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Posts Tagged ‘clapham’

Clapham Pottery is a very succesful community organisation which ahead of it’s redevelopment has moved from Clapham Leisure Centre to this lovely site in the Old Chapel at 4a Rectory Grove.

Mayor of Lambeth with some of the work of Clapham Potters

Mayor of Lambeth with some of the work of Clapham Potters

Clapham Pottery is a busy self-funding and not-for-profit community pottery, offering pottery classes for all ages and all abilities. Pottery classes are held during the daytime and evenings for adults and kids, over a 10 week term, with a half term break. Weekend courses for adults are available on a monthly basis.

Mayor of Lambeth cutting the ribbon to officially open Clapham Pottery

Mayor of Lambeth cutting the ribbon to officially open Clapham Pottery

Clapham Pottery classes are taught by professional, working potters from The North Street Potters, which was established in Clapham in 1978.

Mayor of Lambeth with Naine Woodrow for Clapham Potters

Mayor of Lambeth with Naine Woodrow for Clapham Potters

I was pleased to have the opportunity to personally thank Naine Woodrow, a long term member of the North Street Potters and a key driver behind this project and Clapham Potters. The whole team provide an invaluable service to the local community and beyond and it was wonderful to see their longer team future at the heart of Clapham.

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The service held at St James Church, Briarwood Road in Clapham was for the Licensing of Kit Gunasekera as Priest-in-Charge of the Parish of St James by The Right Revd Tom Butler The Bishop of Southwark.

Mayor of Lambeth with Kit Gunasekera, Priest-in-Charge of the Parish of St James

Mayor of Lambeth with Kit Gunasekera, Priest-in-Charge of the Parish of St James

Kit Gunasekera has come to the Parish from Brentford and I was pleased to welcome him officially to the borough together with the Churchwardens and other representatives of the community.

After the service we had a chance to chat further with the Priest and wish him well in his new position.

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The Heritage Lottery Fund awarded a grant to Big Up Films, a Clapham-based group of film-makers and arts educators. The ‘Common Voices – Past and Present’ Project’s aim was to bring together different generations to capture and compare memories and experience of growing up around Clapham Common just after World War Two with those of children now.

Mayor of Lambeth with organisers of the Common Voices project

Mayor of Lambeth with organisers of the Common Voices project

The result of the project is a DVD film accompanied by portraits and illustrations along with a mixed-media map of Clapham were created collaboratively by pupils from Bonneville Primary School and volunteers.

We saw the film for the first time at an event held at Clapham Picture House, and I was joined by the children who took part in the project, those who had been interviewed and many of the volunteers involved in the project.

Mayor of Lambeth with one of the people interviewed as part of the Common Voices project

Mayor of Lambeth with one of the people interviewed as part of the Common Voices project

All those involved should be extremely proud of their achievement, which in itself is now part of Clapham’s history. These include: Bonneville Primary School, year 6 children and teachers; Clapham Society; Lambeth Archives; The Oral History Society; volunteers and the 12 people who shared their memories about life in Clapham after the war who made this project possible. And of course the Heritage Lottery Fund who funded the project.

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I always enjoy returning to Lambeth College, and today I returned again to the Clapham Campus where they were celebrating their new performing arts courses.

Students perform at Lambeth College 6th form centre
Students perform at Lambeth College 6th form centre

I was incredibly impressed by their confidence and acting skills, together with the level of inclusiveness with students with learning difficulties playing key parts within the performance.

Mayor of Lambeth with performers
Mayor of Lambeth with performers

Whilst the main performance was excellent we were treated to singing from young children from Hill Mead Brixton School – the future students of Lambeth College and their new sixth form.

AudioBoo / Hill Mead Brixton School

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The Abbeville Fete is organised by the Church of the Holy Spirit. Over the years it has grown for a low-key affair into an event that involves and supports the local community.  Last year over £17,000 was raised to support local charities.

Mayor of Lambeth and Rev Jeremy Blunden at Newtons restaurant on Abbeville Road

Mayor of Lambeth and Rev Jeremy Blunden at Newtons restaurant on Abbeville Road

Abbeville Fete has a huge number of events including dog show, pet show, fancy-dress parade, waiters’ and shopkeepers’ race, kid zone; along with music in the church and stalls / traders along Abbeville Road and Narbonne Avenue.

I was met by Rev Jeremy Blunden who showed me around the fete and introduced me to many of the stall holders.

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Each year thousands join the London to Bike ride in support of the British Heart Foundation. This important charity funds research, education and support for britains biggest killer – heart disease.

Mayor of Lambeth, councillors, publican and customers outside the Rose and Crown in Clapham

Mayor of Lambeth, councillors, publican and customers outside the Rose and Crown in Clapham

I was really pleased when the publican from the Rose and Crown in Clapham said they would be willing for their team to be called ‘Mayor of Lambeth’. Then the leader of the council Cllr Steve Reed, Cllr Nigel Haselden, Cllr Mark Bennett and Cllr Lib Peck also said they would come along and help raise money for the BHF by taking part. Finally work colleagues from my day job at BT John Daffern and Kathrin  Hegenberger (who flew in with her husband from Germany especially for the event) volunteered as well.  

Councillors at the starting line of the British Heart Foundation London to Brighton cycle ride

Councillors at the starting line of the British Heart Foundation London to Brighton cycle ride

We met with customers from the rose and crown at 06:30 for a quick photo before a 07:00 start.  This was my first time on the ride, and by far the furthest I have ever cycled – but it was brilliant.

At times the pure volume of people at hills together with the fact that cyclists are often held up at junctions to let traffic pass, meant the start of the ride was very slow. But once you hit the countryside you can really enjoy the ride and the comradeship of riding with such a large group of people.

Now I do have to confess one thing – not all my ‘volunteers’ were really totally ‘volunteers’. The council leader, Steve Reed, had said to me that he thought it sounded a good idea to take part and keen for him to take part I kind of released his participation as a press release which meant he couldn’t really back out! That being said he has now said he is really pleased I tricked him into it and even more pleased to ‘beat’ me across the finishing line (its not a race…).

Riders at the start on the 2009 London to Brighton bike ride

Riders at the start on the 2009 London to Brighton bike ride

A brilliant day. The sense of satisfaction amazing even when muscles you have not felt before are hurting. But even more knowing that together with have raised thousands for the British Heart Foundation and in particular Dave from the Rose and Crown whose efforts (including 30 miles a night training and fundraising) dwarfed us all.

Thank you to everyone who has given support to every member of the ‘Mayor of Lambeth’ team.  And for the team – I have thought of something else we could do… more to follow soon…

If you appreciate the efforts of the Mayor of Lambeth team please donate now and help the British Heart Foundation.

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On Saturday 08 November I attended the Lambeth Archive open day at the Minet Library which this year was inspired by the centenary of Lambeth Town Hall which opened one hundred years ago in 1908. To mark the event Lambeth Archives encouraged local people to contribute their stories and experiences from those hundred years including old family photographs, documents or anything else that tells a story about Lambeth.

Outside Minet Library

The Deputy Mayoress and I were taken around the many stands of local societies and organisations from Brixton, CamberwellClaphamCrystal Palace  Herne Hill, Streatham and The Museum of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society

Clapham Potteries were running stands where local people were contributing to creating tiles featuring historical images to contribute to a map of the borough. The children were also producing figures that were made out of a type of clay that would set by itself enabling them to take their creations home.

We also visited the Lambeth Mobile Library where we were pleased to hear that there was a large number of new members who had signed up on the day.

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