Ridley Road Market Documented by Year 5

How pupils at Princess May Primary School used illustration to document their local market in Dalston, inspired by our Lucinda Rogers exhibition.


  • Grace Attlee
  • Learning

For our current exhibition – On Gentrification – we commissioned Lucinda Rogers to document Dalston's 150-year-old Ridley Road Market. Alongside we have worked with two classes of year 5 pupils from Princess May Primary School on Kingsland Road.

The project began with a visit to the exhibition, during which pupils identified aspects of the market they recognised and asked Lucinda about how she made her drawings.

Hackney-based illustrator, Sion ap Tomos, then spent five days with them at the market and in the classroom, where they studied historic maps and photographs from Hackney Archives.

A vital part of their community, the market is where the children shop regularly with their families – they evidently cared greatly about its history and protecting it in the future. 

The result of the project is a limited edition booklet featuring the pupil's reportage drawings, which is being distributed by the children to market traders and sold in House of Illustration’s shop.

The brilliantly observed depictions of stall holders and colourful produce is an example of how illustration can be used to report facts, emotion and tell a story vividly and accurately, about an important location that is under threat of disappearing.

Get your copy from our online shop here. 100% of the price goes towards supporting House of Illustration's education and outreach programmes.

A few days ago we opened a wonderful exhibition of the pupils' work at Princess May Primary School. Thanks to all of the pupils involved and to the school staff who assisted in delivering the project, particularly to Catrina Bangura, Deputy Head/SENCO.