There is no new thing, and no sun

Just a flying post, more to provide new space for comments than anything else. I have a touch of ennui about Camberwell at the moment, and need something new to give me my groove back. The new meat & fish shop on Denmark Hill doesn’t count, unless someone tells me it serves better quality than it appears to serve.

Latest casualty in our shopping mecca seems to be Duraty electronics. I noticed the last time I went in there that it had changed hands, and on the two occasions I’ve passed it since then, it’s been closed up. On the bright side, that frees up space for another pound shop to open. Update: Apparently still open. One less thing to be cynical about.

Sunday saw the Olympics come to Camberwell Green, only I can’t find any coverage of it bar this brief reportage from our own Dagmar on the SE5Forum forum. I was away, as usual. Update: Here’s a brief report; is that our very own Drew Mishmash in the first photo?

I saw the ‘million moron march’ walking along Peckham Road yesterday afternoon, with their police escort, apparently walking to Notting Hill for a rumble. Spare us from bored, aggressive, baby gangsters.

I’m still looking for guest contributors; anyone feel they have anything to offer?

Author: Peter

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

32 thoughts on “There is no new thing, and no sun”

  1. The Notting Hill youf roundup blew my mind. Here were a huge group of Afro-Carribean kids seemingly hell bent on causing trouble at what is essentially an amazing celebration of the progress of their own community in the UK. Unbelievable.

  2. This may not be all that new but The Cambria pub has had a major refurb and now looks excellent — and has a live jazz night on Mondays. Very welcoming beer garden too although some decent weather to enjoy it in would be a start!

  3. I’ve got one.. anyone get caught up in the 150 person riot at Oval station on Monday night? Seemed to be another aftermath of the carnival excitments.

  4. I passed by, I was on the 185 from Victoria and as we came down from Vauxhall about 5 or 6 police vans hared past us with all the lights and sirens on. We then got stopped at the northen part of the oval and had to get off the bus, there were about 10 vans there, about 50 or 60 coppers too I would say, plus a helicopter!
    We had to walk round the oval the long way which wasn’t that much of a deal, far more inconvenient for the huge tailback of traffic stretching all the way back down Camberwell New Road!

  5. Also the Bear was closed on Monday for “refurbishment”
    Refurbishment? It seems like it’s only been open 5 mins!
    Had my maiden experience of Tadim on Sunday, nice food and murals, good value too. The Olympic party on the Green was quite fun, my new housemate and I wandered around for a bit, we were there early on at about 1.30 and it was a bit dead, good african drumming though!
    Then we went to Tadim and when we came back past it was much more happening, Camberwell was lovely on Sunday, the sun was out and the people seemed in good cheer.

  6. Hello, long-time reader, first-time writer.

    Unrelated to the Carnival ‘Troubles’ but this morning on my way to Brixton tube there was another poor bugger hit by a truck by the junction of Coldharbour Lane / Loughborough Rd. Thats 2 in about a month now at the same time of day. How many need to get crippled before the Council put up some lights there?

    PS where were the petrol bombs and plastic bullets at this so-called riot? poor effort all round I thought

  7. “Where were the petrol bombs and plastic bullets at this so-called riot? poor effort all round I thought.”

    I know! It’s not like the old days round here. Used to be State-of-the-Nation stuff (ah, memories!), now it’s desperately piss-poor and underachieving.

    Re: The Bear — I doubt if that was refurbishment, more like a crafty Bank Holiday. And good luck to ’em!

  8. The ennui many people feel around Camberwell may well be due to the grey skies of recession hanging over us. The large moths seen in late summer are the harbinger of the dark — autumn, winter, then nothing.

    However, a clue to what really awaits us lies in a remarkable discovery I have made in the ever-magical Lucas Gardens. Coca-cola cans have a male ring-pull whereas Pepsi cans have a female ring-pull.

    Even the large entry on Wikipedia for “Beverage cans” does not note this amazing fact, this chink of light in the armour of corporate capitalism.

  9. Can anyone tell me what Supermalt is? I’m always seeing these little brown bottles on the walls of people’s front yards, one would think they’re used to ward off evil spirits (no pun intended)considering the frequency at which I see them.

  10. Supermalt.. is the food of gods.. its a fermented thick sweet malt like beverage drunk in African countries as a source of nutrients and nourishment. However it is now often consumed by “well fed individuals” who really do not need the extra 600 calories!

  11. Supermalt is hard to drink if you’re me.

    Duraty was bought by some Asian guys who are hard working and industrious. The outgoing brothers Lee and Roger were fairly glad to see the back of Camberwell. My words not theirs. Duraty still closes on Wednesday afternoon so maybe that’s when you’ve seen it closed.

    The Bear I guess was closed to sort out the table tops which badly needed de-stickying. Had a couple of very decent meals there recently. Good to see it’s getting busier.

    The Beijing London Olympic handover on the Green last Sunday was a joint effort by loads of local people and businesses. Knackering but good fun. I took a lot of photos — my job for the day once I’d delivered all the food and refreshments and helped set up. Flickr thinks the SE5 Forum stream isn;t pro and is not allowing upload which is really irritating. It said I’d uploaded 100mb of photos but they aren’t in the site.

    I missed an almost irresistible invite to Notting Hill to drink Champagne and eat snacks all day long on the roof at Portobello Gold — the pub overlooks the Carnival and is owned by a friend, Mike Bell, who’s fighting the PuBCos with me, my business partner Nicky, and Steve Corbett; guvnor of the George Canning.

    Roll on the revolution…

  12. Ha ha ha! Spot on, Mark, I had to move tables at The Bear the other day because the table I was at was so sticky. Still, scallops with chorizo for a starter, and duck confit for a main, it doesn’t get any better dan dis!

    Minor note — those 150 blokes arrested at the Oval were English, not Afro-Caribbean. And they’re the future. Your future. God save the Queen!

  13. @ Merrick — Yes, the new owners seemed good. Glad to hear it’s not closed, although they must keep strange hours in that case; I recently went past there on a Saturday afternoon and it was closed.

  14. Mark, went for a quiet drink in the S&D on Monday evening, your staff are lovely, I had a very amusing chat with a flamboyant chappy with a French accent who was behind the bar. Thoroughly enjoyable evening.

  15. @15 Correct. And I’m assuming you’re including the British Government under the title of “scum”, seeing as they are one of the biggest arms-dealers in the world.

    “Wars, conflict, it’s all business. ‘One murder makes a villain. Millions a hero.’ Numbers sanctify.” — Charlie Chaplin.

  16. Recieved details of this meeting from my ward councillor. Posting it here for anyone else who may not have heard about it and is interested in attending.

    “Following concerns from residents of the SE5 part of Herne Hill Ward, exacerbated by the recent murder in Northlands Street, Sergeatnt Tom Cornish has organised an informal meeting for residents onThursday 4th September at 7:30 pm at the 1st* floor meeting room of Harry Caddick Community Hall, 63 Lilford Road, SE5 9HN (Lilford Road junction with Carew Street).* Any queries, please contact: Sergeant Tom Cornish Tom.​Cornish@​met.​police.​uk Herne Hill ward safer neighbourhood police team Tel: 0208 649 207″

  17. Thanks — we’re not in Herne Hill Ward but anythig that happens on Coldharbour Lane tend to affect our bit of Camberwell too.

  18. In concur, Norman, the chaps in the Oval shindig were probably British and also we must learn to spell Afro-Caribbean with one “r” and two “b’s”. Mind you, some were probably from African origin pretending to be cool (sullen and no facial movement) and getting it a bit wrong. Mind you we are all Africans, Africa is the tree where man was born. But let’s not be beastly to the Germans… male and female ring-pulls… Supermalt brewed in Denmark, Malta in Nigeria… fair pint… Inbev, Unibev, Brewuni… Tadcaster… Burton… ou sont les bieres d’antan?


    Bel Air Park on the edge of Dulwich Village is a real find as a beautiful diversion by bicycle on the way to Normalwood and Snorbury. It has a “Gone with the Wind” wedding cake mansion, a long lake of deep, dark water, big trees and massive areas of superbly cut grass. It looks private, but there are welcoming signs from good old Southwark right there in Dulwich proper, where many other posher futures are being crafted, in stark contrast to those of the marginalised, brutalised, aggressive, paranoid, deprived, despised, avoided and feared Oval people, nevertheless children of Albion.

  19. I concur, Norman, that should have said, above. I am feeling under the weather and error-prone. I have therefore been reading the poems of Francois Villon who was marginalised and became a thief (from grand mansions) in France in the 15th Century. His ballad of “les Pendus”, the hanged ones, is great.

  20. Funny, from one ne’erdowell to another — I’ve almost finished a great biography of Caravaggio (real name Michelangelo Merisi, for all you pub quizzers out there). After having fled Rome on a murder charge, he was inducted into the Knights of Malta, whereupon he committed a further undocumented crime (I have a feeling it was something beastly), was imprisoned and made a daring escape from a heavily-guarded fortress, and is currently on the lam in Sicily. I fear this is not going to end well, Dagmar.

  21. I went to Caravaggio: The Final Years at the Nat Gall. The paintings were so big and dark and depicted such larger-than-life lowlifes that it was like being in the Hermits Cave in winter outside term time.

  22. @19 Hi, I am a long time reader, first time poster and agree very much with the comment re S&D barman. In fact, I think that the bar staff are standout now whereas in the past I did tend to avoid S&D due to service not being up to much.

    Whilst I feel chatty, I tried a chinese takeaway (after giving up on them as they are usually so bad) called Bing in SE17, they deliver to SE5. They were great and dare I say it…were better than Tasty House (which can be a bit stale and oily in comparison). I am now off to lurk again — I thank you.

  23. I think it is okay to refer to Afro Caribbean (attacking spelling on chat sites is a cheap argument in absence of anything else, I find) community even if many are first, second or more generation ‘British’. Just as we do with the South Americans at the Carnaval del Pueblo or Irish at St Paddy events. I don’t think it racist, but actually the beauty of London and the UK’s diversity where people who’ve been here forever still cling to their roots.

    And I stand by my disbelief that folks from that community would be hell bent on causing trouble at a celebration of their very own heritage, struggle and success. Nott Hill C is an amazing event. How those it is meant to honour would want to destroy it for the vast majority of attendees is beyond me.

  24. The gangs are a pain, you are right newroad. Thank God the bill were on the case. There is more to life than knives, guns and other bling. Spelling for instance!

  25. Newroad said “And I stand by my disbelief that folks from that community would be hell bent on causing trouble at a celebration of their very own heritage, struggle and success. Nott Hill C is an amazing event. How those it is meant to honour would want to destroy it for the vast majority of attendees is beyond me.”

    It’s beyond you because you are white.

    Dagmar said “There is more to life than knives, guns and other bling. Spelling for instance!”

    Try telling that to the young black tribes and you will be stabbed to death as was Mr. Lawrence. BTW Chindamo was released today with Police protection and was given a car all at tax payers expence. Hey Ho!

  26. White people have risked their lives listening to left-wing music at Rock Against Racism concerts… oh, never mind. The conkers have started to fall. The mushrooms in the parks are as big as parasols. In Bel Air Park, from the long, deep, dark lake, thousands of mosquitoes rise in the evening, still drowsy with the blood of Dulwich Village investment bankers, yet still hankering after fresh human claret, aye, imbued with the great vintages of the fragrant Bordeaux, no doubt.

    Tomorrow, great doings in Camberwell. A huge tree is to be felled in Lucas Gardens. Counselling is being offered.

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