Peckham Perspectives // Prince of Peckham

“The Prince of Peckham is a traditional pub where old and new Peckham can co-exist. A home from home, where everyone is welcome.” This couldn’t ring more true upon visiting the Prince of Peckham on Clayton road a few weeks ago. A local community pub delivery seriously good fuel courtesy of White Men Can’t Jerk, cocktails and a genuine and easy vibe.

We met with Clement who runs the Prince of Peckham one Friday afternoon to discuss growing up in Peckham, what he loves about his local area and what he wants to see over the course of the next few years.

Read our full interview below!!

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What does Peckham mean to you?

Growing up in Peckham was challenging for a variety of reasons, but one I wouldn’t change for the world. Going school in the area and having my family house down the road has definitely strengthened my bond with the area. My mum did her weekly shop for her Nigerian ingredients in Peckham religiously, so for me Peckham is literally what I grew up on.

What was the inspiration for Prince of Peckham and how did you get started?

I’ve been working in pubs, clubs and bars for some years. Some amazing experiences, some not so amazing. But the one thing that stayed true was my passion for people and their social habits. I’ve always wanted a pub, but to have one in the area I grew up was always something I wanted a lot. I wanted a pub that celebrated the journey of the local area as well as its current position while creating an inclusive experience.

Growing up the area and going to school at local Peckham school, St Thomas Apostle, means Clement has seen many of the changes to the area over the years.

What changes have you observed in Peckham over the years?

You guys see Morrisons, I will always see Safeways. Kwik Save and Blue Inc have also gone. Ezekiel’s used to be the spot and Lazerdrome was the Saturday afternoon hangout spot before it became the Saturday night rave spot.

 What are the best things about the area?

I love the amount of afro-caribbean hair and beauty shops up along Rye Lane. These have been a mainstay of the areas cultural backbone as well as adding vibrancy. The transport links in Peckham are fantastic with 2 train stations and bus links to almost anywhere in the city.

What are the biggest challenges Peckham faces?

Maintaining the balance between old and new Peckham. And the litter problem.

Growing up with our community manager, Clement is aware of Peckham Levels and the purpose of the project.

 What do you hope Peckham Levels can offer in the local area?

I hope Levels acts as a further reason people gravitate to the area. What the area needs is more quality and aspirational operators, further shining a spotlight on an area that has been in the dark for far too long.

Do you have any fears or concerns about the project?

Nope. An old school friend of mine is Community Manager and I have every faith in what he, and his team are planning to do.

The Prince of Peckham’s focus on community is obvious, with local Wednesdays offering 25% off drinks! It’s just the right amount of lively and Clements passion for what he does comes across from the minute you walk through the front door – beaming smiles and always present on the bar interacting with his customers.

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 What is Peckham’s hero statement? I wake up, and my only mission is to make magic.

 When you’re not behind your bar, where are you? At someone else’s bar.

Jacob Read