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Dragan Novaković’s Club Row

February 18, 2018
by the gentle author

In this second selection of East End market photography by Dragan Novaković from the late seventies (published for the first time), we include rare pictures of the ancient Club Row animal and bird market which closed in 1983 when street trading in live animals became outlawed

Photographs copyright © Dragan Novaković

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9 Responses leave one →
  1. February 18, 2018

    Yet more extraordinary photographs from Dragan. Thanks for publishing these for the first time. I recognise some of the faces from photo’s I took in the 80s in Spitalfields.

  2. Jennifer Blain permalink
    February 18, 2018

    I have so much enjoyed studying Dragan Novaković’s street portraits. Of the hundreds of photos I’ve seen on your website, these are the ones I will remember.

  3. Lesley Harrison permalink
    February 18, 2018

    Amazing photos from a time which seems so far removed from now, and yet is relatively recent. Thank goodness the animal market was closed down.

  4. February 18, 2018

    Another likely set of lads and lasses (not a few of whom, I suspect, were at Violet’s funeral), a reminder of the hard times my lucky generation missed.

  5. Paul Loften permalink
    February 18, 2018

    Thanks for the memories. As an animal lover lover I am happy that Club Row animal market is no longer. However my dad used to sometimes take us down there on Sunday mornings in the late 50′s and early 60′s and I recall looking at the puppies and kittens for sale and pleading for him to buy one. So the memories of the faces and characters that were there at the time still haunt me. I recall at the top of the Shoreditch end of the market in the 60′s there was a NF stall that was often there Sunday mornings with a speaker all ready to invite trouble from unwitting protesters who were unaware, that parked around the corner was a van full of ex boxers all primed up for a bit of trouble.

  6. Ed Hack permalink
    February 18, 2018

    Club Row Animal and Bird Market,
    East End, London, 1970s

    They smoke–but back then everybody smoked.
    Some don’t have teeth in front. East End and poor
    and out, about, with wife and kids. Their hope?
    They know that all they have is work and more
    of it, a life of it, except for week-
    end fairs–small dogs for sale, the kids all smiles,
    the wife, thank God, not broken down, the bleak
    streets just the neighborhood they’ve walked for miles
    throughout their life, the pub, the grocer’s shop,
    the butcher’s bloody block and saw dust floor,
    the lines of clothes in dirty air–and not,
    not one complaint. Too smart to ask for more.
    A Sunday out–see friends–with family.
    Then home, some hours more, and then their tea.

  7. John permalink
    February 18, 2018

    Excellent photos. Was the market at Spitalfields?

  8. Mary permalink
    February 18, 2018

    Wonderful image,s but the closure of this animal market is one part of the East End I was pleased to hear had gone. I remember visiting once in the early 1970s and so many of the animals looked in distress that I never went back. A lot of the kittens and puppies looked too young to be taken away from their mothers and I am sure they did not last long.
    The chap in the white tee shirt in the eighth photo looks like the (in)famous Sir Peter Green – he of the BHS debacle!

  9. Ron Bunting permalink
    February 18, 2018

    I had to google Mr Green… If it’s not him, it’s his older brother… ha ha

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