…and they’re coming to Fulham, Victoria and Oxford Street.
There’s big news for London’s foodies in 2018 as a major new company, Market Halls, is planning on opening three new street food halls in just one year – with one proposed to be the largest in the country. It’s been founded by Andy Lewis-Pratt (of the Xscape indoor snow-slopes company) and Simon Anderson (of London BBQ specialists Pitt Cue Co), possibly after their initial ‘steak and snowboarding: STEAKBOARDING!’ concept failed to get off the ground.
The first venue will take over the entrance hall of Fulham Broadway station as soon as this spring, with room for 180 guests and ten different street food vendors.
Then, in summer 2018, a second, larger food hall will open in the former Pacha club opposite Victoria Station, seating 300 guests and offering food from fourteen different kitchens.
Finally, in autumn, the team will be taking over part of the former BHS building off Oxford Street (where Swingers will be running a mini golf course in the basement.) Promising to the UK’s biggest dining experience, it’ll also feature retailers, producers, bars and event spaces, and coincide the planned pedestrianisation of the street.
The company, who I’m not saying are three days into a ‘manic phase’, even say they’ll be announcing three MORE venues towards the end of this year, which makes me want to make them some camomile tea and get them to bed. Let’s just see how these first ones go first, lads. Baby steps.
The artist’s impressions are a bit on the formulaic side thus far, but with the right traders in the kitchens, this could be yet another culinary experience on Londoners’ bucket lists, in an increasingly competitive market.
London Union currently operates Street Feast, with food halls in Shoreditch, Canada Water, Canary Wharf and Lewisham, with another in Woolwich on the way. The KERB group, meanwhile, operate six proper ‘outdoor’ food markets in Camden, Paddington, Kings Cross, the Gherkin, West India Quay and London Bridge. Eataly are opening a huge Italian food hall off Liverpool Street this year, while Bloomberg Arcade hosts ten restaurants in the City. And even Time Out planned on opening a London food hall to rival their successful market in Lisbon, until their plans in Spitalfields were blocked by local residents. Oops!