Empty parade in Willesden transformed into ‘pop up’ shops

Former textile storgae building is home to 13 units

A vacant building in Willesden Green which has stood derelict for more than five months has been transformed into a parade of ‘pop up’ creative shops.

The former Textiles storage building in Queens Parade, between Willesden High Road and Willesden Lane, will now house thirteen creative enterprises stocking a variety of goods.

The building has been transformed thanks to hard work from painting and decorating students from the College of North West London, in Dudden Hill Lane alongside West London based designer Kieren Jones.

Among the shops that will take up residence in the space include an organic children’s clothing shop and an emporium stocked with body bath and face treats.

The scheme forms part of the New Windows on Willesden Green project which aims to attract footfall and bring positive change to the area.

The project is being jointly run by The Architecture Foundation and Meanwhile Space, who specialise on ensuring that vacant properties can benefit from temporary shops before they are ready to be permanently occupied.

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Eddie Bridgeman, director of Meanwhile Space said the project in Willesden Green would be the ‘standard bearer’ for brining new ideas to London’s high streets.

He said: “It brings diversity to what is already on offer in Willesden Green, making use of an otherwise under-utilised space, whilst giving people the chance to try out their big idea.”

Supported by the Mayor’s Outer London Fund, New Windows on Willesden Green has previously seen initiatives including an ‘advent calendar’ of shop windows which opened throughout the 25 days leading up to Christmas and a scheme to encourage aspiring designers to publish a book about their area.

Sarah Ichioka, Director of The Architecture Foundation said the high street was ‘crucial’ to local communities.

She said: “New Windows on Willesden Green is beginning to creatively reactivate the Willesden High Road area, and this, we believe, will catalyse long-term regeneration for the benefit of local people.”

Queens Parade will host a series of exciting events, activities and workshops over the coming months, kicking off with the official launch celebration on March 29.

For more information visit: www.willesdenwindows.com.