29 June 2013

Second Forest Hill Fashion Week

There will be a second Forest Hill Fashion Week (FHFW) this autumn (20-25 September), and they are looking for local fashionistas to get involved right now!

This time they are doing it in association with the Horniman Museum, who are creating a whole Fashion themed ‘Museum at Night’ event for it. The catwalk shows will be held in Gallery Square, with a fashion market in the Conservatory and lots of other fashion-related events and displays, including static fashion shows.

That's just one evening of course. Over the following few days there will be Fashion Fun all around the Forest Hill shops and venues plus another all-day fashion market.

September will come around very quickly indeed, so this is what they are looking for right now:

  • Local designer-makers to submit their collections for consideration for the catwalk/static shows.
  • Local fashion/textiles/accessories experts, teachers or enthusiasts to run or host an event/workshop either at the Horniman event or in the high street.
  • Ideas for fashion events/workshops that you would love to see.
  • Market traders selling designer-maker fashion products.
  • Models for the Horniman catwalk show.
  • Advertisers and sponsors for their website, brochure or FHFW generally.

For more information and contact details, visit their website, foresthillfashion.com. In the meantime, do put 20-25 September in your diary, subscribe to their newsletter and like them on Facebook, follow them on Twitter or do both.

28 June 2013

Friends of Mayow Park meeting

Are you a regular in Mayow Park? Would you like to find out more about activities and developments there? If so, the Friends of Mayow Park would like to see you at their General Meeting at 7pm on Tuesday, 9 July.

The meeting will be held at the Dacres Wood Nature Reserve Field Centre, which is a single storey building located up a driveway off Dacres Road, between Homefield House & Catling Close. The Field Centre is accessed through gates at the end of the driveway and turn left into building.

View Larger Map

They are particularly keen to invite regular park users including dog walkers, sports groups, young people aged 16+, parents of young children and others to join them. For more information email: friendsofmayowpark@ymail.com

27 June 2013

Chair’s Report - June 2013

It has been a busy three months for Forest Hill Society. Events like the 'Edible High Road' and the Food Fair take a lot of organisation behind the scenes and we are very lucky to have such a dedicated group of volunteers who give so willingly of their time for everyone's benefit.

We would like to do more. However, we need more helpers to make this happen. We also need new ideas and views to keep the Society fresh and proactive.

For example, we would like to extend the planters to the Perry Vale side of Forest Hill station and down Honor Oak parade, but before we do that, we need to make sure that we have enough volunteers to weed, water and tend to them; I do not want the planters to become neglected due to placing too many demands on too few people.

We're also looking for more volunteers to help deliver, write and design this newsletter. Each delivery route takes about half an hour – why not volunteer? It's only four times a year.

The Planning committee are working on a master plan for the future of Forest Hill, particularly the redevelopment of the station area and also looking at the regeneration of Kirkdale. The previous masterplan is now ten years old and many of its recommendations have been implemented so it needs updating. What changes would you like to see?

If you would like to learn more or have an idea which will make a difference in the community, then please drop an email to richard@foresthillsociety.com

26 June 2013

Summer Walk on the Pool River - Sunday 21st July

Back in 2011 we had a thoroughly enjoyable walk from Bell Green to Ladywell along the rivers Pool and  Ravensbourne. Two years later we are doing it again.

Despite starting behind Sainsbury’s in Lower Sydenham, this is a remarkably pleasant walk suitable for walkers of all ages.

This year’s walk will take place on Sunday 21st July at 11am. The walk starts at the entrance to the Riverview Walk, opposite the Railway Tavern on Southend Lane (356 goes from Forest Hill Station). We will follow the river through Catford and on to Ladywell Fields, returning back to Catford where walkers may wish to partake in refreshments at the Catford Bridge Tavern.

The walk will take 1½ - 2 hours.

Start point: Bell Green, on Stanton Way, between Sainsbury's Petrol Station and the Southend Lane bridge. Map at http://bit.ly/q9Dt7I 


The Portas pilot continues to have a positive impact on Sydenham, Kirkdale and Forest Hill.
Recent SEE3 activities include the Makers Market outside the pools and various activities by the Artists in Residence, Michael Burton and Michiko Nitta. Freed from the restrictions of running a community hub, they have been busy running two NESTs* at St David's Coffee House and the Algae Opera and Metamorphosis Factory on Havelock Walk. Hopefully you had the chance to enjoy these investigations into the future of the High Street.

Meanwhile it's Sydenham's turn for the Pop Up treatment with “Pop Goes Sydenham” - a series of evening events, street art, club night and four pop up shops opening in the high street over the summer. The first of the Pop Ups opened on 18 May at 167 Sydenham Road (just down from The Dolphin) with contemporary jewellery and interiors brand Gunpowder Cherry Pie and vintage furniture and clothing company Flash Trash.

The evening events will include supper clubs through the summer at Blue Mountain. Tickets can be purchased online at www.GrubHub.com/Pop-Goes-Sydenham. There will also be a community party at The Dolphin on 13 June.

Despite the initial projects of SEE3 coming to an end, with the contracts for the Markets Coordinator, Hub Coordinator and Artists in Residence drawing to a close by the end of July, there is still plenty to be delivered. We will be returning to Forest Hill with Jack In a Box (a mobile community hub) and another Pop Up, possibly in October. We are also beginning on the next projects which are focused more on supporting existing traders.

Finally, we are building out the Town Team. It will have four action groups; Community Involvement & Development, Enterprise and Creative, Events Communications and Marketing, Built Environment and the Public Realm, Events Communications and Marketing. If you would like to get involved, please send an email to townteam@see3.co.uk

* NEST is an incubator of ideas, future careers, collaborations and projects.

Forest Hill and Honor Oak’s Edible High Roads

Forest Hill went back to its roots on May 18th, transformed into an urban orchard by members of the Forest Hill Society and Anne-Marie Parker of Lewisham Gardens as part of the Chelsea Fringe Festival’s Edible High Road - a volunteer-run celebration of plants, gardens and landscapes. Fifty shops and businesses in Forest Hill and Honor Oak Park joined forces to create an avenue of seventy fruit trees celebrating Forest Hill’s history and its current standing as a hub of community gardening.

Close to one hundred people gathered in Forest Hill station’s forecourt to see Channel 4’s Landscape Man, Matthew Wilson, cut the red ribbon to launch the event. Onlookers were genuinely surprised when several hundred free tomato and runner bean plants and various packets of seeds were handed out – as well as an early Harvest Festival basket of fruits supplied by J. Sainsbury’s. Kate’s Sax Quartet provided the opening music, followed by the sweetest renditions from Holy Trinity Primary School’s amazing brass band.

Continuing until Sunday 9th June, a trail map to lead visitors along the route lined with apple, cherry, pear and plum trees is available from Forest Hill Library, the Horniman Museum and various shops. Children taking part can also win gardening prizes with the first 100 correct answers to the puzzle sheet submitted to Shannon’s Garden Centre before June 9th receiving a small herb pot to kick-start their own gardening fun.

Thanks go to all those who volunteered their time and a not inconsiderable amount of energy to making Forest Hill’s first Edible High Road such a success.

Special thanks go to sponsors Shannon’s Garden Centre and Winkworth estate agents, the Horniman Museum and participating stores, Happy Seeds and the Chelsea Fringe.


Lewisham gets its day in court

This Saturday, 29th June Michael Mansfield, one of the most eminent QC's in Britain, will lead the ‘Peoples Commission’ at the Broadway Theatre, Catford from 9:30am to 5:30pm.

Michael Mansfield has mounted an investigation into the Government's plans to close Lewisham Hospital, but is also examining them against the wider implications of the new Law which will effectively dismantle the NHS. It is a whole day BUT it is a one off chance to be part of a historic moment and to see him in action with his team, who have all donated their time and expertise for free.

The theatre and it's facilities have been made available for the day; there will be breaks and all the rest and refreshment areas will be open for your use - you don't have to just sit in a seat for the duration. The event is being filmed, so it would be good to ensure that there are no empty seats. If you can only do the morning or afternoon, why not share your ticket for the day? Tickets are only 50p, with donations being taken at the door. Please reserve your place using the booking form on the Save Lewisham Hospital website.

Immediately following the Commission is the formal Judicial Review, which is challenging the legality of the Government's decision to close the hospital. This will take place at the High Court in the Strand (nearest station Charing Cross/Waterloo/Holborn) from Tuesday, 2nd to Thursday, 4th July, between 9.30am and 5.30pm each day. The Save Lewisham Hospital campaign has been advised by their legal team that it would be beneficial to fill the Public Gallery, which may result in the review being moved to a larger Court. Campaign organisers, top clinicians and Inter Faith leaders will be there, but your support is crucial.

Please go along and show your support; the Press will be there at 9.30am on Tuesday, 2nd July and we need to show the strength of support for the campaign.

25 June 2013

Planning Update - June 2013

There have recently been a number of important planning rejections and approvals by Lewisham Council. Most importantly the expansion of Miriam Lodge Hostel from 120 units to 186 units was rejected by council officers, in line with the objections from the Forest Hill Society.

We continue to support the principle of hostels for homeless people in the community, but we agree with the council’s conclusion that ‘intensification of the hostel use on the application site will mitigate against the objective of delivering an inclusive, mixed and balanced community’. There were additional issues where the council agreed that the bulk, overlooking, layout, and other features would have a negative impact on neighbours and future residents.

Meanwhile, 14 Waldram Park Road has been a disaster since a developer began excavating the basement causing the structure to collapse and kill one worker.

Over the last year we have worked with a new  developer to design a building that suits it surroundings, rather than a modern block that would not integrate well into the streetscape.

Officers had previously recommended the acceptance of a modern block, but this was opposed by the Forest Hill Society, and the plans were rejected the council planning committee. The latest plans were supported by the Society but recommended for rejection by officers. Once more  the planning committee sided with the Society and approved the plans. Proof that we are not always against any development at all!

24 June 2013

Bonhoeffer - The Saint of Forest Hill

By Jacob Phillips, PhD student at King's College London, and resident of Forest Hill. He is also one of the founding members of the Dietrich Bonhoeffer Centre London: http://dbcl.jimdo.com

Dietrich Bonhoeffer was a Nazi-resister, an influential writer, a renowned theologian, and a Christian pastor. He was also a resident of Forest Hill for some 18-months, between October 1933 and April 1935, when he was 27. He lived at 2 Manor Mount, and there is today a Lewisham council plaque on the house to honour his memory. His short period here in Forest Hill was important in his life, and for the political activities of resistance to Nazi tyranny which he embarked on when he returned to his native Germany. This important figure is someone who continues to fascinate many people, and the modern-day community of Forest Hill would benefit from engaging with his life story and his legacy. Indeed, some would go so far as to say he something of a saint – and he is perhaps unique as the only modern-day saint connected with this area: ‘The saint of Forest Hill’.

Bonhoeffer’s primary concern in Forest Hill was being a pastor to a German Lutheran Church. This stood on Dacres Road, and was originally a rather beautiful 19th century neo-gothic building, built in 1883. Ironically enough, this building was hit by a stray German bomb during the War. It was rebuilt in 1959, and named the Dietrich Bonhoeffer Church. It is still a place of German and English language Lutheran worship. Older residents of Forest Hill still call the little footbridge behind the Church ‘the German bridge’, which is clearly a consequence of there being a German church on this site for many years. But Bonhoeffer’s time in Forest Hill had ramifications which went well beyond SE23.

Bonhoeffer arrived here on October 17th 1933, under something of a black cloud. He wrote to a friend eight-days after his arrival that he left his home in Berlin because he felt the need to ‘retreat’ and ‘go into the wilderness’. The Forest Hill of today is certainly not what many of us would think of as a ‘wilderness’, and nor was it then, as 1930s London was a vast metropolis. So what Bonhoeffer seemed to have in mind, was a need to retreat from the difficulties which were ravaging Germany, as he tried to discern how best to react to the dark developments in his homeland.

Adolf Hitler had been appointed Chancellor in January 1933. For various reasons, Bonhoeffer was markedly immune to the various factors which tempted normally rational and sober Germans to entrust their fate to the Nazi party. Most enemies of the Nazis were direct victims. They were victims on racial grounds (mostly Jewish), or political grounds (mostly Social Democrats or Communists). Bonhoeffer, however, came from a highly-esteemed Prussian lineage and was in many ways an archetypal upper-middle class cultured German. Yet, he was deeply disturbed by the growth of Nazism from long before Hitler’s takeover of power.

Things came to a head in the weeks following January 1933, when Hitler’s henchmen began transforming Germany into the totalitarian Third Reich. A key aspect to this was a policy called ‘harmonisation’, or ‘synchronisation’. This involved synchronising all aspects of German society to Nazism – so every facet of life was in line with the will of the Führer. One of these facets of life directly impacted on Bonhoeffer himself: German Protestantism. Bonhoeffer was a Lutheran pastor, and theology lecturer at the Berlin University. The Nazis wanted to bring the churches into line with the totalitarian state, and so they sought to get the churches under the control of a group calling themselves the ‘German Christians’. This organisation tried to blend Nazi ideology with the protestant religion; they would give Nazi salutes at services, dress church altars with swastikas, deny Christianity’s Jewish origins, and even refute Jesus’ own Jewish ethnicity.

For people like Bonhoeffer this was utterly unacceptable. Many pastors joined together to resist the attempt to turn churches into organs of the Nazi state. Unfortunately, the first few months of this struggle were rather unsuccessful. Through various underhand machinations, the Nazis were able to ensure the German Christians performed well in church elections in July 1933, and soon after this a deeply dejected Bonhoeffer came to London, perhaps to lick his wounds.

Bonhoeffer’s immediate duties as a pastor in Forest Hill did not lead to a retreat from the struggle with Nazism. He fought virulently to ensure that the German congregations in Britain were kept free from Nazi control. He also campaigned with his comrades in the struggle back home – firing off countless telegrams, and spending many hours on the telephone. All his telephone calls were made at the Forest Hill Post Office. It is recorded that the staff at the PO took pity on the friendly and polite young German when they saw his astronomical phone-bill, and gave him a 50% discount as a good will gesture.

He also underwent considerable soul-searching about how he should respond more broadly to the evil of Nazism. While in London he was preoccupied with the figure of Mahatma Gandhi, who was then a thorn in the side of the Imperial British. Bonhoeffer was a pacifist, who believed that his Christian faith forbade him from violence against other human beings. Gandhi’s methods of non-violent resistance to the British authorities were fascinating to Bonhoeffer, and he made concrete plans to visit Gandhi, and received an invitation to stay with him in an Indian ashram. Although this never materialised, it provides us with one of many examples in which we see how highly unique Dietrich Bonhoeffer was. Most of the Nazi-resisters in the protestant churches were conservatives, who opposed certain ideas associated with the German Christians on theological grounds, such as believing it is necessary to preserve the Jewish Scriptures (or the Old Testament), as part of the Christian Bible. Bonhoeffer was rather different, in that although broadly speaking quite conservative, he clearly saw Nazism itself as an utterly evil ideology in its entirety, and well-beyond merely the attempt to synchronise the churches.

One way in which this uniqueness is apparent, is that his letters from London show him planning to found to community, a sort-of Christian monastery, practising some aspects of Gandhi’s pacifist resistance, to oppose the Nazi regime. In July 1934, the Nazi resisting pastors back in Germany had decided they wanted to start some training colleges for their ministers, as an alternative to the training which was under Nazi control. Bonhoeffer was offered the position of directing one such college, and he accepted in September. One reason his stay in Forest Hill is rather important in his own personal development, is that he decided when he was here to make this training college into the monastic community he had been planning for some time. This was a moment of great personal significance for Bonhoeffer, and he wrote to his brother in January 1935, that ‘I often feel quite happy’, as ‘for the first time in my life I feel I am on the right track’. He went on a tour of some of the English theological colleges in Spring 1935 to conduct research for his new endeavour, spending some time at colleges in Oxford, Mirfield and Kelham. He left Britain to found his own college in April of that year.

When one reads Bonhoeffer’s work from before his time in Forest Hill, and his time afterwards, one is struck by the difference in tone and style. After his return, he spoke with a new frankness and confidence. The young pastor seems to have found his voice while living in the Manor Mount parsonage, and to have undergone an important, personal change – seeing his calling in life to be full-blown opposition to Nazi ideology in all its forms. This change was to have consequences in Bonhoeffer’s life which are now very well-known. Some years later, around 1940, he decided that, notwithstanding his pacifist convictions, he would try and help end the Nazi regime by any means necessary, even violence. He became involved in a group which were plotting to kill Hitler, and then hoping to broker a deal with the Allies for a German surrender. This group’s attempts were unsuccessful, and as a consequence, Bonhoeffer himself was implicated to the authorities. For this reason, he was executed at the Flossenbürg Concentration Camp, on April 8th 1945, aged 39.

This is indeed a desolate scene, dying on the gallows of a Nazi concentration camp in some of the darkest and most chaotic days of the 20th Century. But Bonhoeffer continues to fascinate and inspire many people across the globe to this day. His theological and spiritual writings are widely read and studied, and there is a statue of him amongst other 20th Christian martyrs at Westminster Abbey. He is also, arguably, one of Forest Hill’s most important historical residents. There are many reasons why those of us who live here today would do well to engage with his message and seek to continue his legacy, in this little pocket of South London which is significant for his life story. In Dietrich Bonhoeffer we see a blend of genuine and heartfelt conviction, inspiring and poignant religious faith, a deep respect for the dignity of human beings of all races and creeds, a highly sophisticated and culturally literate intellect, and an innate humanity, which not only had a powerful effect on those who knew him back then – but looks likely to continue to affect people well into the 21st Century. For these reasons we would do well to celebrate and perpetuate the legacy of this saint of Forest Hill.

Other Bonhoeffer resources:

Edible High Road prize winners

Congratulations to Jake, Arthur, Olga and Edith who won our competition by completing the Treasure Trail Quiz and drawing a picture which represented gardening in SE23.

The lucky winners were awarded their prizes of ceramic bird feeders and some seeds for the garden, with ice cream or sweets for the winners by Edible High Road coordinator, Alisa Owens. Alisa said “It was a difficult decision, but these were the clear winners. It's great to see the difference the Edible High Road has made to the look and feel of Forest Hill and how it has brought people to the High Street”.

The prizes were donated by local traders, Shannon's Garden Centre and Sugar Mountain.

22 June 2013

What Sort of Town Centre do we want?

Forest Hill has been in the property press a number of times recently.  On Location Location Location there always seem to be people priced out of the local market, and stories of Kirsty and Phil in local cafes.

However, another recent piece - "Lets Move to...." In the Guardian in April raised a number of different questions that made me think that it is sometimes good to look at things from an outsiders point of view rather than your own comfortable angle.

This article, written by Blackheath resident and architectural critic Tom Dykhoff basically said that the town centre 'looked' rubbish. He didn't mean the quality of the shops or local businesses. He meant the visual appearance of the place, particularly when seen from the South Circular (which is, I suspect how he did his site visit).

We have some lovely shopfronts, some interesting buildings and some nice artwork. But in between all of this there is a lot of rubbish. Uncared for buildings, derelict shopfronts, blank advertising hoardings, poor conversions, a LOT of street clutter, poor signposting, and a general lack of coherence.

The town centre is a Conservation Area and this should mean we see a gradual improvement as new works take place. But I'm not sure that is what's happening. We really need a much clearer view about what would work better, what improvements we would like to see, and how we think the area could work in the longer term.

In the last issue of the newsletter we talked about ideas for a new town centre vision possibly using the Neighbourhood Planning provisions of the Localism Act.  This could be a 10 year plan to take us to 2023.

What seems really important is that we all take a very good look at the town centre, possibly from an outsiders point of view and have a good think about what could be better.  Over the next year we will be asking for your ideas!

Hilary Satchwell, chair of Forest Hill Society development committee, architect and urban designer.

21 June 2013

Transport Update

The refurbishment work in the Forest Hill Subway is now almost complete. Walls are painted, panelling in place, steps improved and the guttering is massively improved. But users of the subway will have noticed gaps in the panelling between the lights as the work is not yet finished.

We are expecting Skanska to complete the installation of new lighting in the subway in July and then the final panelling can be put in place with improved lighting.

In the last edition we reported that as well as extra carriages on the East London Line trains (five carriages rather than four), there  would also be additional trains to Crystal Palace. This was based on a draft Business Plan produced by Transport for London in December. However, since that time it has become clear that although orders have been placed for the additional carriages, the extra trains may not be in the immediate plan for capacity improvements.

The timetable for the East London Line has been built with two gaps where additional services could be squeezed in every hour, giving us 10 trains to Canada Water rather then the current 8 trains, as well as the 6 trains to London Bridge at peak and 4 off-peak.

The Forest Hill Society believes that demand for East London Line trains justifies the increase in services as well as the lengthening of trains.

We are also concerned about recent rumours regarding the availability of trains in 2015-2016, while the Thameslink work takes place. It is possibly that this may include a year with no weekend services to London Bridge or Victoria, as well as some other cuts to services during weekdays. If true, these cancellations would place a huge strain on the East London Line, especially if additional trains are not being provided.
We will be pressing for the minimum reduction of service possible and some imaginative solutions to any reduction to capacity on the line to London Bridge. We know this is not just a problem that worries us but it also worries rail operators.

We will keep you informed of developments as details become available.

In other developments, Boris Johnson has started making more positive noises about a possible extension to the Bakerloo line. This issue was raised by Forest Hill Society vice chairman, Michael Abrahams, at People’s Question Time when Boris was in Catford.

Lewisham have already produce a viability report which prefers a route via the Old Kent Road to Lewisham, Catford, and possibly beyond. It now looks like TfL will be producing a report of their own to look at the economic benefit of the Bakerloo line extension and other transport enhancements in South East London.

At a time when the government is being encouraged to spend money on infrastructure projects, the Bakerloo line is one that makes economic sense to develop as soon as possible. It would be a boost to London’s economy and would benefit South East London for decades to come.

20 June 2013

Shall we fetch you water out of this rock?

It may have taken a long time, but we have finally managed to install a watering system for the main flower bed outside Forest Hill Station.

One of the recommendations from our entry into the "It's Your Neighbourhood" competition in 2011 was that we install a watering system for the main beds in front of the station. Although we have selected woodland plants, the trees' canopy prevents water from reaching the ground and it was proving too large a burden for our group of volunteers to carry the many watering cans of water from the platform, through the ticket gates to the car park several times a week; while it kept us fit, it took too long.

We initially bid for the funding from the local assembly in July 2011 and were awarded the funding in March 2012, but it has taken us over a year to deliver due to a number of delays including station upgrades, Network Rail red tape, the Olympics and our own scarce time. LOROL eventually put us in contact with one of their contractors who have been very helpful in getting this project completed a little later than we had hoped, but in time for this year's competition.

We are all looking forward to stunning blooms this summer and for many years to come.

19 June 2013

Give Us back Our Walrus!

In May this year the Horniman Walrus went to Margate to take part in an exhibition at the Turner Contemporary Museum. His departure has left a large gap in the museum, and in our hearts.

He is sending regular postcards to the museum and children visiting the Horniman are encouraged to send him postcards (they were cutting edge technology when he was born in the 19th century). However, he's no Luddite, so you can also follow @HornimanWalrus on Twitter.

Despite assurances that he will return in September, the Forest Hill Society is considering what action to take to help this poor peripatetic pinniped. Even after watching 70s comedy One of Our Dinosaurs is Missing, the executive has not ruled out rescue attempts of the one ton animal.

But we all need a trip to the seaside occasionally and he has been stuffed in the museum for more than 100 years, so he is probably due a holiday.

18 June 2013


Saturday 29th June - 14th July - Sydenham Arts Festival
Sunday 30th June, 1pm-9:30pm - Devonshire Road Nature Reserve - Festival in the Forest
Friday 5th July, 9pm-11pm - Bat, moth and owl prowl - Sydenham Hill Wood (London Wildlife Trust)
Saturday 6 July, 11am-5pm - Blythe Hill Fields FestivalSunday 7th July - Forest Hill Food Fair, Station Car Park, 11am-3pm
11th July, 7pm - Perry Vale Ward Assembly, German Church, 50 Dacres Road
13th-14th July - Friends of Horniman Art Fair, Horniman Conservatory
Sunday 21st July - Pool River Walk, 11am

Sunday 4th August  - No Food Fair this month
Sunday 1st September - Forest Hill Food Fair, Station Car Park, 11am-3pm

Events at local Nature Reserves
One Tree HillFirst Saturday of the month, practical conservation workdays
Albion Millennium Greenregular events on the second weekend of the month, always open
Devonshire RoadSecond and last Sunday of the month, open days
Dacres Woodlast Saturday of every month, open days

Forest Hill’s Flourishing Food Fair

The Forest Hill Food Fair is run by the Forest Hill Society and continues to bring in new traders and new shoppers to Forest Hill town centre.

The Food Fair runs on the first Sunday of the month (although we are taking a break in August) at Forest Hill station. There are about 15 stalls serving hot food and food to take home and eat.

We try to provide a range of foods including fresh fruit and vegetables, bread, cheeses, cakes, pies, pickles, pizza, hot dogs, sausages, fish, wine, and beer. But if you think we are missing something we are happy to receive new ideas. Our only limit is space, and we have more traders interested in joining the market than we can provide with pitches.

The majority of traders are local people, living in SE23 or close by, but we also bring in a few specialities from further afield if we cannot source them locally. In addition you will always see a stall from the Forest Hill Society, where you can chat to us about local issues.

In addition to the Forest Hill food fair on the first Sunday of the month, Sydenham now has a SEE3 market on the last Sunday of every month on Sydenham Road, close to the station. This gives local shoppers twice as much opportunity to buy produce from local people and explore the other shops on our improving high streets.

If you would like to contact us about the food fair please email foodfair@foresthillsociety.com

11 June 2013

Farewell Gordon

It has come to our attention that Gordon Lucas is leaving the Horniman at the end of the week. According to the Friends of the Horniman,

Gordon Lucas, the Horniman Gardens' Manager, will be leaving his post on 14 June. He has been a staunch supporter of the Friends since he first came to the Horniman 15 years ago and will be much missed.

The annual Plant Sale and Art Exhibition are just two events for which his help has been invaluable, but especially the Plant Sale into which he has put so much time and effort. And let's not forget all the work the Garden team, led by Gordon, put into the re-design of the Gardens last year.

In recognition, therefore, of his many years of service to the Friends, a collection is being taken for a farewell gift. If you would like to make a contribution towards a leaving present for Gordon, please make a cheque payable to ‘The Friends of The Horniman’, with a note that it is for Gordon's farewell gift and send it to:

Ann Wallace,
Chair of the Friends of the Horniman,
Horniman Museum,
100 London Road,
Forest Hill. SE23 3UE.

We would like to echo those sentiments and wish Gordon and his family every success in the future. His warm smile and friendly welcome will be greatly missed.

If you would like to contribute, please deliver your cheque directly to the Horniman as above or click this button to send your donation via PayPal

10 June 2013

Horniman Art Sale 13 - 14 July

The 22nd Friends of the Horniman Art Exhibition will take place in the Conservatory of the Horniman, over the weekend of 13th and 14th July 2103.

Opening at 10am on both days, the exhibition will close at 5pm on the Saturday and 4.30pm on the Sunday. Entry is free and there will be 36 exhibitors with all the paintings, prints, sculptures and greeting cards present for sale during the event.

SEE3 - Community party at the Dolphin

Thurs 13 June, 5pm (food from 6pm), The Dolphin, 121 Sydenham Road SE26

The team behind SEE3 (the Portas Pilot in Forest Hill, Sydenham, and Kirkdale) are certainly creating a buzz this summer! With supper clups, pop-up shops, street art and a club night, save the date for a community party at The Dolphin. All are welcome for a fun evening of music, food and great people!

For more information go to www.see3.co.uk or follow on Twitter at @SEE3PortasPilot

03 June 2013

Persian Delights

On Saturday, 8 June, Young Lewisham Project and Southwark Refugee Project are hosting ‘Persian Delights!’ an evening of great food and entertainment including watching a documentary film at the Ackroyd Centre.

Dinner will be a 3 course meal starting with hummus and freshly baked bread, followed by our very own cous-cous massive and then enjoying some fresh pastries with tea and coffee.

Before the food we will be screening ‘Grass’, an incredible documentary about Persian tribal nomads. The epic story follows the journey of 50,000 of the Bakhtiari, a poor nomadic tribe in Iran, as they herd their livestock up snow-covered mountain passes, barefoot to get to the grazing lands on the other side of the mountains before their animals die from hunger. An amazing story from 1925 of human endurance and a community working together.

There will be two screenings of the film, one at 7.15pm and the second at 8.45pm. Tickets for the whole evening, inclusive of food, are £20. They will be available on the evening but if you are planning on attending please send your name, email address, how many of you are coming and which viewing time you would like to dave@younglewisham.org.uk To find out more information about the projects that this event will be benefiting go to: facebook.com/young.lewisham and www.southwarksrp.org/.

Buses - Have your say

The London Assembly has launched an in-depth investigation into bus services in London as passenger numbers rise and investment into bus services has flat-lined. Local London Assembly Member Len Duvall wants residents in Lewisham to share their experiences of bus travel in London to improve and strengthen the service offered by Transport for London.

Mr Duvall said “Residents can share their good and bad experiences by filling in a short survey on bus services in London and attending the public meeting on 6 June at 10am in City Hall. We need bus users help to ensure the London Assembly puts forward strong recommendations to the Mayor on how we can make bus services in London suit the needs of the people that use them.

“TfL’s business plan does not provide for expansion of the bus network, and unless plans are secured to deal with extra passengers, London buses run the risk of entering a period of decline.”