Get involved

Planning work has now officially started for our new building on Old Kent Road! Livesey Exchange has appointed architects what if: projects to prepare the planning application for the new site on the corner of St. Jame’s Street and Old Kent Road. A series of consultations will be organised over the coming weeks and at the Pempeople Pop up shop where drawings of the proposed project will be shown and the architects.  The team is seeking  input from future users and local residents to help us shape the project development and it’s future use. Please come along!

Pempeople Pop-up shop
91 Peckham High Street, SE15 5RS

alternative site for Livesey Exchange

Following the Grenfell fire, structural issues of the tower blocks on the Ledbury Estate were discovered resulting in the Livesey Exchange project being put on hold.

To ensure the Livesey Exchange becomes a reality on Old Kent Road the LB Southwark suggested an alternative site on the corner of St. Jame’s Street  in close proximity to the Ledbury Estate as a location for a temporary building that can accomodate the Livesey Exchange program for approx. 10 years (tbc). This will allow for the project to find its feet and grow. The Livesey Exchange team accepted this option as the only way forward at this statge and hopes that in the future the planned workshops and communal spaces will still become part of the Ledbury Estate.

The focus of the Livesey Exchange project on skill building and creating space for local communities to come together remains and translates into the proposed construction method and processes that allows for the participation of non experienced people into the making on site.

The proposed range of spaces has been informed by our experience of kick-starting the Livesey Exchange in the garages of the Ledbury Estate, the demand expressed locally and the workshops that have been set up there. Spaces will be adjustable in size providing small starter units as well as space for more established businesses that can facilitate training.

A multi-functional café/bar, an adjoining roof terrace and a courtyard will provide space for people to come together formally and informally in a place focused on sharing skills. Imagined as a physical linked-in these spaces for socialising as well as learning will create opportunities for meetings, finding support and forming networks such as the Old Kent Road training program.

A feasibility study for the new site was prepared by what if: projects with the help of structural engineers Structure Workshop, business planner counterculture who assessed the financial viability of the scheme, developer Berkeley Homes who financed the site surveys, local contractor Standage who costed the project, Power Project and Nomadic People who informed workshop sizes and social enterprise Pempeople who steered the project to address local needs. The time and resources individuals and organisations have been willing to invest into this project at no cost is proof of the considerable support and momentum the Livesey Exchange has gathered since starting at the Ledbury Estate garages in September 2016.

Plans will be developed in the near future but a first model has been made to give an indication as to what might be possible.

Cllr Mark Williams, Southwark Council’s cabinet member for regeneration and new homes, said: “We completely support the Livesey Exchange and have been working closely with the team behind the project since the situation on the Ledbury first emerged.

“The project has been affected by the works but the team have been very understanding during a very difficult time for local people, which we thank them for. While works continue on the estate, council officers have identified another site nearby that the Exchange project can use to prevent any further delay to the project starting.”

Watch this space.

Photo by Alexander Christie
Drawings and model by what if: projects

Drawing A Blank

An exhibition by Frank LeBon and Hanna Moon opens on 17th June.

Drawing A Blank will show several works from the artists alongside other names, and promises to be ’14 mini exhibitions’ in one.

For more info and an interview with the artists read DAZED

We live in Peckham

On Saturday 20th May at 6:30pm we will show ‘We live in Peckham’, a film by Marcus Hessenberg.

We Live In Peckham was filmed over three years, interviewing the locals, old and new, of an area currently under going many changes. Meet shopkeepers, residents and visitors to an area sometimes known as Little Lagos, The Golden Mile and the new Dalston and discuss if the recent regeneration has benefited everyone?

‘We live in Peckham’ is part of London Untold a new regular film night by Pempeople and Guap Magazine showcasing the best up and coming film creatives London has to offer.

When: Sat 20 May 2017, 18:30 – 21:30
Where: Livesey Exchange, 135 Bird in Bush Road, Peckham SE15 1QP

To book a free ticket go to Eventbrite

new sports pitch

On Wednesday 19th April at 3pm the new sports pitch will be opened. Millwall Football Club will deliver a special training session for the kids from Camlet School and afterwards the pitch will be open to the public.

The sports pitch improvement work was initiated by the Ledbury Estate TRA and funded through Southwark’s CGS Fund. what if: projects provided architectural input. Livesey Exchange will support the sports programme with WCs, showers and changing rooms once the first phase of capital works has been completed (dates tbc).

made with Norfolk flint

Ledbury Estate
Architect: GLC Architects Department
Built: mid-1960sSize: 16 blocks

The concrete panels of these twelve-storey towers were faced with Norfolk flint.

The Ledbury Estate in Peckham is a great example of the kind of post-war building most overlooked by fans of modern architecture. The low- and high-rise blocks on the estate were built using the most ubiquious form of construction of the era – prefabricated building systems. Used mainly for the rapid construction of council housing, these systems involved large concrete panels and components being manufactured in factories and transported by lorry to the site, where they were bolted together, like giant fat-pack furniture. Many companies produced these building systems, some of the biggest being Tracoba, Camus and Sectra from France, and Jespersen, Skarne and Larsen-Nielsen from Scandinavia. British construction firms such as John Laing and Taylor Woodrow-Anglian did deals to offer these systems to their customers in the UK. Councils desperate to keep pace with the demands made on them by successive governments, who were promising voters ever higher number of new homes, turned to these building systems as the answer to all their problems.

Four high-rise blocks form part of the Ledbury Estate: Skenfrith House, Sarnsfield House, Peterchurch House and Bromyard House. They were completed in the mid-1960s for the Greater London Council at the high point in the system building boom, and were made using the Danish Larsen-Nielsen system. The concrete panels of these twelve-storey towers were faced with Norfolk flint, and the blocks were immediately recognisable from their unusual design: two concrete slab blocks stood face to face, and were joined in the middle by a tower containing the lifts and stairs. From the air these blocks form a distinctive ‘H’ shape. Despite their rugged concrete stylings, these towers are less truly ‘brutalist’ and more part of the a Scandinavian influenced tradition of ‘point blocks’ like those at Alton Estate.

Larsen-Nielsen was one of the most ubiquitous systems used for building flats across Britain in the 1960s. The design of the Ledbury Estate flats could be seen repeated all over London. There are two taller blocks in Limehosue, reaching fifteen storeys, which have recently been refurbished and covered in an off-white render. And there are four more on Wick Road in Hackney as part of the Gascoyne Estate. These are ten storeys, and have been recently refurbished. The largest collection of them was to be found on the Morris Walk Estate in Woolwich, which was also London’s first use of the system. Here the seven ten-storey towers had been designed for the London County Council back in 1962. In 2013 residents began to be moved out ahead of the large scale demolition of the estate, and the eventual construction of (mainly private) new homes. (….)

Ledbury Estate has avoided being demolished, unlike Morris Walk, or re-rendered, like its siblings in Limehouse and Hackney have. The towers remain largely in their original condition.

This is an extract from the book ‘Brutal London’
Text: John Gindrod

Photographie: Alexander Christie and what if: projects

Toolbox making

On the 22nd March the Power Project lead another toolbox making workshop and were excited to have Jeanette Mason, the chair fo the Ledbury Estate Tenant and Resident Association take part.

The Power Project is run by James Green, Maya Alvarado and Louise Colgan. Material was sponsored by Pempeople.





Peter John visits Livesey Exchange

Thank you to Leader of the Council Peter John, Councillors Mark Williams, Michael Situ and Johnson Situ for visiting us on Friday 3rd March and supporting the project.

“It has been thrilling to visit the Livesey Exchange today – and to see the start of a journey which will bring local jobs and opportunities for local residents – genuinly inspired by everyone’s commitment and enthusiasm.” Peter John, 3.03.17

Images by: Alexander Christie

Livesey Exchange 3 Livesey Exchange 4 Livesey Exchange 5 Livesey Exchange 13 Livesey Exchange 23

Make your own toolbox

Power Project ran a very popular Make Your Own Toolbox workshop on Wednesday 8th March, 4-8pm, to celebrate International Women’s Day 2017. This womens workshop taucht skills in pan folding and metal finishing starting from a laser cut steel sheet. Power Project’s workshops attract a wide range of people and warmly welcome those making for the first time. Participants left with their own toolbox ready to house a current or future collection of tools.

The workshop was part funded by Keepmoat and supported by Pempeople.
Number of participants: 23

Livesey Exchange OPEN DAY Sat.14th January 1-4pm

Thanks to everyone who came along to the open day and to all those who helped to organise it. The clamp making in the Livesey workshop and the mobile forge were a great trial of what is about to come. Latin American dancers, ukolele performances, bubble blowing combined with architectural drawings and a model made for a fun and informative event.

We are very pleased about the 60 feedback forms we recieved on the day and that so many xanax online buy visitors told us what they thought about the proposed transformation of the garages on the Ledbury Estate. The feedback will be analysed and published in the near future.

Special thanks to: James Green and Maya Alvarado for running the ‘Power Project’ workshop, Kevin Boys for his mobile forge workshop, and the New Tribe Art’s Develpment for dance and music.

You can also leave your comments online

Drawings and photograpy by what if: projects

LEX_open day_1

LEX_forge 1 LEX_forge 2 LEX_forgeLEX_consultation 1LEX_Consulting_3


Funding for building work secured

Great news! Livesey Exchange has successfully attracted capital funding from the Mayor’s Regeneration Fund with match funding from Southwark Council, Southwark Tenant Fund and Airbnb. Building works is scheduled to commence in 2017.

Workspace exhibiton at NLA 13.10.-17.12.

Livesey Exchange proposals will be part of an exhibition at the New London Architecture Centre ‘Shaping London’s future workspaces’ 13.October – 17.December 2017

‘This exhibition discusses the changing nature of work in a time of flux: both internationally, technologically and culturally. What do we need for the future? Where will we working?’

‘With ever increasing lifespans, there may be four generations in one working environment; technological advances will afford new ways of working flexibly and collaboratively. Accommodation for commercial and industrial uses is under threat. London’s continued growth – to an expected 10 million people by 2039 – is pushing up land prices. In a post-Brexit world, London will have to work harder than ever to compete on a global level to attract and retain the best talent. The availability, affordability and quality of the spaces in which we work will be critical.”

More information

Drawing by what if: projects