Published: 6th Feb 2019

A controversial regeneration scheme in Elephant and Castle is reaching its endgame following years of protests from local traders, residents and activists. It’s another win for gentrification in the capital but at what cost to the area’s vibrant Latin community? Freelance journalist Kieron Monks reports. Distriandina, also known as The Colombian, is one of the largest, liveliest, and longest-serving Latin-American nightclubs in London. Nestled in the railway arches behind the Elephant and Castle shopping centre, the venue attracts crowds of 300 on weekend nights that extend deep into the early hours, largely drawn from the Andean nations of Colombia, Peru, and Ecuador. The arches were largely derelict and the shopping centre neglected when the Quintero family set up shop in 2002, initially as a Latin grocery serving tastes of home. Over time, they earned the licenses to operate as a cafe, then a restaurant, and eventually a nightclub. ‘We were the … (To read the full article, subscribe below)