my name is Matilde Martinetti and I'm currently contributing to "Union Press" project (21st June - 1st July, Flat Iron Square) - www.unionpress.cc.
The title of my specific contribution is "STEREO-TYPE. Questioning stereotypes. Busting Stereo-Type. Knowing Union Street". My aim is to discover the "hidden side" of Union Street and its surroundings, people and places that have shaped and are shaping Union Streetís multifaceted identity while undermining the obvious or conventional stereotypes about the area(for example Dickensian slums). I would like to create a temporary and alternative road marking using eco-stencil (the rain will clean them!). They will show significant places such as "Red Cross Garden" or "Cross Bones Graveyard" alongside the official/tourist road marking.
I would really appreciate your help... In your opinion, is there any other place or person (from the past or the present) - a part from the 2 mentioned above - that is significant for the identity of the area? They could also be, for instance, a local shop or market struggling to face the gentrification process. What or who else is still hidden, and not part of the main road markings towards Tate Modern?
I'm collecting contribution to prepare the stencils. Then, I will be at Flat Union Square on 26th June, from 10am to 6 pm and I would be very glad if you will come to make few stencils with me. I'm at your disposal for any further information or material you may need as I will be around the area next days.
re The hidden side of Union Street - How about Gentrification Corner?
There's a legend about a sweary ex-footballer opening a posh restaurant at the junction of Union Street and Great Suffolk Street, while telling everyone it's close to Borough Market. Apparently, it was between a Waitrose and a unicorn stables.
For the longest time the corner building of Union Street and Southwark Bridge Road was the home of the League Against Cruel Sports. They had a nice big sign along the side of their building which was perfectly placed to catch the eyes of thousands rail commuters every day as the trains crawled over the elevated bridge. I believe they left at the end of 2008.
I miss it! Hope this helps and here's a pic (not mine)
Thanks, interesting! This confirms that Bourough Market is still one of the major attractive places in the area and that the gentrification process is trying to shape the identity of the area, today. But what about a "resilient" place or person? Something that is trying to resist the gentrification? Something loved and significant for SE1rs? Any legend about it? (the inverse process)
A great man and a much missed asset to the area is Barry Mason. A photo of Barry is attached to the gates of Cross Bones, next to a bike wheel. A tireless advocate of cycling and the Graveyard, with monthly pilgrimages. Others on this site should give you a fuller portrait, but I can't think of anyone who better to be recorded in your project. He (and Southwark Cyclists) helped the Bike Polo Tournament in Union Street (2009) from being extinguished by bureaucracy. A real local hero.