June and July: Arts Festival, Open House, Fair and more

Lots happening in the next few months in Camberwell and around…

Camberwell Arts Festival is back for 2017, starting with a party on the Green on 10th June, “where you can expect feasting, free fun workshops, a cake competition and a market showcasing the talent of Camberwell’s creative community”. There’ll be an Arts and Crafts Market on the same day, with a “wonderful range of goodies made in and around Camberwell’s dynamic creative community.” (Pardon the quotes, I’m using their press release to avoid rewriting it all.)

There’s a full programme of events at venues all around the area until 18th June. Some events will require tickets, so make sure you check in advance. You can view the brochure onlinedownload it as a PDF, or find a printed copy at “several shops, cafes, restaurants around SE5 including The Leisure centre, Hill Bakery, The Camberwell Arms, Joiners Arms, Art Deli and Maloko”.

On Saturday, 17th June, there’s the Myatt’s Fields Midsummer Fair. “a celebration of food, nature, arts and community, with live music, dance displays, stalls selling food, craft and bric a brac, greenhouse tours, fairground rides, a football tournament, peepshow exhibition, a parade for peace, Big Lunch and more”.

And also on 17th June, just slightly over the border, the Warwick Gardens Great Get Together [Facebook link] is “a community BYO picnic to get people together to meet their neighbours, share food and have fun”. Activities include “hand massages, glitter face-painting, table tennis tournament, yoga demo, kids ballet, swing dancing, and live music throughout the afternoon with local reggae artist Ras Keith”.

On the following weekend, 24th June, there’s the Ruskin Park Summer Fete, with “stalls, activities, pop up bar, food and music. This year you can try your hand at Willow Craft Sculpture, have a beautiful Henna Design, listen to wonderful Caribbean folktales. And back again by popular demand will be Kids’ Whirled Cinema in the Tipii  and those gorgeous and much loved Donkeys.”

The same day, 24th June, Camberwell College of Arts are holding an Open House, “a family-orientated event, offering free creative workshops, especially designed for children and young people. [it] takes place across two sites, Wilson Road, SE5 8LU and Peckham Road, SE5 8UF. The workshops at the event will include letterpress, screenprinting, The Darkroom Experience, stop motion animation, and much more”. Full details on their website.

And the evening of the 24th sees the return of Organoke—karaoke sung along with the mighty organ of St. Giles’ Church. Buy tickets online, or from The Pigeon Hole cafe (Datchelor Place), or on the door if any are left (there might not be).

On the 1st of July there’s the Just So pop-up Summer Fair at Ark All Saints Academy, Wyndham Road. Arts, crafts, local businesses and more. Details on the flyer.

Later the same month, 22nd July, Camberwell Fair returns to the Green. Full details should be released in a few weeks time, and I’ll add them here when I get them; or, keep an eye on their website.

Not forgetting the regular Saturday Farmers Market and Sunday Market; all told, should be plenty to see and do in the next months.

Over in Dulwich, the Picture Gallery have opened a Summer Pavilion until 8th October. There’ll be plenty of events happening there, with local interest provided by a bar and menu from our own Camberwell Arms. More information on the Gallery’s website.

Noisy neighbours: the Peckham scene

I read recently yet another ‘Peckham is the latest London hotspot’ article, with the evidence this time being Frank’s (of course) and a one-off night food market at the Bussey (of course). There’s definitely a buzz in Peckham at the moment, but it goes a bit further afield than those two now-stalwart venues.

Just around the corner from the train station is Peckham Refreshment Rooms, a small Spanish-style restaurant serving portions of fantastically well-cooked food including some delicious Parma ham. It’s small and very busy, but worth a trip.

Peckham Pelican is a new bar/cafe with tasty and very reasonably priced pizza. It’s got a very improvised vibe* at the moment but is still a work in progress and is more accessible than the previous incarnation, the New Gallery.

Cinnamon Tree Bakery sell at Borough and Broadway Markets and have just opened  a new shop on Peckham High Street. It’s mostly sweets and pastries, plus pizza; haven’t been there myself yet, but they’re apparently very proud of their coffee. And if coffee’s your thing, Cafe Viva sell hip London blend, Volcano, along with some good breakfasts and lunch specials.

Nowadays a scene is defined by its pop-ups, and in SE15 there’s the Peckham Bazaar, a ‘pan-Balkan meze and mangal’. Haven’t been there yet, but looking forward to it. Also on Fridays and Saturdays ‘all Summer’ there’s Peckham Springs, behind Bar Story.

And the hipster bingo card will soon have a full house with the arrival of craft brewers, Brick.

There’s probably a ton I’ve forgotten, but it’s pretty exciting to be around Peckham at the moment. Biggest news is, of course, that the temporary space holding Bold Tendencies/Frank’s will be made permanent over the next few years. Visit now before Foxtons get there.

Update: If you’re into the Peckham scene, you might want to kickstart a new local magazine, the Peckham Peculiar.

* Do people still say ‘vibe’? I fear I may be showing my age here.

Beer, Food, Rumours, and the Neighbours

I started this as a comment, but it grew so long I may as well turn it into a post…

Open and shut cases: Odie & Amanda (Grove Lane, nr. Denmark Hill station) has closed down; Tadim is currently closed “for decoration, until further notice”. Have heard that the Cadeleigh could open under new management as they couldn’t get change of use permission, and Hoopers could close. I went into Hoopers for the first time this weekend, and was amazed at their beer selection; really good. It was very quiet, but it was the night of the downpour so didn’t read too much into that.

And talking of beer, went to the East Dulwich Beer Festival on Saturday, and the three pubs I went in were heaving. First the Draft House, then the Bishop, then the EDT. And it wasn’t just regular Saturday night trade, lots of people were out specifically for the festival. Could we run one in Camberwell? I suspect the lack of freehouses would count against us. If only there were some expert on the local pub scene we could ask…

One of the special beers for the festival was Prima Donna from A Head In A Hat brewery of Brixton. All of the hops were grown in the gardens of local volunteers. Beautiful.

I also went to the evening food market for Elefest, and had an amazing Scotch Egg from Egg Boss, a resident of this parish. He sells at Brockley Market generally, after an unsuccessful attempt at the farmers market on the Green (which seems to be shrinking).

There’s so much going on around us.

Jazz, Swimming, Democracy In Action

As you may have read in the comments on the previous post, Jazz At The Crypt have been removed from the crypt. I don’t really know much about it — apparently there was an email sent out yesterday but I haven’t received one. I have to say that this is a grave blow; this was one of the few venues that attracted people from outside the area — I have a friend in Holloway Road who would frequently make the trip south to visit. I’ll update this post with more information when I get it.

Update: Since writing this post this morning, the matter has been cleared up. The Jazz at the Crypt is not ending, it’s just that the original promoters have moved on; they sent an email to their subscribers (which I’ve included at the foot of this post) which raised some alarm, but it’s all been put to rest now. There is still Jazz every Friday night — you can see what’s on at the Camberwell Crypt website. Now let’s get on with some real news.

The reopening of the Leisure Centre has been put back to February 2011, ‘following the recent inclusion of additional works’. I don’t know what those works are, but this project is now severely delayed; if it does reopen in February, that will be the end of a 15 month closure.

New stuff: the new cafe in Chumleigh Gardens officially opens this Saturday; there’ll be music, food samplers, and the chance to see the new plans for Burgess Park, as well as a workshop with the developers. Also, a new bar/cafe/gallery has opened on the Peckham Road (it’s SE15, but we’ll let it slide). It’s prosaically called the New Gallery, and there’s a brief review by Gay Camberwell.

Finally, we got a nice little mention in The Guardian (online) today. Thanks are due to every reader, author and commenter, because you make this blog what it is.

Update: Below is the full text of the email from Jazz Live.

Dear Jazz Live Fans

It is with great regret that we have to report to you that , after 15 years of successfully promoting jazz concerts, we have been sacked from the Crypt of St Giles Church by the church authorities and that the Jazzlive@theCrypt project no longer exists at St Giles Church. We have moved our jazz promoting operation to Le Petit Parisien Brasserie on Sundays where we will continue to promote high quality live jazz at accessible and affordable prices for you, along with the usual atmosphere and unbeatable vibe we are known for.

As you know the vicar of St Giles Church the Rev’d Nick George has installed new management at the Crypt led by Mr Mark Dodds of the Sun and Doves pub in Camberwell, with his associate Mr Steve Corbett as venue manager. Unfortunately the venue manager gave us one week’s notice to remove all our equipment from the venue and stop promoting jazz.

Please let us know (jazz@​looksouth.​net) what you think about this decision, whether you would like to know more about it or do anything about it. We will get back to you soon!

In the meantime the Jazz Live team and the Company and Registered Charity behind it, Jazz Umbrella, would like to thank all of you for visiting and supporting the club and our music at the Crypt of St Giles Church for the last 15 years, at what will go down in history as one of London’s legendary jazz clubs. Please support us in our new venue!

Lambeth Country Show this weekend

Although strictly not Camberwell I know this weekend is the fabulous Lambeth Country Show in Brockwell Park, SE24.Visited by over 100,000 people it is one of the biggest free outdoor summer events in South East England.

Over the course of Saturday and Sunday 11am — 7pm there is music, dance, food, displays, a flower show, farm animals, charity stalls, owls and all sorts of other things all in the heart of inner London.

Further information is on the Lambeth website including the programme of events.

Update (by Peter): Also it’s the College of Arts MA Summer Show this week; it’s open to the public from tomorrow (Wednesday) until Saturday; details here. And huge apologies to Hannah at the CCA for forgetting to tell you all about the private showing.

Update 16/7/2010 There is also the fabulous Urban Art Fair on Saturday and Sunday on Josephine Avenue, SW2 near to Brockwell Park.
London’s largest annual open air contemporary arts fair will have around 2,000 pieces of work on display from 150 local and international artists. As well as art displays there will be foodstalls, refreshments and a sound stage featuring a mix of local musicians. This is the kind of art event I would like to see Camberwell in the future