CamberwellOnline Blog

Camberwell and my life in it

Get regular updates

Subscribe to the RSS feed

Latest comments

  • Lucas: On another note: For those who’ve watched ‘Sell-Off’ (still avail on YouTube) & are...
  • HowardS: Thanks Peter/Monkeycat for the info about House. Shame to see it go, but happy something else should be...
  • Peter: The story of House is here: .uk/2014/11/camberwells-pla...
  • Monkeycat: @HowardS. There are comments about what happened to House somewhere on this Blog. As for Tire B. It was...
  • HowardS: I expect many people must have noticed, but House cafe has closed down. Does anybody know how come? It...


  • IMG_9145
  • Ruskin
  • DSCF1284
  • DSCF1282

RSS feeds:

Welcome to the Camberwell Online blog, a place for free and spirited exchange on anything with even a tangential connection to the South-East London district.

National Record Store Day this Sat at Rat Records Camberwell

Written by | 10 Comments.

Tomorrow, Saturday 18 April 2015, is National Record Store Day and our own Camberwell record shop: Rat Records on Camberwell New Road will be marking the day with records and DJs– see flyer below (taken from the Rat Records Facebook page)

Rat Records is always worth visiting for a browse: Camberwell is very lucky to have this shop when so many, it seems, have been forced out of business across London.

. Rat Records National Record Store Day flyer

10 Comments » . April 17th, 2015. Filed under Art, Shopping

A housing construction boom in Camberwell

Written by | 12 Comments.

Anyone travelling north or west from Camberwell cannot fail to miss the scale of development taking place in Elephant and Castle and Vauxhall at the moment. What is not so obvious is the number of projects currently underway or anticipated in Camberwell itself. A plethora of developers, housing associations, and even the Council itself are getting in on the act. Here’s a summary of the main ones just within the Camberwell Green ward.

Camberwell Fields: Notting Hill Housing Association are currently building 279 homes on Edmund Street and Southampton Way, overlooking the south west corner of Burgess Park. The development is a mix of private sale, shared ownership, and social rent, on a site formerly occupied by social housing, knocked down over 10 years ago and immortalised by two paintings on display in the Museum of London. The development recently received a rather snooty write-up from the Evening Standard, although personally I think it could have been a lot worse. Status: completion late 2015

Camberwell Road/Wyndham Road: On the corner of this junction, Parritt Leng are building 82 mixed tenure flats in five blocks, as well retail space, a gallery, and studios to replace those demolished by the development. The stretch of shops along this part of Camberwell Road appears to be really struggling at the moment. The Corrib Bar has been illegally turned into a church, while two other shops appear to have been quietly converted into studio flats by their owners. If the development creates a fillip for area it will be no bad thing, and would compensate for the Victorian buildings knocked down to clear the site. Status: under construction

Crown Street: A few metres away the same developer is also building 69 mixed tenure flats and commercial space on a slither of land between Crown Street and the railway line, formerly used mainly as a car park. Status: under construction

315–7 Camberwell New Road: On the site of the former Jono’s Snooker Hall, IDM Properties have now begun a development of 31 flats as well as a bar and a replacement snooker hall in the basement. This site has had a chequered history with planning permission having originally been granted for a smaller development with a larger proportion of social housing, but which the developer subsequently determined was not viable. Status: under construction

1–6 Camberwell Green/307–11 Camberwell New Road: On the opposite side of Camberwell Passage, Frasers Property have begun work on a development of 101 private and shared ownership apartments with eight commercial units on the ground floor on the site of the old Jobcentre and HSS hire centre. The advertising boards describe “the art of living”, though the current website suggests the development is firmly targeting the buy-to-let market. However, the ground floor commercial space from this and the above development could hopefully further increase the number of eating and drinking choices in Camberwell, currently constrained by Southwark’s planning policy that requires 50% of commercial premises in the town centre to be for retail use. Status: site cleared

272–4 and 286–304 Camberwell Road: Just next door to the previous site, Peabody housing association have had planning permission for 2 years to build 66 mixed tenure homes on land overlooking the north west corner of Camberwell Green. It is not clear when construction will begin on this site, though it appears Peabody are still seeking ancillary permissions to meet the requirements of their planning consent. Status: site cleared

240 and 252 Camberwell Road: A few steps further north, and another developer has recently been given permission for 164 homes on a site currently occupied by a theatre set company next to and behind the Nags Head pub. Ironically, the only objector was the House of Praise, which itself only recently received retrospective planning permission, having illegally converted the former bingo hall into a church (albeit one with nice lights at Christmas). Status: planning permission granted

Elmington estate: As part of the final phase of Southwark’s long-term and oft-delayed plan for the Elmington Estate, the housing association Family Mosaic is working with the developer Bellway to redevelop three sites in the area. One, on Lomond Grove, consists of 82 mixed tenure homes; another on Elmington Road consists of 89 units; and the third, on Benhill Road, includes 54 units. These are the only sites out of those listed which will see the demolition of homes to make way for the new buildings – around 180 council-owned and right-to-buy homes, many of which have fallen into a terrible state of repair in recent years. Hopefully, those people being rehoused will be moved to one of the above sites. Status: planning permission granted.

Lomond Grove: Finally, elsewhere on the Elmington estate, the Council itself has begun work on a site formerly occupied by garages to build 25 homes, the sales from 10 of which will be used to fund the provision of 15 for social rent. Status: under construction

Altogether, the various developments come to 1,042 new homes across the ward. Albeit, not all of these are additional. My estimate is that taking account of the homes that will be demolished, around 860 are additional. To place this in context, the 2011 census estimated that there were 6,179 dwellings in the ward. So if all of these come to fruition over the coming years, it will mean a 14% increase in the ward’s housing stock.


12 Comments » . April 8th, 2015. Filed under Development

Camberwell Co-Op reopening 27 March 2015

Written by | 16 Comments.

A leaflet drops through my door telling me that the Co-Op food shop at 28 — 32 Denmark Hill is set to reopen this Friday, 27 March 2015, after a refurbishment.

The shop, formerly Somerfield, and before that Kwik Save, closed around two weeks ago and I feared that we had lost it. I hope that the refurb will be along the lines of the Camberwell New Road Co-Op with a bright and airy feeling.

On the subject of Camberwell retail does anyone know what plans there are for the Peacocks site (ex-99p, ex-Woolworths) on Denmark Hill? I havent seen any signs up advertising it for rent and there doesnt seem to be any activity on the site. There was a planning application made last April to redevelop the site to provide 42 student accommodation rooms over three floors but it is unclear from the Southwark site at what stage the application is at.

With a Premier Inn being built on Coldharbour Lane in Brixton maybe there is scope for a hotel? Camberwell is on Travelodge’s list of target locations and it would be good to have a larger more mass market hotel in the area. We shall see — anything but another betting shop!

16 Comments » . March 25th, 2015. Filed under Shopping

Free Film, Cheap Comedy, Prizewinning Photography

Written by | 13 Comments.

This year’s Free Film Festival begins on Thursday, 19th March and runs for eleven days, showing 19 films at 18 venues. There are films for families (The Lego Movie, Frozen), old classics (The Night of the Hunter, Pretty in Pink), documentaries (The Punk Singer, Finding Vivian Maier)… it’s pretty unlikely there won’t be anything to your taste. My recommendation is Two Days, One Night, showing at The Crooked Well, but you can find the full schedule at the FFF website.

On the subject of events, there’s a new comedy club in town. Called Up In Arms, it takes place monthly above The Camberwell Arms (hence the name). I heard that it’s organised by the comedy editor of Time Out, so manages to get some quite well-known names on the circuit — the first one, this month, had Tim Key and Stuart Francis, and next month’s will feature Nick Helm. Tickets are pretty cheap, and available now.

The Friends of Ruskin Park have announced this year’s photography competition will take the theme ‘Park Life’ (how unexpected!). First prize winner will get a year’s membership of the Tate galleries, with cash and voucher prizes also on offer.

Update: The team at Camberwell Arts Festival say:

Plans for Camberwell Arts Festival are underway! Keep 20th-28TH JUNE 2015 free in your diaries. The 2015 Festival theme is: FEAST. We want this year’s festival to be a feast for the senses, a feast for the soul and a feast for the stomach! It’s time to celebrate not just about the diverse range of food that attracts people to Camberwell, but also the cultural feast of art and creativity.

GET INVOLVED! Whether you’re an artist with idea for a commission, you want to be part of the Open Studio weekend, you’re a fringe partner with a event that could happen during the festival and would like marketing support, a local organisation that just wants to be involved, or a local business who would like to sponsor us… get in touch with us.

In food news, The Hill Bakery has opened and is already a huge success — I tried twice on Saturday and they had sold out both times. I’m hoping for a bit of better luck this weekend. Update: I managed to buy a loaf today. It was properly tasty. But they really need to find a way to meet the weekend demand.

13 Comments » . March 12th, 2015. Filed under Eating & Drinking, Events