Perronet House is a prominent and celebrated example of 1970s GLC housing on the Elephant & Castle roundabout. We were tasked with the transformation of a disused ground-floor storage area to provide retail units for tenants from the nearby Elephant & Castle shopping centre.

In close collaboration with our enlightened local authority client Southwark Council, we steered the project through feasibility, planning and construction. Operators Meanwhile Space have brought their expertise of running similar enterprises around the city. The signage, wayfinding and graphic identity was designed by students from the neighbouring London College of Communication.

Elephant Arcade provides 10 retail units and is home to a diverse range of small businesses, along with a coffee shop and juice bar. The existing brick frontage was opened up with windows, entrances, greenery and seating, transforming a blank corner under the podium into a public-facing community asset.

Inside, robust materials such as Georgian wired glass, corrugated fibre cement and OSB echo the hardy language of concrete, metal and glass found in Perronet House above. The straightforward plan is informed by the existing grid of concrete beams and columns, dividing the floor into two parallel rows of units connected by a central arcade.

‘Turner Works are so good at working with what is there already and are passionate about supporting independent businesses and local communities in the places they work. They bring vision, energy and a refreshing pragmatism, always thinking like an operator, and searching out cost effective solutions. ‘


Dan Taylor, Programme Manager, Regeneration Division, Southwark Council



Southwark Council

Completed September 2020

Images and model:
Turner Works