Village Underground
is a space for creativity
& culture in the heart
of East London

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Venue

Our venue is a renovated turn-of-the-century warehouse ready for everything from concerts and club nights to exhibitions, theatre, live art and other performances, as well as being available for private hire.

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History

Village Underground started in 2006, with the aim of building affordable studios for creative people who were struggling to get a foothold in London.

Four tube carriages and two shipping containers were converted into co-working spaces. A few months later, the perfect location was found: the top of an old railway viaduct in the middle of Shoreditch, East London. Great Eastern street was closed for the day and they were hoisted into position by crane. Next to the viaduct was an old Victorian warehouse which had been a coalstore for the railway but had fallen into disrepair. We put a roof on it, cleared out the rubbish, sandblasted the walls and laid down a floor to transform it into the venue that we have now. The main renovations took place over a year, just in time for opening in April 2007.

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Rooftop

Above the main venue, four recycled Jubilee line trains and shipping containers make up the creative “platforms” of Village Underground. Up to 30 artists, playwrights, filmmakers, architects, photographers, producers and startups working side-by-side in a creative community.

The proximity and communal spirit foster collaboration and the exchange of ideas, whilst the affordable rent makes it easier for our tenants to focus on what they really want to do. By facilitating partnerships and maintaining low rent, creative practitioners can unlock their potential and develop ideas into great projects.

Previous tenants include – amongst many others: theatre company Punchdrunk, author and poet Joe Dunthorne and his Aisle 16 accomplices Tim Clare, John Osborne, Luke Wright and Ross Sutherland and the too-fabulous-to-be-true Sink The Pink family.

We currently have up to four working spaces available on our rooftop for other creative professionals.

Current Tenants

Meeting Room

Located in one of the shipping containers, our Meeting Room is available for external bookings and is ideal for both formal and informal meetings, workshops and presentations and sits up to 15 people.

For more information, please email alicia@villageunderground.co.uk or visit Vrumi.

Street Art

Holywell Lane wall is the largest dedicated street art wall in London,
and it is repainted every three months by locally, nationally and internationally renowned artists.

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Recent Works

Click to view galleries

Village Underground is a proud member of Trans Europe Halles (TEH), a European-based network of cultural centres initiated by citizens and artists. TEH advocates and promotes culture, shares knowledge and encourages new centres and initiatives.

With 56 members based right across Europe, the network functions as a dynamic forum for ideas, experiences and exchange, supporting its members and their communities. TEH contributes to building a sustainable future for the independent cultural sector.

For more information on the good work that Trans Europe Halles does, visit teh.net

Village Underground is also a member of Liveurope, an initiative supporting concert venues in their efforts to promote up-and-coming European artists. The platform works as a quality hallmark awarded to live music venues committed to European diversity.

The objective of Liveurope is to boost the programming of young European acts across the continent and help them reach new audiences. Established in 2014, the Liveurope platform is the first initiative of its kind in Europe. Members include: Ancienne Belgique, A38, Blå, Circolo degli Artisti, FZW, Melkweg, Palác Akropolis, Sala Apolo, Stodola and Vega.
For more information, visit liveurope.eu

Many cultural organisations and artists around Europe struggle to find new ways to survive and develop in times of change and declining financing structures for culture.

This is the reason why Creative Lenses, a unique cooperation project funded by the Creative Europe programme of the European Commission was created. For more information about the how the project is developing check out our creativelenses.eu

Working
Ethics

Culture is for everyone and we’re proud to have a silver accreditation from Attitude is Everything, who lead the way in improving deaf and disabled people’s access to live music. Similarly we were early advocates of Hollaback’s campaign to tackle harassment in bars and clubs. We’re a London Living Wage employer and run creative apprenticeship schemes in partnership with Big Creative Education.

In addition to being a cultural centre, Village Underground is an ecological project. From repurposed trains and shipping containers, to reclaimed sleepers, staircases, furniture and flooring… All our artist studios are virtually carbon neutral and we’re powered by Ecotricity, the world’s first 100% green energy company, we’re also an active member of our local zero emissions network.

We’re passionate about London’s culture and nightlife and with nearly half our music venues closed in recent years we’ve been working hard on helping to fix the underlying problems. We were part of the Mayor of London’s Music Venue Taskforce which wrote a Rescue Plan, and are now active members of the London Music Board and the London Night Time Commission, which were recommendations of the Rescue Plan, along with other initiatives including Agent of Change and a Night Czar.

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Village Underground, 54 Holywell Lane, Shoreditch, London, EC2A 3PQ

Find us or take a look inside on Google Maps

Phone: +44 (0) 20 7422 7505

Our office is open between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.

GENERAL ENQUIRIES

Amelie Snyers: amelie@villageunderground.co.uk
Alicia Latham: alicia@villageunderground.co.uk

MARKETING

Jim English: jim@villageunderground.co.uk

LIVE MUSIC, ART & THEATRE

Glenn Max: glenn.max@villageunderground.co.uk

ELECTRONIC MUSIC

Jorge Andres Nieto: jorge@villageunderground.co.uk

COMMERCIAL & PRIVATE HIRE

Rich Wakeman: vuevents@villageunderground.co.uk

PRODUCTION

Jack Foxcroft: jack@villageunderground.co.uk
Ty Vigrass: ty@villageunderground.co.uk