A walk on the Cheapside

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Located in the heart of the George Town World Heritage Site, Lorong Cheapside is both a tightly knit innercity community and a place to buy hardware. As the city continues to evolve, Cheapside residents and traders are trying to negotiate change in this historic neighbourhood.

Blink and you’ll miss it. Locksmiths and hardware shops obscure the entrance to a narrow alley just off the bustling Lebuh Chulia. Taking its name from a market street in London, Cheapside is George Town’s hardware lane1. While the one in London has its origins in the Middle Ages, Penang’s Cheapside got its name in the 1920s2.

For decades, this has been the go-to place to get keys cut, locks changed and knives sharpened, or to buy just about anything one might need for home repairs. Behind the stalls, a row of shophouses accommodates local traders and their warehouses.


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