Open House, PSAs, and Mary Boast

It’s Open House London this weekend, and there are five events in Camberwell. Private residences at Coleman Road, Grace’s Mews and Camberwell Grove will be open for visits, and there will be a walk around Burgess Park. St Giles church will also be open — I’ve still never been inside, so I’m keen on that one. Unfortunately the tower at William Booth College won’t be open this year, I’d imagine that’s because of the building works that are ongoing.

A bit of a public service announcement — Southwark Council have asked me to post the following couple of links: first is to a service which helps parents whose children are starting school in September — southwark.gov.uk/schooladmissions; and second is an online questionnaire about violent crime in the borough: southwark.gov.uk/keepingyousafe.

Now, unless I’m spectacularly unobservant and have never noticed it before, the passage that cuts between Camberwell Grove and Grove Lane, where the Grand Union sits, has been named Mary Boast Passage Walk in honour of the local historian and long-time (life-long?) resident, who died earlier this year.

Mary Boast wrote the well-known The Story of Camberwell, still probably the definitive history of the area despite being written in 1972. I have a copy here at home, and refer to it often. She was a Freeman of the Borough of Southwark, and lived in the flats at the top of Denmark Hill, which have wonderful views all across Camberwell, until she passed away in June of this year, aged 89.

Author: Peter

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

24 thoughts on “Open House, PSAs, and Mary Boast”

  1. I went to Angels on Sunday night a few weeks back, unannounced. Plenty of space. Really good time to go actually. Less manic. You don’t get stuck on a table right next to someone if you don’t want etc.

    Razor clams were a-mazing.

    Tried to go to the Polish place at Elephant last week but it is temporarily closed because of a flood.

    Speaking of which, checked out the Polish Deli near Chicken Coop. Largely full of jarred junk. Grim.

  2. Mamuska! didn’t win, I don’t think; it was just shortlisted. I liked it, and thought it was quirky and unexpected but not groundbreakingly good…

    Mark, I agree about the tortilla — Roz and I were at Angels and Gypsies the other night and sent it back as it was so runny. The waitress indicated that the chef would get upset if we criticised his intentional style of cooking and that the difference is that it is fresher than previously. We had it removed from our bill and had something else instead. Shame.

    Phil, I think people haven’t yet realised it’s now open on Sunday nights — go while you can, local people! Maybe you should have to produce proof of address as SE5 to dine on a Sunday night…

  3. Well I suppose it depends on your definition of wet really. What I mean is that you don’t get the kind of dried out tortilla that you get in some places over here. More moist. Or at least that’s experience.

    On another note, bingo related. I notice that whilst some major national conservation societies have objected to the bingo hall change of use the one closest to home, that objects to almost every other development known to pass through Camberwell, has been silent.

    I’m talking about the Camberwell Grove Society obviously. Sorry the Camberwell society, who are apparently very busy with a planning application that affects a house in Camberwell Grove, and therefore have no time to deal with something that will actually affect them and everyone else in Camberwell much more. (No, I’m not joking, this was the unofficial response I got from someone who has contacts with the society).

    I think it is a disgrace, and a total lack of courtesy to not return calls. The Camberwell Society and everyone that is a member of it should be ashamed of themselves.

    There. I’ve said it. It’s been bugging me for weeks.

  4. @Monkeycat: I too was underwhelmed by the lack of Camberwell Society response.

    I’ve noticed that builders appear to have started work on the old bing hall — anyone know what that’s all about?

    BTW — bought the Mary Boast ‘The Story Of Camberwell’ after seeing it mentioned here. Tucking into it this weeked — looks very informational, and very charming.

  5. @st giles: we’ve been asking about it too & as i posted the first article, http://www.peoplesrepublicofsouthwark.co.uk/index.php?option=com_k2&view=item&id=1064:gala-bingo-hall-goingson&Itemid=3
    i got a reply from susannah pettit of the council saying hop are ‘not in breach’. the planning application itself however, includes plans for the reception desk/area, and the planning application will not get to be approved/declined until late october.
    http://www.peoplesrepublicofsouthwark.co.uk/index.php?option=com_k2&view=item&id=1065:gala-random-bingo-number&Itemid=3
    so hop have money to burn, do not give a damn about secular law, or know something none of us do.

  6. Seriously Camberwell Society should pull their moth bitten socks up. They’re nimbies who don’t see beyond their back yard. They live in a different world from plebs like us lot.

    Ad for tortillas I at a lot of them, mainly in Spain, and there’s a BILLION ways to kill one. Some dry some wet. Well done they are delicious whether wet or dry although my preference leans toward soft and succulent with harder caramelly edges. At that level a bit of liquid oozing from the marbled potatoes is fine for me.

    Angels und Gypsies lack is in salt and pepper. Seasoning went west with the fresh look. Tortillas mature with time so fresh is lost on most,.

  7. Just did a review of tortilla in the edit time and it got lost in the sands of the internet.

    A&G problem mostly from what I tried is nothing more than a light hand on the seasoning. Oh. And tortillas, like many foods, improve with time. Fresh doesn’t seem right. Maybe in posh restaurants in Madrid they like their tortillas like they like their sushi. Still kicking.

    Uh? It appeared again. Baffling.

  8. Lambeth rates bailiffs in again this afternoon. Trying to collect £28K in one go (This means I seem to have paid £11K so far this year). He said he was going to close the business down this evening, stop us trading. I wasn’t there, no I was at St Giles’ crypt putting up poster frames and public safety notices and up to my elbow with rotting vegetation as I unblocked a gully just outside the back door. Nicky, my partner at S&D had her arms in the women’s loos. Doing a proper job the highly successful previous people missed previously.

    Bailiff left eventually. Said he had another job to go to. But will be back. That’ll be interesting. Why do bailiffs spend so much time sitting around saying they are about to remove ALL the furniture, TODAY, and then leave without doing anything. Something to do with the fact that they are lying low life criminals?

  9. I need to treat everyone to one of my home made tortillas…

    Yes, it needs to be moist in the middle — slightly runny but not fluid

    ie: NOT like Delia Smith’s scrambled eggs recipe…

    Oh No!¬ You’ve got me all thinking about other homely goodies now like…

    Pulpo (Baby Octopus) and

    Chipirones (Deep Fried Baby Squid)

    Can’t get them Ocean Fresh in London 🙁

  10. I’m intrigued by the Camberwell Society. I’m sure there’s something debauched going on behind the fusty magazine and all the expertise of local planning bylaws.
    Is it like the Freemasons? Will they get me a better job? Will there be orgies?

  11. Now I am hungry for tortilla. And chipirones. And pulpo a feria. And patatas pobres. And lechuga corazones con ajo. YUM YUM.

    Alan. I am also concerned that I cannot remember anything of the plot.

    What’s new eh.

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