Whilst there's no room for complacency, nor should we go all sentimental, it is still good to reflect that our AGM this year is our fifth anniversary.
Of course it's not been all plain sailing, we have a broad range of opinions and strive to represent the views of all in this, until recently, relatively hidden gem of SE London.
So how did it all start? On 23 April 2006 a local resident with the pseudonym ‘Roz’ started a post on the chat room SE23.com about setting up a new society. Interest picked up quickly and, a month to the date, around 20 of us met at the Dartmouth Arms. This included mystery residents who used evocative monikers such as Hilltop General, KK, and Loneranger.
It all seemed very organic at the time, but looking back much had already been done by the time we met, our current vice-chair (and former chair) Michael had already started working on a constitution. Importantly we ensured that this recognised that Forest Hill and Honor Oak were already thriving areas, and that our role was to make SE23 an even better place to live.
Four months later at the Friends Meeting House in Sunderland Road 150 members met. The feature was a discussion on the proposed new East London Line extension (aka the Overground) and it was refreshing that whilst most welcomed this, there was a strong voice objecting to any degradation of the existent service to London Bridge. (Now we look to more exotic proposals such at the Bakerloo and DLR extensions). You may find it interesting to revisit these minutes: www.box.net/public/rk7cyyyet6
Committee members were voted in and, in what seems like record time, the Society had gone from a speculative discussion to a fully fledged organisation.
(To be continued in Autumn 2016!).