Historic inns and yards off Borough High Street set to benefit from investment
Borough High Street is one of London’s most ancient and famous routes. Once the way into the city for the agricultural producers of Kent and Flemish brewers its proximity to the river meant that it became a staging post and consequently economic, social and artistic activity pressed in on the carriageway, leaving a legacy of cultural heritage which competes with current realities.
Today’s pressures are different, but the intensity of use harks back to that earlier time. Traffic in particular is an impediment to successful place making. And with no real prospect of its importance as a thoroughfare being diminished, it is those ways and spaces running off the street that must provide a refuge and alternative means of navigating and enjoying the area.
Working in partnership with Team London Bridge, Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity, Southwark Council, Greater London Authority and other local stakeholders, Better Bankside has secured funding from Southwark’s High Street Challenge to transform one of the historic inns and yards off Borough High Street.
The partnership are delighted to appoint Untitled Practice to develop design proposals that can easily implemented and replicated. This initial commission will focus on Kings Head Yard and White Hart Yards. These interconnected spaces provide a pedestrian link between Guy’s Hospital, Kings College London and Borough High Street.
The project will deliver an exemplar transformation, from which the learning can be applied to the transformation of other yards in the future as further funding and opportunities arise.
Better Bankside's Borough High Street Project
Better Bankside is embarking on a programme of improvements to Borough High Street and environs. Borough High Street, the eastern border of the Better Bankside Business Improvement District, is one of London’s most historic high streets and a key route from the City and London Bridge through to the Borough and Elephant and Castle. Our ambition is to shift perceptions of Borough High Street so it becomes more than a functional street, a connector moving people and transport, to a street with cultural significance and a sense of place. This project feeds into our aim to make Bankside the best neighbourhood in the world.
We aim to improve the environment, making it more pleasant to live, work and visit. We will achieve this through a series of interventions from smartening up the building facades to transforming the Inns and Yards, a deep clean of the street, air quality improvements and tackling crime and anti-social behaviour.
Work has already started. We’ve been awarded funding from the High Street Challenge to deliver an exemplar public realm project in White Hart and Kings Head Yards, and a grant system has been launched to encourage shop front improvements.
Working with the landowners, occupiers and stakeholders is vital to effecting change and creating a street that everyone is proud of.