Nat's Your Lot

Nat's Bake & Juices, the Brockley Cross takeaway, has closed - a notice of foreclosure is pinned to its doors.

It's been raided and closed so many times now that perhaps the landlords have finally decided now is the time to give someone else a try with a unit that now sits between a new deli and a new salon and opposite a brand new Indian cafe.

29 comments:

Anon said...

How many years has Nat's been there for? Anybody know? I was upset to see the sign on the door. Apart from having enjoyed getting food from there from time to time, I feel that Nat's (along with Nu Spice, The Honeypot and Tickle Me across the road) play an important part in representing the area's cultural identity and history.

Whatever it's past in terms of the law, I don't think the tone of this post is warranted really. I'm all for new businesses taking over from failing businesses that don't provide much for the local community, but Nat's is not one of them.

Headhunter said...

Cultural identity or not, I'm not that keen on businesses that have been raided and closed several times like Honeypot and Nat's in our midst. I'm not saying good riddance but surely cultural identity goes beyond criminal activity....

Headhunter said...

See the following regarding criminal activity at Nat's

http://brockleycentral.blogspot.co.uk/2012/04/nats-bake-and-juices-raided-by-police.html

Brockley Nick said...

It's not fair to lump a great, well-run business like Nu Spice together with a chaotic enterprise like Nat's, just because of the ethnicity of the food they serve.

Ju82 said...

Its not about the 'ethnicity of the food' at all, it is about gentrification and social cleansing. I, personally have never had bad service or food there.

getreal said...

For many years some retail premises in Brockley have been the used as drinking clubs, gambling dens, fronts for dope peddling, convenient on-pavement parking - all kinds of dubious purposes that provide benefit only for local criminal families. Suggesting that they represent a section of an ethnic community is as disingenuous as suggesting that the old London criminal gangs were representative of working class Londoners.

If these premises are now becoming viable for legitimate businesses, that is indeed progress because it suggests the economic life of the area is improving and not abandoned to criminal elements who are only interested in exploiting society for their own selfish ends.

Brockley Cross has long been a very dispiriting place, these new businesses should be welcomed, whether they are relevant to your lifestyle or not.

terrencetrentderby said...

Lady Progress continues unabated in Brockley, this is a good day. Plenty of scuzzy shops left for the nostalgics amongst you.

terrencetrentderby said...

Lady Progress continues unabated in Brockley, this is a good day. Plenty of scuzzy shops left for the nostalgics amongst you..

Brockley Nick said...

Perhaps you could explain how this represents "social cleansing"?

Headhunter said...

Dodgy business which has been raided several times in the past by the police for criminal activity leaves the area..... How is this "social cleansing"? It's as ridiculous an argument as people here saying that fried chicken shops represent "honest" food (as opposed to fresh meat and veg or deli fare)...

Headhunter said...

Exactly, 1 of my friends who has lived in SE London pretty much her whole life told me that back in the 90s she would never venture to Brockley after dark, places like the Brockley Barge, then known as the Breakspears Arms, were well known dens of criminality. She said walking through Brockley in those days was literally asking to get mugged or beaten up. No idea if she was exaggerating as I didn't live here then but it sounds to me like things have greatly improved....

Ju82 said...

I didn't raise the issue of cultural identity, I simply responded to it. There tone of the original post was that Brockley needed 'fixing' by new businesses - it didn't. I also said, it hasn't there was nothing chaotic about the service or food I had, had there.

Ju82 said...

never said they represent honest food. I personally would never go into a chicken shop be it KFC or morleys, however, its not up to me to say other people can't. The cost of some of this 'deli fare' is often unobtainable to local families.

Ju82 said...

the area is improving for who? I have no problem with fantastic businesses that serve the community but I do have a problem if they only serve pockets of a manufactured community. I'm not just talking about Brockley, I'm talking about gentrification in general

Ju82 said...

I've lived in Brockley for 32 years and I can tell you I have always felt safe even in the 'dark days of the 90s', was never been mugged and have seen ten times more crime in Bromley on a Friday night!

Mark Racz said...

it feels like Brockley Cross is some sort of post-Apocalyptic Juarez, good thing I bought a double-barrel sawed-off shotgun (and I love how drugs+gambling are on the same level with illegal PARKING). Joke aside, if these businesses don't work neither as businesses nor at least places within the confinements of law, they should go away. NU Spice, as stated, is a great ethnic business, others as well and they will always be supported.

Brockley Nick said...

"Manufactured community" - what's that then? Who manufactured it and how?


Just about the only local businesses that can realistically claim to serve a broad range of the local population are the supermarkets.

Ju82 said...

Who mentioned 'ethnic'? what does that even mean. we are all something ethnically. As a 'half ethnic' I find it really quite offensive

getreal said...

Well, goodness knows what kind of superhero figure you cut during those dark days to scare off those desperadoes.

Do you remember when Brockley station had security guards after it was robbed three times? Do you remember the crowds of addicts that used to congregate around Breakspears Arms harrassing residents as they walked from the station? The epidemic of street robberies, burglaries and aggressive begging. The car crime? Remember the frequent yellow noticeboards put by the police appealing for witnesses to some streetcrime? Did you not notice that the pub was closed for two years before Wetherspoons took it over after the rivalry between gangs turned resulted in a shotgun murder at Brockley Cross?

I've lived in Brockley through those bad times and it is gratifying to at last see the back of the hoods and crime families and their pernicious enterprises.

The indignation of a few class warriors who don't like some of the new shops seems a small price to pay.

Ju82 said...

I'm a 5ft 1 woman. No superhero. We clearly lived in different Brockleys.... there might have been the odd thing going on, but I honestly don't agree. if it was so terrible why didn't you leave?! Is 'hoods' a euphemism... you're really not paying any price, its comments on the internet, we'd pass each other in the street and not know the other. I'm not a class warrior by any means, however, I don't subscribe to the ideology that Brockley needed fixing, nor to I agree that even if this did need to happen the way to do this is by having expensive shops that alienate whole communities and push out local people. You don't have to agree with me, but it doesn't make it any less true. Gentrification is happening across London, to deny it would be ridiculous, local businesses are wonderful if they serve the local community not just small pockets of it. You may not want a chicken shop, but it serves a section of the community, just the same as a deli does. They both have their place but social cleansing aims to get rid the 'basic' businesses that don't serve the middle classes aims, God forbid it drives down the cost of your £895,000 house!

Guest said...

A manufactured community are those who will come in for a couple of years and then move on leaving behind a lack of community all continuity goes.

Testing said...

That's not a manufactured community it's a transient community, who is manufacturing a community here? Define it not just it's timescale, but anyway, lots of new families moving into the area, they aren't moving on in a couple of years.

Monkeyboy said...

If there's one thing people moving into an area despise it's the people who move in after them.

Monkeyboy said...

I've never really got the fetish about 'serving the community'. Bussinesses open primarily to earn a living for their owners, some do by serving a common need, some do by aiming at a niche. Not sure why one is valid and the other isnt or why it matters really. Gentrification? people move to where they can afford because there is a housing shortage. no doubt some brocklirtes will be driven out of SE4 by the housing costs and move to a cheaper area where they will drive up the local costs with their brockley fortune. The put upon SE4 dweller becomes an evil social cleanser in Thurock.

Anon said...

They are both restaurants serving Caribbean food. No implication was made towards them being of a similar level of quality or organization, though I'm not so sure why Nat's is apparently so chaotic in your opinion? As has been said, I've never had a bad experience there, and they also seem to get a healthy level of custom.

I don't make a habit out of frequenting criminal hives for my evening meals either, never got that impression from the place. If they were harboring illegal activity then that is obviously a matter for the police to deal with, and I would hope that the fact that they were allowed to continue operating as a business after such problems speaks toward them having sorted those issues out (and perhaps the seriousness of the actual offenses, if they were proven/charged).

Don't have anything at all against new delis and restaurants opening either, I welcome it. Just ideally places like the deli and Masala Wala would sit side-by-side with spots like Nat's, creating a good variety of options. That would be my ideal anyway.

Mark Racz said...

In this case, Caribbean. It was not meant as an insult of any kind, yes, we're all ethnically something- in the context of the conversation it meant restaurants where you get food specific to a certain country/region.

"It's not fair to lump a great, well-run business like Nu Spice together
with a chaotic enterprise like Nat's, just because of the ethnicity of
the food they serve."

another use of "ethnic" in the context of food in this thread.

anonymouse said...

Oh come on, 'back in the 90s...'

Brockley Nick said...

"though I'm not so sure why Nat's is apparently so chaotic in your opinion?"

One police raid in the last few years would seem unfortunate. Repeated raids, disputes with the landlords, one short closure, one extended closure and now another forced closure. If that's not chaotic, I'd hate to see what you think is.

anonymouse said...

The yellow signs disappeared because it is now police policy not to alarm the residents. When I was burgled along with 4 other homes in my street I asked for yellow signs, they were refused because they upset people.

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