THIS WEEKEND EXPLORE A HIDDEN CORNER OF EAST LONDON WHERE NEON NEVER DIES!
If the January blues and dark winter nights are already starting to get you down, then take a moment to explore with me a heavenly little enclave of bright neon lights, vintage signs and old movie props guaranteed to brighten up your day. Tucked away on an industrial estate in Walthamstow, East London you will find God's Own Junkyard, a wonder in neon that shines brightly and beautifully into the night.
I'd been wanting to visit this place for so long, ever since friends who live nearby had told of its glorious, glistening existence and also after reading about it on a favourite fellow bloggers site Emma Inks. On a few occasions when visiting the area, I was disappointed to find it closed, so when I managed to finally get that first, fluorescent glimpse just before Christmas, it was every bit the colourful, crazy, neon wonderland I'd expected. Queue gasps of delight and a wildly snapping camera as I tried in vain to capture each and every bit of its shiny, quirky goodness.
God's Own Junkyard houses the work of the late and legendary neon artist Chris Bracey. Often known as 'The Master of Glow' Chris started out in the 70's and over the years, until his passing in 2014, created literally hundreds of neon signs and artwork for many Soho bars and shops, as well as commissions for an impressive list of Hollywood blockbusters - including the likes of Bond, Batman and Blade Runner. God's Own Junkyard is a home for much of this iconic work that is now looked after by his family.
This really is a great place to visit, and if you're in this part of London then somewhere I'd highly recommend. Take your time to wander around and marvel at the bright, funny and provocative collection of neon lights and signs - some old, some new, that grace every crevice of each and every corner of the industrial block in which it's situated. With colourful content literally spilling out all over, you'll probably find yourself standing and staring in awe for a good hour, taking everything in, trying to decide which sign you'd personally like and if you could feasibly take one home and find somewhere suitable to put it!
If you wish to sit back and rest a while as you gaze at the walls around you, then the Rolling Scones cafe will see you right with its selection of freshly baked cakes and food, or if you prefer grab an alcoholic tipple from the bar. A fun place to sit and chat as your eyes take in the wonder of your surroundings.
God's Own Junkyard is situated on the Ravenswood Industrial Estate in Walthamstow and is open on Friday and Saturday from 11am to 9pm and on Sunday from 11am until 6pm. Once you've taken your time to have a look around then I'd definitely recommend popping into the nearby Wildcard Brewery for a nice local beer to finish off your evening. Or if gin is more your thing then maybe check out Mother's Ruin the new Gin Palace that has recently opened in the area. I haven't had the chance to visit yet - but it sure sounds fun to me!