Craft Central Winter Market at The Forge
When: Friday 16th November to Sunday 18th November, 17.00 to 20.00
The Forge, West Ferry Road, is a Grade II listed-building set within a largely residential area on the Isle of Dogs in East London.
Join us this November for our seasonal craft makers-market. This is the perfect opportunity to buy special gifts for friends, family or simply just to treat yourself. On offer will be handmade ceramic, interior products, textiles, fashion accessories, jewellery, prints and much more. Bring the whole family and join in workshops or enjoy refreshments at our pop-café which will be run by local business Fitololgy
About Craft Central
A registered charity for 40 years, we have supported craftsmanship and craftspeople, encouraging the public to appreciate craft skills and buy fine craft products.
We provide many resources for creative enterprises and individuals including: studio spaces; co-working spaces and desks; educational workshops and classes, plus a busy programme of events held in our gallery.
Our creative community can exhibit and sell fine craft products at our events, whilst our ever-growing network of designer-makers enables craftspeople to link with colleagues in the wider craft and creative community.
Craft Central at The Forge
Commended for a New London Award, The Forge is a glorious, Grade II listed building with immense historical significance.
Located on Westferry Road, The Forge was built in 1860 for CJ Mare & Company (engineers and shipbuilders). It is one of the last buildings from the golden age of shipbuilding on the Isle of Dogs. At the time of Brunel’s famous paddle steamer, The Forge – part of a 5,000-strong workforce – built the keel for HMS Northumberland; one of the earliest ironclad battleships.
Built of robust, Flemish bond brick, The Forge then had a varied history. After becoming a workshop for Joseph Westwood & Co (structural engineers and bridgebuilders) in 1889, the vast building went into decline. At one point, there was even a risk of demolition.
2003 saw The Forge gain Grade II listing and most recently, Craft Central approached Emrys Architects with a brief to create a collection of studio spaces, creative workspaces and a gallery for exhibitions.
An inspirational renovation
The sympathetic renovation ensured that many original features remained. You’ll find huge feature windows, exposed brickwork, eight former furnace chimney breasts, old gantries, ironwork and industrial fittings – even two overhead cranes (in full working order!)
One crane is particularly rare. Built by the Vaughan Crane Company in Manchester, it dates back to the late 19th century and comprises a timber gantry frame, under-braced with a timber gantry.
It is an exemplar of what can be achieved in a Listed building by good design and sympathy for the existing features. The conversion of the open lofty space without damaging the industrial inheritance is a remarkable triumph.
Chris Halliday, Estates Project Manager, Royal Museums Greenwich.