INTRODUCING: CREATIVE STREATHAMReading Time
Since 2019 B1 Creative have been located at 165 Gleneldon Mews. Situated behind Streatham High Road, this is one of the last remaining cobbled streets in the area. Its history and evolution since the late 19th century is very interesting; the original stables were transformed into garages and mechanics as cars became more popular in the 1920s, and at one end of the Mews you will still find many of these running daily.
THE CREATIVE HEART OF STREATHAM
The other end, however, is where you’ll find B1, nestled amongst some equally fabulous businesses. From caterers to upholsterers, “creation” is key.
What’s confusing though is the many number of Streatham residents who don’t know the Mews exists! Just streets or steps away and yet the Mews has remained SW16’s little secret – until now.
MOVERS AND MAKERS
B1 launched Creative Streatham with a mission to showcase not only the Gleneldon Mews crew but all the creative, small businesses which exist locally. The best way to do this, we decided, was to start with a Makers Market.
To help support the event, B1 applied to InStreatham for funding. The InStreatham Community Events Fund is designed to support community festivals, events and experiences to happen, expanding the cultural programme in Streatham and driving footfall. With InStreatham on board, we set to work finding makers from Streatham and beyond to pitch up in our studio.
The response to the Market was fantastic, with many residents saying that it was just what Streatham needed. Not just local but makers from across London signed up and we were very lucky to fill our trading spots with creatives of all kinds; artists, jewellers, chocolatiers, florists, sewers, bakers, potters, hot sauce makers – the line-up of traders was quite incredible.
The team at B1 had extra helping hands from two SW16 locals in particular. Toby Rivers runs Muse Bespoke Upholstery, across the Mews from the studio. He kindly offered to open up his workshop to house additional traders.
With making at the heart of Creative Streatham’s ethos, B1 employed local carpenter Will Marschall to hand-build the Market’s stalls. Not only was this cost-effective (compared to similar stalls available to buy or hire), the stalls were constructed in such a way that they can be flat-packed and stored for future events.
It took serious sweat from all involved but on 5th December, we welcomed traders and customers for the Makers Market. As early as set-up, the buzz in the studio was exciting. There was plenty of chat as traders browsed from each others stalls, introducing themselves to one another and swapping tips for the day ahead. The Mews businesses were also open, with Michael’s 5 Star Caterers serving up warming curries and stews, and London Smoke & Cure offering a complimentary glass of mulled wine with their smoked salmon and charcuterie. Bruce Upholstery opened up their workshop for visitors to see, and braved high ladders to get the Mews’ bunting flying high!
Nothing could have prepared us for how busy the market was going to be. With COVID still casting a shadow over the events industry we were thrilled to see so many shoppers (all appropriately masked, of course). We didn’t have an official count but estimate the market attendance to be around 300-400. What was particularly nice to see was the diversity across visitors – it really seemed to be a fun day out, enjoyed by all.
We were really thrilled with the feedback we received from our traders:
- Traders rated the Makers Market 5 stars
- 55% experienced takings better than they had expected for the event, and 45% were as expected
- The promotion and location of the Market both received 4.6 stars, with the rate of organisation on the day at 4.9 stars
- 91% of traders said they would “Absolutely” return to the Market, and 82% were certain that it made a positive impact to the community (the remaining replies being either “Probably” or “Maybe”).
Download the full trader feedback here.
MORE FOR THE COMMUNITY
We’ve already been asked by both traders and visitors when the next Makers Market is planned for. We’re thrilled to announce that the Market will be returning on Saturday 26th March in the build up to Easter.
As the event grows and the weather improves, we hope that by the summer we can close the Mews to cars and pitch traders outside, all along the stretch of the Mews. This also opens us up to more outdoor businesses, such as food and drink trucks.
Markets aren’t the only event we’re hoping to host through Creative Streatham. The studio is a versatile space, with ample space for all kinds of creative events. Keep your eyes peeled for talks, lectures and workshops, all hopefully being added to the CS timetable for 2022.
Would you like to get involved with Creative Streatham?
Contact the team now: [email protected]