Mayor joins Eddy Grant to light up Electric Avenue
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and music legend Eddy Grant were guests of honour at celebrations to mark the refurbishment of Brixton’s Electric Avenue today (Monday 17th October 2016).
Electric Avenue, so called because it was the first street in the UK to be lit by electric light, has undergone a major refurbishment thanks to more than £1m investment from the Mayor of London’s High Street Fund, Lambeth Council, Transport for London and the Heritage Lottery Fund.
The scheme provides the iconic new ‘Electric Avenue’ sign as well as a new layout for the street market including larger pitches, new stalls and increased space for shoppers. Improvements to street lighting, resurfaced pavements and a new crossing will make Electric Avenue and the surrounding area more pleasant and accessible for traders and shoppers.
Electric Avenue, with its vibrant market and shops at the heart of Brixton, was immortalised in the eponymous 1983 hit song by Eddy Grant, who switched on the new illuminated sign on 17th October.
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, said:
“From Covent Garden to Brentford and Whitechapel to Romford, London’s local markets have brought vibrancy and life to the streets of the capital for generations. It’s vital we ensure they continue to thrive as an important part of our great city’s culture. Electric Avenue is, without a doubt, one of London’s most iconic markets and I’m delighted that we can celebrate this fantastic milestone with the legendary Eddy Grant.”
Cllr Lib Peck, Leader of Lambeth Council said:
“Brixton’s markets are world famous and none more so than Electric Avenue, largely thanks to Eddy’s hit record and I’m particularly excited at rocking down to Electric Avenue with the man who wrote those words. Many people have played a huge part in the refurbishment work, but most of all the market traders and shopkeepers who’ve had many months of disruption. This is a huge investment in Brixton town centre and not only preserves our precious heritage, but signals our shared commitment to the future of our markets.”
Eddy Grant said:
“Electric Avenue and I have been intertwined for a long time and I’m delighted to have been invited to switch on the sign and be part of the celebrations.”
The switching on of the illuminated Electric Avenue sign at 7.00pm on Monday 17th October marked the climax of an afternoon’s entertainment, food and fun.