I moved to New Cross in 2006 and started to visit the 2nd hand market 2 or 3 times a week (market days are Wednesday, Friday and Saturday) soon after. A couple of years ago I finally decided that I really should try and document the community.
On a particularly grey and cold morning a friend I had invited along coined the phrase “broken things and broken people” to describe the “junk” and its regular visitors, I thought this was unfair but I could also understand how an outsider would think this and perhaps I was drawn to photograph people and things together after hearing this phrase.
The market caters for all types of collectors and dealers, specialists in records, vintage cloths, ephemera, Barbie dolls, bicycle parts, fetish gear and vintage porno mags to name but a few area of interest. Most of the items are legally removed from rubbish tips in a nearby wealthier borough, literally one man's junk is another man's treasure. House clearances make up the majority of the rest of the market stock I have personally spent days if not weeks looking through other people’s memories building up a collection of vernacular photographs for a as yet to be created tumblr.
Its possible that some of the people would not have let me take their photograph if they had not seen me looking through old records, photographs and clothes over the years I felt like I had earned the right to make this series.
As with most areas in London Deptford is being filled up with new builds and gentrification will follow, Fridays mornings are a lot less busy then they used to be and the quality of the “junk” is a lot less interesting thanks to IKEA but Saturdays have seen a growth in food and other stalls so perhaps the market will continue in good health but under a different guise.
I have found what I wanted in the market and that is a collection of images of how the market was when I knew it: a proper used goods market like Brick lane and several others in London use to be like, filled with interesting things and interesting people.