Crofton Park Challenge

Civilization is sterilization

- Brave New World

Crofton Park: The historical heart of Brockley. Home to the Rivoli, the Brockley Jack, Mr Lawrence and Jam Circus and the most successful high street in the area.

But reviewing our coverage of Crofton Park, it is primarily a monotonous stream of stories about the fate of the library, the rotating occupancy of what is now Krizz Kutz and stuff we missed at the Rivoli, punctuated with the occasional initiative from Jam Circus or the Brockley Jack Theatre.

Crofton Park residents rarely email us with stories and even Google and Twitter draw a blank.

So it that all there is? Are CP residents so comfortable, with their neat streets and low crime rates, that they have nothing to say? What are we missing? Please tell us - fill the void.

31 comments:

Tyrwhitt (nowhere near Crofton Park) Michael said...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crofton_Park

Hooray for Wikipedia!

Brockley Nick said...

Information is not news ;) I need juice.

Tyrwhitt Michael said...

Well speak for yourself, I am looking forward to seeing the Whale's shoulderbalde next time I am in the Brockley Jack.

Matt-Z said...

The Whale's Shoulderblade sounds like the title of a Viz annual.

Anyway, Crofton Park is great.

A few positives

Useful range of shops and bars, especially the chippy and Mr Lawrence.

The cemetery always has something interesting happening (nature walks, remembrance thing etc)

Londis is surprisingly well stocked, often winning out over the Co-op or Budgens for a hard-to-find ingredient


A few negatives

Parking is getting worse in the side streets, and local businesses get really annoyed when Rivoli TV crews block all the parking spaces on Brockley Road as it prevents passing customers from stopping and going into their shops.

The train service from Crofton Park is poor and I can't see it improving any time soon, though the proposed Victoria to Bellingham service would be a massive boost.

Lack of restaurants

Lack of late night convenience store

Brockley Nick said...

@Matt-Z, cheers, a good summary of CP, but again what are the live issues? Parking might be an interesting one to follow-up...

Matt-Z said...

OK:

People rat-running and speeding in the side streets off Brockley Road and Brockley Grove, and taking the back route to Catford.

Poor quality of street furniture, railings at crossing, all contributing to a scruffy town centre environment which in turn promotes litter etc etc (usual story)

Under provision of primary school places (a borough wide issue but particularly pertinent at the moment with the bru ha ha over Gordonbrock and the fire at Stillness.

Despite the decent high street there remain plenty of boarded up or closed shops, with seemingly no initiatives to get the dead space into use.

barryls said...

Hear hear to all those.

CP is a wonderful place to be, partly due to the fact that the houses are still intact and haven't been converted into flats. So we are not so densely packed together.

However we dread the onset of winter and the annual collapse of the First Capital Connect timetable. Thank god for Ladywell and Honor Oak Park stations.

And the regeneration of Ladywell Fields will be hotly anticipated, but until then this valuable space is a mudbath. Grrrr....from the dog walkers.

D said...

I'm keen to see how ladywell fields turns out too. It looks like the somme at the moment, but hopefully it'll be a vast improvement when they finish next year.
I love Crofton park so not much to moan about. Oh, the horrible modern monstrosity they've built on Manwood Rd amongst the houses. No idea how that got planning permission.

Crofton Park Ranger said...

Moved to CP a couple of years ago. Here are some thoughts:

The Rivoli
I have never really seen anything advertised at the Rivoli. Do they have late night licencing issues? - seems such a waste of a supposedly great venue - I say supposedly because I have never been in there, because there has never been anything on (that I have been aware of)(other than that dress up freaks night advertised a while ago)(I say freaks in the nicest possible sense).

Some more busses would be nice from more diverse central London locations. Oh and one to blackheath please.

Loads more trains would make Crofton Park worth using - no trains on a weekend and 1 every half hour on a weeknight what is that! Will we have weekend trains when blackfriars opens again? - that would be good for the southbank...

PS I regularly use the rat run to Catford on my way to Bromley - what a great short cut!

Steve said...

There's plenty of stuff on at the Rivoli that's well worth a look. A nice taster for first timers is the Jive Party which is on once a month.

http://jiveparty.wordpress.com/

It has a great atmosphere and not a problem if you cant jive. There are lessons if you turn up early or you can just sit it out and leer all night at the all the pretty things young and old. Last time I went, Fern Cotton and the other Radio 1 idiots were there looking glamorous.


There are also Cabarets and Vintage Balls on less frequently but like the Rivoli itself are nothing to look at from the outside but truly wonderful inside...Just go!

mg said...

Jive night is this Saturday btw, it's always great fun.
Crofton Park Ranger, we do have trains on the weekend, they go to Victoria (maybe you meant no trains to Blackfriars?)

Josh said...

Hi What about the Brockley Jack Theatre it has film nights, scratch nights, writers groups and great plays especially the christmas show this year it's The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.
May be the Rivoli could give some of its profit to the community I hear its £10k a week to film there!!!!

Crofton Park Ranger said...

Sorry I should have added

A) yes trains to Victoria but not to all the places on the other line that I want to visit. Woul be nice to go direct to Camden or St p for eurostar.

B) my post was a little negative. I should mention that I love Crofton Park

C) in some ways the lack of goss on CP reflects how it just ticks over nicely...

Anonymous said...

During the week it goes directly to Kings Cross St Pancras in under 25 min. At night time and weekends, sadly not:(...

Matt-Z said...

At some point the through service to St Pancras at weekends will be restored. Not sure how far away that is though. Even if the Thameslink Programme is heavily cut, the central core will still be finished - Farringdon is due to be completed in 2012, so proably around then.

Anonymous said...

Happy Days...Life is just good in CP:)

CJ316 said...

Star cafe are currently open until 830pm weds, thurs and friday.

Making excellent grills. Tell the chef what you want and he'll make it...

oryx said...

To be honest, a lot of this blog seems to concentrate on the shops in Coulgate Street and issues in/about the conservation area, and when it ventures beyond this remit the focus is on Ladywell/Telegraph Hill, so no wonder there is a lack of input from or about Crofton Park.

If there were threads started about issues in Crofton Park I've no doubt debate and discussion would follow. To be fair though, there have been some more lively local issues in those areas such as the by-election and the skate park. Keeping the beautiful library open for the public is a big issue here at the moment.

On the positive side, Crofton Park has three absolute gems for drinking or eating out: Mr Lawrence, the Brockley Jack and Jam Circus. There are also a florist, at least one good dry cleaner, a good keycutter/locksmith, a fantastic butcher and probably plenty of other small local businesses I haven't yet used.

Not to mention the wonderful Mr Lawrence off-licence with its selection of unusual beers, wines and spirits (and helpful staff), the library and Rivoli.

The beauty of this entire area is its abundance of mixed independent shops and businesses, and its lack of chains. This is even more in evidence - the further south you go in Brockley - Brockley Rise and off it (though Honor Oak Park is not really Brockley) the better it gets. :-)

I moved here nearly four years ago from the Battersea/Clapham area and much prefer it.

Brockmum said...

Sorry to piggyback the thread at a slight tangent, but do any Crofton-Parkers have a rough idea of the catchment area for Stillness? Thanks...

Crofton Park Chris said...

Use the Lewisham website- they will tell you the distance to the school. Last year the last child they took lived 643m away. We are 354m away so are very hopeful of getting in.

Brockmum said...

Great - thanks. Will do that.

urbansurgery said...

"To be honest, a lot of this blog seems to concentrate on the shops in Coulgate Street and issues in/about the conservation area, and when it ventures beyond this remit the focus is on Ladywell/Telegraph Hill, so no wonder there is a lack of input from or about Crofton Park."

Not to mention when you have reposted news and updates more than 500m from BX in the past plenty of contributors have responded negatively at their inclusion. Cliquey? Not the authors, but the readership.

Kevin said...

I love living in C. Park too, though I'd also add that there is a pressing need for a bus that heads east to Deptford/Greenwich/Blackheath.

Re. food all the places mentioned are good, I'd also like to highlight the jerk chicken place opposite the Co-op. Also the dry cleaner next to the jerk chicken place is a lovely bloke and does great repairs at a low price.

Always find it entertaining reading about people moaning about the train service. Yes, I wish trains through C. Park were more frequent, but it's great that they no longer terminate at Blackfriars, and I also can walk in under twelve minutes to Catford Bridge (thus be in C. Cross and Waterloo in no time), and to Hon. Oak for the East London line. It's train heaven!

I'm v. fond of both Ladywell Fields and Blythe Hill. The butcher in Ewhurst Rd. is excellent. The kebab place 'The Taj' just to the east of Catford Bridge station is a great late night takeaway, they even roll their own naans! C. Park is also v. near Babur (especially the takeaway one), which was featured as one of the 50 best curry restaurants in the country in yesterday's edition of The Independent newspaper.

But, arguably my favourite thing about the part of C.Park where I live is that it is easy walking distance to the Blythe Hill Tavern, which I think, in all seriousness, is probably my favourite pub in London. Also good neighbourhood feel here, get on v. well with both my neighbours, a great mix of people too. p.s. SAVE OUR LIBRARY!

Brockley Nick said...

@Oryx - the blog venture where the news is - there's no particular reason why Ladywell or Telegraph Hill should get more coverage than Crofton Park, other than the fact that there has been more worth reporting.

It would be nice to create a virtuous circle where more news begets more comment, begets more suggestions of news - that's what this thread is for. All of the businesses you have mentioned (with the exception possibly of the florist) do have their own threads, by the way.

josh said...

Makebelieve arts have offered library by council with facilities for library user.. its a done deal this is news i heard in a pub in deptford

Monkeyboy said...

"....heard in the pub...." many a dream has foundered on those rocks.

josh said...

have been offered it should read thisis in total contempt of the community and everyone who uses the library they have no connection to the area and will offer nothing to

Monkeyboy said...

From their website...

"Based in Deptford, we have established ourselves as a high quality provider of services in Lewisham and our neighbouring boroughs. We have also worked in Greenwich, Southwark, Tower Hamlets, Newham, Islington, Hillingdon and Brent. We always look to expand our work across London, throughout the UK and beyond."

So they do have a connection to the area. It's as if BP have shown an interest.

Brockley Nick said...

Josh, what's the problem with them not being a Brockley-based organisation? Do we not like outsiders?

cupcake_girl said...

Have been in Corfton Park for 3 months and I love it! Think my favourites of Jam Circus and Brockley Jack and Theatre have already been highlighted. I love the local community feel, and special mention to the butcher at Peter James - they always have a wave and a smile for me when I run past in the morning because I am always late for the train, not to mention the great quality meat.
More trains from Crofton Park are much needed and the last train at 9.09pm from city thameslink is really frustrating.
As a relative newbe, anyone know of good fruit and veg shops? Any there any hidden gems?

Anonymous said...

Deptford market is fun, I'm told lewisham fruit 'n' veg is good too

Brockley Central Label Cloud

Click one of the labels below to see all posts on that subject. The bigger the label, the more posts there are!