Harvest Month

I can’t believe it’s September already. Plenty going on this month, starting with the return of the Farmers Market on the Green this Saturday. Also on the Green later this month is Camberwell Information Day:

Meet local councillors and learn about plans for your area, such as: Improved homes; New library and resource centre; Burgess Park transformation; Street improvement schemes.

Also it’s the College of Arts MA show next week; find out more at MA Digital Arts or MA Fine Art, which has an impressive list of events.

McDonalds on Denmark Hill want to open 24 hours at weekends. I know that in the past the area outside McDonalds has been marked as one with a high incidence of crime, so I hope that’s taken into account when the planning decision’s being made.

Last weekend I went to the new bar where Funky Munky used to be, which is currently nameless (well, I know what the name is but I’m going to let the owners unveil it when they’re ready; suffice it to say, you’ll never guess what it is). It’s bright and spacious and has a fantastic range of beers; they offer the new 13 pint measure so you can experiment many different beers without getting too hammered.

Three small glasses of beer

Beer taps on a bar

It’s not officially opened yet but I’m already optimistic that this is going to be a great addition to the area; finally a place which serves more than the standard choices provided elsewhere (to be fair, The Phoenix has a pretty decent selection too).

I really, really hope they keep the NEVER GIVE UP sign.

Update: More stuff! Saturday is the Brunswick Park fete, from 12–4 in Brunswick Park (obviously). And at 9am on Sunday the Bikes for Books team departs from Camberwell for a ride to Burwash, some 50+ miles away.

Author: Peter

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

61 thoughts on “Harvest Month”

  1. Also on this Saturday is the Brunswick Park fete — stalls, food, drink, face painting & urban bees on offer. Say goodbye to the summer in style. 12–4.

  2. @Gabe — It’s only been on that corner for a couple of years, but it feels right; appropriate somehow. Reminds me of the famous Churchill quotation:

    “Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never — in nothing, great or small, large or petty — never give in, except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force. Never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.”

  3. The famous flying bombs of 1944 landed on the densely populated area of SE5, claiming many lives. Churchill visited the area once and urged the bombees to never give up. A cove in the crowd called out that it was all very well for the bunkered classes, but they, the people, were vulnerable and scared to look up — in so many, no doubt choice, words.

    The NEVER GIVE UP invocation presupposes that passers-by lack sufficient British beef to continue their journey past the sign. It is a condescending slogan and the sooner it ceases its preaching, the better.

    It also recalls those Munky funsters who are so fond of their charlie. Once they start talking, they NEVER GIVE UP.

    It seems the Dagmars now qualify for delivery of LIVING SARF mag.


  4. Talked to Moira about the ‘Never Give Up’ sign last week, she seemed to imply it would be gone if someone were to come up with a decent offer for it… Sad if it does, it’s like having a local Banksy, with the added advantage of not being sh*t…

    Camberwell tonight was absolutely rocking. Bloody lovely to see it so… nice crowd outside the Hermits, open windows of the BarWithNoName giving the mentals a new crowd to bum ciggies from and the Tiger and the Crooked Well both packed. Didn’t see Angels and Gypsies, but friends hadn’t managed to get a table till 10.30 so I’m guessing that’s a good sign!


  5. The Old Dispensary was packed as well. I was wondering, “Is this where the Silver Buckle clientele ended up?”

    Yep, it is. Make of that what you will.

    In other news — the Miliki Spot is now the Clarendon Arms once again! And it has ESPN. Which means I don’t have to walk all the way down to the Black Sheep for those slightly obscure games.

  6. Been asked to present this information:

    Camberwell Leisure Centre’s stunning new £4.7m developments will soon be complete. To celebrate the recently reopened pool, changing areas, reception, café and, the soon to reopen 30 workout station gym on the 24 September, Fusion is giving away three Choice memberships to the lucky winners of this competition.

    The prizes up for grabs are a 12 month, six month and three month membership, and could be for a family, joint or individual so don’t forget to tick the box at the end to state which type of membership package you would like to win.

    To test your local sporting knowledge and for your chance to win go online today at http://www.southwark.gov.uk/camberwell You can also visit the centre to complete the form and post in the competition box. The closing date for the competition is 15 September and winners will be notified on 20 September.

  7. IF you’re REALLY interested; as I mentioned here before, NEVER GIVE UP was made by Jez Rands, who, separate from being a great guy, is variously in employ at Camberwell College both as a teacher of things creative and occasionally on the bar. IF you’re SERIOUS about commissioning such work, I can put you in touch with him.

    Jez also worked at the Crypt for a long time and, had my tenure there been continued, his paintings would have graced the walls, from floor to ceiling, right from the entrance through to the bar and round the stage.

  8. Was thinking.…. all in all, Camberwell’s pubs are not doing so bad in the survival stakes — even if there have been re-brandings and ownership changes, most survive, against the trend of many other inner-city areas that have seen similar demographic changes over the last 50 years. Central Camberwell particularly. There have been casualties along the way (The Marlborough, Dalwood St, The Flying Dutchman, Southampton Way, The Castle on Camberwell Rd and for those who remember it, The Orange Tree in Havil St). But generally, things still look quite healthy (I talk from a customer’s perspective — I know that Mark D has a different perspective).

  9. By the way — whilst in reflective mood, I want to go public with how grateful I am for this blog, Peter (& the rest of you). It was particularly heartening to see how many lurkers appeared as part of the discussion on the riots. The readership appears to be much wider than the number of regular posters.

  10. Yes, without us regulars, the zenly-patient Peter’s blog would be usless. Thus a real message can be successfully woven into the warp and weft of a sentence to avoid derogative blogging, which is rightly proscribed by Peter, and yet be as refreshing as the gentle September rain.

    The Yellow Train passed slowly through Camberwell yesterday evening, a ghostly sight. Much of the bright yellow livery is technically-speaking “Warning Panel Yellow”, though not all, so the train made up of several passenger carriages plus service wagons offers the open-mouthed moon and other wonderers an almost phosphorescent ghost train going on its way in the gathering dusk.

    97301 pulled it, a locomotive built in 1962 in the world’s first railway town, Newton-le-Willows, in the Celtic mists of Merseyside within a punter’s wish of Haydock Park racecourse.

    This Class 37 English Elelectric Type 3 was made at the mighty English Electric Vulcan foundry founded in 1831 and was originally numbered D6800.

    This type of diesel-electric workhorse is known as a “tractor” to gricers, because of its similar sound to the agricultural puller. But the main difference is that the diesel motor is used to generate electricity to power the wheels — there is NO direct link between the diesel motor and the traction wheels. You might say the vehicle is a massive mobile generator.

    All throughout the 1960s and 1970s D6800 worked the old LNER up to Yorkshire and the East Anglian lines to Wymondham and Norwich. In June of 1984 it was dual-braked and sent to work at the great Immingham Dock.

    Test borings (rather like this one) were made at Immingham (or Ming-Ming, as just plain “Ming” as it is known locally) as long ago as 1874, but the first sod was dug in 1906, digging continuing until the finished trench became the country’s biggest deepwater dock.

    1993 found the loco working the long-long-haul Euston-Inverness passenger route. It was renumbered to 97301. Now it is part of Network Rail’s maintenenance fleet.

    97301 is 50 years old next year, a classic “clagger” if there ever was one. (“Clagging” is the name given by gricers to the sudden belching of black smoke as the train takes the strain.)

    Oh, but we are all passing through.

    We may see ourselves as “residents” of Camberwell and constantly recycle and revise down our own opinions of what we see as our “known” environment till our trusty certainties are as repetitive as a rattly escalator and as dull as worn-down tarmac.

    But anyone who has seen the Yellow Train appear from the darkness with its mournful but determined aspect will know, that one day, they, too, must climb aboard — strangely obey — at some lonely nocturnal halt around here, and be taken who knows where — or if at all to any destination whatsoever, ever again.

  11. @mushtimushta — Regarding readers/lurkers, etc: there’s a generally accepted 1:9:90 ratio of users on community web sites: a highly engaged 1% who create and administer; an engaged 9% who contribute; and 90% who consume without engaging often. I’d say that probably holds true for this site; in the last month I’ve had about 3,000 visitors, of which some 67% return more than once. Of those, a handful contribute in comments.

    I am, of course, massively grateful to everyone who reads and comments; I am always aware that my own contributions are only a way to hopefully start a conversation, and what goes on in the comments holds the real value of the site.

  12. And as Mark says, I did have a lovely day out in Peckham on Saturday. First the Peckham Rye fete which was amazingly busy; loads of families enjoying the different events, including a Punch & Judy show which still had the kids on their feet shouting angrily at Mr Punch even in this age of multimedia distraction.

    Then stumbled across the Bussey Building with some beautiful art on the outside by Phlegm and Roa, and inside an exhibition of paintings by Berlin-based artists; there’s a free closing party tonight (Monday) where most of the artists will be in attendance.

    Followed that with a trip to Bold Tendencies and Frank’s, which every year becomes a more established and elaborate fixture.

    Finally, dinner at Ganapati, which even seven years on is still fully booked at weekends. Triffic job.

    I do love living in our neck of the woods.

  13. Went to see the mighty Dulwich Hamlet at the weekend. They won for the fifth time in a row (and five clean sheets), beating the artisan roofers of Eastbourne 2–0.

    Promotion year I tell you.

  14. @ florian

    I love the Mighty Hamlet!

    It’s a great little place for a drink and to watch some grass roots football…

    A great community club — if only more people would go and lend some support — they certainly need it.

  15. It is. Crowds are good for the Ryman South at around 250–300 for home games. But they rely heavily on revenue from the bar and the fitness club for survival, I understand. Hand to mouth stuff, although they got £1900 for beating Eastbourne and progressing in the FA Cup at the weekend.

  16. “Grass roots football?” Eusebiomate, I knew the gentle September rain would bring new genius to Camberwick. We should have a Camberwickonline terrace presence there. We Danish love anything to do with Hamlet. 2 nil or not 2 nil. It’s a good afternoon there, for sure — the players are fast and hellish fit.

  17. Well. I was in Northumberland again when Peter was in Peckham and the Yellow Train passed through, shame to miss so much going on.

    Came back to open a letter from Scottish & Newcastle Pub Company (http://www.snpubs.co.uk/ OR: couldn’trunapissupinabrewery®) via Lambeth County Court… might come back to this later today but in the meantime don’t forget the QUIZ at the Sun and Doves this Wednesday.

    If you want a laugh look for S&NPC’s Environmental Statement. It’s a crock of LIES like everything else they do.

  18. @ Dagmar

    We should definetely (one day) organize a camberwick online meet-up at the Hamlet’s field of dreams!

    I usually go on a tuesday night.

  19. Are you the one with the wooden leg or is that Alan Dale?

    Camilla Parker Bowles was at Myatts Field today. Just thought you might like to know that. She visited there after Walworth Garden Farm where she spent an hour with a lot of very smartly dressed people. And some pots and stuff.

  20. Now that you believe you’ve seen Camilla Parker-Bowles in Myatts Fields, Mark, have you thought of the Sun & Doves becoming the shirt sponsor for Dulwich Hamlet? If it were a runaway success, you could buy the club and be a “popular, colourful local businessman” like Mohamed Al Fayed. Worth a thought.

  21. Mark,

    Would it be an idea to run your business rather than knock around with Camilla in a park?

    Just a two cents worth.


  22. Got to give these guys a quick plug…I just popped into the Beanery cafe at Looger Burooger train station and had a slice of their pizza.…delicious

  23. Looger Burooger — many, many turns of our planet ago, I worked in British Rail’s Central Telephone Enquiry Bureau, answering calls from people who wanted train times, fares etc. Anyway, someone once phoned up and asked for the train times from Elephant & Castle to Lowbrow Junction.

  24. The former Funky Munky is now called Stormbird (note the lack of ‘the’). I went their last night for their unofficial launch; a few free drinks were given out to known regulars of the Hermits, and there was a little snack buffet laid on. I may have had one nice beer too many.

  25. Might drop in for 13 of a pint sometime. Austerity era and all that.

    Anyone ever had a drink in The British Queen on Picton Street? It has a fabulous pub sign. Boadicea & her chariot.

  26. The chunk of 1955 film about Camberwell, “London Borough”, showing at the Cuming Museum has been extended and now runs for about 20 minutes. It shows Camberwell Baths in Artichoke Place, with the large legend on the side of the old Munky, “STOBART MANSIONS”. Now if Camberwell were a small provincial town, which is some ways it is, circa 1979, the old Munky would now be called “Stobart’s” like “Bogart’s”.

    40-tonners on the way to the Channel ports would screech to a halt and park up on the Peckham Road, “Operation Stack” style. Norberts and Stobarts would swap stories of M25 nightmares at the bar.

  27. Have never dared to enter the British Queen — http://bit.ly/pVUrB3 It has an uncomfortable foreboding that comes from St George flags and the like paraphernalia.

    Stormbird’s a good name. Like it a lot. Have twice ALMOST got Funky Munky — and both times it was to be called Artichoke. The business plans, logos and all now simmering on a back burner waiting for another life.

  28. Yes — good luck, Mark, with whatever you decide as your next move. What about an off-licence near the Green? The trade would be quite good, given the proliferation of them. I don’t mean that in a nasty way, by the way.

  29. That’s awful news Mark, very sorry to hear it. The Sun and Doves is a potent symbol of Camberwell’s improvement over the last — ok, 16, years — and so many people will miss it. Miss it for the food and drink, the friendliness, the music and the quiz nights, the films and for being a focal point for sensible living.

    And I’ll miss having lunch there; it’s got to be a regular habit since I retired and I’ve got to love the way the guys know what glass of wine I’m drinking.

    I hope you have something lined up for October and beyond; there’ll be many wishing you the same.

  30. Many thanks for the thoughts. Means a lot to me, really. I probably said this before over the years but frankly, it will be a relief. Been fighting the vile stupidity of the beer tie for a very long time.

    The Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee on Pubcos is due to publish their latest findings about the tied pub industry this Wednesday. It would be a delicious irony for me if they find that all tied tenants should be offered a free of tie deal with an open market rent review, which is what Fair Pint has been pushing for since 2008. If they do that, the pub industry as we have come to know it for the last 20 odd years will finally be at the start of its end. If you get my drift.

  31. First post from me, hello.

    Went to Stormbird on Friday — has potential. I would say, the third pints are rather ‘keenly priced’: in excess of 2 quid for a 3rd means you’re potentially paying £6 for a pint.

    Still, there were some nice touches — lots of free snacks, including chocolate with the fruit beer, wins me over. If they’re going to trade on the beer selection they could do with having table menus with the details listed.

  32. @sloth I think (but not 100% positive) that if you by one of the beer bats (3 x 13 pints) you get it discounted; good way to try out some new ones.

  33. Yeah, sloth, nice one.

    Have you seen lust recently? She is so slippery, that one. Avarice is keeping his head down — in a flat-screen telly. His mate envy wants one, too.

    Gluttony is dead.

    Pride and wrath — at it again. Dirty buggers. Dirty buggers!

    Forgive one.

    One of the delights of Camberwell is that one may so easily go over the hill and far away to the Dulwich Picture Gallery and see many fancy and nice paintings of human nature by turns clad and divested in classical themology and semiological threnody.

    One wafted past for the last day of Poussin and Twombly on Sunday — of which more later, for one has the vapours and must now take the powders and lie down on the eiderdown, seeking oblivion and yet watching the old cathode-ray television.

  34. These are the proposed boundary changes for local constituencies.

    In Southwark, we noted that the electorate was too large for two constituencies. We also noted that the existing Bermondsey and Old Southwark, and Camberwell and Peckham constituencies each have an electorate within 5% of the electoral quota. We considered that it was necessary to make minor changes to both of them to fit in with the pattern of neighbouring constituencies. We propose that the Peckham Rye ward should be included in the Dulwich and Sydenham constituency instead of the Camberwell and Peckham constituency, that the Newington ward should be included in the Camberwell and Peckham constituency instead of the Bermondsey and Old Southwark constituency, and that the Bishop’s ward of the Borough of Lambeth should be included in a renamed Bermondsey and Waterloo constituency.

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