The Regeneration of Deptford
With the news of The Victoria pub (Grove Street, SE8) being converted into a super funky commercial space and the removal of the iconic anchor, we wonder if Deptford will soon be subject the same level of gentrification as the East End?
We have been watching the developments proposed with a mixture of excitement and pangs of nostalgia. Deptford High Street was as undeveloped as Exmouth Market 25 years ago – until recently. Fantastic local restaurants and useful bits and pieces, small and very local businesses, but the word trendy never felt right when describing the area.
Last year, the London Borough of Lewisham undertook works to the high street improving the general roads and layouts to allow the thriving Tuesday market to continue. With this brought a cycle cafe and that, we fear, is the beginning of the displacement.
Deptford is the last place within shouting distance of central London where you can still find decent office property for £13 – £14 per sq ft, the last bastion of cheap, slightly run-down space. We have rather less chunky Victorian warehouses than Shoreditch, so it’s not as obvious a play for developers, but wander off down the side streets and there are forgotten chunks of industrial land ready for developments. We have no doubt that developers will be on their way soon and as we watch our local area in transition, we wonder if they will be able to adapt their game to suit Deptford’s property stock and maintain it's unique charm.
After the success of last year's tour, Nicholas will be hosting our 2nd Deptford Walking Tour later this year. Watch this space for more details!