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Containers Direct logo
Quality you can see, experience you can trust.

Container Pop-Up Shops

Container pop-up shops are a fast growing trend, used as a quick, low cost start up option that will get you noticed, or for big established brands to capitalise on and expand their territories in a temporary outlet. Retailers ranging from big brand names like Nike and Superdry, to small independent businesses selling artisan goods, are at the forefront of the contemporary concept of the pop-up shop. The humble shipping container can provide the perfect structure to transform into a boutique style retail space. Take your store on the road to capitalise on sales at festivals, seasonal markets and events, or use it as permanent fixture. Boxpark Shoreditch, opened in 2011, was the world's first permanent pop-up shipping container mall, which led the way for a number of similar projects across London. Containers Direct provide shipping container conversions for pop-up shops for any purpose, including specialist conversions for catering businesses, using new and used shipping containers of any size. Alternatively we can supply bespoke new builds or flat pack pop-up containers.

Constructing your container pop-up shop

Designed and crafted to your needs, we can construct your pop-up unit to any required size, although 20ft shipping containers and 40ft shipping containers are standard sizes therefore they don't need cutting to size. Multiple units can be stacked for larger storage space without taking up extra floor space, and be accessed via an external staircase. Full side opening containers are a popular choice as they can be accessed via an open side with your goods on full display, true market style. 10ft shipping containers are popular for the small retailer or where space is at a premium. Whatever size and type of container you choose, we can fit it with a range of suitable features including:

Shutters and hatches

A pop-up unit, especially one where food and drink is purchased from, requires an opening for serving. We have come up with three popular standard options, although we will always work to a bespoke design if you have other ideas.

Option 1 - Lifting hatch

A steel hatch that opens upwards on gas struts. Lockable inside with shoot bolts when the hatches are closed.

Case studies:

15ft pop-up football club cafe15ft pop-up fish and chip shop

Option 2 - Flat panel door hatch

These shutter style hatch doors open outwards to rest flat against the container. When open they make great menu boards. Lockable inside with shoot bolts when the hatches are closed.

Case studies:

20ft cladded cafe

Option 3 - Rollers shutter hatch

Steel lockable shutters, with either manual or electrical operation. The shutter box can be housed either internally or externally.

Case studies:

14ft pop-up bar

Serving rails or a drop down serving counter can be included with all these options.

Option 4 - Flat pack pop-up containers

These units come with a large upward tilting hatch, which makes them suitable as catering units and retail units. Their flat pack form makes them incredibly easier to set up and take down again, and transport from site to site.

Patio style and bifolding doors

Many of our clients choose alternative door styles that lend themselves well to the function and aesthetic of a unit designed to attract customers, such as glazed patio style doors, sliding doors and bi-folding doors.

See The Farm Shop conversion as a great example of what can be achieved.

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Contact our sales team for your no obligation quote, including delivery!

Case studies

Superdry pop-up shop

Using 2 x 20ft full side opening containers, we made units for the internationally popular brand to sell their products market style. With a few additions such as steel racks, stud plates for signage, and a branded repaint, the shipping containers became two eye-catching, portable retail units.

Pop-up catering

If your business is catering, the pop-up container can easily be modified to sell food and beverages, with cooking and preparation facilities inside. Popular at festivals, outdoor attractions and events, pop-up catering is a rapidly expanding business, with innovative and creative designs helping widen their appeal with customers and caterers. See this 20ft cladded cafe, created for our client The Trudy Scrumptious Cafe. Trudy Scrumptious is a rural cafe in, serving home made ice cream, cakes, toasted sandwiches, tea and coffee in Tavistock Meadows, Devon. See our main page Containers for Catering for more ideas.


"I found the customer service excellent. They were extremely helpful in answering my questions and dealing with my payment issues. The communication that I had with them on the run up to delivery was faultless. They kept me fully up to date on how my order was progressing and dealt with any issues that came up effectively. I would also like to mention the delivery driver, who made the whole thing pain free. An excellent service overall. I would highly recommend them."

Received from Rosie Smart, Earls Barton Parish Council
Read all testimonials here!

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