Tag Archives: Events

april 2020 update

Highlights in this issue

– Coping during the Coronavirus epidemic

– Health and Social Care news

– Greenspaces and green fingers

– Funding, training and other support

– Virtual events and news from groups

Coping during the Coronavirus epidemic

 Sharing information with you

We are currently circulating information twice a month, trying to keep you all in touch with developments and emerging sources of help.  Most of the information below is extra to that we circulated earlier this month. If there are other things you think the Forum should be doing, do tell us – but remember face-to-face meetings are still out of the question.   

Help with Shopping

Lambeth Council is currently trialling a new shopping offer, as part of its borough-wide food offer.  This is based on a service previously delivered by Age UK Lambeth.  It will be provided to residents who are unable to leave their homes due to Coronavirus, but who do not require an emergency food package.  Around Brixton, Vassall is one of the trial wards, with Brixton Hill and Tulse Hill about to be added.  Plans are still developing, but if you or a neighbour have a need for this, contact the Council’s helpline, 020 7926 2999 between 8 am and 8 pm, Monday to Friday, or see their website, www.lambeth.gov.uk and follow the links. 

Mutual Aid and WhatsApp groups

We found that the most complete listing of these groups around Brixton is on the Brixton Buzz website, including hot links – see www.brixtonbuzz.com

There is now a generic free phone number to contact the Mutual Aid groups, 0800 009 6504. The main local groups are:

– ABRA (Arlingford & Brailsford Roads, SW2)

-Acre Lane and West Brixton

  • Brixton Hill (Lyham Road/ Blenheim Gardens/ Lambert Road/ Branksome Road)

– Brixton SW2 (Glenelg/ Strathleven/ Kildoran/ Maulever/ Mandrell Roads)

– Brixton Water Lane & St. Matthew’s Estate

– Brockwell Park Estate, SW2

– Clapham Park (roads between Lyham Road and Kings Avenue, including Kingswood, Rosebery and Thornbury)

– Coldharbour (Central Brixton)

– Ferndale

– Leander Road

– Loughborough Junction

– Poets Corner (Railton and roads off)

– Tulse Hill (main group)

– Cressingham Gardens (sub-group of Tulse Hill)

– Mackie, Hillworth and Estoria Roads SW2 (sub-group of Tulse Hill)

– Vassall.

And if there are other active groups out there, please tell us – apiperbrix@aol.com

Local Businesses are still operating

You can now find them: Brixton Local is a new website that connects you to local services during the outbreak.  So far, 61 organisations are listed, from Brixton Brewery to Yogapoint, mostly businesses but also some VCS organisations like Brixton Pound.  The emphasis is on those providing delivery of goods, though there are also various remote services on offer such as advice and webinars.  Explore the site at https://www.brixtonlocal.life/

On-line Meetings

Recently we have all had to make use of various forms of on-line or virtual meeting systems.  However, if you are a registered charity or a limited company, key decisions still need to be made and recorded correctly, with an adequate quorum of board members or trustees involved.  The Directory of Social Change recently flagged up a handy guide to good practice, compiled by the Chartered Governance Institute.  It includes a useful comparison of the available types of software to enable such virtual board meetings.  The PDF file can be found here http://www.brixtonneighbourhoodforum.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/Virtual-Board-Mtg-Ap20.pdf

However, it does not address the looming issue of Annual General Meetings, where more members may need to be involved – probably time to start reading the small print of your constitution! How should we support the “left behind”? Telling people to do it all on-line can work for a lot of people, but not everybody has either the kit or the IT skills to sort their benefits or order groceries on-line.  And how can anybody afford a smartphone if they are on Universal Credit?  This is troubling several of the Neighbourhood Forums right now – we want to be inclusive but we cannot see a way forward – got any bright ideas?

 Health and Social Care News

 Firms feeding NHS workers

The major food delivery firms have recently been offering concessions to NHS staff. Just Eat offered a 25% discount to NHS workers, and this has been extended until 26 April after staff had ordered a million meals through the scheme in its first two weeks. Last month, Uber Eats gave away 100,000 vouchers valued at £10 to enable NHS workers to buy a meal from the restaurants and convenience stores linked to its app. Deliveroo has raised £1.5 million to enable it to donate free meals to NHS workers.  The money, from customer donations and corporate funding, will provide £20 Deliveroo vouchers to 50,000 frontline workers, covering both the meal and delivery. Source: The Big Hospitality e-mail bulletins.

Staying Well

A major concern during the present crisis is to minimise demand on the hospitals, not just from coronavirus cases, but also from other conditions exaggerated by lack of exercise or fresh air, or the stress of sharing limited space at home.  Common threads among several “survival guides” seem to be setting a routine (but taking regular breaks), a varied diet rather than comfort eating, getting regular exercise, fresh air (at least you can now open a window) and touching base with the extended family, friends and colleagues. If you have any other “top tips”, why not share them with us? It may also be worth noting that Brixton Therapy Centre is offering Video and Telephone Consultations – enquiries to (020) 7733 9944 or e-mail to info@brixtontherapycentre.com

Greenspaces – and green fingers

Social distance in parks – jog responsibly!

  • Friends of Brockwell Park are encouraging park users to follow these guidelines to maintain social distance within the Park , which has been very busy on recent occasions. These apply across walkers, pram pushers, wheelchair users, runners and cyclists.
  • Move around the park on the left-hand side of the path, keeping 2m behind the person in front. Most paths are wide enough for you to stay 2m clear of people approaching from the other direction.
  • Overtake to your left, on the grass, keeping 2m clear of others.
  • If there is no space to the left, only use the opposite lane if this is clear of other users.  Do not walk, run or cycle between the two lanes, to maintain that 2m clearance.  That may mean joggers running on the spot until a safe space opens up, or cyclists dismounting, but please keep a safe distance.

Discover other green spaces

Why not ring the changes and explore some other open spaces on our patch?  I have just heard from a Town Centre resident who has discovered Myatt’s Fields Park for the first time.  Far fewer people know about the Loughborough Park open space – there is far more to it than a disused adventure playground.  You might think that Trinity Gardens, Blenheim Gardens and Wyck Gardens are too small to bother with, but at least the walk there will vary your exercise routine.  And with less traffic on the roads, a woodland walk through Brixton Orchard and Rush Common finally becomes worth tackling.

Grow at Home

Community gardening efforts are rather limited right now, but have not stopped completely.

Brockwell Park Community Greenhouses are running some “remote” sessions including Gardeners Question Time, Fermentation classes, Story Stompers and a Singing Group. They also have some young soft fruit bushes, grown from cuttings, for sale at £5 each.  For details of all these, see their website,  wwwbrockwellgreenhouses.org.uk/events/

Myatt’s Fields Park has a free seedlings scheme to help local people grow their own food at home.  This applies to residents of Coldharbour and Vassall wards  More details at www.myattsfieldspark.info/free-seedlings.html They have also highlighted the Lambeth Larder website for great tips on food growing, recipes and saving money.  See  www.lambethlarder.org

If you are an experienced grower, Incredible Edible Lambeth are looking for people to start vegetable seedlings at home and then share with the community.  See https://www.incedibleediblelambeth.org/news/growing-veg-for-your-community/

Funding, Support and Training 

New funding sources

The problem for many groups seems to be that income from events and sessional activities has dried up, but many fixed costs still need to be met, so the business plan has gone out the window.  Some funders have diverted resources to help keep voluntary groups operating, and if you are already operating with grant support, many funders are willing to be flexible about outcomes and reporting timescales – but you need to keep them in touch with any changes in how you are operating.  If you are still seeking funds, either to do more or to start something new, it’s more difficult right now. 

The London Community Response Fund has been delivering differently grants for the up-front costs of switching the way you deliver services, e.g. putting sessions online:  https://londoncommunityresponsefund.org.uk

For a more general list of sources for organisations supporting people during the Coronavirus lock-down, see  https://charitybank.org/news/covid-19-emergency-funding-for-charities-and-social-sector-organisations

Webinars and On-line Courses

Survival Strategies for Youth and Play organisations is a FAQ session being led by the Integrate Agency on Friday 24 April from 2 pm. Business planning, financial resilience and future income generation will be included.  To submit questions in advance, please e-mail to Tom Cunningham, tcunningham@lambeth.gov.uk by Wednesday. To reserve a place, e-mail richard.davis@integrateagency.co.uk

Homes for Lambeth has started a new partnership with the Virtual College to provide free access to selected on-line courses for Lambeth Council tenants. There is potential for more (see www.virtual-college.co.uk ) but on offer to start with are:- Nutrition and hydration;- Completing application forms;- Get moving, get healthy. The Directory of Social Change has confirmed that courses on its Training Online Platform will be free to access until 17 July.  More details at www.dscorg.uk and follow the links.

Virtual Events and Other News

Write on Art

Teenagers running out of things to do?  Write on Art is a national writing competition for students aged 15 to 18 and studying in the UK.  Its mission is to encourage an interest in Art History among young people. All students need to do is select one art work from www.artuk.org that fascinates them and persuade readers to share their interest and take a closer look.  Entries can be made in 2 categories, years 10/11 or 12/13, and win a cash prize of £500.  The deadline for entries has been extended to 31 July – see www.writeonart.org for guidelines and entry details. 

Soft Launch for “81 Acts” programme

Since last summer, several local groups and arts activists have been talking about how to mark the 40th anniversary of the original Brixton Riots in April 1981.  What is emerging is a programme of events under the banner of 81 Acts of Exuberant Defiance. With a year to go, we had intended some kind of curtain raiser over the Easter weekend, but the current restrictions ruled out even a stroll together along Railton Road, the old flashpoint. Instead, we have had to make do with a virtual launch, through e-mails and social media channels.  If you have not already picked this up, please check out the links below and respond with your own ideas and comments.  Share with your own networks, discuss with those who were around at the time, and consider if there are lessons for today.  Above all, we want you to start planning now so that Brixton can host a wide range of activities and events between April and October next year. Find out more at  https://81actsofexuberantdefiance.com Get involved by contacting connect@81actsofexuberantdefiance.com

A Longfield Hall Celebration

An evening of entertainment from the many artists who use the halls – on Friday 1st May at 7-30 pm, via their Facebook Live page  @Longfieldhall. Hosted live from their homes by the hall’s artistic director, Laura Harling, and presenters Adam Courting (BBC Radio 4) and Kate Starling (London Fringe Radio), with streamed performances from a range of artists and organisations that use the hall.  In order to support the artists at this difficult time, viewers are encouraged to donate via Paypal – more details at www.longfieldhall.org.uk/events

Lockdown Diaries

These days will pass – but keep a record. The Lock-down Diaries is a Lambeth Archives project to collect local people’s experiences of the Coronavirus epidemic in Lambeth.  The project is to encourage Lambeth residents to start keeping a diary, and then to send a copy to the Archives, documenting their lives right now. The Archives staff are particularly interested in the experiences of people whose lives have been dramatically affected by recent events, such as NHS staff and restaurant proprietors. 

Enquiries to archives@lambeth.gov.uk or by Twitter,  @LambethArchivesKeep in touch

Share your News

To include your news or event in the next e-bulletin, be sure to send it before 28 April to the Forum Secretary at apiperbrix@aol.com

We are trying to sustain publication twice a month, and we have also been putting more information on this website.

Keep our mailing list up-to-date

Please notify admin@brixtonneighbourhoodforum.org – if you are changing your e-mail or other contact details;- if you want to add a colleague or neighbour;- if you have moved away or no longer want to receive these bulletins.

April 2019 Bulletin

News, Events and Activities

Windmill Gardens – Beer & Bread Festival 

This will be the next major event in Windmill Gardens, open between 1 pm and 5 pm on Bank Holiday Monday, 6 May.
Brixton Windmill itself will now be open for tours one weekend a month until October – for dates and bookings, see the Friends website, www.brixtonwindmill.org 

Events at Impact Brixton

The Hub at the back of Pop Brixton has an ongoing programme of training sessions and workshops, mainly to support those getting small enterprises underway.  Free or discounted rates for those who are already members of the Hub. Two notable sessions are coming up on Thursday 25 April:

Overcoming barriers on the way to success, 2 pm to 3-30 pm, non-members £5, free to members, workshop led by Vegard Olsen as part of the Business Helpdesk series.

The Mom Test – How to talk to customers and learn if your business is a good idea when everyone is lying to you,6-30 to 8 pm, non-members £15, members £5, a talk based on Rob Fitzpatrick’s bestseller. Register athttps://themomtest.eventbrite.co.uk

For more events, see their website, www.brixtonimpacthub.net or enquiries to Tamara Amarquaye on (020) 7926 3032 or e-mail tamara@impactbrixton.com

Creative Community Placemakers Network

A network covering Creatives, Artists, Performers, Designers, Placemakers and Community groups is being developed by Jacqueline Bleicher of Global Urban Design.  She has organised a meeting to explore the idea on Tuesday 30 April, 6 pm to 7 pm at the Basement level of Lambeth Town Hall, 1 Brixton Hill SW2. If interested, please register via Eventbrite on www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/creative-community-placemakers-network-tickets-59300768194
or e-mail to enquiries@globalurbandesign.org or call 07 570 438 977.

Brixton Community Base

Under the banner of Common Ground, Brixton Community Base has launched a new series of classes for over 55s.  All Classes are free and held at Brixton Community Base in Talma Road, SW2 1AS.  To sign up, contact Jane on 07 941 624 247 or e-mail to brixtoncommunitybase@gmail.com
Topics include:
Drama Workshop, Saturdays 20 & 27 April, 10-30 am to 12-30 pm, Arts & Crafts, Thursdays from 2nd May, 2 pm to 3 pm;
Yoga, Thursdays from 30 May, 2 pm to 3 pm.

Youth Connect Careers Event

A reminder that We Rise is holding monthly careers events, each focussing on a different field of work, in conjunction with Business Launchpad.  Each is at International House, Popes Road, SW9, between 5 pm and 7 pm.  These are aimed at Lambeth-based 16-18 year-olds, to help them explore different careers and build conections with professionals in those fields.  Enquiries to: hello@werise.org.uk
Next up are:
– Tuesday 14 May –  Health & Sport, 
– Tuesday 4 June – Finance & Tech.

Support the Remakery!

A familiar story around Brixton these days is of landlords jacking up rents and thereby pricing out familiar traders and community organisations.  More disappointing though when it’s Lambeth Council adopting the greedy landlord approach. The Remakery, below Council flats on the corner of  Lilford Road and Paulet Road, is facing a rent review in July, with the threat of its annual rent increasing from £6,000 to £40,000 a year – hardly realistic when the whole turnover of the organisation is only £28,000 a year.  It looks unlikely that a commercial business would want to take over this remote location.


The Remakery – or Lambeth Re-use Centre –  was set up a few years ago, with Council support, to encourage recycling of unwanted objects into resaleable goods, and to help people learn practical skills.  Once again a grassroots project appears to be the victim of the Council losing interest once the novelty wears off.

Were you around back in 1971?

An unusual request from a documentary film company, On The Corner Films:  They are producing a documentary series focussed on the music, culture and politics of the year 1971. They are particularly keen to track down home movie footage, particularly of people playing or listening to music, or at music festivals or carnivals. See also their website, www.onthecorner.tv


If you (or your granny!) have anything to share, contact Natalie Fiennes on 07 986 559 115 or e-mail to natalie@onthecorner.tv

Community Business Weekend – 16/19 May

Do you run a Community Business? Want to find new customers, volunteers or members? This event can showcase your impact and provide free marketing support (and some bunting).  Word came to us via Locality but the event is organised by Power to Change – more details at their website, www.powertochange.org.uk

Your Views on Events in Parks and open spaces – reminder

We discussed this at our last meeting on 1st April, and the main concerns expressed were:

– Large areas of public open space are being taken out of use for long periods so commercial events can be staged on them.

– Although this is supposed to be to raise money, finances are not transparent about how much comes back to that park, or to Lambeth parks generally.

– These events cause damage to grass and paving from heavy vehicles, concentrated footfall and temporary structures. There is not enough time between events for the ground to recover.

– Noise disturbance to people living around the park, particularly from entertainment events.

– Community-based events are discouraged by the demand from commercial events, and by cumbersome booking arrangements designed for bigger events.

Have we missed anything?  We encourage you to respond directly to the Council – see www.lambeth.gov.uk and follow the links to the Consultations page. The closing date for comments is Sunday 5 May.

Funding, Support and Training opportunitiesLambeth Wellbeing Fund projects

Last year we published details of this grant programme, and it’s good to see several local projects now being supported from Round 3, including Brixton Community Base, Community Education Foundation/ Lyncx, Moorlands Community Development Project, The Remakery and Ubele.  A few examples are mentioned in this bulletin, or the previous one.  More recently, Friends of Brixton Tate Library were awarded funding for a series of Tai Chi sessions at the Library on Saturday mornings, starting in May.

Introduction to Computer Skills Course

Just about to start at Mosaic Clubhouse, 65 Effra Road, SW2 – assessment session on Wednesday 24 April, 11 am to 1 pm.  Course will run from Wednesday 1 May until 10 July, 11 am to 1 pm at Mosaic Clubhouse.  The course will cover key computer skills including e-mail, web search and basic Microsoft programs Word and Excel.  You will gain a City & Guilds Functional ICT qualification.  This course is free to Lambeth residents on benefits.  Enquiries to Sinead on (020) 7924 9657 or s.obrien@mosaic-clubhouse.org

Tech Mates at Pop Brixton

For older residents, Pop Brixtonhosts introductory sessions on computers, smartphones and IT on Thursday mornings, 10 to 11 am.  Equipment is provided but feel free to bring your own phone, laptop or tablet – particularly if you are struggling with how to make it work! This free class is led by Pop member, KHK Technology, who supply refurbished IT equipment to schools and other organisations.  NB – limited to 6 places per session, sign up through the Pop Brixton website or enquiries toinfo@popbrixton.org

First Aid Skills Day for over 50s

Another event at Pop Brixton in Brixton Station Road – St. John’s Ambulanceare holding a free First Aid Skills session (with lunch!) on Thursday 23 May, 11 am to 2-30 pm. The aim is to build up a network of first aid champions among local community groups.  For enquiries or bookings, contact Rosie on 07 896 969 869 or e-mail to rosie.mcgloughlin@sja.org.uk

Achieving Life Balance Workshop

Wise Women Wellness presents a free self-development programme, Sista Self-care Coaching Circle, for a small group of women to learn the 6 life domains, set goals and boost confidence in a supportive coaching group.  Sessions over 7 weeks at the Eurolink Centre, Effra Road, SW2, the first on Saturday 27 April, 9-30 am to 4 pm, then on Tuesday evenings.  Supported by the Ubele Initiative and funded via LCF.  To book, call Sharon Brooks on 07 973 825 255 or e-mail toinfo@wisewomenwellness.org.uk

Lambeth Larder Resources Directory

Lambeth Larder started with a church-based group in Kennington in 2015, trying to map community food resources. When the pilot scheme ended, they decided their online map was too useful a resource to let go, so they managed to find more funding to expand the project and also publish paper copies of their Directory, a 20-page free guide to food banks, advice centres and other support groups.  Lambeth Larder now works in partnership with Brixton Advice Centre, and last year its resources reached 35,000 people around the borough. Enquiries to info@lambethlarder.org or to download the directory, go to the web pages below.

In fact there are several strands of information about health services, advice and community contacts to be found by exploring the revamped Public Health web pages within the Lambeth Council website: Start from www.lambeth.gov.uk/adult-social-care-and-health/your-health

Volunteers Wanted!

Loughborough Farm (on Loughborough Road, opposite Wyck Gardens) is hosting a Welcome session for new and prospective volunteers on Saturday 27 April from 1-15 pm. This will include a tour of the space and an introduction to how it is run. The session will last about an hour, but you are welcome to stay for the tea-break afterwards. Regular volunteering is an opportunity to pick up or refresh basic gardening skills, such as sowing, transplanting, composting and harvesting. Please book your place by e-mail to Emily at loughboroughfarm@gmail.com

If your project needs volunteers for certain tasks, why not advertise your needs in our next bulletin?

Measnwhile, national charities are not hesitating to ask.  News just in from Keep Britain Tidy that they are seeking volunteers (over 18) for their Litter Heroes Ambassador Programme, for people who want to get their communities involved in litter-picking and improving public spaces for all.  Applications are open until Monday 6 May. For more information contact LHAmbassador@keepbritaintidy.org

Directory of Social Change

We continue to receive occasional updates from the Directory of Social Change about their funding directories, charity management handbooks and training courses. For more details about all of these, see their website at www.dsc.org.uk 

Keeping in Touch

Forum Meetings

We are currently trying to firm up a couple of informal meetings to plan Forum activities through 2019.  You are all welcome to attend the next General Meeting of the Forum – it has been booked for Thursday 27 June, 6-45 pmat the Vida Walsh Centre, 2b Saltoun Road, SW2 (facing onto Windrush Square).

Future Bulletins

We aim to issue these bulletins each month, so if you want to include something in our next issue, please send it to us before11 May.We are often short of time, so earlier is better – and after allowing for editing and distribution, there’s not much point in telling us about events happening much before the 18/19 May weekend. Please send direct to apiperbrix@aol.com

Stay Connected!

It looks impressive if we build up a long list of contacts, but we much prefer if the information is reaching people who are still active and in a position to make use of some of it.
Please respond to this e-mail to tell us if:
– You have moved away or are no longer interested in Brixton affairs;
– You want to add a colleague or a related group to the contact list;
– You want to change your contact details so you get these bulletins sooner or more reliably.