The most sought-after car park in London currently hosts four floors of art installations, live music from the aptly named Multi-Story Orchestra, poetry and literary events, all washed down with a tipple (or two) from the legendary Frank’s. And the small matter of that jaw-dropping view of the city.
Not bad going for a once-disused space. It seems, however, that Peckham’s creative community aren’t done with the transformation yet. Come September, Peckham Levels will have transformed the lower seven floors into an experimental cultural destination in the hope that it will allow grassroots creativity to blossom and flourish.
The first five floors will contain affordable workspaces for emerging artists and entrepreneurs working in design, fashion, crafts, film, architecture and social enterprise.
Last week, membership was confirmed for a handful of young, local businesses including gal-dem, the creative collective comprising of over 70 women and non-binary people of colour and Guap Magazine, the world’s first video magazine dedicated to discovering creative and entrepreneurial youth. Not to mention violin-maker Andreas Hudelmayer and The Reasons Why Foundation who run behavioural change programmes for people involved in crime.Meanwhile, the fifth and sixth floors will extend the hedonistic and artistic playground created by its forefathers on the above floors, playing host to two bars, a café, a live music venue, gallery space, a hair salon and yoga studios. Oh, and seven street food traders will be setting up shop, including signature chicken wings from Drums & Flats’ aka Pechkamites Khamisi and Daniel, and Kurdish food from Camberwell’s family-run favourite, Nandine.
With the aim of creating a community-oriented space for talented south Londoners to work, grow, trade and learn, the team behind the project are buzzing with excitement. “We cannot wait to open our doors, and harness the energy and talent in this area,” says Luds Van De Belt. “We want this to be one of the most exciting cultural destinations in London.”
In short, home-grown talent is about to transform the most impressive car park we ever did see into, well, something more inspiring, creative and constructive.