These lights could be from any town anywhere in the UK. I really hope the lovely strings of Christmas bulbs are back up and running next year. I wonder what would have happened if Skanska had not won the contract to update all the street lamps. Would we have no Christmas lights, or would someone have found a way to repair the existing ones?
Tag Archives: blackheath
Councillor Kevin Bonavia responded to my enquiry about whether Blackheath’s traditional festoons will be lit up this year (they won’t):
The Guide is correct in saying that Skanska will be putting up white lights on lamp posts for this year’s Christmas season. This is meant as a temporary alternative to the traditional suspended lights across the Village, because there are a number of maintenance concerns relating to the existing lights, which frustratingly are unlikely to be resolved in good time for this year’s season.
To give you some background, unlike the Christmas lights in other parts of Lewisham Borough, the existing lights in Blackheath are not operated by the Council, but were acquired some years ago by a consortium of local businesses and had been paid for by local businesses, public donations and financial assistance from Lewisham Council.
Throughout the past year, we have been working to assist the operator of the existing lights to try to ensure that all of the existing lights could be switched on this year (including those across the roads). Unfortunately it looks as if the lights might be beyond economic repair.
Until recently, we were faced with the real risk that there would be no lights at all, but on examining the terms of Lewisham Council’s new long-term agreement with Skanska (who as you may know are currently replacing all street lamps across the Borough), it became clear that Skanska would be responsible for putting up and maintaining any temporary lighting as provided by the Council. In the short term, the Council’s own lighting budget has allowed for the lamp-post lights for this year.
As for the long term, we hope to make a funding proposal to the next Blackheath Assembly on 14 January (along with proposals for other community projects) so that the future of Blackheath’s Christmas lights can be put on a permanently viable footing.
As for this year, I hope the weather is kind for the switch-on: 4.30 pm on Saturday 7th December. Whilst on Christmas related events, Age Exchange are doing an open day on Thursday 5th December(10 am – 4 pm) which I understand involves switching on some Christmas lights as well, and there’s the traditional Christmas Eve nativity procession from St Mary’s Church to All Saints Church with carols on the heath, kicking off at 4 pm.
Don’t forget, it’s the Blackheath Christmas Fair today 10.30am-4pm. It’s in Blackheath Halls, and costs £1 to enter. All proceeds go to Age Exchange. Alan Williams, author of The Blackheath Seance Parlour will be selling signed copies of his book too.
On sale will be a wide range of beautiful hand-crafted presents, most of which are not readily found on the high street. From cashmeres to award-winning ceramics, Bolivian knits to finger puppets, limited edition prints to jewellery, organic babywear and recycled bags, to enamel bowls and gorgeous Christmas decorations, spectacular Indian silks and kitchen linens. There will also be plenty to tempt the taste buds with gourmet delicacies including flavoured vodkas, hand crafted chocolates, plum rum, homemade saucy sauces and chutneys. Something for everyone to suit all pockets and with most items £10 and under.
The Blackheath Christmas Fair has been organised by The Friends of Age Exchange, and local Blackheath based artist Fiona Bell-Currie. In an effort to keep it local, most of the selected independent traders and designers exhibiting are based in South East London and Kent.
There’ll also be live music, face painting, a tombola and the opportunity to buy charity Raffle tickets at the Fair, with fantastic prizes, from a week’s self-catering accommodation for six on the Isle of Wight, to an original framed pastel by artist Fiona Bell-Currie.
All proceeds from the door ticket sales (£1 entrance), and the Raffle go towards supporting the work of Age Exchange, a registered charity whose work using reminiscence based projects transforms the quality of life for older people. Proceeds will also support the volunteer-run lending library which shares its building with Age Exchange in the heart of Blackheath Village.
Entrance to The Blackheath Christmas Fair is £1 adults, free to Friends of Age Exchange and under 16s. More details at http://www.friends-of-age-exchange.org.uk. Twitter @blackheathfair. Blackheath Halls 020 8463 0100.
From the Met Police YouTube channel:
Police in Greenwich have released CCTV footage of a distraction theft at a cash point outside Barclays bank in Vanbrugh Park, SE3.
Officers are asking the public to assist in identifying three men suspected of being involved.
The incident occurred on Tuesday, 10 September at approximately 14:00hrs when the victim, a man aged 82, was at the cash point and while waiting for his money he was distracted by a man standing behind him.
The suspect was speaking in a foreign language and kept pointing at a £10 on the floor by the victim’s feet, implying he had dropped it. The victim subsequently bent down to pick up the £10 note. When he stood back up, he noticed his card and £50 cash had been taken.
The victim saw the suspect walk away with two other men. The victim was unharmed.
Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to call the Burglary Squad on 020 8284 9449 or alternatively call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
Gary writes on Facebook that there have been a few of these in Blackheath village too.
An interesting blog post from Simon Carter, the upmarket menswear shop that is going to replace Black’s the jewellers in Blackheath.
…we’re opening a new store in Blackheath. This is an even more prosperous and leafy London suburb than Crystal palace. I’d passed by the site dozens of times; a long standing jewellers in a prime location just down from the station, on the main drag. When I saw the ‘To Let’ sign, I moved so fast I blurred. Beating other retailers off with a stick, and having to raise our offer twice, we finally secured it earlier this month.
The shop dates from around 1870 and retains the original frontage, right down to the curved glass windows, tessellated entrance floor and foxed Victorian mirrors above the doorway. Inside, there’s much to be done. The nineteenth century tongue and groove ceiling remains in place under a 1980’s shopfit. There’s a glorious wood panelled light well at the back, and once we start stripping out the previous generations of fixtures, more will be revealed.
From their website, they also sell watches, so some continuity from that perspective. The owner of the shop goes by the twitter name @kingofcufflinks. Lots of changes coming to the high street over the next few weeks I think…
(Thanks to Rob for spotting the post)
Did you know, Selectric still sell beautiful, warm, dim, inefficient light bulbs?
Apparently the lightbulb industry have got around the ban on incandescent bulbs by describing them as “rough service” bulbs, which are designed for use in the building industry. The glass is slightly thicker than normal, but apart from that they’re just as good as the old ones.
Article about the workaround here in The Telegraph.
“Calling all dedicated and hard-working volunteers in Lewisham’s so-called community libraries. Want to know how you’re doing? How many books you’re managing to lend? How visitor numbers are holding up?
Well, tough. As of October 2012, Lewisham council has decided to stop allowing access to the statistics which it used to publish on a quarterly basis, often before anyone even asked.
Now Lewisham tell us we can wait until the official government statistics agency, CIPFA, produces its report in December 2013 for the year ended last April. What they don’t tell us is that CIPFA only provides figures for the borough as a whole, not for individual libraries. So there will be no way of knowing – to give but one example – how many times Blackheath community library’s total of 13 books for teenagers made it off the shelves. Lewisham also fail to mention that CIPFA make a hefty charge for access to their publications.
Surely the council can have nothing to hide! Like, how are “community” libraries faring compared with the ones still being run by the local authority? Come on, Lewisham. You’ve handed over almost half your libraries to volunteers. Now let the people who are doing your work for you see how they’re doing.”
I love this sign. It’s got shades of Hanna-Barbera or Looney Tunes about it. Its remained on the front of that building through the many changes of tenant, pointing the way to redemption, with its oversized thumbnail, and elegant shirt cuff. Probably the best sign in Blackheath, (after the bridge weight sign of course).
The serif typeface around it appears to be Pompeii, which seems appropriate to the Roman Catholic Church…
As selected in The Wirecutter, and sold in Blackheath Rymans for £2.99 (the Uniball Jetstream). Seems pretty good, even for a left handed scrawler.
Open House London is a rare opportunity to see inside some of London’s most interesting buildings. It’s on this weekend. Some buildings require tickets or email requests to enter, but many are first-come-first-served. Such as the amazing looking Boone’s Chapel built in 1682 on Lee High Road, which I hope to check out this weekend! Great photo set here by @darryl1974 showing the interior.
Greenwich Open Houses (Severndroog Castle is a great option). My sightseeing trip from 2008 is now out of date since the renovations. The Quaker Meeting House in Blackheath, or Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich are also good options.
Photo credit: Alex Mitchell on Flickr