Exchange Square


Guildhouse Rosepride is planning to bring the atmosphere of Covent Garden to Croydon’s Old Town, making a destination out of its Exchange Square, with the historic Pump House at its heart, restored and refurbished as a creative work space hub, café/music/art venue and restaurant.

The ambitious scheme to bring the Pump House and Exchange Square back to life will see a range of small retail units, food and beverage outlets, creative and co-working office and studio space as well as a partly-covered Covent Garden style space for activities and events.

The plans, which are yet to go before Croydon Council, include three main elements:

1. The first phase will see the creation of a terrace of new retail, food and beverage units as well as office accommodation at the North-West corner of Exchange Square to create a new cultural piazza, along with the conversion of the westernmost part of the listed Pump House to form a music, arts and events centre/café.

2. The next stage is the fuller renovation and extension of the Pump House to provide co-working and office space as well as studio/community spaces. This will interact with the first phase and external spaces to provide a centre for cultural interaction and entertainment. The draft plans include retaining, repairing and conserving as much of the existing gothic style buildings as possible, including the facades, interior spaces, and remaining original finishes, features and fittings. A dramatic new extension would be built to house the main entrance and circulation space as well as office and restaurant space.

3. The public real around the former Pump House and Exchange Square will be enhanced by creating two interlinked elements which celebrate the area’s history and create new, more welcoming entrance to the Old Town from Charles Street.

David Hudson, chief executive of Guildhouse UK, said: “This scheme underlines our commitment to Croydon. By helping to restore Old Town and create a dynamic centre for people to gather and enjoy their free time, we intend to change perceptions of Croydon, bringing the wonderful Pump House building back to life and bringing fun to a forgotten part of town.”

Mark Waterstone, Chief Executive Rosepride Properties Ltd, said: “The aim is to create a destination for Croydon’s burgeoning arts scene while complementing neighbouring Surrey Street Market by producing pop-up retail outlets, helping to fill the void while Westfield and Hammerson redevelop the Whitgift Shopping Centre, while establishing long-term vitality for the area.”

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