Interview with Assemble & Join
It’s not just the road and pavements which are getting a new look on Lower Marsh.
The former Casse Croute café is currently being transformed by a collective of artists and designers called Assemble & Join.
Assemble & Join are Tom Tobia, Theo Adamson, Lucy Smith and Christopher Jarratt.
Their mission is to open a wood-cutting workshop which will create an artistic legacy for Lower Marsh and Waterloo.
The group have been commissioned as part of the Lower Marsh Regeneration Project and hope to be open to the public by the first week of November.
So, while new paving slabs are laid on the street by project workers, the A&J team are painting, sanding, lifting and removing around the clock in order to prepare the premises for trade.
Once opened, the shop will be split into two, with a public area for free workshops for market traders, businesses, schools and community groups and a studio for detailed work with a CNC precision wood-cutting machine.
The studio will then be used to create artwork and signage for the street, with ideas including market signs, bird boxes, seating and A-boards ready to be explored.
Theo said: “It is all about creating awareness of the street. Lower Marsh is a really great independent road – one of the last truly independent streets in central London.
“It needs to hold on to that independent feel to distinguish it from other streets in the area.
“Assemble & Join is also about empowering local people to get involved and have an influence on their local environment.
“Outside of the workshops there will be downtime to create bespoke pieces which could be for commercial use or for community groups or schools.”
Assemble & Join have already met many of their neighbours, and have been helped by Vin Vara, owner of Housewares on Lower Marsh, which has donated materials for the refurbishment.
The group have signed a four month lease, but hope that if the business becomes commercially viable it could become a permanent fixture.
Assemble & Join also hope to have a pre-opening launch party for local businesses and residents.
Tom said: “We already feel part of the community, and it would be great to meet some more people who live work and play in the area. They understand how the street works, and we have the tools to help them shape its future.”
If you are interested in attending the launch email firstname.lastname@example.org.