If I had to describe Peckham Levels in one word that word would probably be ‘community’. Peckham levels is many things; business hub, a place for a night out, a pop-up cinema for a spontaneous viewing of the exorcist, but all of it is built around Peckhams vibrant local community.
The venue is bare-bones, which makes sense as until a few years back Peckham Levels used to be a multi-storey car park. Now it is still very much a car park, but in its several storeys manages to house a co-working space, a yoga studio, a hairdresser, and a number of offices, including a therapist and an architect, supporting local entrepreneurs and business with reduced rates and a bonus resident cat. Aside from being a great hub for business and locals, it also offers free event and meeting spaces to community groups and local organisations for 25% of time.
The top floor is where all the after-work fun takes place. There are 3 places one can sit down for a nice a drink; a nice wine and beer bar, a cocktail bar called Near & Far, and what is a very successful attempt to have a pub in a car park. The Food options consist of a rather large amount of burger hole-in-wall takeout stalls, with the one out-of-place Chinese restaurant separating them, and a vegan food stall further down the hall. The staff of both the bars and the food shacks seems particularly chill and friendly, and my first ever jackfruit burger from Zephyr Burgers was not a disappointment. The food could use a bit more variety as the selection of burgers is a bit too extensive, but if you’re really into burgers you’re in for a treat.
All in all, this place is one of the coolest hang out places I’ve seen for a while. It is artistic and inspiring. The atmosphere reminds me a bit of how society would function in a post-apocalyptic London, but with good street food and plenty of alcohol. I will not delve too deeply into how that would be acquired in post-apocalyptic London, and why in this case no member of society over the age of 30 seems to have survived. But luckily for them, they have a cat, a hairdresser and a therapist, everything a post-apocalyptic under-30s-years-of-age survivor needs.
Peckham Levels run a number of free events every month, ranging from movie screenings and gigs to embroidery workshops, a list of which can be found on the events page: