – formerly the main library – for the duration of its lease. Artangel, the well-known charity, was the first organisation to exhibit at the gallery. The critically acclaimed Natural Selection (above) exhibition was created by father and son duo Andy and Peter Holden. 14 issue 18 winter 2018


SOUTHWARK COMES TOGETHER TO CELEBRATE LIFE OF JO COX Events to commemorate the life of former MP Jo Cox took place across Southwark in June with key events in Bankside (the fourth largest in the country), Bermondsey Spa and East Dulwich. The Great Get Together was a countrywide initiative, inspired by the life of the MP – who was tragically murdered in 2016 – and the Jubilee celebrations. Neighbours held street parties, picnics and concerts to foster good relationships within communities. The event – in part organised by Cox’s widower Brendon – was uplifted by the Labour politician’s notion once spoken in parliament that people “have more in common than that which divides us”.

TFL NAMES PARTNER FOR LANDMARK SOUTHWARK PROJECT Transport for London (TfL) has named housing development consortium Triangle London Developments, comprising Notting Hill Housing and U+I, as its preferred partner to build a mixed-use development at Landmark Court on Southwark Street. Proposals for the 1.2-ha site, situated close to London Bridge Station, the Tate Modern gallery and Borough Market, include 80 homes, as well as retail, commercial and office space. At least 28 homes have been earmarked as affordable housing. Once public consultation is undertaken and planning permission is granted, work is expected to start in 2019, with completion scheduled for 2022. James Murray, director of commercial development at TfL, said: “We look forward to establishing a long-term, joint venture partnership with Triangle London Developments to contribute to the Bankside neighbourhood, which has been known for centuries as a hotbed for London's creativity and independent businesses.” southwarkmagazine.com

CAMBERWELL FAIR RETURNS TO THE GREEN Camberwell Green welcomed back its annual festival this July, for the first time since the area’s £1 million renovation. Taking place on 22 July, the event attracted 2,000 people to the green for music concerts, food markets and family oriented activities. Musical performances took place at the

Wormfood stage, featuring music by The Mouse Outfit, Afrikan Boy, Kakatsitsi and others. First taking place in 1279, the fair happened every year until 1855 when it was shut down by local authorities for causing “immoral and riotous behaviour.” issue

18 winter 2017 15

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St Mary’s Quarter

DELIVERING THE VISION It’s been years in planning, but now St Mary’s Quarter, which is at the heart of plans to regenerate Elephant and Castle, is approaching completion. Two residential towers, a new leisure centre, a theatre, a renovated park and retail, the development exemplifies the council’s original vision for a mixeduse, mixed-tenure town centre and shows what can be achieved when the public and private sectors work together. Noella Pio Kivlehan reports 18 issue 18 winter 2017

St Mary’s Quarter

the building, the more units, which would mean more money the public purse. How so? An agreed deal – or ‘profit overage arrangement’ – between Lendlease and Southwark Council meant when a certain amount of money was raised, both parties would share the excess sum equally. As Jon Abbott, the council’s project director for Elephant and Castle, says, funding for the Castle leisure centre (see page 21) and part of St Mary’s Churchyard was provided through a combination of selling councilowned land, the planning gain (section 106 contributions from One the Elephant) and the profit overage arrangement. Around £12.5 million was expected to be raised, but £22 million was the final figure, resulting in the financing of not only the Castle, but the landscaped garden and equipment for the children’s play area too. Abbott says: “We see these partnerships as being unique. Using our land and planning power has provided a new [leisure] centre for Southwark residents.” “This builds on a first phase of improvements to St Mary’s Churchyard. There was an initial investment into the park in 2008, with plans for the removal of the southern roundabout and subways, as part of the wider Elephant and Castle regeneration.”

“I’VE NEVER SAID THIS to anyone before, but I wish the tower had been bigger.” Rob Heasman, project director for the 37-storey One the Elephant, is in confessional mood. Heasman has overseen developer Lendlease’s residential-led high-rise scheme, One the Elephant, for the last seven years. It makes up a third of the new landmarks at the nearly completed St Mary’s Quarter project in Elephant and Castle. The other two are Realstar’s 45-storey tower with 457 homes – 80 Newington Butts – as well as the Castle leisure centre, which opened in 2016. The scheme reinforces Southwark Council’s vision for Elephant and Castle and the local authority hopes its success will act as a catalyst for future regeneration projects in the town, such as the long-awaited redevelopment of the shopping centre. southwarkmagazine.com

Having nursed the building from conception to completion, Heasman explains: “If I could change anything, I think One the Elephant could be taller. “From an urban design perspective, tall buildings in London primarily have policy focuses around areas of public transport, accessibility, and the Elephant is the highest classification you could get. “There are buildings around the Elephant, which are about 10 storeys higher than ours. One the Elephant is lower because it is within a strategic viewing corridor, which I think is a blunt tool to measure the actual form a tower should take.” Wanting more floors is no vanity statement. Heasman says though Lendlease is “really pleased with the outcome”, the desire for more storeys is philanthropic: the taller issue

18 winter 2017 19

St Mary’s Quarter


Then came the financial crash of 2008, and the leisure centre started to fall into disrepair; the swimming pool closed, and St Mary’s Churchyard and the surrounding open space became rundown. But the revamp – part of the overall £3 billion cost attached to the St Mary’s Quarter project at Elephant and Castle – is hailed as a milestone in the overall masterplan for the area. Abbott says: “It is the first phase of our new town centre and it demonstrates the mixed-use approach we are trying to take.

“It includes residential, a public facility in the Castle centre, [which is] surrounded by public realm. You have the cultural element with Southwark Playhouse (see pages 24-25) and there are also a full range of housing types from private to social rent, totalling over 800 units. St Mary’s Quarter demonstrates what we want to see.” Of these, 457 of those are in the 45-storey 80 Newington Butts residential tower, which forms another part of St Mary’s Quarter, which will also be the new home of Southwark Playhouse. The development by Realstar Group, with MACE and Peabody will have 278 one and two-bedroom apartments to rent, while Peabody will manage 179 homes aimed at being affordable, including 44 at social rents, when the building takes its first tenants in early 2018. Ryan Prince, vice-chairman of Realstar Group, and founder of UNCLE, an arm of the real estate group dedicated to creating private rentals for young professionals – under which 80 Newington Butts was financed – says the building is “our flagship location in the centre of zone one”. Realstar has eight other London buildings. Prince adds: “Elephant and Castle is going to be one of the great regeneration areas of the whole city. The most exciting thing that is going to happen is when the shopping mall gets redeveloped. That will completely change the whole place.” The shopping centre is being redeveloped by Delancey and is due to start with the demolition of the current facility in 2019. But for now, St Mary’s Quarter is in the spotlight and being hailed as a blueprint for regeneration throughout the borough. It is not just the infrastructure or buildings that are a positive case study. The project is seen as an example of how multi-agency delivery can work, through public, private and RSL partnerships. And there are social economic elements St Mary’s Quarter has brought too. Lendlease’s Heasman says St Mary’s Quarter isn’t about the buildings, “it’s what they stand for and what they are performing as, as part of the completed scheme. Obviously, they also deliver homes and retail facilities, but they also generate employment and health outcomes for Southwark. “I’ve worked for 20 years in this industry and the collaborative approach to achieve success should be celebrated. St Mary’s Quarter is a total transformation as before, the area wasn’t even on people’s radars. “That transformation will awaken people to the reality that the Elephant is in zone one. It’s incredibly central – when you look at a map, it’s the eye of the needle.”

St Mary’s Quarter

THE CASTLE Pigeon excrement, a partially caved-in roof, rumours of rats in changing rooms, a pool closed since the mid-1990s: the old Elephant and Castle leisure centre operated for more than 40 years – despite having an original use-by-date of 25 years – before closing in 2012. It wasn’t exactly an example of best practice in health and wellbeing. But after years in planning and costing £20 million, Elephant and Castle now has a modern, sleek and popular new leisure facility, The Castle. Opened to much fanfare and anticipation in April 2016, the centre has swiftly become an asset not only for the local community, but for those in neighbouring boroughs and who work nearby. The figures speak for themselves: the old centre, before its gym and sports hall were demolished, had just over 240,000 visits per year. The Castle is projected to receive more than 700,000 visits annually within the next couple of years. Around 15 primary schools, four secondary schools and two universities – King’s College and London South Bank University – use


the centre for swimming and sports hall use. “We cover the whole educational spectrum,” says James Tierney, community development manager with Everyone Active, which operates The Castle and seven other Southwark fitness sites. As well as the educational fraternity, Tierney says there is a huge spectrum of people using the centre. "It fulfils the diversity quota," he says. "You have those who come to adult and parent swimming lessons to older people going to our silver classes for those aged 60-plus.” Tierney adds that all ethnic groups from white British, BME (Black, Asian and minority ethnics), Latin and other ethnicities use the facilities, reflecting the area’s diversity. And to date, there are 1,873 disabled people registered at The Castle, with 264 joining between April and June 2017. The stand-out programme run by Southwark is the ‘Swim & Gym’ initiative. Available to every Southwark resident, it includes free access to the gyms and two pools – the 25m pool and teaching pool – all day Friday and after 2pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

Unique to Southwark, the programme was a Labour Party manifesto pledge in the 2014 local elections, and the Elephant and Castle site is the busiest Swim & Gym centre within the borough. While The Castle may be up and running, Southwark is constantly reviewing it to ensure it keeps up with constant changes in the fitness market. Stephen Hopkins, Southwark’s strategic development officer for contracts and facilities, parks and leisure, says: “When the centre was originally designed, well over three years ago, the fitness market was at a certain point, but it has moved on quickly and what people want out of a gym has dramatically changed. “People want more floorspace, they want more interaction, more free weights, rather than your traditional treadmills or bikes. So we modified part of the gym to reflect current trends and feedback from users. Reflecting on the regeneration around The Castle centre in Elephant and Castle, Hopkins adds: “We will keep updating, keep modernising, and keep investing in our leisure facilities.”


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St Mary’s Quarter




St Mary’s Quarter



PICTURED: A swimming pool, modern gym equipment, a spacious lobby and sports hall are some of The Castle’s features. southwarkmagazine.com

WHAT THE CENTRE’S USERS THINK MONIQUE, 64, CAMBERWELL GREEN I used the old gym for a few months, but it wasn’t good at all. There were little cramped stairways, the equipment in the gym was dreary and depressing and the swimming pool was closed. I waited and waited for this new centre, as the opening date was pushed back. I wanted to come here for a long time, I was desperate. When I first walked in, I thought: ‘yes, beautiful’. I love the layout of the gym – it’s so much better. You can look all around and out over green areas. It’s far enough away from the crowds so you feel they are not watching you. This is so much better. As well as gym, I do a lot of classes – six to seven hours a week. I also go swimming with the over 60s on a Tuesday morning. They are friendly, lovely people. This is my second home basically, and it’s important for me because I see the money I pay as an investment into my health.

RICHARD, 39, CANONBURY, ISLINGTON I come because I work close by. It’s a great gym – I really like it. The best bits are the equipment and that there is plenty of space: it’s a well-constructed gym.

MARIAH, 25, ELEPHANT & CASTLE The gym is lovely, the equipment is great and it’s not too busy. I did one class so far and it was good. I will probably use the pool and the sauna and other classes that work with my schedule. This is certainly up to the standards of other gyms I have been in. It is a great centre for the community.

JOHN, 68, BLACKFRIARS ROAD I started coming to the gym just after it opened last April and now use it four or five times a week – both the swimming pool and the gym. With the gym, I’m more than happy with what I use it for. And for the community, the centre is great – especially the prices: it saves local residents a fortune.


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St Mary’s Quarter

SOUTHWARK PLAYHOUSE The nomad of the theatre world, Southwark Playhouse has had numerous homes since being established in 1993. Over the last quarter of a century, it has been in Southwark Bridge Road – its first base – temporary accommodation in Union Street in 2006 while waiting the availability of the arches at London Bridge, where it operated betwen 2007 and 2013 – and its current home at Newington Causeway. “Having to move has always been our problem,” says Chris Smyrnios, artistic director and CEO of Southwark Playhouse. “At our Southwark Bridge Road site, we were there before the Jubilee line, The Globe theatre and Tate Modern. “We came at the start of renewal of the area. But as it was being renewed, we had to fight to not be squeezed out: the landlord was demanding higher rents, which we couldn’t afford at the time.” The Playhouse is once again being relocated from its current home before schedule. Its lease was to run into the 2020s, but the most recent move has come about as the Greater London Authority wants to put the building out to tender. Despite the negatives, the future of the theatre is beginning to look more secure. Ironically, having moved so many times, the Playhouse is now to settle in two permanent homes – and these relocations are on the horizon.


24 issue 18 winter 2017

The theatre company has secured space in both Newington Butts, part of St Mary’s Quarter, and London Bridge station. Both leases were enabled through legal agreements linked to planning permissions. Smyrnios says: “When St Mary’s Quarter was agreed in 2008, we were in the temporary site at London Bridge, which we then wanted to make our permanent home.” Network Rail, which embarked on a £1 billion upgrade of London Bridge station, had other ideas. “They wanted us out, but we held a campaign to say ‘Network Rail is chucking us out, but we’d like to stay. If you agree with that then please object to the planning application’,” explains Smyrnios. After gathering 1,500 signatures from those who objected to the plans, Network Rail then agreed to include the theatre company as part of a section 106 agreement for its development plans. “We have ended up where we have got these two amazing opportunities at London Bridge and St Mary’s Quarter, both at subsidised rates,” says Smyrnios. Each time the theatre company has moved, it has grown. Its first venue at Southwark Bridge Road was just 139sq m, the London Bridge arches expanded its premises to 743sq m and Newington Causeway comprised 929sq m. Smyrnois says: "We have grown to a point where if we moved to just one of our proposed new venues, we would be shrinking." “St Mary’s Quarter will be Southwark Playhouse’s flagship theatre. “It’s a big space – 12,000sq ft [1,200sq m] – so it’s going to need big shows. “Also, there will be youth and community space – and it’s the best place for us, because Elephant and Castle for us is really the heart of Southwark.” While the developer is providing the shell and core, Southwark Playhouse has to raise £3 million for the fit-out and a fundraising campaign will soon begin to work towards this. The London Bridge site, when it opens in 2019, will have a main space, and host higher profile shows, says Smyrnios. “There will also be a smaller theatre space for new and emerging theatre companies to use to showcase their work for the first time,” he adds. “St Mary’s Quarter looks great. We’ve got the green space and the churchyard in front of us. “It’s always quite busy with the leisure centre, and you have the park, children’s park, and the lovely water feature. “Once our development is done, it is going to be a key place for people to come and chill out. It will be an oasis in the city.”

St Mary’s Quarter

PICTURED: Performances at Southwark Playhouse will be taken to new premises (bottom) at St Mary’s Quarter in 2018.



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OPPORTUNITY ENFIELD / The regeneration of Enfield


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ns are currently in place for residents’ gym. Travel times taken from TfL. Help to Buy is a Government-backed tive in partnership with housebuilders. Available on selected plots, subject to status, terms and conditions. Help uy cannot be used in conjunction with any other scheme. It is highly advised, for a swift, smooth transaction that A/Solicitor advised by Redrow Homes is used. Offer cannot be used in conjunction with any other Redrow offer. mage is indicative only. Prices correct at time of going to press. Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep payments on a mortgage or any other debt secured on it. Check that this mortgage will meet your needs if you to move or sell your home or you want your family to inherit it. If you are in any doubt, seek independent advice.



Rise of the phoenix From dereliction to desired destinations: inspired uses for buildings brought back to life

Community chest Old Kent Road set for transformation, as appointed leaders set out the vision for the area

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Trust in the estate A decade of help for the Aylesbury: active residents, healthier lives, ready for employment

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projects Southwark hosts some of the biggest and most extensive development sites in London and change is coming to areas of great signficance – from London Bridge to Canada Water

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18 winter 2017 27

Grosvenor and Bermondsey Grosvenor‘s proposals for Bermondsey would deliver up to 1,343 new homes for rent as part of an active mixed-use neighbourhood that is physically, socially and economically integrated into Bermondsey. The proposals represent a ÂŁ500 million investment in Bermondsey, and would deliver homes, a new school, almost 2,500 jobs, amenities and local opportunities in a reconnected neighbourhood that is stitched back into the surrounding area through over 20,000m² of new and improved streets and open spaces (the equivalent of 3 Wembley football pitches).


PECKHAM The regeneration of Peckham continues, with Southwark having announced plans to demolish a series of vacant garages along Bournemouth Close to make way for the Peckham Palms hair and beauty quarter in a mix of commercial units near Peckham Rye. These will be primarily be offered to businesses, mainly Afro-Caribbean hairdressers and nail bars, that need to be re-located temporarily during the work to create a new public square in front of Peckham Rye Station. The council is seeking a company to manage the site, and is offering business support to the beauty businesses to make Peckham Palms the “go-to place” for AfroCaribbean hair and beauty. Architectural group Something & Son has designed the Palms covered market concept, which will reflect the local concentration of hairdressing businesses by staff weaving and plaiting materials into designs that will be cast in jesmonite to create baroque shop fronts. Southwark is proposing to regenerate the area in front of the station to change what are now its narrow and dimly lit access passages around the Grade II-listed station building,


one of the few in London that retains its 1860s features. New public spaces are being planned for the station – work will include the reinstatement of a historic forecourt that once formed its entrance. Exposed viaducts along the north and south sides of the square will create new places in railway arches for local and independent business to trade. Meanwhile, the Townscape Heritage Initiative is restoring historic buildings in the nearby Rye Lane Peckham Conservation Area. The refurbishment and extension of the Blenheim Grove corner building will provide space for community groups and affordable work space for start-up businesses. In a further boost to the area’s regeneration, Peckham Festival (pictured) was held in September to celebrate the area’s creativity and cultural diversity. It featured arts performances, guided walks and opportunities for the public to meet local ‘makers’, who were working on everything from ceramics and sculpture to painting – and from making mead or neon design-icon trays, all adpoting the ‘Made In Peckham’ theme.


18 winter 2017 29


LONDON BRIDGE London Bridge (right) is among the capital’s busiest stations and its £1 billion redevelopment project – which began in 2013 – entered its final phase after eight days of major engineering work over the August bank holiday weekend in 2017. New track and signalling equipment was installed on the lines serving Cannon Street, while the Charing Cross lines were moved into their final alignment through platforms 6-9 and connected to the new Bermondsey ‘dive under’, providing dedicated tracks for trains serving south-east London and Kent. The final section of the new concourse will open in January 2018 following further engineering work at Christmas and new year with completion of platforms 1–5. This redevelopment is the cornerstone of the Thameslink Programme, which combines new trains, track, signalling, and expanded infrastructure to give greater reliability and more journey options, with trains running from destinations north and south of the Thames through central London. New retailers are due to be announced soon for spaces in and around the station. In the surrounding area, Science Gallery London (below, right) will open in 2018 to connect art, science and health in a freeto-visit space, which is expected to draw 300,000 visitors a year, bringing together scientific researchers, students, local communities and artists in exhibitions, events, performances, live experiments, open discussions and festivals, with scientific engagement at their core. The Bridge (below, far right), London’s first large new theatre for 80 years, opens this autumn just west of London Bridge with productions of Young Marx, Julius Caesar and Nightfall. It was founded by directors Nicholas Hytner and Nick Starr, who left the National Theatre in 2015 after 12 years. The focus will be on new writing but with occasional classics performed. The 900-seat auditorium is designed to be adaptable to the needs of a variety of styles of theatre. Southwark Playhouse, which moved to nearby Newington Causeway because of work at London Bridge, will move back to its original home at the station.

30 issue 18 winter 2017


BANKSIDE YARDS Bankside has been transformed in recent decades with its former power station reborn as the Tate Modern art gallery and major developments having risen near the Thames. The next step will be Bankside Yards (above), near Blackfriars Bridge. This is a massive ÂŁ1.3 billion redevelopment of the former Sampson and Ludgate House site for a 13,064sq m mixed-use project by a consortium of partners including Native Land, Temasek, HPL and Amcorp Properties. The new riverside landmark will feature nine buildings, including a series of towers, the highest of which will reach 49 storeys. The project is intended to reconnect both the eastern and western sides of the railway viaduct and the space between Tate Modern and Blackfriars station. Bankside Yards will occupy a 2.14-ha site, with permission granted for 26,756sq m of grade A office space together with 2,322.5sq m of ground floor retail, 1,486sq m of cultural facilities and 489 homes. Developers will pay Southwark ÂŁ65 million in lieu of providing affordable housing on the site. There will also be 9,290sq m of public space, including a new public square and improvements to that section of the South Bank riverside walks. southwarkmagazine.com


18 winter 2017 31


CHARTER SCHOOL The Charter School in East Dulwich (right) will provide an eight form entry secondary education facility with a sixth form, catering for 1,800 pupils. It opened temporarily in September 2016 on the former LeSoCo site in Camberwell until its new site is ready for occupation. The school is an academy, which is one of the most over-subscribed new schools in the country. It is part of the Charter Schools Educational Trust, which also runs the Charter School North Dulwich. Once the new site is completed, the school will move onto land previously occupied

by East Dulwich Community Hospital. This is now expected in January 2019 and by September 2020 the whole site will be dedicated to school-use. The design of the new school seeks to create a ‘campus’ feel, with maximum use of natural light and good acoustics through environmentally responsible design. Teaching blocks will be brick-clad throughout, close to the character of the retained hospital buildings and the design has been adapted to fit with surrounding uses. The school is working closely with the NHS on the development a nearby new health care centre.

PRIMARY SCHOOL EXPANSION Southwark’s rapid growth means it has a quickly increasing young population, necessitating a programme of primary school expansion to keep pace with demand. As the latest cabinet report shows, the planned primary expansion includes two primary school rebuilds, with the redevelopment of the Albion site (below left) and a new site for Bellenden (far left). There will also be two new free schools at Belham and Galleywall and eight primary schools will expand: Ivydale, Grange, Crawford, Keyworth, Phoenix, Robert Browning (left), Charles Dickens and Redriff. The report said the improved results from the borough’s schools show “Southwark is viewed as great place for families and young people to live and learn” and that as the borough grows and regeneration occurs, “we have to plan well ahead and invest in our schools to make sure we meet the pace and scale of demand for places”. By September 2018, Southwark intends to have added 4,425 primary school places through a combination of new schools and maximising use of the existing schools estate. Further plans include the rebuilding and expansion of Rotherhithe primary school for new communities expected to live in and around the Canada Water development. In the longer term, the council expects longer to need new school provision around the proposed Bakerloo Line stations in Old Kent Road. 32 issue 18 winter 2017


EAST STREET MARKET East Street Market was identified as a potential project in the ‘What Walworth Wants’ exercise – a catalogue of ideas created with the local community. The proposals will support market traders and there will be a series of measures to improve the signage and appearance of the market to make it easier to find and use. Enhancements proposed for East Street Market include: a new market brand identity, new stalls and refurbished traditional wooden barrows – all shaped by the idea ‘old market, new ideas’ to blend tradition and modernity. Further work to building frontages and market entrances at Walworth Road and Dawes Street will support traders and other local businesses. New canopies, gazebos and branded signage can already be seen at the market and the new custom-made stalls opened at the beginning of October 2017. Additional branding will be provided after that, including further market stall signage and furniture at both entrances. The idea is to improve the experience of arriving for those visiting the market. Shop front renovations and signage installation is to begin later this year at Dawes Street, and shop front improvements for 14–20 East Street. There will also be new catenary signage, lighting and direction signage at the Walworth Road entrance.

ST OLAV’S SQUARE St Olav’s Square is in front of Rotherhithe’s Grade II-listed Norwegian church, which was built when the area was part of London docks and frequented by sailors from the Baltic. This unusual heritage is also apparent in the nearby Swedish and Finnish churches. The entrance to the Rotherhithe tunnel runs by the square. The church had become obscured by structures in front, because of a decision many years ago to construct public conveniences in front of it. The square frontage to the church has now been re-landscaped to create a pleasant space and improved sound proofing to reduce noise from the tunnel. This space can be used by the community throughout the year and could accommodate street markets and local events in the future. The bulk of the £500,000 cost came from Morten Hoegh, of Norway’s Leif Hoegh Foundation, and the square includes a sculpture of King Haakon VII, who led Norway’s government-in-exile in London during the second world war. Works to the square formed part of wider improvements to the area, which include a plan to rebuild a school in Albion Street and construct new affordable homes on the site of a former library.



18 winter 2017 33


CANADA WATER Canada Water is emerging as an entire new suburb around the remaining stretch of water, kept from its previous life as a dock. It is well connected, with a London Underground station on the Jubilee line, as well as access to the London Overground and buses. Work to create a new urban centre is progressing, with the potential for 3,500 new homes in mixed tenures, around 185,000sq m of offices and workspace, approximately 92,900sq m of retail, leisure, entertainment and community space. Other proposals include a replacement for Seven Islands Leisure Centre and a higher education campus. British Land expects to submit an outline planning application in spring 2018, together with a detailed application for the first phase. Early work to develop and deliver the masterplan is in progress and British Land is piloting projects in education, employment, business and community, to trial ideas and understand how and where to focus its energies and investment at Canada Water. Meanwhile, the concrete frame structure of the phase one building by Notting Hill Housing and Sellar Developments has now reached up to 12 storeys and when finished 34 issue 18 winter 2017

will stand at 18 storeys. This will offer 1,030 new homes in mixed tenures together with 13,935sq m of retail and commercial space, and a 9,290sq m Decathlon store. At the lower levels, the brickwork and glazing exterior of the building is starting to emerge and fit out of the new homes will be completed in summer 2018. Work is expected to begin shortly along Surrey Quays Road, including tree planting, new paving and kerbs, realignment of junctions and lines, crossovers for vehicle access and improvements to the pedestrian crossings. The works will be finished in spring 2018. The adjacent 11,074sq m former London Evening Standard and Daily Mail printing facility is now the 6,000-capacity Printworks London entertainment and cultural venue, which has six spaces for different uses inside and is fully soundproofed to prevent disturbance to its neighbours. Printworks London has a five-year contract to December 2021 and there is a possibility of it being made a permanent fixture once decisions are taken on the masterplan and how the different developments at Canada Water fit together.

Creating tomorrow’s spaces

Since 2009, we have completed seventeen schemes, delivering 1.5 million sq ft at a 38% profit on cost. The current development pipeline comprises fourteen schemes, covering a record 43% of our existing portfolio. All of it is within a five minute walk of a Crossrail, mainline or tube station.


Unlocking potential


FLAVOURS OF THE WORLD For food lovers, inner London offers variety of cuisine like few places on earth, as demonstrated in Southwark. Lucy Clarke visits some of the borough’s best restaurants, representing countries across the globe

THIS PAGE: The interior of El PastĂłr, the restaurant bringing a taste of Mexico to people based in or passing by London Bridge.

36 issue 18 winter 2017


SOUTHWARK HAS one of the most diverse and evolving restaurant scenes in London – some feat in one of the world’s most multicultural cities, which offers cuisine from every continent in the world. In contrast to stereotypes of British adventurousness when it comes to dining, the openness of residents in the borough to food from different cultures and regions has driven its success. From warming West African dishes on Old Kent Road and colourful Mexican tacos in Stoney Street, to an English take on Neapolitan pizzas in Nunhead and spicy Asian delights off Peckham’s Bellenden Road, the variety of food on offer should be diverse enough to satisfy even the fussiest eater. According to Adam Hyman, who runs the Code hospitality news forum, London “has so much diversity; it’s culturally rich and is still a financial centre...it has upped its game and restaurant tourism to London is on the rise”. In Southwark, this is self-evident.

ASIA THAILAND New Zealand-born Jane Alty (above) owns The Begging Bowl, an authentic Thai restaurant in Peckham, which opened its doors in August 2012. “I’ve been living around Camberwell and Peckham for 15 years and my business partner lives in East Dulwich,” Alty says. “We used to drive past this area and think how beautiful it was. We also felt there weren’t enough restaurants offering what we could. “When we first got the site and were renovating, we would leave the doors open and everyone kept telling us there was never a restaurant here that worked. “But it felt like Peckham was on the cusp of things happening. And it was. About eight months after we opened up, lots started to happen in the way of regeneration and now it southwarkmagazine.com

is going from strength-to-strength. “When I moved to London at 21, it was before street food had taken off and I was working in high-end restaurants, but only cooking modern British food.” Alty eventually went on to work at famous Australian chef David Thompson’s restaurant Nahm - the first Thai restaurant to gain a Michelin Star in Europe. “Once I got the Thai bug, that’s all I wanted to cook,” she says – and her experience at Nahm inspired her to establish The Begging Bowl. “We wanted to do quality food in a friendly environment that was personal, really fun and something people could explore,” she says. “Young families bring their kids here, but then we also have lots of solo diners; artistic types and musicians. “It can also get quite raucous - it’s truly an eclectic mix.” issue

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AFRICA NIGERIA With Southwark’s significant West African population, there are ample opportunities to discover this part of the world’s cuisine, and one popular Old Kent Road eatery run by Damaris James and her family is selfproclaimed on its website as ‘London’s best Nigerian restaurant”. Its popularity stacks weight behind the claim. The menu at 805 Restaurant offers dishes such as Monica – a famous grilled fish dish – to tilapia, tiger prawns and firm favourites like pounded yam and jollof rice. “It was a run-down area when we took the building over around 15 years ago,” James says. “There was a bank here and not much else. But we knew the African community would respond well to it. “It’s so important for people to have a taste of home nearby, but people also travel across London for our signature dishes.” So who can be found inside the restaurant’s doors on an average evening? “Nigerian doctors working up the road, accountants from the City, and people from outside of London, [in places] like Surrey, come to spend time here. “This is a family run place and every weekend it’s like Christmas in here. It’s a celebration.”

THE AMERICAS MEXICO With London Bridge serving City workers and tourists in equal measure, there are a wide variety of places to dine. Food lovers who know all about the area’s joie de vivre include Sam Hart, his brother Eddie and Crispin Somerville, who run the successful Mexican restaurant, El Pastór; a taqueria (meaning it specialises in tacos) on Stoney Street. Using tortillas made from scratch in-house every day, this is a restaurant that treats the country’s colourful cuisine with respect. The name El Pastór is taken from Mexico City’s ‘al pastor’ taco, enjoyed immensely by Sam Hart and Somerville when they ran nightclub El Colmillo in London during the 90s and 00s. Despite their time in the South American city, Hart and Somerville have a long-held affiliation with London Bridge. “Way back in the day, I used to go to electronic music gigs on Clink Street, so London Bridge has always been such a relevant part of my life,” Somerville says. “Borough Market is such a special place in terms of produce and atmosphere. “We have Mexicans looking for authentic 38 issue 18 winter 2017

THIS PAGE: Traditional Nigerian food at 805 restaurant on Old Kent Road (above); Mexican treats at El Pastór, London Bridge (right and below).


Elephant and Castle, was a disused paper factory and is now 4,180sq m of food stalls, shops and bars which offer tastes and experiences from across the world.

ASIA: THE SUBCONTINENT INDIA In Peckham, Ganapati (below) owner Claire Fisher has been cooking up South Indian cuisine for 14 years. “I wanted to set up a restaurant in Peckham specifically because it was an area friends of mine were passionate about and I knew there was a ready audience for it,” she says. “This corner shop came up when Bellenden Road was in its early stages of regeneration, so I got a good rent, a good landlady and off we went. “We had people ready to welcome us from the offset because there was no one else offering home-cooked Indian food in the area. “I first became interested in cooking almost two decades ago after backpacking around India with a friend. “What started off as a hobby has become a big part of my life and Peckham is a great spot to turn a hobby into a business. We have become part of the community.”

Mexican food, we have foodies who span all demographics, we have people who have travelled from out-of-town, we have locals, we have journalists from newspapers in the immediate vicinity, doctors from local hospitals, tourists visiting the market who find their way here. It’s a real cross section. “We also feel that Southwark Council knows its input is so vital for our existence and it is great to have that support,” he adds.

EUROPE ITALY If London is not short of anything, it is Italian restaurants, but Daniel Edwards and his brother have done something a little different in Nunhead. Pizzeria 400 Rabbits (top), in Westow Street, draws influence from Napoli, but uses seasonal British toppings and London sourdough as a pizza base. The brothers knead the mixture before fermenting it for at least 48 hours and then cooking it at around 400 degrees in a woodfired oven. “My brother and I live in south London and we always have,” Edwards says. “We wanted a restaurant here because the area has such a nice feel and Southwark is really having its time at the moment. There is so much regeneration and the council is really paying attention. “My brother and I love beer and pizza, they are never going to go out of fashion. There are loads of Neapolitan places but we wanted to do a London version. “The dough isn’t Italian because it [uses] sourdough bread, which is having a real resurgence at the moment. Everything is from local suppliers and is a celebration of the south-east of England and London. southwarkmagazine.com

“We love the Nunhead area because it retains what is nice about the south – the people and the diversity – but it also hasn’t gone too gentrified.” For another taste of the Mediterranean, Mercato Metropolitano – the urban farmers’ market of Italy – which opened in September 2017, is the place to be. The Newington Causeway hub, in


18 winter 2017 39

SOUTH BANK TOWER, DELIVERING SUSTAINABLE REGENERATION IN THE BOROUGH OF SOUTHWARK CIT Group are proud to have delivered South Bank Tower in the London borough of Southwark. This landmark development transformed public spaces and reinvigorated retail space for existing local traders. The project created more than 2500 employment opportunities with the delivery of office space and further generated a number of local apprenticeships during construction. CIT remain a committed investor in Southwark’s future. For more information on CIT and current developments, visit our website. www.cit.co.uk

Reviving disused buildings THIS PAGE: The Mondrian London hotel was created from the former Sea Containers House building on the Southbank.

LEARNING TO ADAPT In many places, derelict buildings remain so for years, until being converted to offices or housing. But in Southwark, unusual and ingenious new uses are found for everything from abandoned car parks to court rooms, libraries to factories and from former printworks to power stations. James Cracknell reports southwarkmagazine.com

INNOVATION AND CREATIVITY continue to be shown in Southwark through the transformation of old and disused buildings. Famous projects such as the conversion of the former Bankside power station into one of the world’s leading art galleries, Tate Modern, are well known. But there are examples all over the borough of buildings that have been brought back to life with imaginative revamps and refurbishments, to be made fit for the 21st century. Whether it’s a biscuit factory converted into flexible co-working space, a printworks transformed into a venue for live music, or a magistrates’ court re-styled as a luxury hotel, Southwark is a borough brimming with brilliantly restored buildings. Peckham Levels could potentially lay claim to being London’s most famous car park. issue

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Reviving disused buildings THISTHIS PAGE: PAGE: Up to Runners 500 artists’ in Burgess studios Park (top) and new and creative businesses are gym equipment set to open at Peckhamwith Levels viewsmulti-storey of The Shardcar – a former Street 2017. Park park –ininMint December (bottom).

Since art project Bold Tendencies first took over the top floors of the disused multistorey and opened a rooftop bar called Frank’s Café nearly a decade ago, the car park has become a symbol of this south London enclave’s rejuvenation. Half a million people have since visited the car park, and not one of them has needed to put a sticker on their windscreen. This summer, one of Bold Tendencies’ flagship projects, The Multi-Storey Orchestra, once again welcomed the world-famous classical music festival, The Proms, to the Peckham landmark. The building’s new lease of life, with its iconic views of London’s skyline and position in the heart of south London’s cultural 42 issue 18 winter 2017


renaissance, is now arousing the interest of local businesses. A new project called Peckham Levels is set to utilise another seven levels of the car park, alongside Bold Tendencies, and offers a unique environment for creative entrepreneurs to establish themselves and build on the car park’s huge success. Peckham Levels is a partnership between Make Shift, the management team behind Pop Brixton – a similar creative space for artists – and Southwark Council. Expected to provide 500 jobs, the first five floors will house workspaces for artists, designers, makers and creative entrepreneurs, while the upper two levels will become a trading space for food and drink outlets.

Reviving disused buildings

One of the first confirmed occupiers of Peckham Levels is Drum & Flats, a popup street food vendor specialising in spicy chicken wings. The business was founded by childhood friends Khamisi McKenzie and Daniel Opoku-Baah. McKenzie tells Southwark magazine: “We both grew up around the corner from Peckham and for us we wanted to set up in a place with a connection to who we are. “We have been going to Frank’s [Cafe] for years and a lot of people we know have put on exhibitions at the car park. Peckham has become a popular destination over the last few years and there are a lot of new people – we want to show them there is creative talent here.” Peckham Levels is part of the borough’s new cultural strategy, Creative Southwark, which seeks to help boost the creative sector by helping artists overcome social and financial challenges. Affordable rates are being offered to local people looking to establish themselves, with 75% of its members hailing from Peckham, and 85% from Southwark borough. And to help spread the benefits of the project to the wider area a ‘Community Resource Scheme’ will see traders and artists at Peckham Levels invest their time and skills to running training workshops, offer work experience, and contribute to other local projects.

THIS PAGE: Printworks, the site where newspapers were once printed, now serves as an entertainment venue – with music, film and food events. southwarkmagazine.com


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Reviving disused buildings

THIS PAGE: A modern sculpture (top) adorns the lobby of the Mondrian London hotel; rooms at the former sea containers building offer views of the Thames (above).

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Luds Van De Belt, who helped establish Peckham Levels ahead of its launch, says: “Our members are the heart and soul of Peckham Levels, and we couldn’t be more excited about the inspiring group of people we’ll be working and playing alongside over the coming years.” An area already familiar with the concept of reuse and restoration is Rotherhithe. Since the 1980s, as London’s docks were rapidly shut down, the district’s focus shifted, with old warehouses converted into housing and

commercial office space. Now another shift is taking place, as the demand for arts and culture venues in the capital soars. Printworks in Rotherhithe is a relatively young building compared to the Victorian and early 20th century docklands buildings. It was built in 1989, as Harmsworth Quays, and for 24 years housed the printing presses for newspapers including the Daily Mail, London Evening Standard, and Metro. But the building was abandoned in 2013 as the print industry was forced to slash costs and move operations outside London. The move left a huge hole in the centre of Rotherhithe with the 11,074sq m Printworks being left to ruin. British Land saw an opportunity, and together with an adjacent shopping centre and leisure park, acquired an area of 18.61ha to form a huge mixed-use redevelopment zone. The Canada Water Masterplan was published last year and included proposals for 3,500 homes, as well as offices, shops, restaurants, a university campus, and new open public spaces – plans together worth around £2 billion. The fate of Printworks, however, is not yet set in stone. As British Land seeks to evolve its plans for the area – and before construction work is ready to begin – this huge building has been reimagined as an events space with

Reviving disused buildings

a capacity of 6,000 and a 2am licence secured for weekends. With a further 3,716sq m of outdoor space and parking available, Printworks offers the “ultimate blank canvas” for all kinds of largescale events including a major focus on music – as featured in the last issue of Southwark magazine – but exhibitions, product launches and filming too. Vibration Group and its live events agency Venue Lab is working at the forefront of London’s booming entertainment industry and was seen as the perfect partner to take over the management of Printworks for a period of up to five years. Chief executive Simon Tracey tells Southwark magazine: “The challenge with Printworks is what to do with the space while long-term plans are being developed. Secret Cinema came in before we arrived and were hosting film screenings including Star Wars and 28 Days Later, but British Land wanted something there that was more visible for the marketplace. We’d previously worked with them on an event space at the Leadenhall Building and we started talking about a strategy for Printworks. “We have come up with a programme where there will be something for everyone; we’re hosting a techno club, ballet, a beer festival, a horror exhibition, and we’re looking at hosting corporate brand activities where we can use the space in an unusual way. It is a massively varied programme. We want to put this place on the map. “We are also looking a creating a community space, using the external garden and developing schools programmes alongside the commercial programme. We want to be really good neighbours and turn Printworks from this enormous looming building with the gates locked to an active space for local people. It would be easy for a developer to just mothball it but I think people like Roger [Madelin, head of Canada Water development at British Land] are more visionary than that. They want to make it central to their plans. “Printworks won’t be here forever but it can leave a legacy. There is a massive shortage of events space in London and our business exists to activate these places that can then be used for something culturally significant.” Since opening in January 2017, Printworks has been shortlisted for two events industry awards. Madelin is leading the Canada Water development which includes Printworks and says the success of the events so far held there are already influencing his plans. He tells Southwark magazine: “Every time we walked into the building we just thought it was a very special place, and would be an attractive space for all sorts of different events. southwarkmagazine.com

“We decided to bring in Vibration Group and they put together a business plan. It still took us a while to think that a part of the building might be refurbishable, or extendable, but we’re now doing a lot of work to see if it can be brought back to life, maybe as a corporate headquarters or as a performance space. It’s unlikely we’ll keep all of it, but we’re looking at what we can do. “We will keep our options open, but certainly having these events there has been a useful exercise and has helped put Canada Water on the map. More people now know about the area and it has certainly started a conversation. “When British Land bought Printworks in 2012, the assumption was it would be knocked down and the land used for housing.

But now we’ve had time to think about the attraction of the area and the sort of authenticity that this building brings to it – it starts to become an exciting prospect.” Bermondsey is another area of Southwark that has struggled since the decline of its docks, where one of the chief industries historically has been food manufacturing. The riverside district was even nicknamed “London’s larder” because the majority of London’s canned meats, butter and cheese were made from factories around the area of St Saviour’s Dock. And it was in Bermondsey that biscuits were manufactured at a large factory built in 1866, where it continued for more than a century until finally closing down in 1989. Today, the Biscuit Factory has been


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Reviving disused buildings THIS PAGE: The Kagyu Samye Dzong London buddhist temple in Bermondsey – which was formerly a library.

reimagined as a business hub for freelancers and entrepreneurs looking for shared office space in the city. Workspace offers 69 co-working locations around London, but chose the Bermondsey site for its character and flexibility, with professionals in film production, fashion, graphic design, and tech all calling it home. It even features a gym and a climbing wall. The successful revamp of the Biscuit Factory led to developer Grosvenor buying the remainder of the site in a £51 million deal. Grosvenor has let out the existing industrial buildings to a range of creative companies, including the Old Vic theatre, the Construction Youth Trust, the Arch climbing wall, and architectural collective Assemble.

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A planning application is being prepared which will retain and convert part of the site to deliver an exciting mixed-use scheme which links to the historic railway arches. On the Southbank, another iconic building has recently undergone a major transformation. Sea Containers House was originally designed and built as a hotel in the late 1970s but ended up becoming an office building instead. Now, nearly 40 years later, the original vision for the building has finally been realised. The Mondrian London hotel opened at Sea Containers House in 2014, alongside a new business hub. Simon Gilkes, regional director of sales and marketing at SBE Group, says of the project: “The hugely successful redevelopment of Sea Containers House as a design hotel and vibrant business hub has played a huge part in the reinvigoration of the area.” Other examples of Southwark’s successfully re-imagined buildings include St Olave’s Grammar School in Tooley Street, near London Bridge. The site has a rich history, having been built in the 19th century following a merger between two 16th century boys’ schools. It was closed to pupils in 1968 and later used as an annex for South London College until 2004. The listed building lay empty for more than a decade until being bought by the India-based Lalit Hotel group. The company’s first-ever London hotel opened earlier this year to rave reviews, with Sherelle Jacobs writing in the Daily Telegraph: “The Tudor-inspired red-brick building still has the sunny, supercilious air of

an English school… But inside glitters like an Indian palace, with flame-tickled tea lamps, illuminated screens, and gold-threaded tapestries of the tree of life.” Also in Tooley Street is the former Tower Bridge Magistrates’ Court. The court was built in 1906 but closed in 2013. As a Grade II-listed property, demolition was not an option, but much like its neighbouring grammar school, the building was ideally suited to conversion for use as a hotel. This development opportunity was spied by Dominvs Group, and the site is now being transformed into the 200-bed four-star hotel (bottom left), which will be called The Dixon and is set to open in autumn 2018. Over in Camberwell, the former Southwark Town Hall had been in serious need of renovation when Southwark Council decided to bring in Alumno Developments to transform its former headquarters into student accommodation. Explaining the appeal of converting an old municipal building for such use, Alumno’s managing director David Campbell said: “This wonderful building provides light and spacious bedroom accommodation, as well as generous communal areas. There is also a large shared common room, which uses the dramatic skyline view from the roof.” But perhaps the most unexpected of all Southwark’s building transformations, is the conversion of a library in Bermondsey into a Buddhist centre. Kagyu Samye Dzong London opened in 2010, using the library’s Art Deco hall as a shrine room for 300 people, including a 2.5-metre Buddha statue.

BUILDING CONTROL SOLUTIONS Whether you’re building a dwelling extension or a complex skyscraper, Southwark Council’s building control team can help you. ► We have dedicated and experienced building control surveyors ► We provide advice and support for our clients and design teams ► We take the complexity out of the technical ► We promote and support innovative design solutions Stephen Rizzo Head of building control 020 7525 5588 Simon Harvey Group manager 020 7525 5586 Bruce Paige Group manager 020 7525 5052 building.control@southwark.gov.uk

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Image: Morley Von Sternberg





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Old Kent Road

ADVANCED TO GO As Southwark Council embarks on a major redevelopment of Old Kent Road, Jane Thynne seeks out Colin Wilson, the mayor of London’s strategic planning manager and the man in charge of what could become the biggest regeneration project the borough has ever seen OLD KENT ROAD is perhaps best known as the first (and cheapest) property you arrive at when playing a game of Monopoly. However, its rank at the bottom of the famous board game’s hierarchy has proven to be a false prophecy, thanks to Southwark Council’s multibillion, 20-year regeneration scheme, which will see complete transformations to its infrastructure, quality of education, industry and public realm. southwarkmagazine.com

Its importance as a thoroughfare linking London with ports at Dover, Richborough and Lympne goes back to Roman times. In the Middle Ages, pilgrims paying homage to the martyred Thomas Becket at Canterbury would use the road as the starting point of their spiritual journeys (as recounted by Chaucer in his Canterbury Tales). Today, not only is the route to become revitalised with a new offer of retail, piazzas, restaurant and leisure facilities, issue

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Old Kent Road

ABOVE: Colin Wilson, appointed to lead the Old Kent Road regeneration company in May 2017.

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but transport links too will be revolutionised, owing to the arrival of the Bakerloo line extension and the opening of two underground stations. The man charged with leading this regeneration is Colin Wilson, who has been seconded for two years to Southwark from the Greater London Authority after overseeing major projects such as Old Oak Common in west London, the Nine Elms development south of the river, and the much-lauded makeover of King’s Cross. “Things are really busy here,” says Wilson, who is now six months into the job. “We have been talking to a lot of people in the area to get a greater understanding of what they want going forward.” So where to start? As in every London borough, housing is a priority for Southwark. Over the next 20 years, the Old Kent Road (OKR) regeneration and development company intends to oversee the creation of 20,000 new homes, 35% of which it says will be affordable stock. And the team has not been slow off the mark – the first major location has already been agreed and as such the 1.4-ha ‘Ruby Triangle’ site is now in the hands of private developers Omer Weinberger and Marc Pennick. Close to Burgess Park, it will comprise more than 1,000 homes along with commercial space. “It’s in its early stages,” acknowledges Wilson. “The developers have bought the site and have committed to delivering 35% affordable housing. They have got their architect [Farrells] and things are progressing.” However, while housing may be a priority, Old Kent Road is currently home to a number of successful businesses, whose needs, Wilson says, must not be ignored. In response to concerns from industry, Wilson and his team have redrafted the area plan which is now out for consultation. “We have been looking at ways not only of providing housing but providing and protecting jobs in the area,” Wilson explains. “We would like to keep a lot of the retail

and actually expand the job offer in Old Kent Road and – more importantly – mix housing not just with office use, but with light industrial and distribution use. “There is a huge demand for this kind of activity in this part of London. We would like to do something that hasn’t really been done that much in London before which is mix those uses up. The priority now is to set out a plan to achieve that.” The regeneration area stretches from Tower Bridge Road in the north to New Cross Road in the south – and takes in major schemes such as Berkeley Homes’ Malt Street project, for which the developer has submitted a planning application for up to 1,050 residential homes, up to 5,500sq m of commercial floorspace, a new public linear park and public realm improvements. Wilson says that the people who live and work on the edge of the proposed development area will see tangible benefits too. He says: “We are talking to colleagues in Lewisham about how we can knit-in to their aspirations in terms of parks and open spaces. “We have big plans for something we are calling Greener About, which will link green spaces around Southwark, Lewisham, Lambeth, Wandsworth, Nine Elms and over to Canada Water. “It’s very much about the Old Kent Road as part of London, rather than just a thing in itself.”


Old Kent Road PICTURED: Consultations ( far left) are ongoing over the future of Old Kent Road. The regeneration scheme on Rotherhithe New Road (left and below) will feature a sixth form college, primary school, retail and homes.



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Old Kent Road

London Bridge

Canada Water

Canary Wharf


Old Kent Road 1

Old Kent Road 2

New Cross Gate

Elephant and Castle Lewisham

Future potential extension options

THIS PAGE: Plans to extend the Bakerloo line with two stops at Old Kent Road would improve the area’s connectivity options, adding to its appeal.

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A key driver to the regeneration will be the expansion of the Bakerloo line and the team is working closely with Transport for London on the plans to bring the underground out to Lewisham via the Old Kent Road by 2030. And while the £20 million funding from the Transport and Works Act Order is in place to complete the extension, according to Wilson, it is then up to Southwark to find around £3 billion in building costs. Part of the funding will come from the borough’s Community Infrastructure Levy, which in Southwark has been upped from £50 to £218 per sq m. It is also in the process of considering the implementation of a “business retention scheme” – which would see the council asking the treasury if it can keep a slice of the business rates for a designated area for a set time period – a strategy employed by Wilson on the Nine Elms development. “In some respects this venture is similar to Nine Elms – yes, it’s about a tube extension, yes it’s about a massive housing project with huge social infrastructure, but there are significant differences too – the main one being that most of the light industry had moved out three or four years before we got started [at Nine Elms] and we were dealing with mainly commercial premises. That is not the case in Old Kent Road.” Wilson points to the thriving art industry that exists in the area as an example, which he is keen to nurture. “There is a huge creative artist industry around Old Kent Road. “As well as lots of art storage facilities – which are important because of the proximity to central London – there are a lot of artists. So along with affordable housing, we want to maintain affordable business rents so people

aren’t priced out of living and working there,” he says. “We are calling it, ‘central London but better’. Yes it’s in London but it has its own vibrant identity which we want to capitalise on.” The needs of the community appear to be at the heart of the OKR regeneration team’s vision. Wilson says the project is about “building on what we already have” and that “we need to let people know that 20,000 people are just not going to turn up and overload their school or GP practices. Things will be required in addition to and will be complementary to things that are already there.” The 19-storey 399 Rotherhithe New Road building is an example of how a mixed-use development can benefit an area. The project is now home to the City of London Academy Sixth Form, more than 150 homes and is awaiting the arrival of John Keats Primary School. “This is becoming more common in London, and works well with primary schools,” Wilson says. “However, we are currently in search of a site for a secondary school and I am not sure a mixed-use scheme is the answer. We are working hard to identify possible locations at the moment.” The team has also launched a partnership with the NHS to ascertain care needs for the area. “We are working on a health plan looking at all sorts of things from leisure provision to extra care homes for the elderly. This project is not just about bricks and mortar. Yes we want 20,000 new homes and 10,000 jobs, but it’s about being a bit more thoughtful about how these things relate to each other. It’s not about chasing numbers, it’s about making the Old Kent Road a really good place to live.” It looks as though now might be a good time to redraw the Monopoly board.

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The Creation Trust

LIVING FOR THE CITY The Creation Trust was established in 2007 to help people living on the Aylesbury estate fulfil their potential and create a community where people aspire to live. Joe Walsh reports on its achievements after 10 years

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The Creation Trust

REGENERATING THE AYLESBURY ESTATE has been a major focus in Southwark for nearly 20 years. Current proposals, detailed in the Aylesbury Area Action Plan (AAAP), were adopted by the council in 2010 and are set for implementation by 2032. The AAAP outlines proposals to demolish 2,000 homes and build 4,200, along with a new library, health centre, youth centre and children’s play areas. This is in addition to redesigning the roads and squares in the estate to better integrate it into the wider community. “Upon final completion you won’t know where the red line border of the Aylesbury estate is, as it will be fully integrated into Walworth,” says Neil Kirby, head of regeneration south at Southwark Council. But it’s not just buildings which will determine the estate’s prosperity – the social economic prospects of its residents are also a priority. The Creation Trust charity was formed in 2007 to ensure residents benefit from regeneration projects at the Aylesbury. It works with the council, Notting Hill Housing Trust – which will manage many of the properties – and other parties, to deliver social benefits in addition to the planned homes. While Notting Hill is under contract to control rent prices and the local authority is helping ensure people are not forced out of Southwark (so far, the council says 90% of residents have stayed in the borough), The Creation Trust targets community activities. These range from youth and employment programmes to supporting older and vulnerable people in the estate and engaging residents in community activities. Amparo Rendon is a lead youth worker and has been resident at the Aylesbury for 35 years. She currently works with The Creation Trust’s Giraffe House; its youth and sport centre, which offers adult learning in areas such as English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL). Rendon says the work being done at Giraffe House has broken the barriers of separation and territorialism, enabling Aylesbury residents to come together with the rest of Walworth as a big community through the mediums of sport, arts and cultural activity. Encouraging young people to increase levels of physical activity and develop leadership and communication skills is a priority for the trust. Its youth programme is being funded by the educational charity Ark Schools until 2020. Activities such as football tournaments take place, aimed at people from low income families and run alongside mentoring and group work sessions, to address behavioural, health and inactivity issues. The boys’ summer tournament had 300 participants aged five to 16, while 200 girls and women between 12 and 45 took part. The Creation Trust has also helped 350 individuals into paid work through its SE17 Working programme, which offers one-to-one coaching, and bespoke training. The Aylesbury Apprentice project, funded by developer L&Q, ran for 13 weeks in the summer of 2016, successfully helping people gain the skills needed for obtaining work. Ewa Wickowska is one person to benefit from Creation Trust’s employment programmes. Approaching the trust in 2013 after her first child was born, Wickowska became a community team member and participated in outreach projects and events, allowing her to improve her English, boost her confidence and adapt to working in the UK. southwarkmagazine.com

LEFT: The Creation Trust’s community team aims to boost residents’ employment prospects. OPPOSITE AND BELOW: Engaging younger and older people in sports activities has been a major objective.


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The Creation Trust

THIS PAGE: The Creation Trust focuses on well-being for residents (top), entertainment for older people (above) and sports engagement (above, right).

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She was also able to improve her CV, access free training and gain qualifications through Southwark Council’s Reveal programme, which teaches event management. This assisted Wickowska in applying for jobs that would fit around her childcare needs. Obtaining a facilities assistant position with a charity called The Bridge – which is conveniently based in nearby Waterloo and helps young people secure apprenticeships in the technology and digital sector based – Wickowska has since been promoted to company administrator. “If you are looking for work, pop into Creation Trust and any information you want, they will get it for you. It helps support people in preparing for work, looking for work and securing employment,” she says. As well as practical help, The Creation Trust has also helped change perceptions of the Aylesbury. Film crews using the site for scenes of urban decay or showing ‘broken Britain’ had become so commonplace, they were banned by Southwark Council, following complaints by those who lived at the Aylesbury over how they felt their home was being portrayed. For example, the trust funded the remake of Channel 4’s 20-second ident of the Aylesbury in 2014. Residents had been upset about how the estate was depicted in the

original clip, which seemed to portray it in a negative light, showing only abandoned walkways covered with bin bags, upturned trolleys and wet washing hanging out. This was considered to be at odds with the community spirit of the estate, which those living there considered to be one of its defining and most admired characteristics. The replacement clip showed what the trust and Aylesbury residents believed to be a more accurate portrayal. It starred those who lived there and showed children playing in clean walkways, as well as people of all ages socialising, walking their dogs, gardening and playing basketball. Until two years ago, Southwark Council was the sole provider of funding for The Creation Trust, which now also receives private funding. Last year, the council agreed to provide £1 million from 2016/17 to 2020/21, but Kirby notes how council funds are being heavily cut and that the local authority will be faced with difficulty in finding the required grant to keep it going. Despite the challenges, the achievements of the trust and the council together show the benefits that positive programmes and a residents-centred approach to regeneration can bring for young and older people, as well as supporting the unemployed back into work.

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Southwark Council is developing phase two of an extra care facility for residents. Noella Pio Kivlehan reports

COMMITTED TO CARE: Southwark Council is investing in its facilities for older people, expanding its extra care facilities.

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THE CATOR STREET extra care facility in Southwark demonstrates the council’s commitment to providing the best possible assistance for those living with dementia and older residents in the borough. “Improving our offer to people with dementia and their families is the core driving force behind our new specialist centre,” says Councillor Stephanie Cryan, cabinet member for adult care and financial inclusion, when updated plans for the Peckham centre were launched in February 2016. The scheme is being built in two phases, the first of which was completed in November 2016 – and featured 42 units for occupants in three storeys, with offices on the ground floor. Southwark Council took possession of the facility in December 2016 and is now turning its attention to phase two. This will have 50 units, predominantly with one bedroom, but with the addition of a day care centre. Both phases will be interlinked. Currently at the briefing stage, the council is also looking at the possibility of including a communal space in-between the one-bed flats which can be converted into a second bedroom for either flat, as the need arises. There will also be specially adapted wheelchair units. It is hoped that a contractor will be appointed in early January 2019, with a completion date for the scheme pencilled in for July 2020. Tendai Mbiba, the council’s project manager for the scheme, says the time gap between both developments was because the Resource and Education Centre on Cator Street already existed on the site. Mbiba says: “Initially, we explored the option of refurbishing the existing building. But it was found that the existing building was not structurally sound and therefore not cost effective to undertake any remedial works. Instead, the old building was demolished to make way for the new scheme.” Cryan adds: “We are also looking into the possibilities of other complimentary services that might be able to share the [Cator] site. All of which I believe will create a better and more responsive, caring environment for those in our borough who need it most.” Further details or information on the Cator Street phase two site can be obtained by contacting Bruce Glockling, Southwark Council’s head of regeneration, at bruce.glockling@southwark.gov.uk

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Southwark #18  

In this edition of Southwark magazine we take a look at the progress made with St Mary's Quarter, world cuisine in one borough and how commu...

Southwark #18  

In this edition of Southwark magazine we take a look at the progress made with St Mary's Quarter, world cuisine in one borough and how commu...

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