South by South East

 

Before a visit to the NPG to see the Audrey Hepburn photographs, a quick visit in and around Waterloo East.

The arches in London are all about contrasts: from the one-man-band auto-repair arches in Hackney etc. to the gentrification in Waterloo East!

The stretch of arches on Wootton Street have been modernised with new façades fronting the original arches. But the arches are still there to be seen, and Chris at the Digital Consultancy was happy for me to poke my Nikon FE through his front door, and capture the modern, stylish interior of their office.

On to the arches adjacent to the Festival Hall, thronging with tourists. The well known watering holes of the Topolski Gallery-Café-Bar Venue and the Archduke Wine Bar are here, but somewhere else caught my eye.

The Interior Designers who created the restaurant Le Pain Quotidien have retained the arch at the rear superbly, using subtle lighting that emphasizes the brickwork. I need permission to shoot here…. and a tripod and my Pentax 67. Another revisit beckons...

New faces on old arches... Wootton Street, SE1

New faces on old arches... Wootton Street, SE1

 

Up the Junction!

 

This triangle of overhead track at Loughborough Junction, east of Brixton, initially looked uninspiring. How wrong could I be! A few highlights...

I found James at JB Cabs, in Padfield Road, relaxing outside his arch at the end of a hard week's work. Click! One of my best images so far.

Then, hidden away down an alley, Miguel’s Boxing Gym; a ring backlit by an arch-wide window; low light, moving boxers, fast film – a challenge!

Next,  a meeting with Anne at Meanwhile Space CIC, where I discovered another facet to London’s Railway Arches. CIC? Community Interest Company. They are working at Loughborough Junction to ‘activate empty spaces while they wait to fulfil their longer term purpose’, thus providing a very useful first-home to start-up companies. Visited a few… The Edible Bus Stop organisation ‘transforms neglected sites across the UK’s transport hubs into valuable community growing spaces’. Their arch was jammed full of plants… however, my shots didn’t quite work, so another addition to the re-visit list.

Up the (Loughborough) Junction, SW9

Up the (Loughborough) Junction, SW9

 

A Brixton Bus Stop...

 

The arches here are under threat today and their residents have mounted a massive campaign to save the area. There are many photo opportunities here – I mention just a few...

Premium Coaches allowed us into their yard – provided we wore their hi-viz jackets – to shoot their two magnificent Routemaster buses housed in an arch.

Catwalk, a beauty business for the Afro/Asian community had a 10-metre wall of wigged heads.

The brilliant hole-in-the-wall, One Love Café shot still eludes me...

Brixton Station Road, SW9

Brixton Station Road, SW9