Cooper's Bakehouse is a small local bakery serving Brockley and Honor Oak. We wrote about it last year, when it was looking for premises. Now it's up and running and they say:
Our bread is now available from Tuesday to Saturday in El's Kitchen in Ladywell; Pat-a-Cake's opposite Crofton Park station; and in the all new Nandi Nandi at the bottom of Honor Oak Park who also have a daily delivery of our croissants and patisserie.
Home delivery is now available on Tuesday; Wednesday and Thursday to anyone who'd like a weekly loaf or two. We bake from a small wood-fired oven so the number of delivery slots is limited; if we can squeeze you in, we will. You don't need to be at home to receive a delivery and priority is based on distance, by bicycle, from the oven to your door.
Thanks to Monkeyboy for the details.
Cooper's Bakehouse is a small local bakery serving Brockley and Honor Oak. We wrote about it last year, when it was looking for premises. Now it's up and running and they say:
The Architects' Journal reports that work to build new apartment blocks on Geoffrey Road has begun.
The site has been dormant for years, but the homes are now due for completion by January 2013. AJ says:
We really like the look of these, which are better architecture than Brockley has been used to in recent years and it's nice to see derelict sites being filled in with new homes at long last.
Lewisham Council writes:
Lewisham’s apprenticeship programme is advertising 52 new vacancies online from 31 May, providing young people in the borough with more opportunities to earn as they learn.
The new apprenticeship roles cover areas such as finance, plumbing, plastering, caretaking, IT, admin, communication and animal welfare. Employers include Lewisham Council, Lewisham Homes, MITIE Property Services, Phoenix Housing, Millwall Community Scheme as well as others.
The apprenticeships are a mixture of on and off the job training. On the job, apprentices will gain key transferable skills including working in a team, communication and using new technology and equipment. Off the job, they will spend time working towards a recognised qualification.
Mayor Bullock established the apprenticeship programme in public services across the Council and its public sector partners in 2009. To date, 152 apprentices have been taken on.
The apprenticeships last for up to two years and apprentices will be supported by an experienced manager. Once the apprentices have completed their traineeship, they’ll be in a strong position to move into a permanent job.
To apply, candidates need to be a Lewisham resident, aged between 16 and 24, have English and Maths GCSE level A-C or equivalent ability, and be eligible to work in the UK.
The closing date for applications is midnight on Monday 18 June 2012 and prospective candidates can find out more at www.lewisham.gov.uk/apprentices
As this sponsored video reminds us, the Jubilee Big Lunch day is nearly upon us (June 3rd). Brockley has held some good lunches in the past, but we're blowed if we can find the map which tells you what Big Lunches are this year, so please use this thread to promote any events you're holding.
British athlete and London Olympic hopeful Joice Maduaka was underwhelmed by Lewisham's Olympic preparations when she turned up for a practice today at the Ladywell Arena and couldn't find a working set of starting blocks. She tweeted:
Not so smart idea.Went local for practice Ladywell Arena. No starting blocks all broken.Are we really hosting an Olympic Games?
Eventually, she found some, but added:
Amazing what you get when you kick up. Smh. But they only have 1 set. Come on @LewishamCouncil sort it out http://pic.twitter.com/qNBubYMn Not moaning just disappointed in Olympic year they dont have equipment. I paid my £2.60 for use of the track.
As a "Gateway" borough (next door to where the action's actually happening), Lewisham initially imagined it would play host to a number of teams as part of its Olympic legacy. In 2008, Mayor Bullock said:
In Lewisham we’re working towards developing some excellent sport and leisure facilities for everyone to enjoy and I hope people will take full advantage of them. In particular, my goal is to help Lewisham’s young people achieve their own goals and levels of sporting excellence.
Follow Joice on Twitter here. Thanks to Martin for the heads-up.
We opened yesterday at 465 New Cross Road where Come the Revolution used to be. We are a partnership starting out with our first business.
We are serving Mediterranean style food, baguettes, tabouleh, salad, quiche, cakes and drinks and our menu will expand over time. We are still running the book exchange and free wifi, and would like to encourage local groups to meet, and artists to exhibit at the cafe.
At the moment we are open from 10 til around 4pm, we are experimenting and seeing how it goes.
Ye have brought this man unto me, as one that perverteth the people; and behold, I, having examined him before you, have found no fault in this man touching those things whereof ye accuse him.
- Pontius Pilate
The Mayor's office sent us this press release, announcing a competition for funding for "Portas Pilots" - projects designed to rejuvenate local high streets. Obviously, Lewisham groups are welcome to apply.
On the one hand, it sounds like an initiative designed by a PR person; on the other, the Mayor's commitment to funding small scale local projects is the best thing about his tenure. PR people: is there anything they can't do?
The Mayor of London Boris Johnson is calling on community groups to bid for funding to breathe life into their local high streets.
Giving his backing to plans by retail expert Mary Portas to help boost the UK economy, the Mayor has announced an additional £300,000 funding to help increase jobs and growth in three “Portas Pilots” across London.
Local communities are invited to submit ideas in order to receive the funding, with the successful three projects to be announced this summer. The ideas which most transform town centres affected by the economic downturn are likely to win the competition.
The fund is separate from the existing £1.2 million government scheme, and builds on the Mayor's £70 million Regeneration Fund and £50 million Outer London Fund. The selected “Portas pilots” will each receive up to £100,000 to carry out some of the recommendations made by Mary Portas in her review for ministers.
The closing date for entries is the 30th June 2012. Click here to download an application form.
The remodeling of Brockley Cross is nearly finished, with only a couple of zebra crossings to install and a one way system around the island of houses formed by Geoffrey and Upper Brockley Roads to implement.
The effect of the work (and the police action that took place recently) has been to normalise a lawless mess. It has also created a large swathe of (so-far) unspoiled paving, like a sun-baked stretch of urban beach.
Whilst we're delighted with what's already been done, we think it's worth asking now what can be done here to prevent it becoming a car park and to get best use from it.
In previous discussions, BC readers suggested that bike racks could be added. Back in 2008 (yes, we've been wittering on about this place for that long) we suggested that the old parking bay (now paved over) could have been turned in to a little patch of green. We'd like to re-propose that idea - some giant planters could help to soften the streetscape and deter dodgy parking.
What would you do with this blank sheet of paper?
The Observer has reviewed the Horniman Museum's new garden pavilion, which marks the completion of a renovation process that has spanned three decades. Architecture critic Rowan Moore writes:
Walters and Cohen's pavilion, a well-proportioned, timber-framed glass box, its structure black-clad on the outside, is an instrument for making all this strangeness apparent. It's a considerably more modest version of Mies van der Rohe's Tugendhat House, perched like that work above a city view. At one end, alpacas will come up to the glass; at the other, a balcony opens to the panorama. The pavilion, light-filled and made rhythmic by its repeating beams and pillars, is a foil.
Click here for a photo of the new building. And here for a discussion on the South East London forum of what their licence application means for local residents.
Here's the difference: Shaq is rich. The white man who signs his cheque is wealthy. "Ah, here you go, Shaq. Go buy yourself a bouncing car. Bling, bling!"... Oprah is rich, Bill Gates is wealthy. If Bill Gates woke up tomorrow with Oprah's money, he'd jump out a fuckin' window and slit his throat on the way down saying, "I can't even put gas in my plane!"
- Chris Rock
In case an armada and a concert in her honour wasn't enough, Queenie's also getting her own festival of light, which Telegraph Hill will be part of.
On Monday, June 4th, a beacon will be lit on Telegraph Hill as part of a chain of light that will stretch around the country to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee. In all, 4,000 beacons will be lit, including another on Blackheath.
The event will take place in the Upper Park and people are welcome to bring picnics to celebrate (no BBQs) - the beacon will be lit at sun down from about 10pm.
The Brockley MAX opening night lineup has been announced. Organiser Moira says:
It’s looking to be a bumper Opening Night on Friday 1st June this year, with music, dance and even a choir. It all kicks off at 5pm. See you there!
Ben Godwin 5pm
The Strum Pets 5.40pm
Montage Theatre 6pm
Hilal Dance 6.15pm
Painters Radio 6.20pm
Dr Joe Joe 6.40pm
Nunhead Choir 7pm
Penniless Cove 7.20pm
The Voodoo Bin Man 7.40pm
Susie T 8pm
Joan and the Juggernaut 8.10pm
Cat Knight 8.30pm
The Hit Men 8.50pm
Scarlett's Roses 9.30pm
One Jah 9.50pm
Laura is organising a benefit gig for SIGNAL (the world's most tortured acronym: Support Information Guidance Networking Autism Lewisham) at the New Cross Inn, starting 7pm on Sunday 27th May.
Local ska/funk band The Skanx are headlining (having recently supported Bad Manners and Dawn Penn) , with support from acoustic folk/ fusion musician Paula Calvin, who used to DJ at the Goldsmiths Tavern and who will be playing a rocksteady set.
Tickets are £5 on the door - all money goes direct to SIGNAL. The venue and the bands are not charging.
Troy: Millions upon millions upon millions!
The cards. The stock! The clothes!
The toothpaste! The guy was on the
level! And you blew it! A man walks
into your life who is the kindest,
most polite, honest, trustworthy,
incredibly rich guy you have ever met
in your life!! And what do you do?!
Eve: Have him committed...
- Blast from the Past
Dominos is moving on and moving up the hill, after it was cruelly snubbed when it tried to colonise Honor Oak Park last year.
BC reader Tyrwhitt Michael sent us this list of 60 locations the pizza giants are scouting at the moment. Honor Oak doesn't feature, although Forest Hill (and Blackheath) do. Because the truth of the matter is, replacing them is so easy. HOP, everything you own in the pizza box to the left please.
New Cross Learning (which runs the local library), St James' School, the Hobgoblin Pub and St James Church have got together to put on a Jubilee Street party in 'Hatcham Village', New Cross, on Saturday 2 June on St James (Road) in New Cross from 2-6pm.
The street will be closed for the family-friendly day and people are asked to bring food to share for a street party.
There will be organised games and entertainments with a stage put on by the Madcap Coalition, guest-starring local bands and schoolchildren, as well as a bar.
The entertainment will include a tug of war, a human fruit machine, a tombola, a stage with street dance, acapella, and bands.
Local enthusiasts at two knitting groups have created a special celebratory huge knitted Union Jack, which will be on display. There are also original items from Queen Elizabeth II's Coronation on display in New Cross Learning, organised by the Local History Society.
On display on St James (road) will be one of the fire engines from the local Fire Station. At the same time, New Cross Learning will be holding a book sale to raise funds.
There will also be a play reading by a local writer and journalist, Swordwater, in St James Church at 5pm. The performance is part of a series of events across the country to mark the millennium of the martyrdom of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Alfege at the hands of Viking raiders in Greenwich.
BC reader K writes:
I've just received a flyer drawing my attention to this lot coming up for auction - which is a huge chunk of the allotments between the train tracks and St Norbert Road:
The property runs adjacent to St Norbert Road to the south of its junction with Endwell Road. Local shops are available close by with the further and more extensive facilities of both Lewisham, Catford and East Dulwich also being within reach. Rail services run from Crofton Park Station located approximately 0.5 miles to the south and Endwell Road (B2142) provides access to the B218 and in turn the A20. Description The property comprises a broadly rectangular site which extends to approximately 0.249 hectares (0.616 acres). Accommodation Site Area approximately 0.249 Hectares (0.616 Acres)
It's not clear whether there is any vehicular access, other than via the plot next door - which recently gained planning permission for development as flats - which may explain the guide price. Having made some inquiries it seems there may be some protections in place for the allotments association, but being sure of this would require someone with greater expertise in property documentation than me.
I wondered whether BC readers could shed any light?
As we've mentioned before, Brockley occupies a special place in the comics industry multiverse. Now Ali, part of the creative team behind the Badger movie writes:
On June 7th, as part of the Brockley Max Festival, Panel Borders in collaboration with Ali Kati Projects, present Brockley Comix, a live panel session hosted by Alex Fitch, where comic book artists and writers gather to discuss with creative work, and living and working in the southeast.
This begins at 7pm, at The Talbot pub, and there'll be an opportunity for Q&A and signings. Comic artists present are: Kieron Gillen, Sarah McIntyre, Sarah Gordon, Howard Hardiman, Simone Lia, Gary Northfield, Woodrow Phoenix and Julia Scheele.
Midtown Caribbean restaurant Rhythms closed recently and is reopening this weekend under new management as Bird of Paradise.
The grand opening in on May 26th, from 2-7pm and the promotional flyers promise that the first 25 guests will eat for free.
The restaurant also delivers takeaways and will offer a new menu every day.
Thanks to Jennifer for the info and the photo.
30 Deptford Church Street
Don't be fooled by the novelty bus parked out front, Deptford's Big Red is as much Cafe del Mar as it is Rainforest Cafe, and it recently bolted on its own music venue called The Container (it's on the back of a truck) where it hosts The Big Red Sessions.
Coming up on May 29th are Shanel Brown (below), Too Many Ts (bottom), Nick Capocci, Jean Genie’s Massive Hugs, Jamie Fisher (live music) and friends. Entry's free and it opens from 7.30pm (show starts at 8pm).
Full details here.
There is no reason why good cannot triumph as often as evil. The triumph of anything is a matter of organization. If there are such things as angels, I hope that they are organized along the lines of the Mafia.
- Kurt Vonnegut, The Sirens of Titan
May 12th 21.57: Sue suggests we do what they did in Ladywell and report it to Love Lewisham on Twitter.
May 12th 23.04: We say great, we'll do that on Monday 14th.
May 21st 11.34: We remember that we were going to report the tree mess to Love Lewisham and do so.
May 21st 16.24: Officer Tyrell kindly retweets our tweet to the address we should have used in the first place: @lovecleanstreet
May 22nd 19.20: We cycle past and notice the trees are clean and take this picture.
So it goes.
That is how public services are supposed to work and let us praise great work whenever we see it.
Lewisham Council officer Colin Sandiford is organising a community clean-up of Wickham Mews on June 23rd as part of the P&G Capital Clean-Up, a partnership with the Mayor of London's office. The event will take place on June 23rd.
Work will involve clearing the pathways, litter picking, cutting back overgrown vegetation and removing graffiti & flyposting. No experience is necessary as full training and supervision will be given on the day. Equipment and refreshments will be provided. Please register your attendance at this event in advance here.
We'd also be happy to help organise any other local clean-ups if residents nominate any other local areas. We'll provide the necessary equipment and the removal of bags after the clean up.
Click here to organise another Brockley clean-up.
Brockley Road fish and chip shop Brockley's Rock has begun opening on Sundays to cater for our insatiable desire for fish.
This weekend was its grand Sunday debut. Obviously we're a little late with the news, sorry. But for future reference, they are now open from 4-10pm on Sunday.
With two new independent businesses opening on Brockley Road this month, it's great to hear that one of last year's best-loved newcomers is doing well. Founder Kyri says:
When we opened, nothing prepared us for the volume of people who would come in! Everyone has been very nice to us, and we've gained a lot of regulars who come in specially for our fish and chips and we're really grateful for their support. We've worked really hard to cut down waiting times, but we are very proud that we cook all our fish fresh to order and hope that people don't mind waiting a bit for their food!
Click here for their website.
The freehold for the largest commercial unit in the Tea Factory is up for sale (or as someone pointed out, rent, although the rent quoted on the site cannot be right). Formerly the home of Tea Dance for Little People, the space has A3 planning permission (cafe or restaurant) although the space is fairly small.
There is a lack of available restaurant space in the area and it will be interesting too see how quickly this gets snapped up, but with the improvements taking place in Brockley Cross and the amount of commercial activity around the station, we'd expect this to shift reasonably fast, assuming the landlord's realistic.
Among our predictions for this year is that one of the area's army of foodie entrepreneurs would take the plunge and open another place to eat locally (in addition to the Gantry). This might be the opportunity.
BCer Claire has asked us to post this, as part of a mission she has been assigned by Secret Cinema. Ordinarily, we'd say no, but since we're also going to the same event, we're hoping that this will in some way pay off for us too:
Cinema lovers, scientists, science fictioners, researchers, osteo-archaelogists and anthropologists- Brave New Ventures are running a recruitment drive that is well worth your time. See www.bravenewventures.org for more information. Or #bravenewventures @Bravenewventure. Upmost discretion required. Tell no one.
A reliable (though admittedly single) source has notified us that Tesco has signed a 15-year lease on 437-439 Brockley Road.
Suggestions that Tesco is planning to occupy a site in Crofton Park have been circulating for months.
Developers submitted an application to turn 437-439 Brockley Road (opposite the Brockley Jack) in to a single commercial unit, which could house a small supermarket, similar to the Tesco on Lewisham Way. Those plans were rejected after demolition of the existing buildings had already taken place, with the Council deciding that the proposals would overdevelop the site.
Transpontine has spotted that two new cafes are on their way in New Cross.
The first is "Cafe 465", which replaces "Come the Revolution". The sign on the front door pointedly explains that the cafe is "under new management".
on the South East London fourm.
The library is based in Catford and provides toys and play equipment to the families and carers of children aged 0-8 in the borough.
The Toy Library is open to the public for three two-hour sessions each week and a five and a half hour session on the 1st Saturday of every month. Membership is available to all families, childminders, carers and not-for-profit groups Lewisham.
Members pay an annual subscription of £24 for families and carers unless they are in receipt of Income Support, in which case membership is free. Childminders pay £15/year by providing their Childminding Certificate and Groups can join for £50/year. There are no additional hire charges on top of the toys.
Find out more here.
Crofton Park Councillor John Bowen writes:
The Council's plan to build a new primary school on the Manwood Road site of Ladywell Fields College is now the subject of another consultation. The plan is to admit an additional 60 children every year from September 2013 until 2019 when the school will have its full complement.
Full details can be found here. If you have any comments, you should write to Margaret Brightman, Lewisham Council, 1 Catford Rd, SE6 4RU. At the same time, the college is working on its Travel Plan. This ought to explain how they intend managing the way pupils and staff get to the College as well as the impact on local residents. It provides a chance to let the College know what you think they should be doing by writing to Keith Surey, Bursar, Prendergast Hilly Fields College, Adelaide Ave, SE4 1LE.
With thanks to Alastair.
169 Brockley Road, SE4 2RS
Tel: 020 8692 2881
Gently Elephant is the new children's shoes and gifts shop on the corner of Cranfield Road and Brockley Road.
BC reader Andy just sent us a large photograph of a penis. Which was nice of him. The dick had been drawn on one of the children's slides in Telegraph Hill lower park and he emailed it to us in order to illustrate his complaint about maintenance in the park. He writes:
I'm proud to live in Brockley and I use the parks everyday with my young family. Telegraph Hill Park is looking pretty grim the last few weeks. The pond is stagnant, vandalism on the playground and polystyrene everywhere. The childs swing is still half missing. The company responsible is Glendale it would be great if people could use this thread to register their unhappiness about the current state of the park.
"Walk around Deptford for twelve quid? I could walk around Deptford for free. This isn't very inclusive, etc and so on."
Directed by Sophie Austin. Written by Vic Bryson, Sarah Sigal and Michael Wagg.
7th - 23rd June 2012
Tickets £12 / £7Concessions
A theatrical adventure around Deptford. A promenade performance that takes the audience on a man hunt down seemingly normal high streets and into the heart of this classic story. Help Telemachus find news of his father and experience an epic adventure.
Telemachus has invited you to join him at his Father’s house. Only his war hero Father is not there, he’s been missing for the last ten years.
Desperate to discover the truth, Telemachus asks you, the audience, to go on your own Odyssey and bring back news of wily Odysseus. On your journey you may come across gods and goddesses, nymphs and monsters, death and desire when an everyday high street becomes the back drop to some bizarre and brilliant stories. Expect a journey into the unknown, dress for the weather and let the adventure begin...
Teatro Vivo specialise in collaborating with public spaces to tell classic stories to new audiences, and in the Olympic year we’ve been inspired to explore this epic tale. For the Odyssey, audiences will be led from Odysseus and Penelope's home to find and interact with various characters and situations around Deptford. Along the way they will find travelling bards and story tellers from our community chorus as we explore the contemporary relevance of this ancient poem.
Want to take part in the Odyssey? Join our Community Chorus by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
Nice initiative from Lewisham Council (although would be great to see a guerrilla gardener category) which says:
We are inviting budding gardeners to take part in this year's Lewisham in Bloom competition. The event encourages people to take part in making the borough a brighter and more attractive place by showing off their horticultural skills and know-how.
Schools, churches, restaurants, pubs, hotels, and businesses are all encouraged to take part. Friends, relatives or neighbours can also nominate a garden or display that they feel deserves recognition.
Entry into the competition is free and categories range from window boxes and balconies to front gardens and communal spaces.
The closing date for all entries this year is 29 June and judging takes place in July. The winners will be announced in the autumn. Entry forms are available online at www.lewisham.gov.uk/inbloom
First prize is £150, second prize is £100 and third prize in £75.
Veronica Corningstone: Take me to Pleasure Town.
Ron Burgundy: Oh, we're going there.
The Pop Up Screens team explains:
Tickets are £8 in advance via our website or £10 on the door. Alternatively if you fancy seeing all the movies, then you can buy a weekend ticket for £20.
Our doors will open at 7.30pm and the movie will start at 9.30pm. (we have to wait for the sun to go down). There will be over 400 tickets on sale, so plenty for everyone... hopefully everyone will come!
You won’t be able to miss us, we’ve got a 5x11m screen. We’ve got food from Tucker’s Exotics who cook exotic meats, so if you fancy try springbok, buffalo or zebra now’s your chance. We’ve got genuinely the most amazing popcorn you’ll ever try from London Kettle Popcorn.
And we are operating a bar stocked with quality beers from craft brewers such as Brew Dog, Camden Town Brewery and Freedom Brewery plus tea, coffee and soft drinks. We’re working with the Live Live Project to screen short films from digital artists before each movie. We also have the very funny Helen Arney doing some stand up before the movie starts.
Open air cinema is completely different to a trip to the local multiplex, it sounds silly but it’s true. We always liken it to marrying together the atmosphere of a festival with the event of going to the cinema. It’s very chilled out and relaxed and everyone is happy. We try to make it about more than just the movie so we work with small quality suppliers to bring good food and drink in, play music beforehand so you can come in and catch up with your friends over a drink before settle down to watch a movie you know you’re going to love.
We were looking for locations in the area to stage an event and Hilly Fields was the our last stop on a whirlwind tour of Lewisham parks found with the aid of Google Maps. We knew nothing about the park, pulled up on Eastern Road and dragged ourselves up the hill. Once you’re at the top of the hill you can see across London and hit us how brilliant a location it is and that made our mind up. We’re really pleased with Hilly Fields and can’t wait to pop up in it.
I had a leaflet through the door today about a nursery opening at 76-78 Foxberry Road at the Elim Chruch.
I wondered if anyone had heard anything about it. I am worried about the parking and traffic as Foxberry Road has a big problem with people parking for the Station as it is.
I am not averse to the nursery and think it would be a good addition to Brockley but I think that the Council should have put some restirctions in place regarding drop off. They are also planning on opening at 7.30am, which seems very early for a residential street.
Details of the nursery here.
A new report by Kings College London finds that Lewisham borough's waste treatment centres at Mercury Way, near Millwall FC, have a serious effect on air quality in the area around it:
The contribution of the industrial source represented 27% of the mean PM10 daily concentration measured at the AQMS in Lewisham.
Although the concentration measured met the EU Daily Limit Value, the industrial source increased the number of daily exceedances from 5 to 25 days compared to urban background AQMSs. When wind blew from the waste treatment sites it added on average 18.4 μg∙m‐3 to the PM10 urban background concentration.
This contribution was slightly larger than the one from road‐traffic sources as measured at RB3 (13.7 μg∙m‐3) and at RB4 (13.2 μg∙m‐3). The industrial sources had a marked weekly and daily pattern, with elevated levels from 7 am to 6 pm from Monday to Friday.
The findings were based on measurements taken between February 2010 and September 2011.
The impact on air quality seems to be fairly localised and the comparison with emissions from traffic highlights that pollution from cars is the real challenge for air quality in the capital. But for the residents of neighbouring homes, this raises serious questions.
Art outfit We Love Cardboard write:
Come and join us build a city cardboard city from Tuesday 5th June until Friday 8th June 2012, 11am-4pm.
On Saturday 9th June we will be destroying the city at noon. This is Jubilee bank holiday and Half Term week and is taking place at the Peabody’s Leander community centre in the Vanguard estate in Deptford SE8.
This event is part of the Brockley Max festival and the Brockley Design Project. The idea of the cardboard city is to invite the whole community, especially children and young people, to work together using nothing but old cardboard boxes and their imaginations.
This year are inviting artists of all disciplines to do a day’s residency at the cardboard city. We are hoping that artist will inspire participants with their creative approach and experience and help us build our best city yet.
After some haranguing on Twitter from BCers, Lewisham Council has provided us with this update about the remedial work being done at Brockley Station at the moment.
The original refurbishment work, done in 2009, was so shoddy that bits started peeling off it from the day it opened and large puddles form whenever it rains, so that the people of west Brockley have been wading through dirty water ever since a drought was declared.
The good news is that it's being sorted and that the team originally responsible has been replaced by the same project lead who's been in charge of the Brockley Cross works, which so-far appear to be of good quality. Here's the statement:
“The Council is acutely aware of and regrets the continuing inconvenience to people who use the Brockley footbridge, resulting from rainwater collecting alongside the entrance to Brockley station. Our intention is to install a transverse, rainwater, drainage channel which will run across the pedestrian walkway, at the side of the station entrance. However, before we can do so, we have to wait whilst the channel’s made to measure components are fabricated.
We were advised, by the manufacturer, that the order period for the channel is 6 weeks. This has meant that our contractor will not be able to install the drainage channel until after 23rd May. As well as the installation of the drainage channel, our contractor will be carrying out some maintenance/improvement work on and around the access staircase.
The black, rubber, anti-slip edging strips to the staircase’s treads will be removed and replaced with a hand-laid, inset, resin bound material. Joints, running between the paving slabs and the brick/concrete boundary walls, will be pointed up with a flexible, waterproof material.
We hope that these measures will result in much needed improvements to this busy location.”
We say "a table" but of course anyone who has actually been to the Particular will know, space there is at a premium and our hosts had decided that the best way of getting bums on seats was to squeeze everyone (about 15 of us I think) round one big table. All very chummy, and Clare (who was in charge) made everyone feel not just welcome but generally well disposed to our immediate neighbours too. Good practice for the enforced jollity of the Jubilee street parties we are surely all looking forward to so fervently.
We were welcomed with a cocktail (a welcome but rather sweet collins) and some lovely radishes with smoky aubergine dip. Starters were ham hock with mackerel, a combination we hadn't considered before but one that worked bloody well and potted broad beans, which was like the essence of spring in – um – a pot.
For mains, lots of people seemed to suddenly get in touch with their inner vegetarian and opt for the fresh asparagus tortellini, served with goat curd and sauce vierge. This was being hand-rolled as we arrived and looked great, although by all accounts the pasta dough was a little on the salty side. Your reviewer – whose inner vegetarian hasn't been in touch for years – was treated to a fabulous pile of lamb sweetbreads and asparagus on an oversized vol au vent base: really lovely, and easily the match of any ris de veau he's had in France.
Pudding was a chocolate thing. But there had been rather a lot of wine-based conviviality by this stage so you'll have to forgive the vagueness. The menu says chocolate and raspberry cake. That sounds right. There was some soured cream on it I think. Or maybe yoghurt. Standard apologies for failing to take notes.
Anyway: the New Cross Dining Co comes heartily recommended, and, at £25 felt like great value (yes, even with the booking fee). This weekend's second outing at the Particular is sold out, alas, but you can email the organisers to go on the waiting list in case anyone's daft enough to cancel. Clare will also make sure you hear about the next pop-up, which is likely to be in July or August, at a yet-to-be-decided venue. You can probably watch this space too.
Brockley Central (or at least this very occasional contributor to same) doesn't hang out in New Cross quite as much as it ought to. So while this fine example of local humour may be familiar to many, it was our first encounter with the window in question and raised a welcome smile on Saturday as we headed to the London Particular and the Spring Supper Club (of which more later).
The return of the sun and long days means that Broadway Fields has come in to its own again.
A giant asphalt sun trap next to the Seager Distillery, the tall buildings that form its perimeter catch the light like a Canaletto (something our useless photographic skills have failed to do justice to here).
Originally opened in 1932 as Deptford Municipal Playing Fields, it was redeveloped by Lewisham Council last decade as part of its strategy for improving the public spaces along the route of the Ravensbourne (see also neighbouring Brookmill Park and Ladywell Fields).
Thanks to some successful urban design, it's become the playground of choice for the area's teenagers.
Dr. Sam Loomis: I met him, fifteen years ago. I was told there was nothing left. No reason, no conscience, no understanding; even the most rudimentary sense of life or death, good or evil, right or wrong. I met this six-year-old child, with this blank, pale, emotionless face and, the blackest eyes... the *devil's* eyes. I spent eight years trying to reach him, and then another seven trying to keep him locked up because I realized what was living behind that boy's eyes was purely and simply... *evil*.
Peel are the world's smallest cars and the company that makes them is owned by Gary Hillman (pictured behind the wheel), a Hither Green-based builder who revived the company with some help from capital raised on Dragons' Den. This will be the first time that Peel Engineering opens to the public. To be fair to our dowdy cousins, that is very cool.
Tickets for Haven't Stopped Dancing Yet! cost £10 in advance ( £12 on the door) and are available from local outlets (including You Don’t Bring Me Flowers, 15, Staplehurst Road, SE13 5ND and Harlequin Fancy Dress, 254, Lee High Rd ) or by calling 0796 716 3247 or via www.haventstoppeddancingyet.co.uk (booking fee applies).
Homer: Now, I'm not one to make trouble, but it seems to me
that everyone who got to keep the old, or *classic* 636 area code lives on the *rich* side of town!
Burns: Dooh, poppycock!
Socialite: Well, I never! [the man sitting next to her is horrified, and his monocle falls into his drinking glass]
Homer: And, as usual, we Joe Twelve-Packs get the royal screw job. Well, I've had it! You rich snobs aren't pushing us around any more!
- The Simpsons, A Tale of Two Springfields
In all other ways harmoniously homogeneous, Brockley life is bitterly divided by its water.
While the those of you in the south of Brockley (or "Lewisham South" according to Thames Water) enjoy relatively sane levels of hardness in their water, those of us in "Lewisham North" have hardness levels of 318.5 mgl CaCO3 (ppm). Yes - you read that right. 318.5mgl CaCO3 (ppm)! That is one of the highest levels in London, hard water capital of the UK.
BC has grown up all its life in hard water areas. Ordinarily we are contemptuous of soft water, with its funny taste and its scumless shampooing. But Jeebus, "Lewisham North" has water so hard it would break you as soon as look at you. It will calcify your toilet bowl in hours and turn your kettle to chalk dust. We can't help but feel a little resentful of Lewisham South.
Cllr Mike Harris knows precisely where and when this creature will attack next, but he is bound by a code of conduct which prohibits the excitement of ectothermic, amniote vertebrates and thus must look on, Cassandra-like, as the carnage unfolds.
One theory is that this is Flea, trying to make his way home to Crofton Park like a character from a particularly unsuccessful sequel to Homeward Bound.
UPDATE - On Twitter, Lou points out that this is a slow worm and a protected species. So in all seriousness, please be nice to it if you see it.
Oursinglefriend Monkeyboy dared us to post this message he found on Facebook. So we have:
Spread the word - brand new C4 property show with Sarah Beeny.
New Areas - Beckenham, Brockley and surrounding areas of Lewisham. If you are looking to buy in any of these areas please email email@example.com or call 0207 539 2011. If you are looking to sell please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cricket was due to start on the new Hilly Fields cricket square this weekend, but the record-breakingly soggy April and continued rain in May has squelched those plans. Friends of Hilly Fields pass on the message from the Council that:
It is with regret that following a pitch inspection this lunchtime we have had to make the difficult decision to cancel the official opening cricket match scheduled for this Sunday. Unfortunately, the square and outfield are too wet to allow preparation and play for Sunday. We will look to reschedule the game at a later date and hope that you will be able to attend.
Crofton Park Community Library now has a bin where people can dispose of small electrical appliances such as:
- Toasters, kettles and other kitchen and household appliances;
- Clocks, ratios and cameras;
- Video recorders, games consoles and music systems;
- Drills and other power tools.
The bin is situated inside the main entrance. Wiser Recycling Company is a disposal service and some of the proceeds will be given back to the library to provide much needed funds for the running of the library.
There is a separate bin, provided by Battery Back for the recycling of household batteries. This is also situated by the main entrance and batteries can be put in at any time the library is open. Mobile and other phones can be handed to library volunteers for recycling. The library still needs donations of books and computers for resale. The library has a sales area where donated books and computers are sold.
Lewisham Cllr Mike Harris writes in the Guardian today about his Kafkaesque experiences with the Lewisham Council standards board, after he was reported for his use of Twitter during last summer's riots. Apparently, the best online record of the episode is this page on Brockley Central, which the Guardian article links to.
We recall his tweets and some of the objections at the time and in our opinion and, more importantly, the opinion of the standards board, he did nothing wrong. It's true enough that riots followed his warnings, but given that riots kicked off all over town without his help, we think his words are best described as prescient, rather than inflammatory.
The bigger issue is whether cases like this discourage Councillors from expressing themselves via channels like Twitter. Social media is the best thing that has ever happened to local politics, creating an instant direct link between voters and their representatives. It would be a shame if instances like this one were to inhibit the growth of digital democracy and it would be good to see a few more of our elected representatives bothering to use social media to tell us what they are up to on our behalf.
Drop the "The." Just "Brockley Jack." It's cleaner.
The Jack Studio Theatre has launched a ticket-booking service on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/brocjacktheatre
To celebrate life as a social business, they are offering discount tickets for their current production Summer by Julia Stubbs Hughes, based on the novel by Edith Wharton (1862-1937).
Wharton was one of America's greatest writers and the first woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for Literature in 1921 for ‘The Age of Innocence'. This yearmarks the 150th anniversary of her birth.
This premiere will coincide with those celebrations, showing that Wharton is now considered by many as an iconic writer for the 21st century. Tickets are £8 plus booking fee.
Turners Domestic Hardware
309 Brockley Road
020 8692 1304
Thanks to BCer Melvyn for suggesting a thread dedicated to Turners, a place which has been a lifesaver for us on many occasions. He writes:
I've been lving in Brockley for about 25 years and not only was this shop here when I arrived, but I still use it as frequently as I ever did.
I used to bet with my flatmate at the time that something we required would indeed be in stock, against the odds that it should be. It almost always was. You don't get Sunday opening, but you do get around the corner convenience for the rest of the week.
A reader who wishes to remain anonymous (rather than Anonymous), writes:
I have some serious concerns about dogs being kept on a small plot of land close to where I live on Arabin Road. The dogs are kept outside in a kennel with no bedding at all times of the year regardless of the weather, when the owners visits they are aggressive with the dogs and the dogs bark and cry all through the night, desperately trying to burrow themselves out of their enclosure.
I have spoken to the RSPCA and Environmental Health. The RSPCA say they can’t do anything as the dogs have shelter and the Environmental Heath say they can only come out when the dogs are actually barking but that’s usually at around 3am when they don’t have anyone available to attend. I’m too afraid to approach the owners in case they become violent or damage my property.
Other neighbours must be being kept awake all through the night too. I’d like to post about this on Brockley Central anonymously so I can find other people affected and hope that Environmental Health will take us seriously.
If you have been affected, please contact us and we'll connect you with anon.
Posted by Nick Barron on 8.5.12
Via Brockley Central's Facebook page (join us please) Chris alerts us to London's "first outdoor supper club", taking place on May 12th. Here's the pitch.
Forza WIN is London's first outdoor supper club. Brought to you by the team behind the Pizza Pilgrims (in Soho) and some of their friends, it takes place in a beautiful garden in the beautiful New Cross.
Being firm believers in the sharing of knowledge and skills, we thought we'd do things a little differently. Instead of just building the oven ourselves, we've got one of the UK's leading experts involved to come and teach you how to build them too. We'll also throw in a pizza making masterclass and some free beers. What more could you want?
So for £35 you get:
- 1 x pizza oven building masterclass
- 1 x pizza making masterclass
- free beer
What more could you want? (probably don't answer that).
At the turn of the year, we predicted that:
"Brockley will get another place to eat. It will be the brainchild of one of the area's many foodie entrepreneurs, perhaps one who's cut their teeth at Brockley Market. It will be closer to #Meateasy than a formal restaurant."
The current slew of pop-up restaurants popping-up in the area is sort of what we had in mind, but we were hoping for something a little more permanent. One day, a pizza pilgrim will buy La Lanterna from its wantaway owners and make it a success. Until then, we'll all have to learn to build our own ovens.
Chelwood Nursery School is looking back over its 73 year history in Brockley as one of London's first open air nurseries built following the pioneering work of the McMillan sisters in Deptford.
School staff have been exploring the school photographic archive preparing for the Early Education conference to be held next weekend at the Laban Centre celebrating the tradition of outdoor play in early years education.
Hunting through photos of war-time evacuation, 1940s and 50s has highlighted the long tradition of excellent early years nursery education we have here in Brockley. Chelwood was judged outstanding by Ofsted in the last 2 inspections!
The school would love to hear from families with a Chelwood connection who have photos or memories to share. If you have a passion for local history and could help with the archive please get in touch.
Looking into the future Chelwood has launched its charity Chelwood House for Families who are raising funds to support the school in the provision of services for families with under fives here in Brockley.
Anyone interested in joining the Friends of Chelwood or in the work of Chelwood House for Families should email Chelwoodhouse@gmail.com
We would love to hear from you!
The new Deptford railway station is ready - and very nice it is too.
Bright and airy to the point of draughtiness, it is now fully accessible via a lift to each platform. Unlike its predecessor, it is bright and well-lit and not-unpleasant smelling.
Delivered on-time a year after work began, it looks like a good investment by Lewisham Council, who contributed £5m to get it off the drawing board, following years of procrastination. The refurbished tunnel and view over the changing Deptford skyline are nice touches, although both are currently surrounded by piles of masonry.
Boris is Mayor again and Labour's decision to select Ken as their candidate cost them the Mayoralty, as it was bound to.
Len Duvall (Labour) has been returned as the London Assembly Constituency Member for Greenwich and Lewisham.
Brockley's Darren Johnson (Greens) has been elected as a London-wide Assembly Member.
Labour is the biggest party in the Assembly, with 12 Members.
All the results here.
Thanks to @swheat25 who sent us the photo via @brockleycentral
On the Brockley forum, Notesofanidealist reports that a new shop called Emporia is taking shape in Ewhurst Road, Crofton Park.
No word on what it is yet, but the name and the brief appearance of a dressmaker's dummy in the window suggest a clothes shop. The shop replaces U Gosi.
Luscious Brahms, 6.30pm, May 13th, St Augustine’s One Tree Hill. Sonia writes:
Some rarely performed delights await choral music fans at this early evening concert focusing on Brahms’s choral music at St Augustine’s One Tree Hill, just beyond Honor Oak Park station.
Chamber choir Londinium, conducted by local rising star Andrew Griffiths, will perform his music alongside works by his friends and by earlier composers who influenced him. The concert will finish soon after 8pm, with wine and other refreshments in the interval and following the concert.
More details and tickets here.
The Allotment grocer and deli in New Cross is hiring. Gill writes:
The vacancy is for Monday to Friday. We need someone 25 or over (due to van insurance) who can go to NCGM 2 or 3 times a week to collect produce (requires a 5am start, finish at 1pm), unload the van and fill the shelves. Non-market days involve setting up the shop in the morning (shift is 8am - 4pm), serving customers, dealing with deliveries and general shop duties.
People can send a CV and find out more information by emailing me at email@example.com
Ryan Bingham: Anybody who ever built an empire, or changed the world, sat where you are now. And it's *because* they sat there that they were able to do it.
- Up in the Air
Book your seat for a very cool cinema event in Telegraph Hill this Saturday, as part of the New Cross Film Festival 2012. And if you don't cry during the opening sequence, you are a monster.
Joshua: Wouldn't you prefer a nice game of chess?
David Lightman: Later. Let's play Global Thermonuclear War.
- War Games
UK I.N.T.E.L.L.I.G.N.C.E has gathered that any attack would be 9/11 times 100 - or 91,100. Basically, all the worst parts of the bible.
Helen Omand and I have made a short film about Howard Hardiman, the comic artist, and his comic creation, Badger. I first got the idea when I read a post about Badger on the Brockley Central blog back here!
It's taken a while but we've now filmed and interviewed Howard at various Brockley locations, and the film has now been edited and in the process of being animated. We have a Facebook page too with more information and pictures.
If you have time, please do take a look, we'd really appreciate it. https://www.facebook.com/BadgerShortFilm
The Brockley MAX 2012 programme is now live on the Brockley MAX website.
This year's festival spans 20 venues and takes in the delights of Honor Oak for the first time as HOP Scotch gets in on the act. Newcomers The Gantry and Pistachios in the Park will also act as host venues.
We'll preview some of this year's highlights, later this month.
Local artists Jay Harris has created an audio experience based on Deptford High Street sounds. He says:
‘Secret Soundtrack’ uses ‘3D sound’ recorded in Deptford Market, based on and around Deptford High Street, to create a theatrical atmosphere that people can experience as they wonder around the market.
Sound art, as a relatively undiscovered art form, seems like the perfect way to bring attention to one of south London’s lesser-known gems: Deptford High Street.
Local musician and sound artist Jay Harris has created ‘Secret Soundtrack’, a work of sound art, which will be interactively-accessible on the High Street throughout June, in collaboration with local businesses.
To take part in ‘Secret Soundtrack’ you will need a smart phone equipped with a QR Code reader and a pair of earphones. ‘Secret Soundtrack’ can be accessed from 1st June to 30th June 2012 by scanning the QR code on one of the posters located at ‘The Deptford Project’ café, ‘Bearspace’ gallery, art supplies store ‘Arch Materials’ or delicatessen cafe ‘Deli X’; all based on Deptford High Street and chosen as supporters of this neighbourhood and community arts.
Scanning the QR Code takes you to the ‘Secret Soundtrack’ website where you will be given instructions on what to do next. You will be encouraged to explore the market while listening to the audio streamed from the website, making sure not to drown out the live sounds. You can expect to hear sounds recorded from the market, reproduced in such a way as to become something new when played in conjunction with listening to the live sounds around you. It is this mixture, when experienced together, that gives you access to a secret audio world createdfrom the local environment.
Jay has also created a separate audio atmosphere for ‘The Deptford Project’ café which will be on display there from 1st – 8th June. You can find out more about Jay’s work at www.Jay-Harris.co.uk
This is due to be a big month for Brockley, with three grands projets due for completion in May.
The Hilly Fields cafe should act like a sponge for the area's young families, freeing up some floor space in the likes of the Brockley Mess and hopefully providing some temporary relief in the Forever War that wages between parents and non-parents there.
The Gantry will boost Brockley nightlife and bring the area's nicest (commercial) outdoor space back in to action for the summer.
And Gently Elephant will inject some more confidence into this stretch of Brockley high street, as well as drawing customers in from surrounding areas, to boost passing trade for other local shops.
No idea when we can expect Conway to finish at Brockley Cross, but you'd think it would be possible to complete the new scheme by the end of the month too...
UPDATE: As pointed out below, May should also see the start of Hilly Fields cricket.