28th June 2014
Elephant Road, London SE17 1LB
Colombian World Cup Fans
Elephant Road, it has to be said, isn’t the most glamorous of streets (even for Elephant & Castle, let alone anywhere else): down one side a line of railway arches serving Thameslink, housing a few Latin American small businesses, a car mechanic and the station entrance. On the other side, well, some sort of building development scheme – nothing particularly noteworthy or controversial there at all, oh no…
Anyway, as mentioned before, this area [for the time being, anyway] is the hub of London’s Latin American community – particularly Colombians, so it’s bound to be the go-to venue for anything of major importance, like, say, a World Cup encounter with Uruguay.
However, with all the established bars and restaurants either fully booked or rammed solid, it could be a potentially frustrating evening for many local Colombianos. Step forward our hero of the hour: the proprietor of a tiny butchers at the New Kent Road end of the street, who, with the help of an extension lead on his TV, a small PA and a smattering of tables and chairs (and what looks like a profitable supply of Aguardiente), the community is provided with (some sort of) experience of the game.
And thanks to our other hero of the hour – James Rodriguez – the gathered multitude (which seems to be growing by the minute) are by all accounts quite pleased with the way things turn out – and then are more than happy to share that pleasure with any vehicle that happens to need to pass along Elephant Road afterwards. Thank goodness the police are here to, er, pose for photos.
And to honour the provider of this joyous occasion, Héctor Lavoe [yes, I’m aware he’s from Puerto Rico, but I’m sure they’d be celebrating as well…] has created a song about this very fine establishment.