And here’s the stuff I was going to post

Herne Hill has a new baker’s shop. I realise that we don’t live in Herne Hill, but I mention it because I passed there a few weeks ago and I noticed that there is a row of shops with a baker’s, a grocer’s, a fishmonger’s, a butcher’s and a delicatessen all next to each other. It’s what I dream of having in Camberwell. Here’s an article from the Guardian, also not about Camberwell, but about the balancing act of regenerating an area without pricing existing residents out, which is what I believe we face here.

News from around;  it seems that we had our own little Cans Festival here, on Camberwell Passage. You can go down and see some of the artworks still, I believe.

I had a somewhat boozy few games of pool in the Cadeleigh recently, and promised Mary (the landlady) that I would mention that Dermot (the landlord) scored a hole-in-one at golf. He is very proud, apparently.

Lots of websites: Loughborough Junction looks to be the result of one man trying to promote the area to increase his house’s value (not your friend the piano man is it, Alan?). Sorry, that was quite mean of me; it’s actually a look at places and services around the titular area. People’s Republic of Southwark is a migraine-inducing site with social and environmental tips and articles; Creative Camberwell Network is a hub for artistic endeavours in SE5.

The SE5 Forum website is back online at the correct address now, although I have some stuff I need to do to rescue it completely. No, I’m not the admin again, I’m just a caretaker manager.

I had some other news which I kept reminding myself to write down, and didn’t, and forgot. Again.

Author: Peter

Long-time resident of Camberwell, author of this blog since July 2004.

125 thoughts on “And here’s the stuff I was going to post”

  1. @42… There were donkeys at the Goose Green Fair the other weekend.

    Anyone seen the new show at South London Gallery? Any thoughts? My kids accidentally sent the crystal balls flying across the room. That added to the spectacle… Made me wonder if they did it accidentally-on-purpose.

    Overall not a bad show… Not pushing the boundaries but worth a look.

  2. Norman, greetings from Dagmar, Grace and Maude. Diane was good on Discs, but you are right, the Nasty Party will be in for years and years. The Duchamp pissoir says it all, or in the words of my small daughter in the Tate Modern bog today, “Come out, poo, leave home.”

  3. @ Newroad

    Yeah, that’s sad. Walked past and some numpty’s bolted on the ubiquitous steel shutters and a flimsy wooden door. What a joke. Some piece of crap’ll replace it no doubt.

  4. Just to clarify, the Bakerloo line will go from Lambeth North to Kennington then on down the current northern line. The Northern line will pick up from kennington and go to Loughborough then new stations south. In other words, Bakerloo line will no longer go to Elephant.

    As for the poor and choice, I think the point is the statistics show huge numbers of commuters in Camberwell prefer a bus only pass now (cost) and wouldn’t take up a tube pass even if a station opened. It’s not unfair, it’s just economics. Meanwhile folks a little further west are overcrowded and pay for full tube passes.

  5. If Bakerloo Line is extended the most logical and cost effective way to do it is Elephant to Peckham (with stations at Walworth and Camberwell Green in between — this would then leave the option for perhaps an extension to New Cross,Deptford and Lewisham at a later date?

    The East London Line/Overground extension will go through Denmark Hill to Clapham High Street/Wandsworth Road and Clapham Junction — opening a station at Loughborough Junction would be a superb idea — it’s a dormant but potentially invaluable transport interchange of the future, and it would continue the impressive improvement of the area in recent years — surely nobody can feel nostalgic for how it used to be a few years ago?

    If Battersea and Wandsworth were to get a tube extension — then the logical thing to do would be to open a branch of the Victoria Line from Vauxhall or Stockwell and this could perhaps in future extend towards Streatham and Croydon…

  6. Tflinsider, WTF are you on?

    Are you the new jonnyM trolling for reaction?

    “As for the poor and choice, I think the point is the statistics show huge numbers of commuters in Camberwell prefer a bus only pass now (cost) and wouldn’t take up a tube pass even if a station opened. It’s not unfair, it’s just economics.” — what kind of BS is that? Unbelievable.

  7. TfLAgitProp, have you considered the following:

    1. significant levels of car ownership in surrounding residential streets is evidence of suppressed demand for a far more efficient kind of local public transport (whether train or tube); and

    2. that the decision by many to go for bus passes is based partly on the credit crunch and partly on distaste for a double transport transaction, by which I mean both waiting for the bus and the descent into the Northern Line or the ‘Loo?

    There are only two reasons the tube may not go ahead in Camberwell: (1) cost and (2) the fear that it would be so oversubscribed that the Bakerloo would go into meltdown. If the public debate were more straightforward about this, the campaign could move onto the real issues of contractor accountability and value, and the potential capacity of both tube and train to run more regular trains given significant investment in infrastructure.

    It would also be appreciated if you did not continue the habit of the old administration of ascribing certain cliched habits to the poor in deprived areas. Even on minimum wage, the tube is an effective economy over the bus given the time taken.

  8. People in Camberwell are poor because they buy bus passes and own cars because there is no tube?? Come on Regenguru you are not making any sense.
    If TFL had surveyed Camberwell Commuter habits surely it would be before they decided where to extend the tube and before the recent credit crunch.
    Regenguru you are probably right it will no happen at Camberwell be because of cost.
    And if it does come to Loughborough Junction it will be long after I will be able to access the stairs with my zimmer frame. East London Extension took at least 15 years to get going and is not finished yet.

  9. The credit crunch has led to an increase in the purchase of bus passes???

    I also blame it for

    - Boris winning
    — Chelsea losing
    — England missing out on the Euro Finals

    oh, and my cat acquiring a taste for duck

  10. The poor/no tube article doesn’t really stand up if you look at both Muswell Hill and Crouch End in North London both wealthy areas with no tube.

    The tube had a large factor in me moving to Camberwell. The lack of one makes it slightly more affordable to live in and also i’m not a big fan of the tube (don’t like being underground!) and seeing as i only work at Aldwych i am perfectly happy using the bus to get around. i thinkl if we had a tube i’d still use the us for my main journeys — cheaper and also better for my general health i think!

  11. Well Sg its not a stupid as it sounds.

    When ever i move i take in transport costs as well as housing costs. In teh past one of my responses to rent rises has been to economise on travel in camberwell you can save about £30 per month by switching from tube to bus.

  12. Hannah @ 63

    You have a point — A lot of people who work in the City and Clerkenwell have the 35,45 bus route and an 8 minute Thameslink service from Loughborough Junction into Blackfriars then Farringdon

    They choose to live in Camberwell because it’s a quick commute to work and they get more value for money concerning property

    South London may be a strange Jambalaya of architectural styles but the private housing is as good and in many cases far more attractive than anything in North London — It’s just our high streets that scare all the snobs away…and I think we all kind of like it that way, it’s our little secret 🙂

  13. Whatever the truth, I’ve long thought if we could make it clear the tube ain’t comin to Camberwell for at least 20 years (or more) would help settle down a lot of fly-by-night campaigners. It’s the plain truth.

    Shame about the tram. I did read something this week so maybe the insider is truly inside.

  14. The cost of the Tram could pay for the Bakerloo Line and East London Line Extension and have plenty change left over…

  15. Speaking of the tube today and tomorrow are your last chances to drink alcohol on the underground and buses before the ban comes in on 1 June.

    Although not normally a public transport drinker I will be taking beer with me to mourn our loss of freedom. Of course the ban does not apply to network rail so journeys to and from Loughborough Junction and Denamrk Hill are not affected — trebles all round!

  16. Only downside is Tram would plug a ‘black hole’ worse than any other spot in the area and compliment Aylesbury/Elephant/Peckham projects. Bakerloo extension a good idea but won’t happen for 20 years or so. No reason for it to really. East London phase 1 is going ahead. Phase connecting to Louborough unnecessary and bad idea.

  17. Hannah @ 63

    Fair enough, though the fact it has supposedly taken something like the cc for people to realise that perhaps paying £8 (?) return for a combined bus / tube journey say from Camberwell to Old Street was poor vfm compared to £2 for a return bus journey on an Oyster card surprises me.

    And I suppose there are some who would still pay it whatever the state of the economy — given the difference in overall journey times.

    Personally, I quit using public transport a year ago and have travelled to and from Camberwell to Old Street by scooter. Total cost £5 a week for petrol. Journey time 20 minutes.

    And it will become even quicker once Boris opens up bus lanes to motorbikes.

  18. Motorbikes already use bus lanes. Damn dangerous to encourage them further. Runners should be allowed to use bus lanes.

  19. SG it only costs that much for transport if you don’t use an Oyster card — combined bus and tube on Oyster is around £3 — probably less if you get a season ticket — i pay £50 a month for my bus pass and i get teh bus at least twice a day which based on a 30 day month makes it about 80p a journey (much less usually becuase i frequently get more than two buses a day.)

    My point was that more people use the bus when money is tight as whatever from you buy your tickets in the bus is always cheaper than the tube.

  20. We use the buses, which are sometimes frustrating but on the whole we like being above ground. We wouldn’t use the tube if it came, nor the Tram (too far away). I do think it is a very small group of transient people who fight for a tube. On the whole Camberwell works for what it is. Any major changes would price too many out. We’ve mellowed in our moaning and take it for an affordable oasis with it’s challenges as the price. Negotiate those challenges and you’ll be content in Camberwell without any need to campaign.

  21. Florian, I agree with all your points. Enforcement is key whatever the policy. Cyclist box occupation by motor vehicles at red lights should be 3 points, automatically. Many would lose their licence just on the way into work, and quite rightly. And no, scoots and bikes are not honorary cyclists for this purpose.

    newroad, as I cycle everywhere the Tube is not a big deal for me, since I too would not use it. However, if it was introduced as a bargain for massively decreased local on-street car storage (locals would have to vote for this bargain), I’d welcome it. With carbon allowances and trading on their way, this could happen. I’d also like some honesty from planners that it is a cost issue so that no-one can lazily rubber-stamp another tube refusal in 15 years time on the assumption that there is “still no demand”.

    Camberwell Rail is what should be opened in the short term. It would regenerate whole sectors of badlands in-between itself and Coldharbour Lane, Camberwell Road, the Green and the New Road through increased pedestrian traffic. They planned to reopen it, cost was negligible and not an issue, and the plan was only halted because of Network Rail’s argument that a commuter service would interfere with LBJ. The possibility that Camberwell had a local daytime economy was not considered.

  22. Regeneguru no one ever doubted you were an avid cyclcists. I think that shines through. Further, I’m not sure that if you repeat your argument 100 times it will make people warm to it anymore, but god bless you for trying.

  23. tfl insider; your comments are interesting. i do not agree with your rationale that poor people chose the bus by preference. the critical factor is we have no option and the bus is time inefficient. the bus journey from camberwell adds 15–20min each way onto commute, most passengers seem to interchange at vauxhall for the tube; it is easy to justify paying tube fares for a new tube link to avoid this daily grind. btw; each bus i catch is overcrowded and unpleasant and driven by drivers that seem to make their own rules with regards to when or if they will stop at a bus stop and allow passengers to board — something again the tube avoids. we deserve better

  24. I am reading a book called “The Lost Rivers of London” by N.J Barton

    Apparently there is an underground river called “The Earls Sluice” which runs from Denmark Hill across the Green along Walworth Road and tails off to the right at the junction of Albany Road and Burgess Park…

    So maybe a Bakerloo line tube extension would be slightly more complicated — unless it was routed down Old Kent Road and then re-directed towards the Green and Peckham — then East Camberwell would get the badly needed transport connection that they have always needed

    Just think how lovely London would have been if only a handful of these rivers had been kept intact and as nature intended?

    Hurrah! — Mother Nature always helps the people but do we appreciate it? — sadly, never 🙁

  25. Easy intrepid. If you want better move elsewhere. Most people don’t think transport is bad here. Or we recognise that if it were better we couldn’t afford to live here. You need only move slightly west or north to get within tube land. IF you tell me you can’t afford to, then I have proven my point.

    ‘Deserve better’ and yet, as you point out, the huge number of people ’round here who are the true misery of the journey.

  26. Mreberman

    Good that you finally broke your rank and said something. Template. Answer. Try and try again. Poor wee timorous beastie.

    How’s the weather been in SE5?

    It’s been lovely in Northumberland.

  27. newroad; my choice to live in camberwell has nothing to do with affordability but due to my businesses being located in surrey and kent and hence location. your assumptions of affordability dont apply to all that live here. deserve better refers not to miserable people but to the misery of not knowing if the only available public transport option will allow you to board…when the tube doors open you can board. when a bus arrives at a stop it can be a matter of luck if the driver allows those patiently waiting to board.

  28. I agree with you, intrepid. I sometimes think the likes of you and I are made to feel like pariahs for wanting greater public transport choice. God help you if you admit to owning a car! Mind you, there won’t be a tube station in my lifetime so my hopes are on reopening the train station. If that happens, I’m more than happy to retain the option of the bus for everyone who enjoys it so much.

    The argument for some seems to go that bus-only is best because it makes living in Camberwell cheap. I have sympathy for everyone struggling with the cost of living at the moment, but preventing progress seems a pity. If that is the way things are going to be then so be it, but don’t then complain about all the awful shopping, drunks and antisocial behaviour. It comes with the territory.

    For the record, I mostly enjoy living in Camberwell and support local stores and activities. But my philosophy is to live and let live, however you like to travel. I certainly wouldn’t tell someone to sling their hook because they find the bus unsettling!

  29. I don’t think anyone is actively against having a tube in Camberwell — i just think some of us disagree that because it is mainly served by buses that Camberwell has poor public transport, i use the buses becuase it is cheaper and actually from Camberwell to Aldwych (home to work for me) bus is the most effiecent route. I would be happy to see the bakerloo line extended but i don’t think that’s really going to happen, so I would welcome a tram in Cambwerwell.

  30. I drive a car.
    I want a bicycle but have nowhere to store one.
    I like getting buses. Generally they seem to work quite well in Camberwell.
    I want a tube station here.
    I want another train station here.

    Camberwell has a population of around 45,000 and nowhere near enough services for such a lot of people.

  31. When is the end of term art college drinks outside the Hermit’s Cave thing happening?

    Anyone know?

  32. Mark: thanks, I will send Barbara an email. Is she the secretary of SE5 Forum, and the right person to get in touch with to organise meetings etc? Butterfly Tennis Club re-opens today at 4.30pm, and there’s also an Open Day on Sunday 8 from 12.30 and I wanted to invite as many local people as possible, and can’t work out the SE5 Forum website at the mo.
    There’s free ice cream, and everyone is welcome, but be warned that you might have to join in the Round the Courts Keepy Uppy record breaking attempt.

  33. Jubilee, the wife and I will come down. We’re big fans of the club and are happy to see the St George development give you a boost too.

    Intrepid, I mean no harm. But I suspect there are places (perhaps slightly further out) where you can drive easily to your businesses and get into London with a tube/train. If I hear you, you would like to see buses improve, which is fair enough. But we won’t get the tube and really I’ve understood why and accept it.

    Mark, get your wishlist and you’ll see Camberwell become what The Guardian article railed against. Great for those of us who own property here, but hardly good for the huge number who rent. And for the majority here who live in council owned properties and need to shop/eat/live without Waitrose and overpriced shops taking over.

    Love it or leave it sounds a bit harsh. But I mean it in the nicest way possible. If you don’t love Camberwell for what it is now, you are destined to be miserable. So relax and enjoy it. It’s a pretty nice place.

  34. I wanted to join in the public transport debate, because I feel I can add something to it. I work for one of the National Rail companies, so have a handle on some of the recent developments.
    For those of you that are really keen on getting Camberwell Station re-opened, now is probably the best time to apply pressure and have some chance of success. For over 20 years, no new National Rail stations were opened in the London area, but that changed with the redevelopment of the West London Line from Clapham Junction to Willesden Jn (the service was re-instated, Kensington Olympia and West Brompton were opened and there’s a new station at Shepherds Bush on the way) and Mitcham Eastfields (between Streatham and Mitcham Junction) looks to open in the next 3–4 weeks.
    Capacity is a major problem on the Thameslink route between City Thameslink and Wimbledon (which is the line that Camberwell sits on). It’s already overfull in the rush hour, so that makes opening a new station less attractive unless they can get more train paths in (and I suspect that may not be possible). I have my own views on whether this idea is a runner, but I’ll save those for later, because this posting is already a bit long.

  35. Have to say living in the Peckham end of Camberwell the lack of a tube station is not a problem. I walk to Peckham road, jump on the first bus that comes and go to either E&C, Oval or Vauxhall tubes (E&C easily no1 preference) and get the tube from there — I’m can be at Oxford Circus in just over 30 mins door to door which is about the same time that it takes me to cycle.

    So tflinsider I’m not impressed by your tube plans — leave the Bakerloo going to E&C!

  36. I just worked out that 438,000 public buses pass Camberwell Green every year, that equates to more than one a minute. If that was even HALVED to one every two minutes because there was a tube i think i could live with this..

  37. Totally off topic, but can anyone recommend a local tradesman to fit and connect a new TV Aerial? Are the TV shop on Church Street worth trying?

    Also, out of the two, I prefer busses to tubes, but my bit of Camberwell needs something to take the strain off the 343, be it another bus route, a tram or simply more 343s! But then, I cycle most places anyway. If I need to get the tube to work, I usually walk up to Elephant. It really isn’t that far. Has anyone else wondered why the bus stops along Camberwell Road and Walworth Road are so close together?

    On another topic, JJ Caterers, the new Indian cafe on Southampton Way is worth a look. Really quite good food and incredibly cheap. Those in the area should try it out.

  38. Matt

    S+S electronics fitted my aerial. It’s the shop on the main road with the old TVs in it (think that’s the one you refert to). Makes you wonder how they stay in business. The guy, called Paul, I think, is a good egg. I’d recommend them.

    The aerial blew down in v strong winds shortly after he put it up but he returned and redid it for free. I was expecting a battle over the charges since the winds were exceptionally strong and it was not unreasonable to expect an aerial to come down in them, but it was a free repair.

  39. Alan @86

    Usually on the day of the BA private view which is Monday 16 June this year 🙂

  40. We have a sister coming to stay, so we will get a takeaway from JJ Caterers of Southampton Way, on the corner of Rainbow Street. Their Indian food, like the predominantly Indian dentists at Camberwell Green, are one of the reasons to be cheerful about Camberwell.

  41. thanks to Mark, have now tracked down the new chair of SE5 Forum, and sadly he is away for 6 weeks on a course in the US. Maybe Camberwell is being twinned with somewhere lovely in the States.

  42. I think that anything which would reduce the unbearable amount of traffic going through Camberwell Green would be a very good thing indeed…

    It’s pure stress that junction — there is no redeeming feature left to enjoy about it whatsoever…

    So a tube link would be useful — let’s hope the Denmark Hill East London Line/Overground extension is brought forward pretty sharpish…

  43. The opening ceremony the other day for the Camberwell Grove railway bridge checkpoint was a marvellous occasion. The Camberwell Town Brass Band played a medley of tunes including Mendelsohn’s “Camberwell Green” performed in a thumping and brassy sort of way. Hundreds of schoolchildren waved Union Jacks. Amongst them was Mark Dodds, waving a home-made flag and wearing his strange, weather-beaten old suit. “I used to be Mayor of Camberwell!” he proclaimed as Peaches Geldof was about to cut the silk tape. He had spent all day in the pub as usual. “No, Dodds!” said the lollipop lady, “That’s Mayor of CASTERBRIDGE you should be in, Studio 7, down the road!” He shambled off, bandy-legged, clutching his top hat to his bonce, cursing his embarrassing error.

    The first vehicle to pass through the checkpoint was a 1903 Austin Loughborough, belching smoke, with JohnnyM and Norman Maine aboard dressed as old-fashioned Edwardian Camberwell swells! They were continually overtaken by gondolas punting commuters up to town on the lost rivers and canals of London, but still, it was Progress.

    Then World War I broke out, but we’d ‘ad such a lovely day, we didn’t mind!

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