Human rights charity Amnesty International will sit among Superdry, Dockers, Diesel and Calvin Klein, with the launch of its first physical store at London’s leftfield development Boxpark, opening next Monday (November 28).
Amnesty has teamed up with ‘affordable arts’ organisation Culture Label as its exclusive stockist, selling 100-unit limited edition pieces from Corrie Williamson (jewellery) and Lucy Jay (scarves), as well as the London College of Fashion selling limited edition t-shirts based on a design brief set by the 50-year old charity.
Lucy Jay scarves, retailing between £25 – 145, and London College of Fashion t-shirts, priced around £25, will also sit alongside a curated second hand book line, by selected authors, the first which will be Jonathan Kemp.
The 40 sq ft ‘store’ will open at Boxpark, featuring a simple design scheme – plain industrial shelving and an Amnesty Lightbox - by Popstore.com. A collage wall depicting 50 years of Amnesty graphics will be a key feature.
According to Lara Woolston, sales manager at Amnesty, the mix of luxury and independent retailers will help open the charity up to a new audience.
One of the objectives of the store - targeting “mindful” shoppers - is to drive subscriptions to the charity and Amnesty will launch its first gift membership card in store.
“I think Boxpark will bring Amnesty to life in a new location, drawing an interesting crowd,” said Woolston.
Contractually, Boxpark has given Amnesty 50% off its rent, while the charity is still waiting to find out if it will receive reduced business rates. It will employ both volunteer and paid staff.
“Boxpark wanted to get more local businesses involved and helped us to come on board,” said Woolston.
Amnesty pitched to Boxpark founder Roger Wade and his team, after Woolston expressed interested, having passed by the Boxpark development on her way to Amnesty’s nearby activist centre.
To date, Amnesty has had a second hand book shop, as well a mail order business and online store both retailing new and ethically-sourced products including clothing, books and accessories.
Dockers, Superdry, Diesel and Calvin Klein are among the brands that will open stores at Boxpark, a retail ‘development’ of 60 shipping containers that was due to open in August at former railway yard The Goodsyard, a 4.7 hectare site which has been derelict for over 40 years.
Developer Hammerson – the firm that owns Birmingham’s Bullring retail site – bought The Goodsyard and will eventually build 2,000 new homes. Boxpark, designed by architect Waugh Thisleton, will occupy the space in the interim five years.