SAVE OUR SHOPS: latest statement from Cllr Jack Hopkins

Arches Atlantic RoadLambeth Councillor Jack Hopkins says “considerable progress” has been made in the fight to stop the eviction of businesses from the Brixton arches because Network Rail has made “a firm commitment” on the right to return. 

In a blog post on the Future Brixton website the councillor for jobs and growth said that it was a positive step that Network Rail had used the phrase “affordable rent” but admitted that as there is no exact figure from the company it is difficult to “judge what is fair.”

His full statement is: “There’s been considerable progress around many  of the issues on and Network Rail have undertaken personal visits to each of the businesses to see what their needs are and how they can be accommodated.

The right to return is now a firm commitment for those businesses who want to come back which is a really important offer that I have been lobbying for from day one. However the terms under which they can come back is unclear at the moment. The phrase ‘affordable rent’ has been used by Network Rail, again a positive step, but there is no exact figure which makes it very difficult for the Council or the businesses themselves to judge whether it is fair.

Furthermore a number of the businesses were concerned that this subsidised rent will only last for 9 years, and whilst they accept that they will pay more once they move back, it is unclear whether businesses will pick up significantly enough to cover market rent in the future. The Future Brixton programme which will see more people shopping in Brixton should help traders to do more business but there is a question about whether that will happen in time.

At the moment Network Rail are working out how much the refurbishment and structural work will cost, and this will have implications on how much rent they need in order to pay for the work. Again it is helpful that they are now talking about affordable rent for some businesses at some locations and full blown market rent in other units. However at the moment there is no detail on how much this is. Businesses and the Brixton community need clarity. Hopefully the meeting I am hosting with businesses and Network Rail tomorrow can provide that.”


  1. Jack’s PR machine in full effect, spinning him as saviour, when he had bugger-all to do with anything, and all the activism has come from the traders, and from Brixtonites.

  2. Where are all the comments regarding the pending closure of the shops in the arches in Brixton and Herne Hill? I am very much against this happening – it is all about greed….what about peoples business and livihoods, the community and the Brixton market vibe….change this and the next thing to change will be the “Brixton village” and the “Herne Hill Village” killing off the communitiites in these areas….It really is shocking the way ordinary hard working people are being treated by “THE BIG BOYS”!!!! it will no longer be the Brixton as we know it as what is happening all over London…London is being sold off by Boris, the Governments and Councils and to heck with the Londoners….The only time a Councillors speak out is when they want to get votes…!!!!

  3. It would help to hear what some of the businesses have got to say! I don’t particularly value what a councillor has to say

Comments are closed.