Deptford Market Yard

Ash Sakula has helped create a new market square in the heart of Deptford. The site, a derelict goods yard, is hard by Deptford railway station and formed a block to pedestrian movement between the station, Deptford High Street and the market quarter of Douglas Way.

The railway viaduct at Deptford is London's earliest, and the goods yard was dominated by an L-shaped grade II listed Victorian carriage ramps which brought goods and wagons up from the High Street to the railway viaduct.

We worked with developers U + I and the London Borough of Lewisham from the inception of the project in 2009 to create and implement a masterplan for the area around Deptford railway station.

Deptford High Street is lined with an amazing collection of facades from the eighteenth to the twentieth century. It has a well loved food market supporting dozens of world cuisines, but the street is narrow and the only entrance to the station was up two steep dingy staircases. We proposed rebuilding the ruinous carriage ramp as a new pedestrian route up to the station, along with the new station entrance proposed for the head of the yard.

Linked to the ramp is a large new apartment building by Rogers Stirk Harbour. Ash Sakula's role was the whole of the public realm including the carriage ramp and the market yard, connections through to the Albany Theatre and the existing market square, and the remodelling of St Paul's House, an elegant 1920s building on Deptford High Street which was formerly the rectory for Thomas Archer's baroque church, St Paul's Deptford, further down the High Street.

The lower part of the carriage ramp was rebuilt and the remainder restored. The arches under the ramp have become small shop, café and bar units. The market yard itself, stone paved, creates a new public realm linking the station with its hinterland, and a location for markets and one-off events.

The public square is highly permeable, bringing pedestrians from all four corners to the Albany Theatre, the flea market, the station and the buzz of Deptford High Street.

London Planning Award 2017 — Winner

Planning Award 2017 — Winner

Property Award 2017 — Winner

New London Award 2017 — Winner

Landscape Institute Award 2017 — Winner

Estate Gazette Award 2017 — Winner

New London Award 2016 — Commendation

Early site plan. The ruined lower section of the carriage ramp is rebuilt, and the remainder restored with market retail in its arches. New pedestrian routes cut through under the ramp south to Douglas Way and west through two opened up arches. St Paul's House houses two new restaurants. the arches under the railway viaduct house cafés. The railway carriage café, which for some years had occupied a space south of St Paul's house is relocated opposite the station.

Early view of proposals, with RSHP building and carriage ramp arches to left, station in centre and Ash Sakula's St Paul's House, residential above restaurant, on right.

Carriage ramp with Rogers Stick Harbour's apartment building behind.

Refurbished carriage ramp arches.

The restored carriage ramp with Rogers Stirk Harbour's apartment building, left, Ash Sakula's St Paul's House, right, and the new station entrance, centre.

First thoughts, 2009

Ash Sakula drawings photos
Ash Sakula drawings photos
Ash Sakula drawings photos
Ash Sakula drawings photos

Nineteenth century map of Deptford showing London's first railway.

Deptford Market Yard sign opposite the station entrance

Deptford Station goods yard before its redevelopment as Deptford Market Yard, showing the semi-ruinous carriage ramp.

View of Market Yard from Taproom, the bar/restaurant under St Paul's House.

Market stalls and arches.

Deptford Market Yard with Rogers Stirk Harbour's apartment building behind.

Client: U and I

Collaborators: Rogers Stirk Harbour, Farrer Huxley, PTE, BDP

Completed: 2016