May 19 2013 Latest news:
Melissa York, Reporter
Friday, August 10, 2012
Another Newham pop-up attraction has temporarily closed due to a lack of interest during the Olympic Games period.
Set up opposite Canning Town DLR station, Industri[us] - the Festival of Upcycling - planned to capitalise on spectators watching events at ExCeL London exhibition centre.
Despite being situated on the main walking route, the social enterprise masterminded by architects Fluid, made the decision to close temporarily and request extra financial support after the hordes of passing punters never materialised.
Fluid won the ‘Meanwhile London’ competition, ran by Mayor of London Boris Johnson and Newham Mayor Sir Robin Wales, to find something to populate the brownfield site, previously a block of flats, which is in the process of redevelopment.
Industri[us], a celebration of modern recycling and creativity, featured a food market, workshops, a vintage market, and English pub and Cockney Museum’s Bendy Bus, hoping to trade until at least March 2013.
The news comes just days after another attraction selected through the Meanwhile London competition, the London Pleasure Gardens in Silvertown, went into administration after Newham Council invested £3.3 million in the project, leading to protests by unpaid workers.
Christina Norton, director Fluid, told the Recorder: “We have always been looking for funding as a project but none has been forthcoming.
“We have closed temporarily to take stock because of the lack of footfall making it no longer viable for us to keep it open during the Olympic period.
“We will now need to use that time to review how we go forward with the project.”
A spokesperson for Newham Council said: “It is disappointing that Industri[us] have decided to close temporarily. We will work with Indistri[us] to help make their future offer one that appeals to residents across Newham as well as visitors to the borough.”
“Both Industri[us] and the London Pleasure Gardens have been a victim of the success of Games organisers in getting visitors to and from the ExCel centre so efficiently.
“We have raised those concerns with Games organisers and have seen some recent improvement.
“The Meanwhile London winners were chosen on the basis of their vision and business planning over the longer time, not just Games time. We are aware that businesses in Newham reported an initial drop in trade to varying degrees.
“We cannot however accept financial or other responsibility for that drop in trade.”