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God’s Own Junkyard (‘Alternative things to see in London’; an occasional series).

2 Aug

I’ve spent so much time in London over the years that I often think I really know the place. Fortunately, to counteract my delusion, I do have some very good friends who do live there and are acquainted with the great city on a daily basis and regularly make me see the London hidden beneath the surface. Two recently married friends, who live in the E17 area (Walthamstow), introduced me to a rather brilliant creative enterprise, which otherwise I wouldn’t have found out about so easily. God’s Own Junkyard, as it’s called, is the work of artist and designer Chris Bracey, who sadly died in late 2014 after a battle with cancer. In a career that saw Chris supplying neon signage for most of the Soho sex industry and films such as Neil Jordan’s Mona Lisa, Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut and four Batman films, he has certainly left his bright mark. Owning the greatest collection of neon signage outside of the US, Bracey’s work (amongst others) can be seen at the warehouse shop of God’s Own Junkyard, and is absolutely well worth a visit if you’ve ever been captivated by the bright synthetic light of neon tube.

The ‘Junkyard’ is located on the Ravenswood Industrial Estate, and there is a German-style brewery/pub nearby and a Gin emporium, so you can grab a quality beverage and worship neon in the same visit. This being London, it’s perhaps the only place in Britain where an Industrial Estate has one day evolved into a social and creative space.
For more information on God’s Own Junkyard, check out their dazzling website: