Campaigners are battling to save Soho, the vibrant heart of London's West End, from the worst ravages of gentrification. The area's independent shops, clubs and restaurants, often owned by generation after generation of immigrant families, are being demolished to make way for luxury apartments for the wealthy.

Successive waves of immigrants – French Huguenots, Jews, Russians, Italians and Chinese – helped shape Soho's unique character. The area is a jumble of sex shops, textile wholesalers and bespoke tailors, independent record stores and shops catering to the counter-culture, world famous live music venues, gay bars, plus one of the oldest street markets in London.

In December 2014, singer and songwriter Tim Arnold created the campaign group Save Soho after the closure and repossession of Madame Jojo's. Backed by celebrities such as Stephen Fry, Benedict Cumberbatch and Marc Almond, the group's aim is to protect the area's music and performing arts venues. Soho is in Arnold's genes – both his mother and his grandparents were cabaret performers in Soho nightclubs. (See the rather saucy photo of his grandparents performing at the Raymond Revue Bar towards the end of this gallery of Soho scenes over the years.)