Brixton East 1871, in the heart of Brixton is a fine example of a nineteenth century furniture warehouse. Arranged over two floors, the characterful building extends to over 4500 SQ FT.

This brick faced building fronts onto two streets, Barrington Road and Gresham Road. Both facades contain large glazed windows, facing east and west.

The ground floor houses ladies, gents & disabled restrooms, glazed entrance lobby and a small tea making kitchen. The large open space is only broken by metal columns supporting chunky square wooden beams and boarded ceiling above.

The floor is a mixture of bare concrete and cobbles left raw with minimal finishing.

Walls are mainly painted white with shallow brick arches forming an arcade to the two outside walls.

The first floor has the original boarded wooden floor and on its brick walls the paintwork remains, as it was when packing crates were made for Mr. Philips forty years ago. The room is double height and vaulted with three skylights in the roof.

The room has a toilet and shower, plus a couple of sensitive additions such as large sliding shutters for the windows. Both rooms can be hired separately and have their own access.

Brixton East 1871, 100 Barrington Road, London, SW9 7JF

We are located 10 mins walk from Brixton tube and 5 mins from Brixton Village.


Brixton East 1871 has been named after the old station that once stood above Barrington Road from 1866 until its closure in 1976. The station was first name Loughborough Park and later renamed East Brixton Railway Station. Today the ticket hall is a photographic studio across the road.

The gilded grasshopper on the exterior is taken from the spindly-legged insect that sits on the Royal Exchange building in the city of London, which has been there since the Great Fire of London.

The grasshopper was the symbol of Thomas Gresham, the Tudor who founded the Royal Exchange and Gresham College. It is said that once of his forbears was saved by the humble grasshopper; abandoned in long grass the infant Gresham was discovered by an elderly lady who had been attracted by the insect’s chirruping…a likely story!

A short history:

Brixton East was built on land purchased from the London-Brighton and South Coast Railway by John Roycroft of Kent Lodge on Brixton Road and David Dougharty both furniture dealers. They built the Barrington Road building as well as three stables in 1871. A year later they knocked down the stables and built the much larger Gresham Road extension.

In the 1922 the property was left to the two Roycroft sisters from Streatham who continued making furniture. Later they leased it to Mr H. J. Philips who has a successful business making wooden packing crates for British Motor Parts, which they delivered to Europe in his own lorry.

Since Mr Philips closed the factory it laid empty until Andy Luckett began restoring furniture carrying on the tradition of furniture dealers Mr Dougharty and Mr Roycroft started 142 years ago. The furniture business has moved to a modern factory and the building needed to be completely repaired.

In March 2012, the building team from Fairland contractors set about making the building safe. Since the repairs have been completed, Andy has hosted a couple of music videos, a pop up shop and an art show called Bad Behaviour…The show was reviewed by Paul Luckraft, his description of the venue is as follows:

"The exhibition (Bad Behaviour 2012) is presented in Brixton East, a generously sized two storey Victorian building that was formally a furniture factory. This attractive space is lit by large windows, has a high ceilinged upper space and possesses a warm, dare I say cosy feel, complete with the smell of sawdust. It's also a domestic space - a collection of distinctive pieces of salvaged furniture are dotted around...... It's not at all in keeping with the harsh coldness of concrete-floored industrial units, warehouse spaces and car parks that are more usual venues for this type of show in South East London ..... The environment is intended to be welcoming and non-elitist. It certainly achieves that ......

Paul is a curator at Modern Art Oxford.

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