Shopkeepers under Brixton's famous arches facing eviction by Network Rail

By James Banks: ITV London reporter

Shopkeepers in Brixton's railway arches have been told they will soon have to vacate their premises as owners Network Rail plan to redevelop the site.

Earlier this week businesses were informed that they would have to seek alternative arrangements whilst the twelve month refurbishment takes place.

José Cardoso, who owns the A & C Continental Deli Continental Grocers Deli told ITV News:

Along with many of the businesses Jose's shop has been a feature of the Archways for over twenty five years.

He like many others feels let down, as he believes much of Brixton's recent success has been down to independent traders like him.

Credit: ITV News

That's because at the moment Network Rail says it has not planning to give current tenants preferential treatment when applying for the refurbished archways, even though many tenants said they are happy to pay higher rent, once the work's been done.

Which has led many local residents to fear that gentrification could see the end of this quirky and unique shopping centre. So much so that an online petition has been launched.

A spokesman for Network Rail told ITV News that the plans would 'spruce up' the archways rather than totally redevelop the area.

A spokesman said that the project was at the very early stages and that planning permission had not yet been given for the work.

The were keen to stress that they were trying to give the current tenants as much notice as possible.