Saturday, 27 December 2014

Towers over The Goodsyard

A short film to raise awareness for The East End Preservation Society's campaign against the proposed Bishopsgate Goodsyard development in East London.

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Hackney Marshes Ladies Running group

 Email rec'd from the Hackney Marshes Ladies Running Group:

Meet every Monday evening to be ready to leave at 7.00 pm Meeting point: The Elderfield Pub (at a table near the back) 57 Elderfield Road Hackney E5 0LF.

The fee is either £15 for a calendar month, or £5 pay as you run. So you can just turn up and run if you want.  For the first time, just come 5-10 minutes early to complete the disclaimer, and then you're ready to go. (There is an option to get changed in the ladies bathroom and leave the bags behind the counter. In exchange I would encourage to buy a bottle of water or tea once in a while as a good will gesture to recognize their hospitality) We run for an hour and a quarter, including warm-up and stretching at the end. The distance covered varies, as it depends on what kind of workout we are doing on the day, but usually 4-7km (though usually not all in one go). The session is based around 2 main sections that usually include speed and strength work and, above all, are fun. We have a mixed range of abilities from a casual runner to marathon runners, but that's fine as each session is designed to give the faster runners a really good workout whilst making sure everyone enjoys themselves and nobody gets left behind. Our Facebook page is

Friday, 14 November 2014

Telling the story of Clapton's Tram Depot

Email rec’d from Voist:

Next week sees the opening of Voist’s exhibition The Deserted Village, telling the story of Clapton's historic Tramway Depot from the perspective of those that have lived and worked on the site for the last 30 plus years. Free entry and open every day 12-7pm from 21st to 30th November at The Depot
(find us at 38 Upper Clapton Road, E5 8BQ). We look forward to welcoming you through the doors of the Tram Depot and offering one last glimpse inside the inhabitants workshops, studios and handmade homes. Sat alongside this series of portraits will be a collection of archive material and audio recordings that not only tell stories of time spent at the Old Tram Depot, but describe Clapton’s various transformations over the last 30 years.

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Autumn 2014 in Springfield

Email from SPUG Committee: Hackney Council is undertaking an application to the Heritage Lottery Fund for full refurbishment of Springfield Park (using the £900,000 that has been earmarked since 2006 for that purpose to leverage more money). The council has hired landscape architect Jon Sheaff to undertake Phase 1 of that application. Springfield Park User Group's (SPUG) representatives on the project board are Peter Cummings, Pam Wadsworth and Joan Yeadon. They will report back to SPUG on progress and gather opinion at three upcoming meetings. Please join them at SPark cafe at 2 pm on Sunday Nov 2nd and Sunday Nov 30th to find out more about the HLF and to contribute to the process. All welcome.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Outcome of the Millfields Improvements Works consultation published

Back in July, the Council launched a consultation on its proposals for improvement works to Millfields.

Following the closure of the consultation period, the Council has now published the results of the consultation which can be found at here.

It confirms that:
  • the most popular design for improving the play area in north millfields was Option 5 and that the designers of this option will be appointed;
  • the ideas put forward for how the paddling pool area could be improved - including more seating/communal areas and some water play element. The Council says it is working on designs for the paddling pool area, and incorporating the views given;
  • whether the railings around the ‘village green’ in Millfields south (near the old Lodge building and next to the basketball and tennis courts) should stay as it is? Leaving the railings in place was the most popular choice  - so it will remain in place around the grassed area. We did a posting last year about why the proposal to have the railings removed was flawed, so we're pleased to see they will remain!

Thursday, 2 October 2014

Hackney Housing Debate

Positive Money Hackney: press release:

'House prices in Hackney have risen over 20% this year, and are now 5 times more expensive than 20 years ago. For some people it is good news that their house is earning more money than they are, but for most Hackney residents this means bigger mortgages or higher rents.
Many young people who have grown up in Hackney are being forced out of the borough because they can’t afford to live here. Rising rents are forcing people out of their homes: recent rent increases by Benyon Estates on the New Era estate in Hoxton threaten to leave 80 families homeless.
In 1996, houses cost 3 times median income but now cost 17 times median income.
Diane Abbott will be discussing the causes and effects of the crisis in the cost of housing with campaigners from Hackney DIGS who support private sector tenants, Priced Out who campaign for affordable house prices and Positive Money who argue that reforming the financial system is the key to stabilising house prices.  
The discussion will take place at Chats Palace Arts Centre on Sunday October 19th at 6pm.
There will be an open discussion and you can put your questions to the panel.   

Book your free place at: HackneyHousingDebate

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Millfields Tree Circle Cinema - free outdoor films - Sat 13 September

Charity preview of PRIDE - Sunday 7 September

Great to see Hackney Picturehouse is supporting London Lesbian & Gay Switchboard (LLGS) by donating 100% of ticket revenue from its PRIDE preview on Sunday 7 September at 11.00am.

LLGS is a voluntary organisation which provides an information, support and referral service for lesbians, gay men, bisexual and trans people, and anyone who needs to consider issues around their sexuality.

A dedicated group of volunteers make sure that the phone line is open every day of the year, and they do this for free. The charity relies on the generosity of supporters to help cover its running costs.
LLGS has provided support and information to more than three million people since its telephone started ringing in 1974.

In the 1970s it helped people coming out after 1967's partial decriminalisation of male homosexuality, and provided much-needed signposting to the newly developing gay scene. In the 1980s it was the leading source of information and advice on the then new and unknown disease of HIV/AIDS, and in the 1990s its support of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans community was never more evident than during the aftermath of the bombing of the Admiral Duncan.

Today LLGS continues to offer vital support on the phone to 15,000 people per year from across the UK, including those that feel isolated in their community, people who have been queer-bashed, and teenagers who are looking for advice on coming out or have been thrown out of their homes by their parents.

Thursday, 17 July 2014

walthamstow reservoirs: cross about Crossrail 2 proposals?

Crossrail 2 will deliver essential transport links and help to transform the economy of north east London and the Lea Valley, but at what cost?

Emerging plans for Crossrail 2 may affect, even threaten our local environmental and built heritage including:
Just at the moment when the Reservoirs are to be transformed into a unique wetlands habitat, a new railway line will slice them in two with a new tunnel entrance emerging between the Warwick Reservoirs.

Existing tracks through the area will be doubled from two to four tracks running alongside Walthamstow Marsh, between the Warwick Reservoirs, past the corner of Markfield Park, over the River Lea, and up past Yarmouth Crescent and Jarrow Road into Tottenham Hale.

Why is the current consultation documentation stopping short of spelling out these consequences?

A consultation on the plans runs out on 26th July.

TfL say they will consult again after they have decided how the railway will travel through the Marshes towards Tottenham Hale. This is the wrong way round. Local people deserve to be consulted on the range of options and to fully understand and comment on the implications before a decision is made.

What is the way forward?

We think at least three options should be developed and consulted upon:
  • The likely current scheme (current plans are vague) with the tunnel emerging between the Warwick Reservoirs, travelling over the Lea on a new bridge and then above ground to Tottenham Hale.
  • A tunnel entrance between the River Lea and Tottenham Hale (i.e travelling under the Marshes, the Reservoirs and the Lea). The impact of this option on the surrounding residential neighbourhoods needs to be fully understood.
  • A tunnel under the marshes and reservoirs and under Yarmouth Crescent and Yarrow Road with a new lower level station at Tottenham Hale. The line would then emerge between the Victoria Line sidings and Northumberland Park, north of Tottenham Hale.
We think local people concerned about the potential impact on the, Marshes  Reservoirs and local built heritage and residential neighbourhoods should argue strongly for the third option.

We also need to fully understand how these options affect the possibility of a new Crossrail Station at Clapton and what that means for the locally listed station building and the surrounding neighbourhood. This may ultimately prove to be a poisoned chalice.

Finally, we need to understand the construction impacts. Where will the main construction sites be located, what routes will the spoil lorries take and where will tunnel access and ventilation shafts be formed?

Find out more about the proposals:

Monday, 7 July 2014

London Life: In Conversation with Colin O'Brien - Hackney museum Thursday 10 July, 6.30pm

Hackney Museum is hosting a special free talk and book signing on Thursday 10 July with photographer Colin O'Brien about his social documentation of London and Hackney.

Here's a youtube clip of Colin talking about his Travellers' Children in London Fields photo collection.

Yoruba Arts Festival 2014 - Clissold Park - 26 &27 July

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Sunday, 1 June 2014

From Bow to Biennale c.1928 - 1936

Date: Friday, May 9, 2014 to Sunday, July 13, 2014

Opening Hours: Tues - Sun 10am - 5pm

Address: The Nunnery, 181 Bow Road, London E3 2SJ

The Nunnery Gallery is currently showcasing works and archival material from The East London Group of Artists.

Gathered from around the country, this is a rare and exciting opportunity to see works, exhibition catalogues, press clippings and sketchbooks on loan from private collections, museums and government archives, revealing forgotten memories and uncovering stories from the Groups history and local heritage.

London evolution animated

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Springhill: Two Centuries of River Lea Rowing

There's a wonderful new book by Dick Anderson that's recently been published that tells the story of the boats, boatmen, rowers and rowing clubs on the River Lea from 1800 to 1980.The men and women who lived, worked, trained and raced on the river challenged establishment views on amateur sport and made rowing accessible to all.

At the moment, the book is only available through Lea Rowing club or direct from Lapesse Publishing as Richard is donating all money raised to the club for redevelopment of their boathouse.