Article in Time Out


Students stand up for Berwick Street market

Keep it authentic”; “Stop the exclusion of bussinesses”; “We dont need another Carnaby Street,” Scrawled on a chalkboard standing in Soho’s Berwick street, these are just a few of the responses gathered by two architecture students who have been asking locals what they want for the future of this historic market.

Since mid-November, Sophie Ramsbotham and Alex Furunes, both students at the Architecture Association School of Architecture, have been running a regular stall on the market, collecting drawings and comments from local traders and passer-by on the chalkboard and through video interviews (see our blog http// The project, called Positive Dialogues, comes as plans are underway to revitalise the formerly bussy street, which has seen a drop in trade over the past year.

Westminister City Council has selected a preffered bidder, but little is known about what exactly the redevelopment might involve. “We will be consulting with local trades and residents prior to a lease being signed.” said Richard Platt, Westminister City Council’s head of corporate property.

Ramsbotham and Furunes hope their own consultation will give a voice to local’s conserns. “We are worried that yet another generic approach to design, which doesn’t reflect the diversity of Berwick Street, might be seen as the answer” says Ramsbotham. “How can we capture the energy that exists in Soho and put it into the redevelopment of the street?”


Rachel Degal Hamilton 
The Positive Dialogues stall is on Berwick st., noon-5pm Tuesdays

Also mentioned on AA’s webpage