Dingwalls was an iconic Camden Town landmark located inside the market. Its colourful heritage can be traced all the way back to June 1973 when Dingwalls Dance Hall was officially opened and its legacy lives on today through Maria Kempinska. The early 70s were times of change in Camden. In 1972 childhood friends, business partners and founders of Northside Developments Limited, Bill Fulford and Peter Wheeler bought the Dingwalls site, an area we now know as Camden Lock Market. Armed with a plan to create workshop spaces for artists, designers and craftspeople, the duo transformed the site previously functioning as a timber yard into one of London’s first crafts and antiques markets. And the changes didn’t stop there. In 1973 a wine merchant called John Armit and his business partner Tony Mackintosh approached NDL with an idea: to transform the ‘run-down packaging warehouse’ along the canal into Dingwalls Dance Hall. Dingwalls was designed to have a very long bar (in fact, it had the longest bar in London at the time) and it was open until 2am, as opposed to most pubs and bars which closed at 11pm. It featured live performances a few nights a week and became very famous for spotlighting up-and-coming musicians.
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