Camden Lock Market

Camden Lock Place (off Chalk Farm Road)
London, UK

Submitted by: William Fulford

One of the most renowned and busiest markets in London, a hive of activity.

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Why It Works

Set on the Regents Canal away from the hustle and bustle of the city, Camden Lock has become one of London’s top visitor attractions. Its unique shopping experience and cosmopolitan atmosphere makes it one of the most renowned and busiest markets in London.

Camden Lock, the original market of Camden, distinguishes itself from others by offering an individual and extensive range of high quality goods from designer clothes, hand-made arts and crafts to accessories, food and furnishings. In fact, just about everything and anything you could conceivably want can be found amongst the designer workshops, studios, stalls, shops, cafes, restaurants and bars at Camden Lock Market.

Open seven days a week (10.00am - 6.00pm) Camden Lock has revolutionized the area with its wide-open galleries & trading areas. Grouped around a Victorian-esque hall and three yards, the Lock draws thousands of day-trippers and locals with its vibrant atmosphere.

During the week, Camden Lock provides local residents and visitors with the opportunity to experience the market first hand without the crowds and queues of the weekend. With a variety of shops and stalls to browse, visitors have time to talk to designers/makers in their studios and soak up the famous Market atmosphere.

Parallel to Camden Lock Market runs the Regent's Canal linking Little Venice to the Thames at Limehouse. With its waterfront scenery and wildlife, the canal provides a peaceful trip through central London with the option to stop off at London Zoo. From Camden Lock, the London Waterbus Service runs daily through the summer (1st April - 29th October) and on Saturdays and Sundays through the winter.

Throughout the year, Camden Lock is also home to a number of promotional, music and entertainment events including the famous Comedy Club, Jongleurs. It is also a prime location for TV programs, film sets, photo shoots and adverts.

In April 2001, the London Tourist Board said, “Camden Lock Market is a hive of activity and the place for the latest fashions, retro clothing and furnishings as well as offering great people-watching opportunities”.

What Makes Camden Lock Market a Great Place?

You can get to the market easily a number of ways:
London Underground: the Camden Town and Chalk Farm Road underground stations on the Northern Line are within walking distance of the Market.

Train: Camden Road and Kentish Town stations on the overground within walking distance of the market.

Buses: Buses to Camden Town include 24, 27, 29, 31, 134, 168, 214, 253, 274 and the C2.

London Waterbus Company: Regular Waterbus Service operates on canal between the Lock, London Zoo and Little Venice.

Opening Times: April – October daily. November – March Weekend’s only

The site is closed to vehicles on the weekend and most of the day during the week. But best of all, most of the site is away from the High Street and the wide open West Yard (with two cafes, a juice bar, and two a restaurants/ pubs) sits alongside the canal and has its own wharf where the London Waterbus Company has regular trips to the Zoo and Little Venice.

The types of people who use Camden Lock vary enormously. There are various events that happen each year, but the most well known is the Camden Lock Fashion Show, which is now in its fifth year. In the summer, the West Yard is particularly popular with locals and visitors sitting by the canal or under the willow tree for lunch.

People visiting Camden Lock come here because of the vitality and atmosphere that the buzz of a market creates. They also come because of the uniqueness of the area (there are no chain stores/cafes) and to eat and drink by the Regent's Canal. Camden Lock is primarily a social venue and a meeting place, but once people are here they find it very hard not to shop!

History & Background

History of Camden Lock
30 years ago Camden Lock Market was T.E. Dingwalls Timber Yard. Timber was unloaded from large river barges to the smaller narrow boats, which plied the inland canals of Britain. The site closed as a timber wharf in 1971 and re-opened in 1973 as…

Camden Lock Market

  • The early development revolved simply around the old wooden sheds and cobbled yards. As the first Market in Camden, it immediately stood out from London’s other markets for its eclectic mix.
  • By 1976 Camden Lock had attracted the vital group of entrepreneurs and artists that first generated the Camden Town ‘buzz’.
  • For young artists, the Lock studios offered a rare opportunity to rent a space where they could sell their work.
  • Camden Lock Market allowed customers to see their goods being made - a rare thing in modern London. Goods are still designed and made on-site today and studios are open to the customers.
  • During the 1980’s Camden Lock’s vitality began to spread - shops up to Camden Town Tube Station which were previously let at peppercorn rents, began to become very desirable.
  • Camden Lock continued to develop throughout the late 1980s. 1991 saw the opening of the Market Hall; a glass-roofed arcade designed to merge with the surrounding Victorian architecture.

Contact Info:

William Fulford or Keir Emms: 00 44 20 7485 7963

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