News

Network Rail evicts creative businesses from Southwark

After months of campaigning against Network Rail’s eviction, the businesses  under the railway arches of Union Street near Blackfriars station are evicted.
Gesbeen Mohammad reports. 

Network Rail plans to turn Union Street from an artistic hub into offices, by evicting the businesses in the railway arches near Blackfriars station.

Businesses such as Academy Costumes and Rocket Van will leave by 15 November, despite campaigning.

Although they signed a fresh three-year lease in October 2012, they were told to leave by June 2013. A petition, currently signed by almost 10,000 supporters, delayed the eviction.

Adrian Gwillym, the costume designer at Academy Costumes, said: ‘’We suspect it was the campaigns that delayed the eviction, however Network Rail never said so.’’ Network Rail did not reply to e-mail inquiries.

The campaign created a lot of awareness, and saved Union Street Theatre as it is the only business allowed to stay in their premises.  Mr Gwillym said: ‘’Union Street Theatre doesn’t know how long they’ll be there for. It’s only a matter of time.’’

Watch local filmmaker, Michael Holland’s, short documentary called Union Street Outrage. He interviews the businesses affected by the eviction.

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