Back in February of this year (2017), we decided to start writing BLOGs again after a fairly long absence. It wasn’t just because it seemed like a cool thing to do (which of course, it is), but at the time we had a few things we needed to let you guys, our dear customers, be aware of. Perhaps the most important of these things, besides Big Marc going on tour to Berlin, and Sgt Pepper turning 50, was the plight of Denmark Street in view of Crossrail’s unstoppable bulldozers.
Well. Guess what? We’re all still here!
In our BLOG in February, we were somewhat in the mood for setting the record straight in the light of the several reports on the demise of Denmark Street. All our customers had read them, people all over the world had read them. Even people who don’t play musical instruments knew about Denmark Street, and the media had made it out to be the greatest tragedy in Rock n Roll, all that history and nostalgia being wiped out by the men in suits. A campaign group was set up to ‘save Tin Pan Alley’ (no one who works on the street was involved). We had many people coming into the shops who seemed surprised to see us still there, or asking ‘so how long have you got left?’.
So we wrote a BLOG to let you all know: We’re not going anywhere!
Then, over the weekend, a new TV show was aired on BBC1 for the first time, a detective drama written by “Robert Galbraith” (you know who). The original story was set on and around Denmark Street, and so the producers aimed to bring that to life along with the gripping storyline. From what we have seen so far, they certainly have succeeded, admirably. The first episode aired on Sunday showed Denmark Street in all it’s present day, thriving and bustling glory. That’s right: murders aside, what those of you who watched ‘Strike: The Cuckoo’s Calling’ saw was the real Denmark Street. A model may have died, but as you can see, Denmark Street most certainly has not. It is very much alive and kicking.
And yet still the media (in this case, the London Evening Standard) tell us that London’s Tin Pan Alley is ‘threatened’. In her article about the TV show, and how it may “put London’s threatened Tin Pan Alley back on the map”, Naomi Ackerman writes “campaigners fear fans may not be able to see the street for long. Owner Consolidated Development wants to re-develop the entire road”.
Interestingly, at the end of her article, Ackerman includes a comment from Consolidated Development who said ‘ “The campaign against the Denmark Street development is frustrating” ‘. Yes! Yes it is! It’s frustrating for all of us here, because it is frivolous. I can’t speak for our right-honorable colleagues elsewhere on the Street, but as far as Wunjo is concerned, Consolidated Development are committed to preserving the musical heritage and character of Denmark Street, and are working with us to make sure we can continue to trade here now and in the longer term. Yes, we have had to temporarily re-locate to allow for building work in our spiritual home at 20 Denmark Street, but by 2019, we’ll be back there, for good. This is Consolidated’s promise. We have no reason not to believe them.
So, enjoy the TV show, because aside from being an excellent detective drama, it also sends the message to the world that Denmark Street is doing just fine. Come and visit us, and notice the distinct lack of panic and gloom in the air.