An artist has built a house out of a dumpster in London, England, and plans to live there for a year. The aim is to draw attention to the “crazy” price of renting a room in the British capital these days.
Harrison Marshall, 28, moved into the converted container on a grass field in Bermondsey, south London, a month ago. The young man explains that it was the only way he found to get money to live downtown, close to where he works.
Returning to the city after a period away, he says he had difficulties finding a place to live, due to the lack of houses.
“As is the case with thousands of people across town and across the country, prices have gone crazy. The income is unbelievable,” says Marshall. “Even when I found a place within my price range, there were a hundred more people looking for that room.”
Price inflation in the UK reached 11.1% — the highest value in 41 years — in October 2022 and remains in double digits, affecting the cost of living crisis, as wages have not kept pace with rising household expenses and feed.
Marshall’s creative solution to the problem was to spend around €4500 building a wooden shed with a curved roof and attach it to a shipping container. Inside there is a small kitchen and a mezzanine with a bed. The words “skip house” (or “container house”) are stamped in black on the yellow container, typically used for construction waste.
“The shipping container gave me the opportunity to make my own tiny house,” he says.
Marshall has a garden that leads to the entrance steps and the public bathroom located at the corner of the premises. He showers at work, a ten-minute bike ride away, or at the gym and has access to water through a hose that comes from the neighbor’s property.
“All the neighbors are incredible, actually. They’re very supportive. I have neighbors who come and bring homemade meals,” he says. “That’s a huge bonus for the whole project. This area has a really good community.”