Destination Deptford: Deptford Market Yard officially opens for business


U+I hosted a launch event today to celebrate the official opening of Deptford Market Yard, U+I’s mixed-use regeneration project in partnership with Lewisham Council. Deptford Market Yard is set to be the new retail destination for independent shops, restaurants and business in London.

U+I, the mixed-use property regeneration specialist, in partnership with Lewisham Council, has today officially opened Deptford Market Yard, a mixed-use regeneration project delivering a collection of independent shops, restaurants and a new public realm for Deptford. Building on the already thriving local market and retail scene – Deptford Market Yard is set to become a go–to destination for people all over London.

Today marks the culmination of an ambitious journey that Lewisham Council and U+I began together in 2008, to transform the derelict 2-acre site into a new space for Deptford’s community, unlocking the value of the public land and delivering real benefit to the local area.

The renovated historical railway arches next to Deptford station, which over a hundred years ago stored passengers' carriages and horses, are now home to 14 new independent retailers. For many of the new businesses open today, Deptford Market Yard is their first permanent, physical space.

For U+I a distinctive local high street offer is essential to the character of the market and the existing high street,  Local start-up businesses were invited to apply through an open call out for the commercial units. Through a careful selection process, U+I shaped a new approach to working with businesses which created a particular sense of place that has fitted with the local community whilst supporting local enterprise.

U+I has supported tenants every step of the way, from conversations with the Planning Officer and the Conservation Officer, to covering legal costs.

At the launch event today Andy Savage of the Railway Heritage Trust unveiled a blue plaque to celebrate the restoration of The Grade II listed carriage ramp, the oldest railway structure in London. Built in 1835 to allow carriages to reach the station, today, with the help of the Railway Heritage Trust, the fully restored Carriage Ramp now connects visitors to the high street, train station and market.

Richard Upton, Deputy Chief Executive at U+I, commented: “Today is a hugely important moment for U+I. I’m delighted to be able to end our first year operating as U+I on such a high with the launch of Deptford Market Yard. We are celebrating South East London’s newest mixed-use community and must-visit destination for independent retail – as well as providing  clear tangible evidence of U+I’s position as the public sector partner of choice."


“Private sector property developers have a crucial role to play in the redevelopment of our communities. A role that takes care, attention, a scheme-by-scheme local approach with a responsibility to do it properly. Done right, it can be highly successful commercially. That is what we have always aimed to do at U+I, and what we have delivered at Deptford."

Richard Upton, Deputy Chief Executive at U+I

“I’m also delighted to meet all of our new tenants again today. Our focus - putting local and independent businesses at the heart of the commercial element of the scheme has produced this distinctive place that supports local small business and the community”

Councillor Alan Smith of Lewisham Council, said: “The creation of Deptford Market Yard has been collaborative work between Lewisham and U+I; a developer who understands community and regeneration. Together, we have created a new commercial and residential heart in Deptford.”

Jessica Childs of Childsdraw, one of the arches tenants, said: "Today’s event means so much to those of us that have been on the journey with U+I and Lewisham Council to create something special here at Deptford. As a business, it’s great to be part of the new Deptford Market Yard alongside other independent businesses and as a local person, I’m thrilled to see the fresh new space for Deptford residents and visitors.”

The line-up of independent businesses open at Deptford Market Yard includes: boutique homeware shop Win & Ruby; ethical hair salon The Box; Little Nan’s, which serves up its signature cocktails in teapots; Childsdraw run by local artist Jessica Childs, whose illustrations are inspired by the local area; Gita’s Portal and Be London offering their own unique, handmade, fashion items made with African prints; not forgetting Circus Fit, a fun fusion of circus aerial skills with fitness. Just to name a few.

These tenants all sit alongside a serious street food roster which includes Mama’s Jerk, Frankie Goes to Bollywood and The Cheese Truck.

Deptford Market Yard will be home to a regular weekend market and further retail spaces will be announced at a later date, including 2 new restaurants and 7 commercial units. At the heart of the scheme is The Tinderbox, a colourful, new eight storey apartment building which will house some of the project’s 132 new homes.

The original scheme put forward to planning was designed by Rogers, Stirk, Harbour + Partners.

For more information, please visit or follow @DeptfordMktYard on Twitter/Instagram.


Notes to editors
About U+I

U+I is a specialist regeneration and property developer with a £5bn portfolio of complex, mixed-use, community-focused regeneration projects including a £200m investment portfolio, we are unlocking urban sites bristling with potential in the London, Manchester and Dublin city regions. We create long-lasting social and economic change for the communities in which we build and sustainable value for our shareholders.

To find out more, visit

For further press information, please contact:


Kristel Tracey, Communications Manager U+I
T: 020 7828 4777

Olivia Blunt, Teneo Blue Rubicon:
0207 397 7377