I want to be a model

A quick plea for help from local photographer Steven Williams:

I am a local based photographer and digital artist who is putting together a photographic installation at the end of June in conjunction with the Camberwell Arts Festival. I am currently looking for people who work, study and live in the area who would consider sitting for a photographic portrait and spend a few minutes talking to me about the experiences and thoughts of the area.

Contact Steven via his website, or Email me if you’re interested, and I’ll pass your details on.

Author: Peter

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

132 thoughts on “I want to be a model”

  1. Just to let you know, to enjoy the nicer weather, our weekly gay Sunday films upstairs at The Castle have been moved to 5pm. Tomorrow is Priscilla Queen of the Desert. Entrance free. Do come along.

  2. The regular Sunday films are usually at 4, but have now moved to 5, so that people can go out during the day, then come and see the film. Priscilla was very well attended. Next week is Beautiful Thing (gay boys falling in love on a Thamesmead housing estate).

  3. Depressing about that vase. People are just arseholes aren’t they.

    If I ever see it in a front room, I’ll have something to say…

  4. Guess you could go to watch the film, but end up hanging around outside being cool. That’s what great about summer.

    Has anyone been to Tadim’s yet?

  5. Are the gay boys from Thamesmead in the film “Beautiful Things” skinny skinheads with hairless chests? Of course they are.

    Someone on Lyndhurst Grove has left a desktop-printed note taped onto the step at the end of their path, which says something like, “To whoever let their dog do, this, you are a C***T!” The pile sits before the caption like an installation from the early 1930s ludicrism movement. No wonder Mussolini stamped it all out.

  6. @ Gabe: Thanks; that’s a real stretch of the imagination. I have the impression that fewer people in Paris LIMP with drug induced catatonia than do in Camberwell.

    ON the other hand maybe it’s best my kids grow up here than in Thamesmead. At least they know where they are here: Going nowhere.

    And Michael Jackson’s making a comeback.

  7. Yes, I wonder about my kids getting a secondary school education. Local options don’t seem that competitve academically. They’re at primary school at the moment and that seems fine.

    Outside the old town Paris is like Elephant & Castle. The movie La Haine is not that far off reality.

  8. But they speak French in Paris and are French. The French are ever so French. They shrug, pout and are very French. They may hate — la haine — being French and may prefer to be American, but they are French in France, very French indeed, just as soon as they are born into the fragrant French air, with the tang of the maquis souffling up from the south.

  9. Went to Crystal Palace the other day and had a drink in The Alma — which is a solid, unpretentious pub that shows the footie and has a garden centre attached to it…very nice

    The White Hart across the road has had a lick of paint and some spit and polish…it’s looking good, ordered some fish and chips and it was one of the best I’ve had in many years — absolutely superb

    Domali Cafe is delicious as is the St.Germain French Bistro…I must check out Westow House that looks like a mighty fine place to take a lady on a date…if their food is as impressive as The White Hart then they can’t go wrong

    I like Crystal Palace, it’s a vibrant place the triangle and somehow works considering it’s where 5 (five!) London Councils share a boundary — but like Camberwell there’s a lot of severely faded glamour which isn’t being attended too

    Bromley,Croydon,Lambeth,Lewisham and Southwark

    Bromley Council lets the area down — A local authority so flakey that it makes Southwark look like Venice at the height of it’s majestic pomp…

  10. J’adore la langue française. On entend parler souvent a Londres et même a Camberwell.

    Et surtout j’aime les Français et les francophones. Ils sont comme nous. Ils mangent les sandwiches. Leurs voitures se garent dans le parking. Les trolls énervent les blogueurs.

  11. I suggest a sculpture of Norman Wisdom hanging off the back of that Milkfloat for the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square…

    He’s a bigger hero than any of the other knobends in that square

    Nelson Mandela doesn’t count…there seem to be statues of him everywhere these days…

  12. Il pleure dan mon coeur comme il pleut sur la ville.
    Quelle est ce langueur que penetre mon coeur?

    Goods trains passing through the parish are few and far between now and for the forseeable future i.e till the planet whimpers out. There can be no more solid signifier about the state of commerce. The nameless Class 66, number 66075, goes up and down, up and down, pulling most of the stuff solo, puffing and plodding, overworked and anonymous, like the unknown solider.

    Let’s cheer up. Salome at Somerfield is staying on with the new Morrisons. She says the smaller Somerfield will be a Co-op. Maybe on the last day — next Wednesday — they will flood the shop with unsold cider and hand out straws. If the warm weather persists, it would be a jolly affair. I would wear my Agent Provocateur and Doc Martens.

  13. Local fashion designer Lu Firth has her first catwalk show at the Alternative Fashion Show in Spitalfields Market 1.15pm. if you work or may be in the area do go and support her.

  14. @SteveK — more on that story at SE5 Forum, latest news item on front page.

    @Gnomee re designer Lu Firth — it’s great to hear these kinds of success stories, home-grown locally in SE5. If you can get any pictures, links or further details, these could be posted on the SE5 Forum site’s business/entrepreneurs section (email the relevant Board member). Hope the show went well.

  15. Thanks for the heads up regarding the Denmark Hill — Victoria train service SteveK.

    Though how I read it is that the service to be scrapped hasn’t started running yet. Am I missing something? Wouldn’t be the first time. Losing the toy train (London Bridge to Victoria via SE5) is a real shame. A very, very useful 7 days a week service. And the only UK train I’ve ever seen pull out of the station without me because it was so full, like the tube on a bad day. No doubt after extensive consultations the powers that be came to the conclusion that nobody used it.

    Despite the best efforts of many, that battle’s been lost. But the ELL will be a big boost for Camberwell, even though it doesn’t directly serve our downtown area. Can’t grumble, however tempting.

    We need to keep an eye on how they’re shuffling our pack to make sure it’s not one step forward and two back. Thankfully the SRUG is doing a great job of this.

    Good luck Lu.

  16. Cool thing is the Blackfriars train now runs right through to Kings Cross every half an hour.

    However, it used to do that anyway back in the day, so this is getting back what was lost, rather than a new upgrade.

  17. I knew losing the Victoria-London Bridge loop thru Denmark Hill was a condition of getting the East London Line…Which ain’t a bad trade off to be fair

    We should still heavily lobby toget the Bakerloo Line extended to Camberwell Green…this is realistic and would relieve the appaling congestion in our town centre

    Note how that recent report from the council in the last thread totally failed to make the connection between the number of off licenses and street drinkers in Camberwell town centre…

    No, it’s because all the alcohol recovery projects are concentrated in Camberwell due to the excellent Alcohol Dependancy unit at Kings College Hospital

    Of course, It can’t be totally unregulated free market economics can it? Never!

  18. Short notice but for those who don’t know there’s another meeting re: the Camberwell Leisure Centre/Baths this Thursday (30th April) at 7pm at the United Reform Church on Grove Lane. Lewis Robinson and Harriet Harman attending to discuss the latest news.

    Some info here:


    According to the Southwark Labour Group newsletter that arrived this morning there’s another firm of architects (Watkins Gray International) who’ll be presenting development plans and timescales

  19. I’ve just cycled past the Dark Horse (as was). It’s got new signage up “La Petite Parisienne”. A new cafe?

  20. @Simon

    With a title like that it could either be:-

    A) Totally sublime and a genuinely authentic surprise delivered by people with a bit of nous


    B) Pretentious Tosh executed by a shower of rank amateurs

    I wonder what Camberwell will attract on this occasion…


    Lets roll the 12 sided dice and see 🙂

  21. GOOD NEWS, PETE. We are fish, after all, we are mentally and fundamentally fish. Even Harriet, Tony, Gordon and Dave are slippery.

    A BOIRE. The Dark Horse’s new sign has gone up, “Le Petit Parisien”, the Little Parisan Chap.

    BIG NEWS. Jeanette is in Camberwell. Calm down girls! Not Jeanette Winterson, but the locomotive 73205 along with her sister “Alison” or 73209. Interestingly, “Jeanette” used to be called “The London Chamber of Commerce”.

    Both girsl are of the now unique Class 73s built in the 1960s at the Vulcan Foundry at Newton-le-Willows, Merseyside, and more recently refurbished by Fragonset of Derby. Vitally for our iron-road arteries, they can run on a third rail electric supply or their own diesel engines. They can therefore operate in difficult conditions and are used as “Thunderbirds” to retrieve broken down trains.

    They are currently parked up just beneath the rotting iron bridge under Camberwell Grove, but alas are not helping to repair the it, but are on track work. There are floodlights, so work will continue throughout the night. Clubbers and pubbers, the nocturnal, turquoise-painted creatures of Camberwell, could go there at dawn and join the throng of already assembled, hyperventilating gricers, complete with their anoraks, bobble hats, cameras, dreadful complexions, eczema, fart gas, ghastly body odour, hair like straw, illnesses like anaemia, jelly babies, kupcakes, lollies, moaning, neuroses, offensive breath, purple acne rashes, quizzical expressions, rambling stories of “clocking” diesel shunters at Crewe, stench, teeth, underpants beyond repair, virginity, wank stains, eximious attitudes towards girls even their own sister Sandra, yaws and Zippo lighters that give off the whiff of hydrocarbons which are ever so slightly carcinogenous “did you know, actually, I think you’ll find”.

  22. “THE IT” are the best band in Camberwell. Three cheers for Le Petit Parisien, showing some nous for us. Maybe the Girsl Flyers will play there. Laissez les bon temps rouler! We have nothing to lose but our chains.

  23. Interesting poetry in the Doves last night. Not really funny enough but a good try.

    Loved the i‑pod dj work. The organiser was very enthudiastic. Good one. Might even get an i‑pod for next time..

  24. From the Morning Advertiser 21/04/2009:

    “Dark Horse Gallops into Gallic Spotlight.

    The Dark Horse pub in Southwark, London, is set to become the capital’s first dedicated French gastropub. Situated close to Denmark Hill station, the leasehold has been acquired by David Fall, who was involved in creating the Le Pot Lyonnaise restaurant in Battersea in the mid-1990s. Fall is currently refurbishing the site and plans to reopen this summer under the name Le Petit Parisien, a French-themed gastropub with a Gallic influenced menu.”

    So there you have it. Punch Taverns have managed to con yet another lessee into taking on the Kerfield. I hope it goes well for David Fall but if the rent’s anything like it was for Blakes and Dark Horse he will fail unless he manages to get out of the tie for beer, or not to sell beer at all. Don’t know how your Camberwell online collective memories are but I predicted the failure of Dark Horse on similar grounds. Good luck David Fall. We certainly could do with your input into the area I just fear for you in that site under those onerous terms.

  25. Speaking of restaurants there was an item in the South London Press about our friend Noodels City — it was in the Eye section (a diary type column):

    “Heres one to enrage anyone who feels passionately about preserving the English language.

    Owners of a Chinese restaurant in Camberwell Green have been told to take down their shop sign — but not because of the horrendous spelling on display.

    A Council Officer revealed planner can only reject such applications if they are too large or contain offensive language. If theres not someone out there who finds spelling “Noodels City” offensive The Eye will eet its hat.” (sic)

    So it looks like they will be taking down the sign…

  26. Thanks Alan but no the photos are by Yusuf Ozkizil (http://www.flickr.com/photos/thesunanddoves/2510443441/sizes/o/) He’s a really nice chap of Turkish descent, got a bit of press for the show and some big Turkish TV channel is coming to film him at the Doves in front of his show.

    As for my photographs I’m having a show in July and, if I can get my act together (I’m under a LOT of pressure from the freeholder now), will have a book for sale to go with the exhibition. It’s called ‘Never Stop Taking Pictures’ and it’s about a third ready now but I’m finding less and less time to work on it as I have to spend more and more time fighting Scottish & Newcastle Pub Enterprises over the kind of things that have happened to Dark Horse et al).

  27. By the way, and sorry if I’ve already posted this here, this week’s Apprentice features a scene in The Sun and Doves — one team selling a skeleton to a member of the public.

  28. Could those scaremongering regarding Lucas Gardens give it a rest? It is not ‘under threat’. The same public area of Lucas Gardens that’s there now isn’t going anywhere. Making outlandish, untrue claims doesn’t help the positive work we’ve accomplished with Council help of late. This is the back garden of a former home turned Council office now being sold because the Council is moving to far more affordable offices. It is not part of Lucas Gardens. There is no threat the Council is going to take away private property at will to sell it off. These sorts of misguided, unfounded claims are irresponsible. There are true battles to be fought and most are best addressed working with the Council.

  29. Le Petit Parisien — ah, the Paris-Camberwell link again. Vive la difference.

    Had lunch in Tadim at the weekend. It was okay. Very much like Carravagio in that it’s a reasonable deal for reasonable food. The stark decor makes it feel noisy but it might work better with a few more people in to create some atmosphere. I’d go back.

  30. I see the covers have come off that refurbed development on Camberwell Grove. Did that happen ages ago?

    With those pillars it looks like the kind of thing you’d get in an expensive suburb in pre-crunch Atlanta. Although I’d guess the Camberwell frontage is original.

  31. I enjoyed spending a few hundred, mostly on dinner, in The Dark Horse and I was sad to see it fall and get made into dog food. But it was lacking in atmosphere somewhat as a pub. I hope the new restaurant will get the balance right between quality and affordability and really pull the punters in. Given its hidden location, it needs to be a destination restaurant. One would also hope that in the present conditions Punch Taverns don’t act like a plantation owner. Surely it’s in their interests to have a sustainable business there paying rent?

    Lots of hungry people with fat pockets arriving in the Datchelor flats will help a little. Mind you, I think The Grove has no redeeming features and that’s still open. So what do I know?

  32. @ Lucas.

    Congratulations on getting all the section 106 money earmarked for parks within the Brunswick Park Ward, as part of the Mary Datchelor Estate dev. (I think!).

    Can you share your plans with us about how the money will be used?

  33. @Butterball — the Grove is owned and run by Youngs, although Youngs no longer strictly speaking are a brewer. It’s a managed pub and has the freeholder behind it.

    The Kerfield/Blakes/Dark Horse/Le Petit Parisien will be let out by Punch on a fully repairing fully insuring lease to an individual. Such as David Fall. Such leases most often come with a legally binding supply agreement — a tie — whereby the leaseholder has to buy some, or all depending on the extent of the tied agreement, of their supplies through the freeholder. Goods available through the tie are invariably MUCH more expensive than open market and normally no discounts are negotiable. A larger company can take on a lease under the same circumstances but larger companies tend to go for freeholds of free of tie leases. This is not to say that David Fall has not negotiated a free of tie agreement. Times are hard and Punch, like the other pub companies, are desperate not to have even more pubs boarded up than they have already.

  34. off topic, but are people aware of this website and has anyone used the service?

    It allows you to arrange for parcels to be dropped off at a local collection point for evening or weekend collection at your convenience. Costs £1 per parcel. Great for when you can’t be home to receive a parcel.


    Camberwell is quite well served compared to other areas.

Comments are closed.