Kiln rooms, artists’ studios, co-working spaces, a club in a record store and spaghetti in a shed: it’s hard to imagine a cooler bit of town than Peckham’s Copeland Park, also home to the Bussey Building. And at the centre is Copeland Social, a youthful drinking spot with a banging soundsystem.
It seems to have already cemented itself as a lead hangout this summer, despite some serious rooftop bar competition – many punters drifted by for a drink during our midweek visit, and if social media’s anything to go by, it was quite the hotspot during the World Cup. That’s probably down to ample outdoor picnic benches, which nestle up against large metal dumpsters resourcefully reclaimed as flowerbeds and filled with bright, tall sunflowers.
Bouquets also rested on tables indoors, with naked lightbulbs strung up above. It’s a stark-looking space, with white walls, concrete floors and a wood-backed bar, and with a small mezzanine hiding behind filled with somewhat random soft furnishings.
The drinks proposition is more focused, with cocktails for £7, glasses of wine for £5 and pints from The London Beer Factory also a fiver, all served in plastic cups on the assumption that you’ll want to enjoy them outside. My negroni was strong and mighty, served with a wedge of pink grapefruit. If it hadn’t been a school night, I’d have ordered a hefty Peckham Punch, a fruity cocktail with four rums in the mix. Food is by plant-based Palestinian dish specialists What The Fattoush.
Those picnic benches filled up with groups of dungaree-wearing Peckhamites enjoying the hip hop soundwaves drifting from the bar. If that sounds pretentious, know that staff joined us outside to dance to Justin Timberlake’s ‘Señorita’ and play with punters’ puppies left off the lead. Social, indeed.