Gods Own Junkyard
What do Soho sex shops, Bladerunner, Batman and an industrial estate in Walthamstow all have in common? That’s right! They all feature dazzling neon artwork by the late Chris Bracey. And you can see a display from the artist’s gallery of signs for free at Gods Own Junkyard!
Gods Own Junkyard has been located in Walthamstow, where Bracey began his work 40 years ago, for a couple of years now after its previous London warehouse was forced to close. Here you’ll find his life’s work in what constitutes as the biggest collection of neon lighting and signage in Europe.
The blacked-out warehouse is jam-packed with neon and as such feels as much a look into the future as it is a look at someone’s career. Bracey’s portfolio is as extensive as it is diverse with pieces used in iconic films such as Kubrick’s Eye’s Wide Shut, The Dark Knight, World War Z and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, as well as being used as the backdrop to editorial shoots for Vogue and brands such as Urban Outfitters.
The artist started life as a graphic designer back in the early 70s. But midway through the decade, Bracey began to light up Soho’s hedonistic nightlife and played a large roll in creating its iconic and nostalgic seediness and smut. Soho’s sex scene served as Bracey’s gallery and ultimately paved his way into film.
The awe-inspiring Gods Own Junkyard is a real hidden gem in London and it acts as the perfect space to showcase Bracey’s achievements. It’s attached to a café too, and not just any café, it’s called the Rolling Scones Café! You get it? There’s no real menu as such but they serve good tea, good coffee and excellent homemade cakes and scones.
Gods Own Junkyard is open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 11am and is located on Ravenswood Industrial Estate, Shernhall Street. It’s a 10 minute stroll from Walthamstow Central Station through the picturesque Walthamstow Village, and while Gods Own Junkyard does share the estate with an MOT garage, there is also a gin bar and the fantastic Wild Card microbrewery on site!