China Exchange was created by Sir David Tang who had the vision for a dynamic centre promoting excellence in Chinatown. Housed in the former BT Telephone Exchange and following an extensive renovation, China Exchange serves as a home for ideas, discussion, and creative expression that stimulate greater understanding of and curiosity about China’s impact on the world. Through a vibrant programme of events, China Exchange attracts people to Chinatown for more than just the food that is available in this culturally distinct area of London.
China Exchange was opened formally by Their Royal Highnesses, The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall on 19 February 2015 – celebrating Chinese New Year and the start of the year of the goat. HE Mr Liu Xiaoming, China’s Ambassador to the UK was in attendance.
Since its inception, China Exchange has had a commitment to accessibility – tickets are priced between £6-£12 unless the event involves additional materials. We have been fortunate as a charity that our guest speakers and performers are willing to donate their time and services, and that companies, foundations and private donors offer financial support to cover the costs of a dedicated staff team and maintaining our premises.
From 2015-2017, China Exchange presented the “60 Minutes with…” Prudential series, which featured accomplished – often very well-known – guests selected by Sir David as speakers on the basis of their extraordinary lives and achievements. With a low ticket price, the events make excellence accessible in London and online and serve to attract people who may not otherwise visit London’s Chinatown or attend a China-related event.
Pureland Series, supported by Pureland Foundation, curates innovative programmes with the aim of enriching lives through creativity, spirituality and self-expression. The series focuses on promoting emotional and physical well being and has seen Goldie Hawn deliver a guided workshop on mindfulness; discussion events on mental health, grief, and masculinity in the 21st Century.
The China Exchange programme also includes:
The Cultivate Programme – our open submission venue partnership available to creative projects and artists that need space to rehearse, meet and create. Each participant welcomed as a member can book up to 24 hours of space during office hours. In exchange, their creative work is presented as part of our programme.
Music at China Exchange – with partners including the Royal Academy of Music we present live music from a range of genres.
Exhibitions and Pop-up Culture – Chinatown is an ideal location for free exhibitions securing good footfall traffic from Gerrard Street and providing an additional layer of entertainment to the neighbourhood’s restaurants and shops.
China Exchange is a UK registered charity (registered charity number 1160354).
The beautiful building is also available as a venue for hire offering large dry hire spaces in central London.