Blue Market Bermondsey – how to revive your local trading hub for £2m

Stallholders in south-east London have been instrumental in driving an exemplary urban design project to regenerate the community “Jesus didn’t go to Tesco,” says Russell Dryden, fishmonger and manager of the Blue Bermondsey business improvement district. “He went to the marketplace.” Markets, in other words, aren’t just places for buying and selling things, but also for meeting people, exchanging ideas, sometimes for starting world religions. But their survival can’t always be taken for granted, for which reason he and his allies in the local community have been fighting for years to revive the one where they work and shop. He is standing by his stall in the Blue Market, a south-east London institution that at its 19th-century peak had 200 stalls. Behind him is a new clock tower, a perky fusion of pyramidal roof and horseshoe arches that hints at the architecture of other places – Moorish? Japanese? – without quite stating which. The silvery scales that clad its oak-framed structure catch the shifting autumnal light. Around are thoughtful and playful but budget-conscious interventions by a collaboration between Hayatsu Architects, a practice with a predilection for working in timber, and the Turner prize-winning collective Assemble. Continue reading...

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