The style spotlight is shining firmly on the East End after Mayor of London Boris Johnson pumped £1.8million into a project to highlight fashion heritage.

Coupled with match funding, it means the new Fashioning Poplar scheme will amount to £3.9million in funds providing commercial studios, a fashion business space, manufacturing unit and fashion technology accelerator.

The money will also be spend on community and exhibition space as well as a cafe and outdoors area.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson MP said: “High streets and town centres the length and breadth of London are a hive of economic activity fuelled by creative minds. It’s important that we make sure they continue to meet the needs of a rapidly evolving city and the talented people who are key to its future success.

The London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London and housing association Poplar HARCA are taking the lead in transforming disused land by the A12 motorway in Poplar into the thriving space for style.

It is on the doorstep of east London’s Olympicopolis regeneration zone and in an area which already houses 30% of the capital’s fashion-based SMEs.

The institutions also aim to support 143 businesses during the first two years and create 40 full time jobs.

Head of London College of Fashion and Pro-Vice Chancellor, University of the Arts London Professor Frances Corner OBE said: “Fashioning Poplar heralds our move east to Olympicopolis in 2021. It supports existing East London fashion enterprises, creates further economic growth and social engagement initiatives for the area and is a hugely significant step along the road to an East London Fashion Cluster.”

Fashioning Poplar is expected to open next autumn.