Towner and Hoxton

I recently paid Towner and Hoxton on Well Street a visit, it’s a very cool artists space/tea room, I wanted to find out a little bit more, so I asked Adam Towner some questions (photos by Alex Pink)

What  is the idea behind Towner and Hoxton?

We went looking for a studio for us to both work in and they were all shit, over priced or nowhere near our houses or jobs, we saw the derelict shop and hit up the owners. when we started building it just got out of hand and we ended up with great studios but also the gallery and tea shop. As you saw our bench is in the main room so we can work and serve tea at the same time.

Who is/has been involved?

Me (Adam Towner) and Johnny Hoxton

How did you go about getting hold of a building like this?

Just said to the landlord it’s fucked and falling down, we’ll pay you very little money but will fix it up.

Tell us about doing it up and of course the grass

The build was great, it took us 8 weeks from getting the keys to the launch. About 6 weeks of that was build. We both have full time jobs so worked it around that and took 1 week vacation. We stripped the place, put all the crap, including a whole kitchen, beds, 2 fridges, a washing machine into a unusable room and sealed it up to save on skip costs. then we went skip hunting and did the whole place for a grand each including £450 on the grass. That was Johnny’s idea, the floor was horrible and it was cheaper than carpet and rocks. We used only local businesses to do  the place. we wired, plastered, built, tiled, and made everything in the place.

Have a look on the first page of our site for pics before.

What do you plan to do while you are here?

We just want a place to make things and for creative minds to come and hang out and chat ideas and work together, also great to show stuff off with a few parties along the way. We are turning it into a restaurant for 3 weekends in November, horse and hound themed with butchery classes, game pie and or course some tweed. have a big xmas party planned. We are also looking at running some community projects for kids.

Why tea?

So many coffee shops everywhere, tea shops are far and far between and i’ve always liked a good old brew. Something different, yellow oolong or silver needles are my first choice and with scones, clotted cream and Jam you cant beat it.

Why Hackney?

We love Hackney, and the shop is situated bang in between our houses.

What’s next for Towner and Hoxton, the project or the people?

Onwards and upwards, we already have possible new sites lined up for when this one runs out and we are going to try and grow the brand as a cool hang out for arty types and designers but also not so up our own asses that we exclude anyone else who might just like to hang out. Next time if we don’t have a tree growing through the building I think we will run as a bar and gallery and live upstairs to save on super london rental rubbish.

Any thing else you want to add?

If anybody wants to get involved or do events please get in touch. Open to any ideas as long as they are crazy and possibly unachievable, we like to make things difficult for ourselves.  Any artists please get in touch.

You can find out more by visiting the Towner and Hoxton website or popping in at Well Street for a pot of tea.

Photos © Alex Pink

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