For some time now, I have been seriously considering opening a very chilled concept bar to cater for pretty much all ages/walks of life, (within reason). My main concern to date, has been to a certain extent, in line with some of your chat, i.e. not enough repeat business/willingness of punters to go out most nights of the week.
Question: Do we really think a 10,000 sq ft bar and resaurant could be suported by you lot? If any of you think there is a remote possibiltiy I would love to hear from you.
In response to PT - I have a couple of ideas/sites up my sleave that I have been monitoring for a while now. The concept does need that kind of space. I know it would work well in say Fulham, Chelsea, West End, NHG, Bayswater and probably Clerkenwell or Shoreditch, just as yet not convinced by SE1.
In response to Jai - I think anyone looking to open a venue with bad food and rude staff is probably heading for a fall at some point. Great food that represents good value is something I am of the opinion is severe lacking across the whole of London, not just SE1.
Please open something on Tower Bridge Road area.... hundreds more people with good disposable incomes moving into developments in the area. Just look at the Jam Factory.
I would too one day love to see Tower Bridge Road as another Upper Street - don't laugh guys - it could happen, stranger things have happened! The most important thing is that people who use this web site believe in the area and it's potential.
Good food, good service, good atmosphere and I'll come back.
It always amuses me to see Estate Agents stretching boundaries both geographically and metaphorically - quite how The Jam Factory (Scarily close to The Old Kent Road) could be described as 'Borough', defeats me.
Dave - a furher planning application for Bermondsey Square is due in from Urban Catalyst this month. They have appointed a new architect with a track history of sensitive inner city sites (don't know if it is a good track history).
Leather Exchange - don't know who runs it, but I agree its a good place with informed friendly staff and quality food. BUT THEY DONT OPEN AT THE WEEKENDS - a tragedy. If an appareently slick and professional unit like this doesn't open then either they are not as sharp as I think they are, or there is not the market.
Surely its a question of marketing the market-
Bermondsey has the only major antiques market in the whole of london, and it would pull in major crowds if only it was marketed in a similar way that Camden did so successfully. Sure, its a different target audience and it would only work if you open at weekends, obviously. But I put a wager that 9 out of 10 people in London have heard of Camden Market, but only 1 out of 10 people have heard of Bermondsey Market. That's not just because people are more interested in buying incense and DMs, rather than furniture and victorian trinkets. Its because of (a) poor transport links and (b) people from outside SE1 not even knowing the market exists. You can't do much about (a) except improve the pedestrian signage from London Bridge tube (its a major attraction so why is there not a single sign pointing the way from the tube?). But you can do something about (b). Even if it just means hiring four students to stand outside camden market every weekend, and hand out flyers saying "You've enjoyed Camden Market, why not try Bermondsey market?" No point, though, as it opens at 4am and is closed by lunchtime. I give the market a year before it dies on its feet.