Predictions for Brockley in 2009

Before 2009 runs out, we thought we'd better get out our predictions for the year.

Like every pundit, we are heavily caveatting all this with the fact that "the world will never be the same again", etc. But then, every boom relies on people thinking that "this time it's different", just as every bust relies on the same belief. We're betting that armageddon will not arrive and the that, while Brockley's course through 2009 will be rocky, the fundamentals will be the real drivers of change. These are:

1. The East London Line
2. The influx of young people that has already settled in Brockley in the last few years

Undeterred by how hopelessly inaccurate our 2008 predictions were (although this one proved prescient), we are plumping for more of the same.

So, reassured by the fact that no-one pulled us up on last year's unfounded optimism, here we go:

1. Brockley Road

One of Brockley's existing retailers will take the plunge and spread their wings on to Brockley Road, near Brockley Station. The demise of the holistic therapy place means that there is now a prime site available and we know that one or two businesses have been looking to expand, despite the credit crunch.

2. The Talbot

Despite the inertia afflicting the pub's revamp, we are not ashamed to say that we have been seduced by the Honor Oak team's can-do spirit and we are predicting that 2009 will see the rebirth of The Talbot. After all, the collapse in property prices means that even with the problems affecting the pub trade, there's little incentive to try and turn the thing in to flats at the moment.

3. Coulgate Street

Coulgate Street will still have a full complement of shops and cafes open for business by the end of the year.

4. The East London Line
The project will progress steadily, with the opening date remaining on course for summer 2010. The government will eventually cough up the funds necessary for the ELL2 extension to Clapham Junction.

5. The Brockley Cross scaffolding yard

We were contacted a few months back by the PR people for this project to turn Martin's Yard in to a new street. They told us to stay tuned because they were about to send us some information about the next stage in the development process. While the silence that followed is ominous and we don't expect any further news for quite some time, we're going to bet that the developers decide to press on with this by the end of 2009.

What at are your predictions for 2009? Will the Rivoli's future be sorted out? Will recession change the face of Brockley? Will we ever get our Turkish patisserie and will the sea container remain?


Tamsin said...

Playing around with statistics (2001 census) at work - Brockley, Telegraph Hill and New Cross are three of the four wards with the lowest population of elderly in the Borough.
Yuppies rule!

jpm said...

My predictions for 2009:


(i) the blossom on my cherry tree will bloom. The flowers will last but two weeks. But I still won't do the gardening.


(ii) Brockely will become a London 'hotspot'. [People north of the river due to be connected to the ELL will ask what are we doing here when we could be there.]

(iii) The Talbot will be up and running and competing with other great eateries - the Royal Albert, Aquarium, the Honor oak - for my Sunday lunch patronage.

(iv) More businesses will open than close on the Brockley Road.

(v) the dosh will be found to do the Common - properly.


(vi) the credit crunch will bottom out, with property prices flatlining in some parts of London, and rising in others. (Guess where?)

New Year

(vii) I will (hepefully) open a bottle of bubbly on the terrace, watch the fireworks and say 'Phew, thank god that's done!'

Oh, and the sea container will still be there, and the Cat Man will be putting is foot in it. (His mouth that is, and not the container.)

Richard Elliot said...

The sea container will still be there when I return to Brockley, unfortunately.....

lb said...

If the Talbot doesn't reopen soon I may just get the lease myself.

Anonymous said...

My prediction/prayer: the wall gets fixed!!!

Will it happen? The suspense is killing me.

drakefell debaser said...

Brockley Max will rediscover its form and 2009 will set the precedent for future years

Brockley gets its first free cash machine

Southern Trains will continue to be crap

House prices fall a further 10% before levelling off in quarter 3

Crash Gordon resigns after admitting Prudence was a floozy, not a policy.

Eternal Jerk will make a comeback after an anonymous investor agrees to fund it. Brockley Foxes declare it, Good Jerk.

Brockley Social Club is hailed as the new Fabric. Well known residents seen dancing on Brockley Rd at 8am in front of police cars.

Pete Doherty and Amy Winehouse marry and move to Brockley with plans to raise a family.

Anonymous said...

A new chillout cafe/bar opens to replace Moonbows and liven up the dead zone between Crofton Park and Brockley Cross.

The punters decide that there they don't have enough money to spread their bets between the various bookies in Brockley and some close down.

The punters decide that they do not have enough money to spread between the various Estate Agents in Brockley and some close down.

The empty commercial properties will be eyed up my fast food vendors and a chicken or pizza joint will open keeping up the usual standard.

A police car haring through Brockley will be involved in an accident and found to be carrying a cargo of takeaways for the fast response team at Lewisham Police station.

Hugh said...

The Talbot is dead, as I predicted last year. I'll be surprised if it ever reopens.

Anonymous said...

Gosh i wish that a "chillout cafe/bar" would open here. Apart from Jam Circus there is not one decent bar in the whole of SE4. To hell with posh food shops businesspeoples, open a bar (like Gypsy Moth or Coach & Horses in Greenwich, Railway in Blackheath etc...) and youll have my money!

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know when the Brockley Max is on this year?

tyrwhitt michael said...

Not so pessimistic as Hugh about the Talbot, but I won't take up his £5 bet made on another thread.

If anyone fancies a pub quiz tonight, myself and a friend are doing the one at the Wickham....

The questions are not too hard I promise.

Richard said...

I'll buy my first ever home and feel very fortunate to be doing so at the right time. Then I'll spend all my spare time painting and decorating and eventually wishing I'd never bought the place to begin with.

Less people will say 'where?' when I tell them I live/work in Brockley, but hopefully not too many of them will flood the area and change its feel.

Hillyfields will get a café?! Is this even possible?

I'll start getting serious about buying my own business, despite no money to speak of.

JPM said...

Richard, good luck with the flat purchase and that business. However, I'm afraid people will start to flood to Brockley, despite your wishes. Hopefully they will change those bits of its 'feel' that are in desparate need of changing.

Hillyfields will get a cafe too.

Richard said...

'Keep Brockley's Feel' - we could all flyer newcomers on the ELL trains

I'm glad you're confident of the Hillyfields café

The Cat Man said...


I had my first 'jam circus' experience on Friday and it was supurb to say the least! Table waiter-ing was a nice surprise and my friends food apparently was very tasty !

Unfortunately, in the drunken state another friend mananged to knock a pint of beer over your floor.

Are you the cute tall one with dark/black hair? That person was cute - you should open a gay bar you would make millons!

JPM said...


Richard said...

A pint was spilled and I didn't throw you out?! I think I'll leave the gay bar niche to someone who knows what they're doing. Glad you enjoyed your evening - the table waiting is something we happily do as and when requested/necessary.

Tamsin said...

@anonymous 27th Jan. Moira told me in November (as I wanted the dates for the Oakhill Year Planner) that they would be 26th May to 6th June - but rather dependent on funding.
Closer, there's the Telegraph Hill Festival, 13th to 22nd March. In which context - Michael who posted here a while ago - do get in touch about being a reader in the Poetry Evening on the 22nd, which I am just beginning to start pulling together...

fred vest said...


weren't you banging on the other day about how awful were the people who snipe from the sidelines - i'm not the first to comment on this but your posts are full of it, made all the worse but the smug superiority complex that accompanies them, at least with hugh it's a (rather poor) act, but you genuinely seem blind to your own pomposity and deluded sense of worth

what prompted that one anyway JPM - does homosexuality make you angry?

cue ramblings about coming round to your house to talk about this face to face or some other fantasist ramblings

Anonymous said...

But he used to write for Punch! He's a proper journalist!!

Terry hayward said...

Anyone into Brockley nostalgia ? Who remembers Wellbeloved's Slaughter House in Coulgate St , behind the RitZ Cinema. My family lived on the corner of Brockley and Foxberry Rds from 1928 till I left in 1962. Anyone like to contact me ?

Anonymous said...

Sounds fascinating Terry.

I think linking up and obtaining some valuable local history is a job for Transpontine!

If you haven't checked his site yet, it's at:


osh said...

There are lots of keen historians who use this site, so hopefully you'll make some useful contacts.

Tyrwhitt Michael said...

Latest on the Talbot Grapevine is that Punch Taverns want to sell the freehold.

If it's true, its future as a pub looks more uncertain. Conversion to flats anyone? Any news from THO on this?

Headhunter said...

I thought we'd already discussed this and that someone said that the freehold has been permanently up for sale for the past 10 years or so?

Tyrwhitt Michael said...

Today's rumour - well yesterday's actually - is that the Freehold of the Talbot has been acquired by the team that run the Prince Regent in Herne Hill opposite the Brockwell Lido.

No news yet on what they propose to do with the property.

Headhunter said...

Ooh, that would be exciting, The Prince Regent's a very good pub. I won't be holding my breath though given the Talbot's recent history....

Tyrwhitt Michael said...

I'm with you there HH.

I anticipate wearing away much shoe leather between Tyrwhitt and Upper Brockley Roads before I can return to my "local".

I understand there was some action at no8 Tyrwhitt Road yesterday with the eviction of some squatters. Did anyone see what went on?

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