25 April 2013

Join the Lewisham Design Review Panel

Lewisham Council is looking for professionals in architecture, urban design, development, landscape architecture, sustainability and other built environment professions to join their Design Review Panel as advisers.

Lewisham’s Design Review Panel (DRP) was set up in 2001 to improve the quality of urban design and architecture through the borough's planning process. The Panel's advice is meant to assist and encourage developers and their design teams to achieve and deliver high quality design in their development proposals. It is made up of about 30 independent specialist design advisers who meet regularly to promote high standards of design in Lewisham's new developments, assessing and reviewing development schemes at either pre-application or application stage of the planning process. A flat daily rate will be paid to members to cover their expenses.

While the panel does not have decision-making powers, it serves as an advisory body helping the Council to achieve the best built environment. Comments from the Panel will be fed into the assessment of pre-applications, applications and appeals. This is a real opportunity to make a difference to one of the most dynamic and interesting parts of London and to impact on the lives of Lewisham residents for years to come.

Lewisham wants to attract members of the highest calibre and credibility in their respective fields. If you are interested in becoming a member of the panel or chair of the panel and you have vision, creativity and the desire to make a real difference to the future design of the borough they would like to hear from you.

To apply to be a panel member or the panel chair, send your CV and statement of intent to Jennifer Currier as detailed below. Please note that if sending via email, any message should be 5MB or less.

Jennifer Currier
Principal Urban Designer
London Borough of Lewisham
Planning Service
Laurence House
1 Catford Road
London SE6 4RU

Candidates applying for the panel chair will need to indicate this within their statement and if shortlisted attend an interview in June.

Applications from both inside and outside the borough are encouraged and the deadline for submission is 17 May.

Find out more about the Design Review Panel on Lewisham's website.

An Eventful Time

Potting Up for the Edible High Road
Saturday 27 April, 10.00am, Devonshire Road Nature Reserve
Potting up and decorating of the fruit trees. Please come along if you can lend a hand potting up to 70 trees prior to the official launch of the Edible High Road in Forest Hill and Honor Oak.
Organised by Forest Hill Society and Lewisham Gardens

Open day at Dacres Road Nature Reserve
Saturday 27 April, 12-3pm, entrance via Catling Close, off Dacres Road SE23
As Dacres Wood Nature reserve is a bit of a hidden gem, there's a plan to have regular open days on the last Saturday of every month from spring to autumn. The next one is this Saturday. There will be refreshments and tours of the reserve, and opportunities for those visitors coming with sturdy gloves and secateurs to help with some conservation work.
Organised by Friends of Dacres Wood

Sydenham Market - street food, craft & vintage
Sunday 28 April, 10am-4pm, Sydenham Station Approach
Organised by SEE3

Forest Hill Food Fair
Sunday 5 May, 11am-3pm, Forest Hill Station
A Forest Hill Society Event

Syd Soc event: visit to the Brunel Museum & Thames Tunnel, Rotherhithe
Friday 17 May, 10am
The Brunel Museum in historic Rotherhithe is directly above the Thames Tunnel which opened in 1843. We'll be taking part in a one-hour tour of the tunnel, followed by a visit to the museum and lunch at the nearby Mayflower pub. The cost of the visit is £6, payable in advance. To book your place and arrange payment, please email jacquelinealdridge [at] gmail.com
A Sydenham Society Event

Edible High Road Launch Day
Saturday 18 May, 1pm, Forest Hill Station
Official launch of the Edible High Road, with a celebrity guest!
More details at http://www.foresthillsociety.com/2013/03/the-edible-high-road.html
Organised by Forest Hill Society and Lewisham Gardens

22 April 2013

Dulwich Fesitval - Local Artists' Open Houses

Artists’ Open House 2013 is on Saturday 11th & Sunday 12th May and Saturday 18th & Sunday 19th May 11 am - 6pm

Across Dulwich and surrounding areas (including Forest Hill) artists are opening their houses to visitors to see their work. Forest Hill's open studios are centred around Havelock Walk, just off London Road.

Full details of all participating artists and other activities in the Dulwich festival can be found at http://www.dulwichfestival.co.uk/content/artists-open-house-3 

Saturday 18th May (2pm) is also the launch of the Chelsea Fringe Edible High Road in Forest Hill and Honor Oak. More details to follow.

17 April 2013

Museum of the Year Photography Competition

To celebrate the Art Fund Prize for Museum of the Year 2013, the Art Fund are organising a competition for photographers.

The best shot representing each of the ten finalists will be chosen by the Art Fund, who will then hand over to a public vote to decide the winner.

We’re looking for the most innovative, atmospheric and even humorous images of the Horniman, from a stunning exterior shot to a close-up of your favourite object. The winning picture will creatively capture the spirit of the museum.

Upload your signature snap today and you could win some fantastic prizes including:
  • An Apple iPad mini
  • A year’s National Art Pass
  • A selected image published in Art Quarterly
  • Two tickets to the Museum of the Year ceremony on 4 June at the V&A, London
The photograph of the Horniman Museum and Gardens which makes it into the final ten will also be displayed in our main building (next to the shop) for one month.

You can enter by filling in an online form, emailing the Art Fund at photo@artfund.org (make sure to include your name, title of the photography and the name of the museum), or send it via twitpic @artfund.
You can also share your entries with the Horniman by adding them to the Horniman Flickr group, or sharing them on Twitter @HornimanMuseum.

Before you enter please make sure you read the terms and conditions carefully.
The last call for entries is Wednesday 15 May.

Doodlebug Days

We recently received the following from one of our members who grew up in Forest Hill. If you have any childhood memories you would like to share, please email email@foresthillsociety.com

I was fifteen years old, a schoolboy in South London, and about to sit my General Schools Exams. It was late June, and V1s had been dropping on London for a couple of weeks. The school - The South London Emergency Secondary School - which operated in the buildings of Alleyn's School, Dulwich, which had been evacuated to Rossall School at Fleetwood, Lancashire - had been closed down because of the flying bombs, and we fifth formers, who were just finishing our secondary school years, were only in the school because we needed to take our exams.

The exams were held in our form room, which was on the second floor. It had big windows, and nothing much in the way of blast protection. Before each exam, we were instructed to continue to work even after an air raid warning sounded; should a doodlebug be heard approaching, we would be instructed when to duck under our desks and wait for it to - we hoped - pass us by.

The exams stretched over several days. Each day without fail the sirens would go, and each day there would be several occasions when we'd hear the two-stroke drone of a V1 heading in our direction. The invigilating master would give the signal, and under our desks we went. We were too preoccupied in praying that the buzzbombs would keep going, to have time to exchange notes on how we were doing with the English Literature or Latin paper, and mercifully - for us at any rate - they all did, though a few crashed close enough for us to feel the room shake.

One of my vivid memories is of our English teacher, one William Hutt, whose nickname was 'Polly'. He was about six foot three, with straggly hair and a shaggy moustache which gave him a very lugubrious expression. He was also a brilliant teacher, and cultivated in me a love of the works of Hugh Walpole, Tennyson and Matthew Arnold which has stayed with me to this day. He was our invigilator for several exams: when the first sounds of a doodlebug were heard, he would stand up, slowly and deliberately, extend a very long forefinger toward us and then downwards, with the admonition "Down!". Down under our desks we went. Polly, meanwhile, would step to the side of his desk away from the windows, and lower himself down so that his back was against the desk, with his legs stretching out for what seemed like yards and yards, toward the classroom door. This exercise he somehow completed with his hands in his pockets.

Once Hitler's latest unwanted present had buzzed by. Polly would elevate himself, and extend the imperious pinkie toward us and upwards. "Up!!", he'd say, and up we'd get, and on we'd go with our exams. His whole manner was so calm and reassuring, that it made this bizarre routine seem perfectly normal. I don't recall that we were given any extra time to compensate for these interruptions. I do remember that some of us took the trouble to learn the French words for things like "air raid", "siren" and "bomb", in case they came in handy during our oral French exam, but as luck would have it, they took place without an air raid to disturb our syntax.

And so the days passed, the exams finished and we ended our school years with no graduation ceremonies, no farewell parties, but just quick goodbyes. I heard later that one of our number who had taken the exam with us, was later killed by a flying bomb on his home, but I suppose that that was the law of averages catching up with us. He had, I remember, carved a beautiful model doodlebug out of balsawood: maybe that was one graven image too many.

Studying for the exams hadn't been made easier for any of us by the advent of the V1s. I personally was a Civil Defence messenger, and was on duty many nights and weekends leading up to and during the exam period. On Friday June, 23rd 1944 my father, my uncle and I were standing outside our house watching the bombs coming over, and when one of the horrid things not only seemed to be coming straight overhead, but its engine suddenly cut out, the three of us tore down the basement steps and skidded along the hall on top of one another, as the earth shook and our ears were shattered by the sound of the explosion. The bomb had fallen on Forest Hill Station, three hundred yards down the road, and we were soon down there helping dazed victims off the platforms, and carrying stretchers – of the dead and the living -away from the scene to waiting ambulances. Three people were killed, and 18 injured.

Many, many years later, I learned that the authorities had calculated, after about a month of flying bomb attacks, that the 'ground zero' aiming point for the bombs had been Tower Bridge, but in fact a plot of where the bombs had all fallen to date put the real 'ground zero' right on my school, in the Alleyn's school buildings in Dulwich! And not only that, but those same authorities went to great lengths to try to convince the Germans that their bombs were in fact falling where they were supposed to - so that, by their keeping the same distance settings, the bombs would fall short of Central London, and thereby cause less loss of life. Somehow I'm glad I didn't know that at the time!

Pip Wedge

13 April 2013

Mixed Signals

Some TV viewers may notice problems starting on Monday, 15 April.

As part of the rollout of the next generation of mobile telephone services (known as 4G), engineers will be running tests in South East London to see what impact the use of certain frequencies will have on Freeview TV reception.

If you live in the south east London area and notice problems with your Freeview service from Monday, 15 April, please contact the company responsible for running the tests, at800, by calling 0333 31 31 800. You will be asked for your postcode, the type of interference and the time it occurred. at800 has a team of professional aerial installers and testing units in the area that will respond to calls from viewers, visit addresses reporting problems and restore Freeview as soon as possible. It is possible that you may need an at800 filter - a small device, smaller than a pack of cards, which when installed correctly will block 4G frequencies at 800 MHz, enabling viewers to receive and watch Freeview as normal.

at800 has contacted approximately 170,000 household and business addresses in parts of Greenwich, Lewisham, Southwark and Tower Hamlets. If you’ve not been contacted directly through the post any interference to your Freeview service is unlikely to be due to the 4G test, but contact them to be sure. Freeview is the television that viewers can receive through their aerial; TVs connected to a cable or satellite service will not be affected.

The purpose of the tests is to ensure that viewers continue to receive Freeview when 4G mobile services at 800 MHz are launched later this year. Further details can be found on the at800 website.

09 April 2013

On the Hoof - Coffee Station - Champagne Reception

Celebrate On the Hoof’s launch of its brilliantly local cups at a champagne reception and learn from local expert.

Did you know over 5-million people travel through Forest Hill and Sydenham stations each year? Or that Rolf Harris and Bill Wyman once lived in SE26? We learned these fun snippets from On the Hoof’s new takeaway cups, which are packed with local facts and insights.

On the Hoof’s owner Ela Mundy reasons the redesign makes sense all round, “Our cups are a new and different concept as they literally talk about the local area. Each cup is full of facts about Forest Hill, Sydenham, Crystal Palace and Catford. On the Hoof’s sense of belonging means we are advertising our areas on our cups. People make a point of telling us the cups are great and have inspired them to look into local history, or that they had no idea certain events took place where they live. We also wanted our cups to be interesting — it’s slightly boring to look at a big logo on the train when you have nothing to read!”

Sydenham resident Ela has built a loyal customer base at each of her superior coffee kiosks and was the first company to bring freshly ground coffee and expert barista skills to Forest Hill in 2001. Since then, On the Hoof has grown to provide a second kiosk at Forest Hiill and further kiosks at Sydenham and Shortlands. Gourmet sandwiches are made daily on site and patisserie is delivered from local artisan bakers. Even the tea is sourced from Imporient, a specialist tea merchant based in Sydenham. All of Ela’s eight staff are local residents who are trained to provide a personal service to customers, even coming to know regulars by name and coffee preference!

Ela herself says, “I’ve always listened to my customers and found myself building relationships with them very quickly. People were encouraging from the moment I opened and have always provided helpful feedback on what they’d like to see improved or added. I feel that the new cups reflect this passion for everything that is great in Forest Hill and Sydenham — in the areas’ past and future.”

As a special treat, Ela has invited renowned local historian Steve Grindlay to give a fun talk entitled, ‘Going Shopping –The History and Secrets of Sydenham and Forest Hill Shops’ at a champagne launch to which you’re invited. Come and admire the new logo Ela’s commissioned by Lee Newham, Creative Director at Designed By Good People (yes, another local resident), which is fittingly based on Sydenham station’s vintage railway sign.

Imminent champagne reception at Jill Community Hub, 27 Sydenham Road, Sydenham SE26 5EX on Thursday 18th April 2013 at 7.00pm. First fill your glass with champers and then stuff your mind with interesting facts: local historian Steve Grindlay will be giving his talk, Going Shopping –The History and Secrets of Sydenham and Forest Hill Shops.
RSVP by Thursday 11th April to onthehoofcoffee@aol.com or via Twitter @onthehoofcoffee.

Call for Volunteers

If you would like to lend a hand on Saturday afternoon at Forest Hill station (13th April at 2.00pm) we need people who can push seeds into the platform planters, the street tubs and help with some planting under the trees.  There's a free cup of tea/coffee at the Question Bar afterwards.

You could also make a note that our Edible High Road project (part of the Chelsea Fringe) also needs help with potting up fruit trees and prettifying their containers on 27th April (10am Devonshire Road Nature Reserve).
On EHR Launch Day (Saturday, 18th May). Anyone with sufficient strength would be welcome to help transfer the potted up trees onto a truck at Devonshire Road Nature Reserve (also 10am) and/or off load them at FH station and then help to deliver to the various participating shops.

06 April 2013

A Colourful High Street

Last year the Forest Hill Society was awarded funding from the Forest Hill Ward Assembly to improve the look of some of the empty shops on the high street. It took us a while to find the right way to do this as empty shops inconveniently started opening as successful businesses up and down the high street.

But the first makeover has now been completed and what was a boarded up and burnt out bakery now has a picture of a friendly Walrus and some Papilio hornimani or 'Horniman Butterflies'.

We want the high street to be a fun place to be with surprises on every corner.We also want to bring a taste of the Horniman to the high street. We are currently looking for further empty shop fronts for more Horniman imagery to brighten up the high street. But more than anything else, we would love somebody to take on this unit, which needs a lot of work to bring it back into use as a retail unit.

03 April 2013

Museum of the Year 2013 (final 10)

We are very pleased that the Horniman Museum has been selected as a finalist for Museum of the Year 2013 by the Art Fund Prize jury. Apparently there was an unprecedented number of entries this year so we are absolutely delighted that the Horniman has made the shortlist of 10 which also includes Dulwich Picture Gallery and a few other museums from beyond South London.

The Art Fund Prize for Museum of the Year celebrates museums and galleries across the UK - annually awarding one outstanding winner £100,000.

Each year the Art Fund celebrate the very best UK museums and galleries, rewarding and highlighting their innovation and creativity in bringing objects and collections to life.