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28
JUN
2014

by our own correspondent

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SNIPPETS OF NEWS FOR JULY/AUGUST  

June was a fantastic month with so much happening in the area– the sun shone (most of the time) and there were lots of exciting events. Brockley Max finished with a wonderful last day up at Hillyfields. ‘Art in the Park’ was one of the best yet and there was a great crowd and atumosphere. I have detailed my experience of being involved in the festival under Blog #37

Also Hillyfields fayre was another brilliant community event and the weather was warm and sunny. I had a stall and loved chatting to everyone who popped by. However, perhaps the most exciting thing to happen in the area for a very long while was the launch of the Model Market in Lewisham. I strolled on down the first Saturday and just loved it. I have been going to Glastonbury for five years now and the atmosphere and vibe really reminded me of this amazing festival. I have provided more details below.

Anyway July is set to be another great month so hope you all enjoy!

Pat a Cakes – Stacie is busy as ever and leading on CROFTFEST meets HOPFEST, which is due to be the biggest of these festivals yet, running along Brockley Rd, linking in with St Hilda’s church and then taking in Honor Oak Parade. The date is Saturday 20th September and more details will follow but put the date in your diary. Stacie is taking a much earned break to Centerparcs from the 4th to the 7th July and the lovely ‘knitting chatters’ women are covering the café for her so pop in and say hello.

The White Room- Nicky has made lots of new summer dresses and local jewellery designers ‘One I made Earlier’ are displaying their unique collection in the shop. All good reasons to visit! They will certainly be doing a one-off teenage sewing session over the next few months- check their website for dates. On Friday 25th July they plan a social night with a local fashion design graduate showing her clothes and discussing careers in the industry. Watch this space.

Arlo and Moe –Jules and Jamie are having another popular burger night on Wednesday 9th July and booking is advised. They are likely to have more supper evenings over the next couple of months but check the café and social media for dates.

Jam Circus – Our popular local Antic bar is introducing a new kitchen team from mid-July who will be focussing on brunch, lunch and dinner-think pancakes and muffins for brunch and fresh fish and burgers for lunch and dinner with always a vegetarian and vegan option. Also a new cocktail list is being launched on Friday 4th July and an open Mic night is planned very soon. Tuesday is the regular quiz night with the lovely James and Thursdays are live music night. Altogether sounds an exciting few months ahead.

Beecroft Garden School – This outstanding local school has their summer fayre on Friday 4th July from 3.15 to 6pm and will have all the usual stalls, entertainment so a good one to visit and see this lovely school if you haven’t already done so.

Paraphernalia – The big summer sale is now on with a £10 and under area so a great time to pop into this interesting clothes shop. Their freestyle range for fab and funky size 16 plus women is coming in all the time and well worth checking out. They are also in need of menswear to sell so if you have designer/good quality clothes pop in with them.

Bryan and Keegan – Katrina of Blake Events organised a fab first birthday party for this independent estate agent last week and invited the community to celebrate with them. I had a lovely time! They are always in need of property to rent out/manage so invite them round to discuss their favourable terms.

Crofton Park Community Garden – Have you seen how this garden has developed recently behind the station on Marnock Road? There are 3 very large raised planters and lots of other interesting areas. Every month they have an open volunteers day inviting the public to pop in and get involved. The next one is on Sunday 6th July from 2-5om

LND Dispensary Beer Bar – What a fantastic addition to our area. Whenever I pop in there I just can’t believe how friendly everyone is. They also confirm that they think we are a great crowd! They had a live brewing session a few nights ago and should be making these a regular feature. The burgers are brilliant and they have added chicken and hot wings to the menu along with Hartland pies. A TV has gone into the back room for big sporting events and so is a very relaxing area to watch the World Cup and Wimbledon. The back patio is a great suntrap. If you haven’t been yet I highly recommend you do.

Mr Lawrence Wine Bar – I love this new refurbishment-it is so light, airy and elegant. Graham and Angela are also enjoying it! They are now closed on Sundays so both having a well-deserved day off. Mr Lawrence’s Wine Merchant online is continually changing/expanding so check it out but you can also pop into the wine bar and sample the wines before you purchase.

Emporia – Garden furniture is still available in this wonderful local shop in Ewhurst Road and they have lots of other larger items in their basement area. New designs of their very popular greeting cards are continually coming in and they still operate a loyalty scheme on cards.

However on popping in there in the week we were greeted with contractors outside erecting railings and closing off the road. None of the businesses in Ewhurst Rd had been notified of the works and supposedly it is the National grid doing major electrical works/cabling and it could be over a month that the road will be closed!! This could be disastrous for the shops along that stretch and so I would URGE YOU to keep supporting them and if you are coming by car there are always spaces to park on neighbouring roads.

News on Peter James, the butchers, will follow in the next blog.

Netball – ‘OnTheRise’ netball team has gone from strength to strength in the last month and whilst we struggled to get 10 women we suddenly now have a regular 14 plus who turn up every week. An umpire has also been coming along and coaching us and we now look like we can play the game!  2 teams have been entered into a ‘Back to Netball’ tournament on Sunday 6th July in Kent so everyone is going along with their families to support. It has now well surpassed what I had hoped this community initiative would become. If anyone is interested we still welcome new members and play on Wednesday evenings from 7.30-830pm at Kings College ground, off Brockley Rise.

Tennis Open Day at Catford Wanderers – I have been a member of the only tennis club in the borough of Lewisham for nearly 30 years and can honestly say it is a really friendly club. All standards are welcome and we now have a coach that does lessons both on an individual or group basis. There is an incredible cheap bar with lots of social activities going on. Families are also very welcome and the junior section has finally taken off. To coincide with Wimbledon the club is doing an open day on SUNDAY (tomorrow) when anyone can come and play for free, with a special, reduced rate if join on the day. Why not pop down and say hello – the courts are those that everyone passes if you go to car park at the big Homebase, off Bromley Rd.

Budgen’s – I love this shop and it so often has obscure things that are hard to find. I wanted pine nuts and glad I asked Patrick as they were 4 different places for nuts but put together I think every nut you would ever need are there! They are involved with Stillness school fair today with their wonderful Indian vegetarian food. I also spotted a good offer on a bottle of champagne for £15. They really are very competitive on price so please support them.

Brockley Jack Theatre – Currently playing at our brilliant local theatre is ‘Marriage’ which is Gogol’s absurd farce about desire, matchmakers, Imperial Russian speed dating and much else besides. It has been adapted by Howard Colyer  and performed by Ballast Theatre. It runs for another fortnight until 12th July. Reviews are just coming out and look very good. Following on from the 15th July is the classic Chekhov play ‘The Cherry Orchard’ adapted by Brendan Murray. This is DogOrange fourth production at the Jack and expect plenty of imagination and passion. It also features live music. As I always reiterate if you have not yet been to this fringe theatre please check it out as you will not be disappointed.

Stillness Summer Fete – If you are reading this on Saturday morning then you still have time to pop down to this local schools fete as is on from 12 until 4pm and is always a good one with lots of children’s activities, stalls etc.

DONDE – This popular Spanish restaurant is always introducing new things and Jason has just launched a ‘Seafood a la Plancha’ platter every Wednesday evening for £10.They are also doing 4 of their delicious tapas for £15 all day Sundays and that early slot on a Monday to Saturday before 6.30pm.

Hills & Parkes Deli – If you have not yet tried this lovely HOP delicatessen freshly prepared food then you should for those summer lunches/picnics. They have beautiful salads and homemade quiches to die for plus their classic sausage rolls.

Hopscotch Café/Bar – This relaxed HOP destination held many successful music evenings during Brockley Max and is very keen to participate in the HOPFEST event in September. They have a large screen where they have been playing all of the World cup games. There is a great sun-trapped patio at the rear and also the front tables are proving very popular in the good weather.

Sodo Pizza Café – Have you tried their delicious pizzas yet? I think they are great and love the vibe in this relaxed addition to HOP. Specials are always on the chalkboard and they have introduced homemade iced tea and tequila can be added to their homemade ginger beer to create the cocktail ‘El Diablo’. The ‘Ollie’ bench has been added in the middle of the dining area which is a crafted wooden high table and integrated benches which can house 12 people. Over the next few months they will be looking to change the exterior and adding their own signage etc.

Honor Oak WI – The local women’s institute meet the first Monday of every month at St. Saviours church and new members are welcome at any-time. However the July meet is a guided tour of Nunhead cemetery on Monday 7th July, meeting at 7.30pm at the Linden Grove gates. There is no August meeting and the next one is on the 8th  September. They will also be at St. Saviours fete and Blythe Hill with a stall selling lots of handmade produce.

Blythe Hill Fields festival – Put Saturday 5th July in your diary if it is not already as this is a great local festival reflecting our wonderful community. They have been very lucky with sunshine for this annual event so let’s hope this continues for this year. It is on from 12-5pm with entertainment, stalls, live music etc. this year

Honor Oak Pub – Over the past month you can’t fail to notice major works taking place to the pub on the corner of Brockley Rise and Germaine Rd. They have also put out lots of information on social media and sent me a press release. Yes they are opening at the beginning of August and the plans look fab. They include honest British pub grub, local craft beers, over 30 fine wine and cocktails, beer garden and dining terrace, private function rooms, a whiskey room. It is owner managed and they say ‘the main thrust will be on the local community……………there will also be a big concentration on the family’. I personally think the area can easily accommodate a good gastro pub but I think it is crucial that they get it right from the outset and I think one of the most important things here is PRICE. I will say no more and look forward to visiting it in August.

Shannon’s Garden Centre – This fantastic local family centre is celebrating 25 years in business in July. Henry Shannon opened the doors of the shop in 1989 and he has since retired back to Ireland leaving his four children to continue running it. There will be many offers to celebrate throughout the month starting with the a ‘buy one get one free’ on 9cm herbs and strawberries the weekend of 5th/6th along with a free give away on the Sunday to the first 100 children. Follow them on social media for more offers. The family want to thank the local community for their support and look forward to serving us for many years to come. If you haven’t yet visited this garden centre please check it out as they are so friendly, very informative, have great variety and very competitive on pricing.    

Sydenham Arts Festival – From the 5th to 20th July this local annual Arts Festival is celebrating music, theatre, dance, art, film, spoken word, outdoor and family events – taking place in venues both familiar and unusual in and around Sydenham for two weeks. Check out their website for further details http://sydenhamartsfestival.co.uk/

Deptford Brunch club – Another exciting pop-up is launching on Sunday 6th July and this time it is in a marquee on Giffen Square in Deptford. It is by the same people who gave us the fantastic Catford Broadway and Canteen dining experiences. Every Sunday a different chef will serve up their take on the ‘Brunch’ with two sittings at 10am and 12noon. To kick start the initiative will be street food newcomers ‘Hot Skillet’ who will bring the taste of the southern states of America to south east London. Other chefs include local caterers Inapikkle, Hank Po Boys and Hungry Larder. All bookings will be via the Grub club website. I promise you it will be a fun culinary experience.

Giffen Square Food Fair – Also using the square outside the Deptford Lounge is the monthly food market on the first Saturday of the month and so is on the 5th July from 10-4pm. Expect delicious food from a great variety of stalls, to eat for brunch, lunch or take away for later and live entertainment.

Little Nan’s Bar – Well the Brockley pop-up bar has gone down a storm and so Tristan assures me it should certainly be continuing into August (playing it month by month at the moment). They will be hosting a Gin Cocktail making class on Wednesday 9th July and you need to book ahead – check out the details on their facebook but it looks lots of interactive fun. However let us not forget the original Little Nans down in Deptford who will be holding another afternoon tea on the last Sunday of July.

Lewisham Model Market – I referred to this exciting initiative at the beginning of my blog and I understand it will continue until September at least. It is open every Friday and Saturday over the summer from 5pm -1am. There are over 10 street food outlets ranging from Indian to Italian to Mexican, with also Maria,a local baker selling her very popular brownies. Three different bars sell cocktails, beers, wines etc. There is then a chilled out large seating area to eat, drink and listen to the music from the DJ. I loved it and plan to return very soon as left before it got dark when I understand fires are lit and marshmallows given out to roast. It is hard to describe the place and convey the atmosphere adequately so why not go down there yourself.

LADYWELL – The ongoing discussion with the Council regarding the pavements seems to have reached an amicable situation and the shared use with cyclists, pedestrians and businesses with tables, planters and A boards outside their shops is being monitored. If you have noticed lots of flats above shops in the village are being refurbished with new windows and paint so is all helping to improve the environment. A planning notice has even gone up on the abandoned unit in between Le Delice and Geddes so this may finally open again in the autumn- rumour has it as a French restaurant!

With regard current businesses Oscars may be having a BBQ evening in July – watch this space! whilst Jason at Slater and King has lots of lovely teacher/teaching assistant pressies for £10 and under. For the first time since opening he is letting someone else do his window displays so check them out next week! He is also a seller of tickets for a ‘Cocktail Party’ on Saturday 12th July at St Mary’s Centre and for £20 you get 4 cocktails, canapés and live entertainment – sounds like a bargain!`

The Larder are going from strength to strength and had a very successful cheese and wine evening in the week and will be doing more events in the future. They hope to have fresh fruit and vegetables on display outside the shop from July and are looking to continually expand their stock. They also have gift ideas for teachers and I feel foodie items make a great present. Michelle at the gorgeous shop Zenubian is having new stock in all the time but also has 25% off some of the original items so pop in if you haven’t already done so. She also an offer of spend £10 and get 40 incense sticks for free.

Mister Moons Gallery have parted company with the Ladywell Tavern but Stuart and Jen are still operating their unique film, art and entertainment events both with their central London friends Flat Planet  and local new partners ‘Ruby and Norm’ on Lee High Rd.

Brockley and Ladywell Cemetery – Our delightful local cemetery is having their annual Open Day on Sunday 13 July from 11-4pm, when the chapel will be open selling refreshments and showing displays. There will be guided walks around the cemetery which I can confirm are fascinating and really informative/interesting.

Brockley’s Rock – This award winning fish and chip shop has been 3 years on the block on Friday 4th July and so expect lots of celebratory treats. Kyri and his team are great community supporters and were fantastic sponsors of the Brockley Max ‘Art in the Park’ day. I hope  they will be around for many years to come.

Brockley Deli – What a great addition to Brockley Cross with this delightful deli on the corner of Shardeloes and Malpas road. Given that it is a very busy traffic island you can amazingly forget it once inside this light and airy shop. There seemed some really interesting deli items- store cupboard products, beer and wine, cheeses and meats, ice-creams and freshly prepared meals to take away. You can also sit in with coffee supplied by Allpress  and some delicious looking cakes/patisseries to accompany your beverage. I certainly wish Martin and Zoltan lots of luck with their new venture.

The Orchard – This busy bar/restaurant is continuing their gin summer with weekly gin cocktails and craft G&T list. Iced tea and coffees, fresh homemade lemonade and ginger beer are also on the liquid menu. Breakfast is now available until 4pm and so keeping the late risers happy. Meanwhile there are take away ice creams with flavours including Cornflake, salted caramel, lemon pie and then passion fruit and Irn Bru sorbet are a must in the sunshine.  

Brockley Brewery – I don’t think there is hardly a pub in the area that doesn’t sell the local brew and it is proving very popular – at Hillyfields Fayre they sold out despite bringing extra barrels following on from the previous year. They are planning a food pop-up on the 11th July with a local chef matching dishes to the ales. Tickets will be on sale very soon. Also another brewery tour/talk is scheduled very soon with date to be confirmed. Keep checking the website for further details.

Blimey I had intended this to be a very short blog! But no it gets bigger and bigger each month, just proving how our area is getting better and better! However I will definitely not be doing an August update as it is a relative quiet month with lots of people on holiday and often businesses themselves shutting for a week or so. This means if you are in the area please USE/SHOP/EAT/DRINK LOCAL as they really need our SUPPORT.

Have a great summer and if you see me around say hello.

Jane x

Please follow me on twitter;

Follow @JaneCanDoSE4

21
JUL
2014

by Cllr Pauline Morrison

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I am pleased to be writing this diary following our success in the local elections and returning three Labour Councillors – Cllr Roy Kennedy, Cllr Chris Barnham and myself, to represent Crofton Park Ward. We ran a very good campaign in Crofton Park, delivering many thousands of leaflets and walking many miles.  Our thanks go to all those who have supported us and to those who didn’t we promise to represent you effectively.
The Council is now fully functional although the large number of new members is quite a challenge. The good news is that most of the new intake is young so the future looks good for the Council.
The three of us have now had our positions on the Council confirmed:
•    I remain Chair of Stronger Safer Communities Select Committee
•    Chair of the Holocaust Memorial Committee
•    Lead member Reserve and Cadet Forces
•    Appointed as one of the borough representatives to the Fire Authority - although Boris is `    likely to abolish  borough representatives by Christmas

A well-attended Assembly was held on 21 June at St Saviours Church. The Neighbourhood Forum meeting – held in the first half of the Assembly discussed and agreed an amendment to  the constitution which enabled better communication with those who have an interest but do not live within the  ward boundaries.
The application goes to Mayor and Cabinet on 16 July for approval.
The Assembly also heard from consultants on the Local Improvement Plan and the Air Quality funding from the London Mayor. These funds will be combined so that we can have more streamlined plans.  Consultation is underway and outline plans will be displayed in the library and ideas and comments will be very welcome.  The Neighbourhood Forum will coordinate responses and integrate some of these into our Neighbourhood plan.
These processes can take up to two years but it will be well worth the wait.  It will be possible to bid for more money and extend improvements up to Honor Oak Park..
I am now working with HOP and Crofton Park traders to organize Croftfest on 20 September and hope that you will all come out and support it.
I continue to provide a CV service in the Library, Thursdays from 12 noon to 2pm, I continue to chair the Library Management Board and the Ackroyd management Committee. However, I have just resigned as a school governor after 29 years of service.
Next month’s diary will be produced by one of my colleagues (Roy or Chris) and we will be taking it in turns in the first half of each month to write a diary to help us keep in touch with you.
I hope you all enjoy the summer.
Best wishes
 Pauline

05
JUN
2014

by Omoh.

Visit us: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cocoon-Crafts/684344108275717

Children at the Walk-in-Space youth club have been enjoying a very sucessful  fortnightly bead and jewelery craft workshops.  The Workshops have been run by Omoh and Antonia of Cocoon Crafts.  The children have learned to make two types of bracelet and have  experimented creating their names in wire. 

We have been amazed at how quickly the children have mastered using different types of tools, and were very impressed with all the unique pieces of jewellery they have created. The boys even put a modern touch to their shoe laces, adding some ‘bling’ to them!!

Seventeen children were in attendance at a special Good Friday Children’s Worship and Workshop at St. Hilda’s Church. The children made beaded crosses using wire and EXACTLY 14 beads; to represent the 14 Stations of the Cross. The children had a lot of fun, as did their parents, who also went home with a beautiful beaded cross placed onto a keychain.

The crosses were taken round all 14 of  the ‘Stations of the Cross ’ and blessed by Father Bates at the  14th Staion, at this last station where Jesus is placed in the tomb the meaning of Easter Eggs was explained. The children then decorated Easter Eggs and assisted the Junior Church leaders in decorating the church’s Easter Garden.

It has been a huge privilege to work with such talented children and feel they are a real credit to us and to Walk In Space. We look forward to continuing these workshops at Walk In space and St.Hilda’s; and carrying out more workshops in the area.

Elsewhere jewelery making has been proved popular as a childrens' party activity.

·         Antonia and Omoh run Cocoon Crafts, creative craft workshops for children in London.

They also are available for children’s birthday parties.

You can contact them at cocooncrafts14@gmail.com

07982761838 /  07788666606

Pictures/Videos of their workshops can be viewed at:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cocoon-Crafts/684344108275717

https://twitter.com/cocooncrafts

 

30
AUG
2014

by our own correspondent

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SNIPPETS OF NEWS FOR SEPTEMBER 

Hope everyone has had a fab summer, whether that be in the area, rest of the UK or abroad. Certainly businesses have been very quiet over the last few weeks and the last fortnight in August is generally seen as perhaps the deadest time of the whole year, with many choosing to shut up shop and take their own holidays. However as the kids return to school next week things should hopefully pick up and return to normal. As I’m gathering information for this blog I can confirm that there is lots happening in the area and September is going to be a busy month!

Perhaps the biggest event is CROFTFEST meets HOPFEST on Saturday 20th September. This community event started just a year ago and has only gone from strength to strength. However the areas of Crofton Park and Honor Oak have not combined before and so this should be a lovely festival and celebration of our two local communities. Both parades of shops will have many things happening along the street and inside the businesses. I will refer to some specific events as I write this blog but more details and timings will appear in fliers in the next week and be able to be picked up from participating outlets. St Hilda’s church is also involved and is a good half way point where there should be a beer tent serviced by the lovely London Dispensary crowd, bouncy castle, stalls etc. A children’s treasure hunt will start at Hill’s & Parkes and finish at the Malaysian Deli, so linking the 2 areas.

Pat-a-Cakes – None of the CROFTFEST events would ever happen without the drive and energy from Stacie, the owner of this lovely café. She is an organisational whizz and gets us all galvanised. On the day itself she will be doing cake decorating workshops so pop along and say hello. Besides Croftfest you can hire the space out for children’s parties or also adult gatherings like baby showers etc and Stacie can help design the package to suit your needs.

The White Room – This gorgeous shop, owned by Nicky, is forever changing and her new ‘Handmade’ clothes are appearing on the rails in the coming season’s wools, tweeds and checks. She is also making coats and will always make anything made to measure, so why not go and see what she has to offer.  There are also some beautiful materials to buy by the metre. On the day of Croftfest there will be the opportunity to try the sewing machines and discounts will be available on the many courses over the autumn.

Arlo and Moe – Jules and Jamie are holding three supper evenings in September on Thursday 4th, 11th and the 25th. The 11th is a curry night with the other two dates being their popular burger nights so book ahead to avoid disappointment. At Croftfest they will be having live music out at the front with ‘Trecco Beis’ at 1.30pm and at 3.00pm Jamie’s own ‘Union Canal String Band’ will be performing Bluegrass/Hillybilly. Not to be missed.

Jam Circus – Lots happening at our local bar for Croftfest with live music out on the front pavement for most of the day with food. Inside there will be vintage/craft stalls and soft play in the back room for the children. The popular Tuesday quiz continues with the lovely James though he is on holiday on the 9th and 16th and I’m not sure if there is cover so check with the bar if interested. Live music continues on Thursday evenings and new cocktails are coming very soon. I have been told that drag queen bingo is planned in October so that sounds a very interesting night!

Paraphernalia – Mandi, the owner of this established local clothes shop has been away for most of August but is back refreshed with lots of new ideas. Children’s clothes from 0-12 years have been introduced and is proving very popular so both sellers and buyers note this addition. There are many bargains to be had on the sale rail and the autumn collection of designer/nearly new/vintage clothes and accessories are coming in all the time. The freestyle range for larger women for size 16 plus are also constantly changing. The shop has joined the ‘SHOP LOCAL’ nationwide scheme so go in and pick up a loyalty card and this will give you 10% off plus discounts in other outlets. The fabulous models will be strutting their stuff at Croftfest as Paraphernalia celebrates 17 years on the block.

Crofton Park Library – There are many things taking place, on a regular basis, at our local community library including baby bounce, knitting & crafts, Caribbean singing and reading challenges. For details check out http://croftonparklibrary.tumblr.com/calendar

Crofton Park Community Garden -  If you are reading this before 2.00pm on Saturday afternoon (30th) then pop down to the BBQ in the garden from 2pm for free food and drink. If you haven’t noticed this already it is behind Terry’s All Locks on Marnock road and is looking fabulous! Also during Croftfest they will be open from 12-3pm for anyone to say hello, view the garden and get involved if interested.

Bryan and Keegan – Jon Keegan, one of the co-directors of this independent estate agents says ‘the housing market is quite buoyant in the area, prices are levelling but it is still a good time to buy and sell’ Certainly in my street houses are being sought after and whilst prices have gradually come down from the silly highs of a year ago the area is proving very popular with young families, many from North/East of the river where prices are just ridiculous. I digress. For Croftfest this community minded agent will be having a face painter again in the shop which always proves very popular.

London Dispensary/Beerbar – Our local ‘Late Knights’ beer bar has certainly become an established watering hole destination on the High Street. As mentioned before the core team of Darren, Jess and Karolina are just so friendly, with the lovely Aidan having left to be the manager of their new bar in Peckham. The burgers are delicious but I understand the menu is looking to be extended so watch this space. Beers change daily and there is another live collaboration/meet the brewery due on Tuesday 30th with Brick Brewery. The plan is that they will host a beer tent over at St Hilda’s for Croftfest so that sounds great.

Budgen’s – Our friendly local supermarket is looking to do free tastings with various products at the weekends. Also ‘Simply Good Value’ range has been introduced which is very competitive pricing against the larger chains. Jay and Patrick will be serving their delicious vegetarian Indian food for Croftfest outside the shop and also contributing a brilliant raffle prize for the day which I would certainly like to win – 4 course takeaway meal for 2 persons prepared by Mrs Jay.

Brockley Jack Theatre – Their short season of one person plays started with Diary of a Madman which finishes at the weekend but then continues with ‘Amaka’ from Thursday 4th to Saturday 6th September. This is a sharply comic and deeply moving one woman show about death, the taboo we fear most and how we look for the silver lining. ‘Spank House’ a week later is a darkly humorous crime story, written and performed by Jake Costello. All shows are only £10 so an incredible bargain. To finish the month there is the multi award winning production of ‘Clybourne Park’ from the same company as the ‘Doll’s House’ in April, Bromley Little Theatre. This runs from Thursday 16th to Saturday 28th and I’m sure will be very popular so I would look to book early.

Ewhurst Road butchers – I’m sure most people have realised that Peter James has retired. For the past few months we have had a new butcher, Oli Khaldi, with Josh as his apprentice. The shop will be properly launched with a new name, website, opening hours, awning and other surprises on Saturday 20th of September as part of Croftfest. They will also be having a free BBQ on the day so please continue to support our local butchers as the quality and choice Peter achieved is certainly being maintained. To note they will be closed on Tuesday 9th to the 15th September for holidays.

Netball – This community team at King’s College sports ground has gone from strength to strength. However from next Wednesday (3rd ) it is moving indoors for the autumn/winter. It is also starting at the later time of 8-9pm at Forest Hill community sports centre. New members are always welcome and it is a great way to keep fit, whilst meeting other local women. We are now playing at tournaments and friendly matches with local teams. Please email on janeyval@msn.com if interested.

Baby Jumble – This is a great entrepernerial initiative by two local women and the next sale is at St Hilda’s church hall from 2-4pm, the same day as Croftfest. Nearly new clothes, toys, books and baby equipment will be on sale at very affordable prices with an entrance cost of £2.50 per family. They will then be holding another ‘Baby Jumble-goes to school’ on 11th October for ages 4yrs plus. Tables are still available for you to sell your goods at £18 an early bird table and £22 otherwise.

Nandi Nandi – Moira is still very much open for business so do pop in and continue to support her until she is able to assign the lease. She has been closing at 3.00pm over the holidays and this has really suited her so she now plans to close at 3.30pm each day except Saturday when it has always been 1.00pm.

Ex Calendonian shop – This shop unit on Brockley Rise (next to the florist) has been a hive of activity over the last month. I couldn’t get to see the owners so only looked through the window. It is called ‘Restored n Adored’ and says is serving fresh coffee and is customising/restoring/upcycling furniture. It certainly looks very interesting/quirky inside so watch this space.

DONDE restaurant – Jason has a great offer on his tasty Spanish tapas- 5 tapas with artisan bread and aioli for £20. This is for takeaway only. He is involved with Hopfest and a magician is performing between 2-4pm on the day for the kids whilst the adults can have a plate of paella, freshly prepared on the forecourt.

Hills & Parkes – Our lovely local delicatessen on HOP is currently on holiday, re-opening on Tuesday 2nd September. However they are fully participating with HOPFEST and are the starting shop for the treasure hunt. They will also have some samplings on the day between 11-12 and doing children cupcake decorating at 2, 3 and 4pm.

Sodo Pizza Café – This popular local restaurant has been open over 6 months and fully established itself on the parade. It is now open from 10am for coffee, with homemade brownies coming very soon. The name ‘Old Bank’ has finally been removed and we should see new signage/paintwork over the next few months. If you haven’t been yet I would certainly recommend a visit though you need to book to avoid disappointment.

HOPFEST – Most of the shops along the Honor Oak Parade are participating with many ‘adopting an artisan’ on the pavement. Highlights include mini pampering treatments and free gift with all purchases at Neroli, guess the herb competition at the florist, kids tombola at Jumping Bean and Caribbean food and 3 piece band at Stone Bar. Fifty metres of the road at the shop end of Ballina Street will be closed off  with a bouncy castle plus stalls. Altogether lots happening along the Parade so it should be a hive of activity and well worth a trip.

Honor Oak WI – After a summer break this vibrant, friendly, local women’s institute branch is back on Monday 8th September at St Saviours church at 8pm. The speaker has yet to be finalised but is always interesting. New members are very welcome.

Honor Oak Pub – Well this gastro pub finally opened its doors a fortnight ago and with its excellent publicity campaign the place has been very busy ever since, with everyone checking it out. I have been a couple of times and have been very impressed with the refurbishment and it is evident that a lot of money has been invested into the new venture. The back dining room with the open kitchen area is amazing, having been to many a party in what was quite a bleak, airless function room. The two outside spaces at the front and back of the pub are very pleasant. However the only issue I have is the food prices/choices. There are many menus-dinner, brunch, bar, desserts and children’s menu. I can see from social media comments that people have been delighted with their food but I can also see that a lot of people share my views that it is overpriced and some rather odd choices. Anyway I really wish the new owner lots of luck and hope that it succeeds as that area so badly needs a good drink/food destination.

Railway Telegraph Pub – This local landmark, on the sweeping corner of Stansted Rd, SE23 has also had a major refurbishment and opened its doors a few days ago. I have not visited it yet so am not able to comment but it looks another quality pub in the area.

Shannon’s Garden Centre – If you visit the Railway then why not pop over the road for all your garden needs. They really are opposite each other! After having celebrated 25 years on the block in July this family business have everything you would want and are always very friendly and eager to offer advice. Check them out.

Forest Hill Fashion Week – Whilst I generally don’t cover Forest Hill in this blog (sorry but it would go on for ever!) I feel the fashion week on the 18 to the 21st should be mentioned. I went to a few things last year and can see it has only got bigger and better, finishing off with a catwalk and wrap party at the refurbished Railway Tavern on the Sunday. For further details go to http://www.foresthillfashion.com/   

Nunhead Food Assembly – I don’t know if you saw the item on the London BBC news earlier in the week but ‘Food Assemblies’ are beginning to take off in the capital. One is being set up locally in Nunhead and using the Ivy House pub as the collection point on Sundays at 10-12. Basically it is a new food model which enables communities to buy fruit, veg, bread, meat, dairy products honey and beverages direct from the local suppliers by ordering online and then picking it up later in the week. It is launching on Sunday 7th September with a taster session to meet the farmers/suppliers from 10-1pm at the Ivy House. You need to book tickets online (but they are free!) This certainly looks worth checking out and I have just booked my place!

Peckham and Nunhead Film Festival – This looks an amazing free film festival taking place from 4-14th September. For the listings see http://bit.ly/1wz7K9v There are lots of great films being shown with also 8 outdoor screenings and a highlight is the ‘Welcome to Busseywood’ day on Saturday 13th September, the UK’s biggest one day festival of African cinema at the Bussey Building from 12-10pm.

Catford Cinema – Talking of cinema on Saturday 20th September there will be a FREE pop up cinema on Catford Broadway from 7pm, with a bar by Catford Constitution Club and street food. The film is yet to be decided but promises to be a great event to bring the community together. You need to bring your own seating. This hopefully will be the start of further movie nights and the prelude to the ‘Catford Free Film Festival’ in 2015.

Catford Family Fun Day – This is a charity fun day at Jubilee Sports Ground, Canadian Avenue, SE6 on Saturday 13th September from 11-4pm in support of the charity ‘Dreams Come True’ There looks to be some fantastic activities and events happening during the day so certainly worth popping down to, whilst supporting this worthy cause. For more information and to hear the story behind the event go to http://www.dreamsfunday.co.uk/

Catford Excalibur Estate – The prefab estate in SE6 is a wonderful community and the museum housed in one of the original prefabs provides a unique insight into the social history of the estate. However to continue opening they need funds and so have created a kickstarter campaign. Discover more information at  http://kck.st/1qL1jkn and support if able.  

Slater & King – Jason reports that it is very quiet in Ladywell at the moment with lots of the shops have taken well deserved breaks but they are all now back open for business so come down to the village and say hello. This lovely gift shop has 30% off selected items and discounted artwork. There is a back to school offer on certain items -buy 3 things and get the cheapest free. Jason plans a big exciting Halloween event in the village so watch this space!

Zenubian – New stock is coming in all the time into this gorgeous shop at the bottom of Vicars Hill. There are lovely bright ‘Carol Canvases’ artwork from a local artist in the window. Michelle is also facilitating regular psychic readings, starting on the 3rd September from 6pm in the evenings. Pop into the shop to book a session and find out more information.

The Larder – Catherine and Cynthia have just returned from holidays and have got lots of ideas/plans for the next few months! They are looking to introduce vegetable/fruit boxes in conjunction with Chegworth Valley and have lots of new stock coming into the delicatessen-new cheeses, charcuterie, wines which they are very excited about. They plan to do more tastings and are certainly looking to do a wine/tapas evening towards the end of the month, with another ‘Ladywell Supper’ club in October. Pop in for more information.   

Ladywell Fields Café – On Wednesday the café in Ladywell fields finally re-opened following refurbishment works. It is being run by the Jimmy Mizen foundation and is called the 10000 hands café. I haven’t got any details yet regarding opening hours, food being served etc but will make sure I do in time for my October news.   

Brockley Mess – They have finally opened in the evenings on a Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and their pop up ‘Skewer Nights’ are scheduled to continue until the 25th September. I went along last week and can definitely recommend it. Treat the dishes as tapas with 3 or 4 each to share and their wine prices are very competitive. This certainly fills a gap in that stretch of parade where we only have the fab ‘Brockley’s Rock’ open in the evenings and so we need to support it as they then may continue into the autumn.

Orchard –Firstly congratulations to the owners Ed and Emily on the birth of their second child. Despite being understandably rather busy they are not letting the bar/kitchen stand still and as September brings a change of season there will be new dishes, new wine specials and cocktails. A couple of months ago they introduced a Sunday evening quiz at 7pm and this is proving very popular.

Brockley Brewing Company – They now sell the delicious Coopersbake bread, along with all their beers in the brewery on a Saturday. The newly refurbished Waverley Arms in Ivydale road and the Honor Oak are both selling their beer. Another pop up supper event is planned for 26th September with ‘Franc and Beans’ following on from the success of the last one in June. Tickets will be available soon on the website http://brockleybrewery.co.uk/home/

The Talbot – There is a new owner, Lesley, at this popular Tyrwhitt road pub and I understand she is very friendly and got lots of energy/drive with many ideas for changes and improvements. The upstairs room is being decorated along with the exterior. It sounds like well worth checking out over the coming months.

Brockley Table Sale – Last year the Brockley Society co-ordinated anyone opening up their garden/garage/yard for the day to sell anything you wanted! As it was such a success they are repeating it over the weekend of the 6th and 7th of September from 11-4pm. If you would like to take part check out the entry in Brockley Central http://bit.ly/1pQ9fB2 I can see from social media that there is a move to include Crofton Park (we are SE4 after all). The addresses of those houses involved will be posted nearer the time.

Little Nan’s – This wonderful quirky bar has unfortunately had to close its Deptford home and the Talbot and so is in effect homeless. However the fab New Cross café Birdie Num Nums has come to the rescue and joined forces to provide a brilliant collaboration of cocktails and food. I understand it is continuing throughout September on Friday and Saturday evenings. Grandson Tristan is behind the counter creating his teapots and there is a great menu to choose from the café. I can vouch for the meze selection for two and the ‘Princess of Crofton Park’ teapot! Go and visit before it pops off.

Giffen Food Fair – The monthly Deptford food market is back after a summer break, on the first Saturday of the month. On the 6th from 10-4pm they will be outside the Deptford Lounge with lots of yummy food stalls to whet your appetite.

Deptford Cinema – A group of passionate volunteers are planning on opening a 50 seater cinema in Deptford in the autumn, showing art and experimental films, along with the mainstream fare. They meet every Sunday at 4pm and welcome new volunteers. They have just set up a kickstarter fundraising page to help buy a digital projector so please support if able http://kck.st/1u1n12Y

Deptford Brunch Club – This is a great food initiative in Deptford where every week on a Sunday mornign different street food entrepreneurs/chefs provide a brunch for approx. £15 under a marquee on Douglas Square. It has proved very popular, more than often selling out. The food on offer for September is provided by Inapikkle, The Cheeky Indian and Hanks Po Boys. To book contact http://grubclub.com/the-deptford-brunch-club

Tall Ships Festival – Greenwich is host to 50 tall ships during the regatta from the 4th to the 9th September with lots of associated events planned. I’m sure it will be a spectacular sight and I fully intend to be popping down. For further details see http://www.royalgreenwich.gov.uk/tallships/info/5/regatta

Books About Town – I had to include this as my last entry because I have so enjoyed doing the four bookbench trails around London. This has been an amazing initiative with 50 benches painted by different artists portraying an author or a specific book title. They have been very cleverly/appropriately  placed in gardens and squares in Greenwich, the City, Riverside and Bloomsbury. Children love hunting for them but also adults equally and they are going to be around until 15th September so if you have a spare few hours in the next fortnight I cannot recommend this highly enough. For further details visit the website http://www.booksabouttown.org.uk/  

Gosh these blogs get longer and longer and once again prove that so much happens in our wonderful community! Have a great September checking out some of the above activities or eating/drinking/shopping at our amazing local cafes/bars/shops. It is my birthday in mid September and is consequently one of my favourite months as the weather is often very warm and sunny so lets hope the Indian summer continues.

I hope to see many of you at ‘Croftfest meets Hopfest’ on the 20th and please say hello if you see me. I am always very happy to have feedback/suggestions on these blogs and anything you would like me to include.

HAVE FUN!

Jane x

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