Urban Fox - February 2020 L

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Issue 7

February 2020

Issue 7


Bake to the future

Apprentice winner on rolling out her Herne Hill bakery


GO TO THE CINEMA MORE! Come and catch all the Oscars favourites, latest blockbusters as well as gripping documentaries, the best of independent cinema and National Theatre live specials.

SUPPORT MORE INDEPENDENT BUSINESSES Not just an independent cinema, at Catford Mews we are home to local food vendor; Compound Coffee, Daun’s Deli, Fuse and Patty Man. Flavours from around the world on your doorstep!



Our food vendors all offer amazing vegan options year round! At the bar you’ll find a a wide range including a delicious selection of mocktails and alcohol free beers.

After the roaring sucess of the first ever Catford Comedy Club we will be hosting a monthly comedy night on the first Thursday of every month. 7.30PM. £5

Cheers to that! Follow us on twitter and instagram to find out about our upcoming events and special offers year round

6-7: The Apprentice winner from Herne Hill

Editor’s Letter Laura Burgoine


elcome to the February edition of the Urban Fox, our monthly love letter to south London. Locals Chris Mullany and Kevin Quinn have been at the helm of London’s last paid-for independent local paper, the Southwark News, since 2002. The Fox is their latest creation. In this issue, Cara Cummings meets the newly crowned winner of the Apprentice, Carina Lepore, at her Dough Bakehouse in Herne Hill. Elsewhere, our intrepid journalist warms up her vocals with Vauxhall’s Tuneless Choir. We round up the food and drink offerings for Valentine’s Day and uncover what’s on for kids this half-term. As always, we go out on the town with Brixton Buzz’s Mike Urban, into the garden with Jackie Power, and into the deep recesses of our minds with life coach 18: Miami without the Vice 23: Shopping - The Fresh Flower Company Carrie Brooks. Follow the Fox as we bring you all the latest stories and 5 Home Secretary: Our curated pick of the month goings on around town.

6 Local Faces: Alan Sugar’s new business partner About us Editor Writer Cover Photography Marketing

Laura Burgoine Cara Cummings Hakob Muradyan Tammy Jukes, Clarry Frewin, Lorraine Wood, Katie Boyd, Samantha Ratcliffe

Media Partnerships Anthony Phillips Design Aurelio Medina, Ann Gravesen Finance Emrah Zeki Managing Directors Chris Mullany, Kevin Quinn Contact us Email enquiries@urbanfox.london Phone 020 7231 5258 Printed by Iliffe Print Published by Southwark Newspaper Ltd

8 South London Sounds: Brixton Buzz music listings

15 South London Larder: Food news & booze-free brunch

20 South London Hemisphere: Greenwich astronomer gets romantic

23 Shopping: Behind the scenes at the Forest

24 Family: February fun with the kids

26 Wellbeing: Staying on course with resolutions

30 Home Turf: Jackie Power plants Busy Lizzies

33 Homeward bound: Property, homes and gardens Our next issue hits the streets in March. Contact us to get involved: enquiries@urbanfox.london or 0207 232 1639






Drop in aerial fitness classes for adults and children in Aerial Silks, Hoop, Trapeze, Slings, Rope, Straps and more. Absolutely no previous experience needed - We promise!

Get your kids airborne in our weekly youth circus classes and holiday workshops in hoop, trapeze and silks. Aerial birthday party packages also available!



Flying Fantastic, 1 Bellenden Rd (Next to Lidl), SE15 5BA 020 7639 2556 or peckham@flyingfantastic.co.uk www.flyingfantastic.co.uk

Classes available for ages 4-6, 7-12 and 13-16 years 1 Bellenden Rd (Next to Lidl), SE15 5BA edel@flyingfantastic.co.uk / www.ffyc.co.uk

Home Secretary

The local line-up for your diary If romcoms have taught us anything, it’s that public serenades = instantly wooing your mega crush. Back up your belting heart with a full rock band at Live Band Karaoke Peckham’s Valentine Day special and watch l’amour flood your way. (Or head for the nearest exit.)

14 February, 7.30pm, The Ivy House, 40 Stewart Road. £4-£5.

Fancy watching world-class musicians perform in south London’s quirkiest venues - from just £20? Check out Classical Vauxhall, a brand new 3-night series of concerts featuring up-and-coming performers at St. Peter’s Church, Brunswick House and The Garden Museum, Lambeth’s oldest structure.

6-8 February, 8-10.30pm. beinvauxhall.com/classical-vauxhall/

Classical Vauxhall

Plosive Comedy’s February offering

Photo by Andy Stagg

Escape the February chill with a shot of sunny Spanish culture as Flamenco spectacular Al-Andalas sashays into Dulwich Village. Performance company Cancion Gitana promises to recreate the stunning colours of Andalucia as they explore the origins of Spain’s most famous dance in a theatrical extravaganza.

sees some of TV’s funniest stand ups descend on East Dulwich. Live at the Apollo stars Darren Harriott and Kiri Pritchard-McLean join Edinburgh Comedy Award winner Jordan Brookes, plus headliner Sara Pascoe of QI and Taskmaster fame for a night of lols.

28 February, 8-10.30pm, The MCT at Alleyn’s School, Townley Road. £17.

29 February, 7.45pm, St. Barnabas Parish Hall. £17.50.

Nu-jazz electro pioneers The Cinematic Orchestra return to their old Brixton stomping ground for one night only this month, rounding up a year of touring new album To Believe - their first for twelve years, already being hailed as one of the most exciting albums of recent times.

Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2019

Secret Guests pops up at Brixton’s Pop Box this month for an open mic night with a difference. Anyone can take the mic for 60 seconds of solo stage time - whatever they have to share. Expect thoughts, feelings, stories and party tricks aplenty.

22 February, 7pm, O2 Academy Brixton. From £29.65.

12 February, 7-10pm, Pop Brixton. £10. Head to the South London Gallery for your last chance to catch

emerging artists set to shape culture through the new decade and beyond. Closes 23 February.

South London Gallery, 65 Peckham Road. Free.

Live Band Karaoke Photo by Matt Crockett

Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2019, a bumper exhibition of

Plosive Comedy


Local Faces Photos by Hakob Muradyan

Bakehouse on the rise


Local Faces

Cara Cummings meets The Apprentice winner from Herne Hill - and hears how fate, family and a devastating fire shaped her success... I was sat here last year and saw his car go past. I tried to run out because I thought: I’ve got to stop him. Since then, I felt like something was going to happen with Lord Sugar. Now I talk to him daily. It’s so weird, isn’t it?” Carina Lepore is telling the story of her first encounter with Alan Sugar outside Herne Hill’s Dough Artisan Bakehouse - or rather, an almost-encounter. Back then, she was a down to earth striver at the helm of her family’s small bakery business. Flash forward a year, and she’s both the newly crowned winner of The Apprentice and the most successful candidate in its history, having won more tasks on the show than any other contestant, ever. Gone are her days of chasing the AMS 1 number plate up Milkwood Road. Now, Carina’s got Lord Sugar - her new business partner - on speed dial, and a £250,000 investment from the man himself. Not that hitting the big time has changed the affable entrepreneur from Thornton Heath, who spends a large part of our interview describing how “surreal”, “amazing” and “crazy” her newfound fame feels. “People are coming in and they’re starstruck at me making coffee!” she laughs. “Some ask for selfies, which I don’t mind at all but it’s weird because it’s just me. I’m just Carina. “We’ve had people come in from Manchester and a lady even flew over from Ireland. I was like, ‘For me?!’ Everyone’s sort of on the same vibe when they come in - I’m overwhelmed, they’re overwhelmed... It’s a joyous feeling.” The atmosphere at Dough Bakehouse HQ is still buzzing following Carina’s triumph in arguably

the toughest competition in television. In person, she’s as warm and friendly as onscreen - and clearly blown away by her success. “The Apprentice wasn’t the plan, as such,” she admits. “I feel like it’s destiny. My mum’s still got the text I sent to the family after I applied: ‘Could have Lord Sugar’s new business partner on your hands guys!’ I sent it as a joke, and now it’s happened. It’s so surreal. “I applied off the back of the feeling I had that this was something. It was the toughest thing I’ve ever done in my life - but I knew it was going to be worth it for me. From the start, I had that feeling.” Trusting her gut may have served Carina well, but it was hard work and laser focus that saw the self-described “pocket rocket” leave her competitors for dust on the hit BBC show. “If you believe in yourself, put yourself out there and work hard, then why shouldn’t you succeed?” she asks, with trademark straightforwardness. “I gave my all with every task. I wasn’t swanning about or pretending to take notes. It was very serious for me. If you want a jolly and whatever other people might have wanted, fine; but that wasn’t what I wanted.” Surely the pressure must have been intimidating at times? “It’s what I’ve always tried to embed in my sister: don’t feel like you ‘can’t’, ever,” Carina continues. “If you want to do something, think: this is what I want to do, so I will do it. Don’t hold back.” At just 31, the humble hustler has the life experience to back up that ethos. Growing up, she watched her beloved dad Carlo build his bakery business into a much-loved local hotspot - only to be gutted by a fire in 2016. “I remember it like it was yesterday,” she says. “I got the call of devastation from Dad saying ‘I’ve

got nothing left’. It was totally gone. He was depressed; I’ve never known him like that. Dad always drilled it into me to push myself - I’ve definitely inherited his drive - so it was a sad time. “I thought: what can we do here? How can we fix this, for Dad?” Carina stepped in to pick up the pieces, along with her sister Rachelle. “They lean on me I’m the shoulders,” she says of her role in the close-knit clan. “I’ll always try and help. So we rebuilt, from scratch. I said I’d sort the business side of things so Dad could refind his passion.” And rediscover it he has - with extra verve since his daughter’s TV success. “Dad’s loving it,” Carina laughs. “He came in last night saying, ‘I’ve got to do extra cakes!’ His cherry and almond slice featured on This Morning and is selling out every time, so he’s making double the amount.” Take that as reassurance, Dough Bakehouse fans: Carina might have nabbed what she needs to expand the business, but Herne Hill will still be its beating heart. “We’ll keep baking on-site here,” she insists. “This will be the HQ, so I don’t want to change it.” And whilst new shops are on the cards, Carina won’t be leaving south London any time soon. “It’s a big part of me,” she says of the area. “I used to come and play in Herne Hill with my best friend from school and I’ve always been visiting Brockwell Park, the County Show, Brixton. It’s a massive part of my life. I think it holds a bit of a rustic charm, a bit like Aladdin’s Cave - a diamond in the rough. We’re down to earth, we get on with it and we’re humble. We’re not stuck up. We’re real. “What more can I say, other than I love south London?”


SOUTH LONDON SOUNDS DJ, Brixton Buzz/Urban75 founder, drummer and Dulwich Hamlet die-hard Mike Urban shares his selection of south London sounds Sat 1st Feb, SW2 Steve Lawler at Electric Brixton Town Hall Parade, Brixton, SW2 1RJ, 11pm-7am, £25 Steve Lawler brings his hairy chest and Warriors crew to Brixton for an allnight onslaught of House, Tech House, Techno and Tribal House. Joining the Hirsute One on the decks will be fellow platter rotators, De La Swing, Guti, Max Chapman and Callum Edwards.

Sat 1st Feb, SW9 Come We Grow at Cafe Cairo 88 Landor Road, SW9 9PE, 6pm-1.30am, £7 Fabulously fluffy out-there vibes at this immersive fundraiser featuring musicians, MCs, performers and activists coming together in a mob-handed quest to “awaken the eco-conscience through music, song, dance, and collaboration.” From 6pm you can “bathe in the vibrations of the Earth and Moon gongs,” followed by Capoeira Science, a Poet’s Tarot Corner and Astrology Readings. Accordion and washboard-wielding Manifiesta perform their blend of Electro-Cumbia, Balkan & Afro-Diaspora beat, with DJ sets from Dónal Mango Park, Ian Solomon Kawall and DJ ch!co aka diRTy cHeeKs. There’s also cocktails, vegan pizzas and, err, free smiles, hugs and toast, if that floats your yin and yang cerebral surfboards.

Sat 1st Feb, SW2 Pake at the White Horse 94 Brixton Hill, Brixton, SW2 1QN, 9pm-3am, Free Resident booth occupier DJ Pake will be ascending and descending assorted sliders with the aim of producing a gusset warming salvo of danceable tunes.

Sat 1st Feb, SW9 Burlesque at Courtesan 69-73 Atlantic Road, Brixton SW9 8PU, 9pm, Free Tucked away in Atlantic Road, Courtesan’s striking interior recalls a backstreet Shanghai bar from the 1920s. Serving as a dim sum restaurant during


the day, the venue transforms into an artistic speakeasy at night, with cocktails and performers. Now established on the burlesque scene, you can enjoy the fabulously named Miss Cherry On Fire “embracing the vintage aesthetic and old glamour whilst fusing it with her Latin spirit and sizzling performances.”

Sat 1st Feb, SW9 Jamm’s House Party at JAMM 261 Brixton Road, Brixton, SW9 6LH, 10pm-4am, £12 Ward off the February chills with six hours of Disco, Hip Hop, House, R&B and UK Garage in two rooms (and a garden).

Sun 2nd Feb SW2 Catch A Fire at Upstairs At The Ritzy Ritzy Cinema, Brixton SW2 1JG, 8pm-midnight, £5 Allison Mason of Shining Stars shepherds a vast heaving mass of live talent onto the Ritzy’s bantam-sized stage, with acts including General Saint, Candy Silk, Clarkz, Danny Sprang, Dohlance and Oska 10 Star, with DJ Zinc Fence getting jiggy on the ones and twos.

Mon 3rd Feb, SE1 Desire Magic Mondays at Union Club 66 Albert Embankment, Vauxhall, SE1 7TP, 11.59pm-9am, £6 Send your pyjamas to bed and head for London’s wildest, sleep-defying weekly afterparty, powered by Jefferson Souza and weekly guests throwing down a bouncy breakfast of tech house and techno every Monday night/ Tuesday morning, midnight til 9am.

Mon 3rd Feb, SW2 Posh Peter’s Bingo at Hootananny 95 Effra Road, Brixton, SW2 1DF, 8pm-11pm, free Eccentric local legend Posh Peter freewheels his electric bike up to the Hoot to host his unique anarchic brand of bingo for this Monday night treat.

Tues 4th Feb, SW2 Olas Boss Ska Revival Night at Hootananny 95 Effra Road, Brixton, SW2

Read more at brixtonbuzz.com 1DF, 9pm-midnight, free The much tattooed Olas Boss will be diving deep into a record box awash with top notch reggae, rocksteady and ska.

Thurs 6th Feb, SE17 Gypsy Tales at Corsica Studios 5 Farrell Court, Elephant & Castle, SE17 1LB, 11pm-4am, £15 Gypsy Tales are back in the house with the lineup including Munich/Londonbased FloorSix and eclectic funkyhouse spinner Elliot Schooling, with Argentinian abstract art on display.

Thurs 6th Feb, SW9 And What? Rise of the MC at Chip Shop Brixton 378 Coldharbour Lane, SW9 8LF, 8pm-midnight, free It may be a Lilliputian-sized venue, but the Chip Shop Brixton already has a rock-solid reputation for putting on some fabulous nights. Tonight, MCs and vocalists are invited to step up to the mic at this free rap/hip-hop event hosted by Absent Minded Poetics, with IsaacB, Calaida, Joel Deep and A.Staxx bringing pumping the vibes.

Thurs 6th Feb, SW12 Rina May at The Bedford in Balham 77 Bedford Hill, SW12 9HD, 7pm-10pm, £11 British singer/songwriter Rina May launches her first EP ‘Beneath The Surface,’ at this ‘pop up show’ at the Bedford, with support.

Thurs 6th Feb, SE1 Astroworld at Ministry of Sound 103 Gaunt Street, Elephant & Castle, SE1 6DP, 10pm-5am, £5+ The south London mega-club hosts ‘London’s biggest hip-hop and trap party’ across four arenas, with twenty performers and hosts. Don’t forget to keep your hats and hoods at home, else you won’t get in. The ruddy hattists.

Fri 7th Feb, SE27 Mambista at Portico Gallery 23A Knight’s Hill, West Norwood, SE27 0HS, 8pm, £10 One of London’s most established and popular Latin bands, Conjunto Sabroso, bring their massed maracas, gamboling brass section and beefy percusion to Mambista. Led by Venezualan percussionist Wilmer Sifontes and fronted by Colombian singer Luz Elena Caicedo, the band produce their own distinctive and original sound that should get you cha-cha-chaing like a pair of over-caffeinated castanets.

Fri 7th Feb, SW2 Brixton Buzz party night at the Effra Social

89 Effra Road, Brixton, SW2 1DF, 9pm-1am, Free It’s a no-holds celebration of armflapping, beers aloft, roar-along pop at this jam-packed, fun night. Expect anything from The Cure to Katy Perry to Green Day.

Fri 7th Feb, SW9 Sniff The Glove at the Dogstar 389 Coldharbour Lane, Brixton, SW9 8LQ, 10pm-3am, £5 Billed as ‘the ultimate night for classic rock, hair metal and power ballads antics,” expect your tympanic cavities to resonate to a bombardment of Black Sabbath, a carpet bombing from the Crue and a mullering from Motorhead.

Fri 7th Feb, SW16 Osibisa at the Hideaway 2 Empire Mews, Streatham, SW16 2BF, 9pm, £22.50 Formed in London in 1969 by three Ghanaian and three Caribbean musicians, Osibisa dovetailed jazz, funk, Caribbean, R&B, Latin and African rhythms to create a compelling new sound. Now with 20 studio albums under their collective belts, there’s no doubting the band’s pivotal role in developing an awareness of African music among European and North American audiences from the 1970s to the current day.

Sat 8th Feb, SW9 Bobby & Steve at Prince Of Wales 467 Brixton Road, SW9 8HH, 10pm-2am, £9 Long-serving London house legends Bobby & Steve of the iconic Groove Odyssey brand wheel in a crateload of soulful house for this rooftop session. Also manhandling the decks will be chums Chrissy T, Linden C & Rob Acteson, plus Liam D, Steve Feelgood & Troy B2B, Nick Hudson and Richie Hodges.

Sat 8th Feb, SW9 Dancing On The Ceiling at Market House 443 Coldharbour Lane, Brixton, SW9 8LN, 9pm-4am, £5 Paul Knight Long occupies the DJ booth to broadcast a frisky regime of funk, soul, hip-hop, boogie, Latin licks and foot-tapping, bootyshaking grooves ‘til the wee hours.

Sat 8th Feb, SW9 Funk The Fires Benefit at Pop Brixton 49 Brixton Station Road, SW9 8PQ, 4pm-11.30pm, donation ‘Funk the Fires’ brings together Aussie and UK locals to raise desperately needed funds for the Australian Red Cross Bushfire Relief. There’ll be DJs, raffles, prizes and more - please donate as much as you can on the door.


RY • 10 SA



MAD PROFESSOR The dub legend celebrates forty years of mixing and producing some of the classic albums of the genre with this exclusive show. The Professor will be joined on stage by a full live band as he live mixes classic dub cuts from his vast archive.



RY • 10 t SA

10 th






One of the most iconic R&B groups of the ’70s and ’80s, The Jones Girls gained global fame with smash hits ‘Nights Over Egypt’ and ‘You Gonna Make Me Love Somebody Else’.





www.hideawaylive.co.uk 020 8835 7070 Hideaway, 2 Empire Mews, Streatham, London SW16 2BF

South London Sounds

Read more at brixtonbuzz.com

Bobby & Steve

Ben Somers Quartet

The Antipoet

Sat 8th Feb, SW16 All Things Soulful party at White Lion

Weds 12th Feb, SE24 Isa Bell at Off The Cuff

Fri 14th Feb, SE27 The Antipoet at the Railway Tavern

234 Streatham High Road, SW16 1BB, 8pm-2am, £5 It’s a Pete Mello and P. Maddix double-headed birthday celebration with an unfathomable amount of candles being ordered in for the cake. Expect a night of soulful tunes in this community pub.

301-303 Railton Road, Herne Hill, SE24 0JN, 9pm, £3 London debut for singer/songwriter Isa Bell who’ll be introducing the capital to her soulful reggae jazzy pop.

7 Station Rise, Tulse Hill, SE27 9BW, 9pm-2.30am, free Anarchic beatranters The Antipoet bring their brand of punky, Ian Duryesque wordsmithery to the Railway’s alternative Valentine’s bash, hosted by local legend, Dennis Just Dennis.

Sun 9th Feb, SW2 No Frills Sunday Session at The Windmill 22 Blenheim Gardens, Brixton SW2 5BZ, 7pm, Free Headed up by the ale-sloshing No Frills Band, this ebullient, round-the-table, candle-lit session invites musicians of all abilities to join in with new and traditional songs. Like a musical Whicker’s World without the airfare or cavity searches, feel free to clatter your tumbler along to rousing folk tunes sourced from all around the world.

Sun 9th Feb, SE14 Ben Somers Quartet at The Royal Albert 460 New Cross Road, SE14 6TJ, 7.30pm-10.30pm, free Original live music influenced by New Orleans jazz, European Folk and World Music, headed up by gifted singer/songwriter/sax player Ben Somers and backed by his band.

Sun 10th Feb, SE1 Izzie Yardley at the Gladstone Arms 64 Lant Street, Borough, SE1 1QN, 6.30pm-10.30pm, free Free evening of alt-pop/folk with a hat passed around for artist donations with Izzie Yardley, Joe Connor Little, Frankie Morrow and Alfie Firmin playing live.

Weds 12th Feb, SE15 Karaoke at Canavan’s Peckham Pool Club 188 Rye Lane, Peckham, SE15 4NF, 8pm-4am, £3 Delightfully rough around the edges and unpretentious, Canavan’s has the homespun charm of an old Brixton club before gentrification ripped the soul out of town. Every Wednesday night is boozy karaoke night, with Danny Borges manning the decks. Sing yourself stupid, dance yourself daft or just get busy in the vast pool hall.


Weds 12th Feb, SW9 Triple Jam Sandwich at Prince of Wales 469 Brixton Rd, SW9 8HH, 10pm-3am, £5 Hosted by hardcore trombone puffer James Coleman, Triple Jam Sandwich host their monthly jam at PoW on the second Wednesday of every month. The late night show sees three rotating sets of jazz, ska/ reggae and funk from the versatile house band, with random jammers strutting on stage to do their thang.

Thurs 13th Feb, SW8 Pretend x TC at The Cavendish Arms 128 Hartington Road, SW8 2HJ 7pm-11pm, £5 Three band bill in this quirky, kitsch, fun bar features Yorkshireman Joshua Zero’s mournful baroque pop, which apparently sounds a bit like Father John Misty stranded on a blustery moor. Berlin-spawned Soybomb rustles up the wonk-pop and tight harmonies while Hether merge chiming guitars with a side salad of grunge and shoegaze, washed down with a soupcon of reverb and fuzz.

Thurs 13th Feb, SW2 Jamaica Jazzzz at Effra Hall Tavern

Sat 15th Feb, SW9 Queen Bitch Valentine’s Break Up Party at the Dogstar 389 Coldharbour Lane, Brixton, SW9 8LQ, 10pm-4am, £5 Fresh from a sold-out Bowie charity bash, the Queen Bitch crew bring their LGBTQ+ friendly club back to the Dogstar for another packed-out night of inclusiveness, fun, hedonism, boozing and partying. DJs Jizzy Rascal and Editor will be hurling out party-sized disco bangers, indie-slammers, arms in the air singalongs and chartbusting blockbusters from the 70s to today, with videos, lasers, confetti cannons and balloon drops.

Sat 15th Feb, SE5 More Life! at the Old Dispensary 325 Camberwell New Road, SE5 0FT, 8pm-12.20am, free A new monthly night taking place in our favourite Camberwell pub, More Life! is a strictly vinyl-only kind of affair, playing ska and reggae. The night marks the return of much-missed DJ Nanker Phelge from Brixton’s Time Tunnel club, plus Zinc Fence (Catch A Fire, Brixton) and Glen T Ramjam Radio (Love TKO).

38 Kellett Road, Brixton, SW2 1EB, 9.30pm-11.15pm, Free One of the few traditional pubs left anywhere in the area, this locals’ boozer has regular live music nights throughout the week. Thursdays is always a busy night, with the house band mashing up jazz, ska and reggae in front of an appreciative crowd.

Sat 15th Feb, SW8 I Love Garage at Lightbox

Fri 14th Feb, SW16 DJs at the Horse & Groom

Sat 15th Feb, SW4 Punky Reggae Party with Shamefaced at Bread and Roses

60 Streatham High Road, SW16 1DA, 9pm-1am, free Unspecified ‘old and new music’ every Friday and Saturday night in this affordable and, err, rugged boozer.

6a South Lambeth Place, SW8 1SP, 10pm-6am, £1 upwards This Valentine’s Special Payback sees the hosts thanking their regulars with a limited run of one quid tickets in this celebration of UK Garage across two arenas.

68 Clapham Manor Street, Clapham, SW4 6DZ, 8pm-11.55pm, Free Spikey covers band Punky Reggae Party - named after Bob Marley’s ace 45 - are back at London’s only Trade


Union-owned boozer to keep it livid with renditions of pogo-jumping classics from the Damned, Jam, Clash, Stranglers and more, with support from Shamefaced.

Sat 15th Feb, SE27 Obscuritones album launch at the Railway Tavern 7 Station Rise, Tulse Hill, SE27 9BW, 8pm-2am, free South London rockabilly/country/ rock n roll outfit The Obscuritones will be unleashing their third album ‘Don’t Stop Her!’ at this free show in this popular Tulse Hill pub.

Sunday 16th Feb, SE1 Folk Music at the Spit and Sawdust 21 Bartholomew St, London SE1 4A, 8pm-11pm, free Every Sunday is Folk Sunday at this extremely well-stocked, on-trend craft beer pub.

Weds 19th Feb, SE5 Jazz Jam at The Junction 171 Coldharbour Lane, SE5 9PA, 8pm-11pm, free Beer pouring pro and bass playing polymath Luke hand picks some of the best musicians in London for an explosive night of hard bop and perplexing time signatures.

Weds 19th Feb, SW4 Common People at Venn Street Records 78 Venn Street, Clapham, SW4 0BD 7pm-10.30pm, free Weekly open mic session in this music-focussed bar next to the Clapham Picturehouse. Sign-up opens at 7.30pm and there’s a free drink for all performers. Wahey!

Thurs 20th Feb, SE15 Open Mic Night at The Joiners Arms 35 Denmark Hill, Camberwell, SE5 8RS, 7pm-midnight, free Get your name on the list from 7.30pm for this open mic night in a lovely, two-room traditional boozer with affordable (i.e. non-Brixton) bar prices. There’s a £1 entry fee, with free sweets and booze promised.

Thurs 20th Feb, SW2 L.A.B. Collective at Upstairs at the Ritzy Brixton Oval, Brixton, SW2

MAKE SOMEONE SMILE Become one of our volunteers and give just 1 hour a week to help an older person


Befriending visits, driving, odd jobs or support at a group 029 8299 2623 www.linkagesouthwark.org volunteering@linkagesouthwark.org

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South London Sounds 1JG, 8pm-midnight, free Hosted by L.A.B. Collective, Beat Meet delves, rummages and ferrets around experimental underground music with live producer showcases, DJ sets, performance, visual projections and beat submission competitions.

Fri 21st Feb, SW9 Jungle Cakes at JAMM 261 Brixton Road, Brixton, SW9 6LH, 10pm-4am, £20 Jungle Cakes kingpins Deekline and Ed Solo team up with the mighty General Levy for a cranium-pumping, lointhrusting night of full-on Bass Music, DnB and Jungle. Special guests include Mickey Finn & Aphrodite, plus Navigator performing an exclusive live PA. Support in the main room comes from Mexico’s Isaac Maya, along with residents Jessi G and Acee, while room two rocks to a soundtrack of dub, roots and riddims from Rasta Fou and Jurassik.

Fri 21st Feb, SW2 Pop Party Night at the Effra Social 89 Effra Road, Brixton, SW2 1DF, 9pm-1am, free It’s the biggest pop party in town, with well-oiled Brixton Buzz DJs crashing the decks with party anthems and armwaving bangers till 1am, backed by crazy dance visuals. Expect dancefloor mayhem to a fun soundtrack of Cyndi Lauper, Beyonce, Bon Jovi, A-Ha, Fleetwood Mac, Cher, Dolly, Whitney, Queen, Bowie, Outkast and more.

Sat 22nd Feb, SE15 Zalon & South London Soul Train at CLF Art Cafe Bussey Building, 133 Rye Lane, SE15 4ST 10pm-5am, £15 Zalon Thompson rose to prominence as a backing singer for the late Amy Winehouse, and he’s headlining the CLF with a set of smooth soul ballads and upfront grooves in the vein of Curtis Mayfield & Marvin Gaye. In Level 2, DJs Snowboy and Andy Lewis shuffle out a shedload of soul, funk and rare groove while resident Keith Lawrence unzips his bulging bag of 70s & 80s Soul, Hip Hop and Reggae.

Sat 22nd Feb, SE15 Keep A Light at Four Quarters

Pop Party Night


Read more at brixtonbuzz.com 187 Rye Lane, Peckham, SE15 4TP, 9pm-2am, free There’s house, boogie, soul, balearica and techno stirring in the Four Quarters basement, courtesy of DJs ONO, Mylan and Oli Flower.

Sun 23rd Feb, SW2 Napalm Death at Electric Brixton Town Hall Parade, Brixton, SW2 1RJ, 5pm-11pm, £28 Extreme metal deathcore dispensers Napalm Death will be dislodging fillings and triggering dust storms of dislodged dandruff as they bring their headbanging ensemble to the Electric, with toe-tapping support from Eyehategod, Misery Index, Rotten Sound and Bat.

Mon 24th Feb, SE5 Folk Jam at The Old Dispensary 325 Camberwell New Road, SE5 0TF, 8pm-1am, Free This traditional Irish boozer is the perfect setting for a no-pressure Americana folk jam where anyone can join in with the band and sing, strum, rattle or parp to their heart’s content. Popular with students who appreciate live music (and the cheap bar prices, natch), the vibes are always welcoming - we love this place.

Oval SE11 4PP, 8pm, Free Unspecified ‘live jazz and blues artists’ bring the music to this unpretentious, 1920s-themed boozer a mere saunter from Oval tube station.

Thurs 27th Feb, SE27 Open Stage at at Knowles of Norwood 294 Norwood Road, SE27 9AF, 8pm-midnight, free Get involved with the open stage night at Knowles on the last Thursday of every month. ‘Performers of all varieties’ welcome.

Fri 28th Feb, SW9 Viva La Musica at Cafe Cairo 88 Landor Road, SW9 9PE, 6pm-2am, £7 There’s a Latin American fusion night with live music and DJ sets coming right up in this cracking venue which combines the laid back atmosphere of a Middle Eastern lounge with the DIY ethic of a brilliant 1990s Brixton squat. Latin music virtuoso Miguel Muziq headlines the show, playing guitar along to his DJ selections.

Fri 28th Feb, SW2 Wonderhoots at Hootananny

Kellett Road, Brixton, SW2, 9pm-11.30pm, Free Glug down a Guinness in this oldschool Brixton boozer and enjoy splendid original Afrobeat and reggae-influenced grooves from local legends, The Soothsayers.

95 Effra Road, Brixton, SW2 1DF, 10pm-3am, £5 Wonderland returns to redecorate Hootananny and host a hefty line up of musicians, DJs and performers, including turntable bothering funksters Jimi Needles & Band, Keyaaardiff booty-shunters Afro Cluster and ten-strong, horn parping, basscone flappers Dat Brass, plus a gift bag of resident DJs. As ever, all profits go to the Wonder Years Centre of Excellence charity in Gambia.

Weds 26th Feb, SW2 Pottery at The Windmill

Fri 28th Feb, SE15 Treehouse at Rye Wax in London

22 Blenheim Gardens, Brixton, SW2 5BZ 7pm-11pm, £7.50 This British/Canadian indie outfit slice and dice their Orange Juice, Josef K and Devo influences to simmer up a steaming dish of hypnotic post-punk, pop, and dance music. Get in quick as this will sell out.

133 Rye Lane, SE15 4ST, 11pm-5am, £10 The resident DJs are primed and ready to drop no-nonsense house and techno beats till 5am. And it’s all yours for two Lady Godivas.

Tues 25th Feb, SW2 The Soothsayers at Effra Hall Tavern

Fri 28th Feb., SW2 Plump DJs at Blues Kitchen

336 Kennington Park Road,

40 Acre Lane, Brixton, SW2 5SP, 10pm-2.30am, £5+ Breakbeat pioneers Lee Rous and Andy Gardner - collectively

Zalon & South London Soul Train


Thurs 27th Feb, SE11 Live Music at Brown Derby

known as Plump DJs - bring their aural portfolio of Acid, Funk, Garage, Disco, HipHop and Techno to the Blues Kitchen, followed by the house band and resident DJs until the bouncers start maneuvering you to the door.

Fri 28th Feb, SW9 DJ Deep & Jeremy Underground at Phonox 418 Brixton Rd, Brixton, SW9 7AY, 9.30pm-4am, £15 It’s a double French show with house and techno ninjas Jeremy Underground and DJ Deep shimmying into the DJ booth at Phonox. Label boss DJ Deep has shared the decks with the likes of Kerri Chandler and Jeff Mills while Jeremy Underground has twiddled knobs in top UK venues like Printworks, Fabric, XOYO and Ye Olde Scrote.

Fri 29th Dec, SW16 DJ at Pratts & Payne 103 Streatham High Road, SW16 1HJ, 9pm-2am, Free Unnamed live bands and DJs bring the party to this Streatham shabby chic boozer every Sat night.

Sat 29th Feb, SW2 No Strings Attached at Barrio 30 Acre Lane, Brixton, SW2 5SG, 8pm-2.30am, free A platoon of Barrio DJs employ a shoe-shuffling broadside of Latin, disco, party anthems and throwback classics to this Latin-themed venue.

Sat 29th Feb, SE8 The Foreign Office at The Bird’s Nest 32 Deptford Church St, Deptford, SE8 4RZ, 8pm-4am, free Banish those beastly late February chills with the buttock warming Dubplate Diplomats, frying up a feast of Reggae, Afrobeats, AfroHouse, Cumbia and more sunshine sounds. Hosts Philipsman Cuba and Papa Scotchie pledge to keep things running smoother than a well polished jackfruit, with selectors including Chief Commander Yaaba, Yaw Noir, Jamie Renton, Stack Up Sound, and Antz Boogie, with Gita Adams on tubthumping duties.

Napalm Death

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South London Larder


The Valentine’s food and drink special

The Artful Dodger Brixton Brunch

Melange Chocolate By Cara cummings If your idea of true romance is supping cocktails created in honour of Pat Butcher, Roy Walker and Cilla Black, head down to Deptford kitsch palace Little Nan’s for a Valentines-themed bottomless brunch or afternoon tea. It’s not drinking-drinking if it involves a vintage teapot.

Whisk a love interest - or a loyal pal - to a Mates &

Dates special at the Prince of Peckham,

where you can share two Caribbeaninspired buns and fries from the White Men Can’t Jerk kitchen team for just £15.


11 February, 4-9.30pm, 1 Clayton Road.

Arches 13-15, Deptford Market Yard, SE8 4BX. £33pp.

Chic Sydenham Hill boozer The Wood House will be laying on a special Valentine’s menu on the 14th - including an oyster bar - from 5pm. Perfect for dinner à deux after a romantic stroll in nearby Dulwich Woods.

What’s more romantic than a glass of fizz? Two hours of the stuff. Sweep your beloved off their feet with 120 minutes of bottomless - quantity, not service - bubbly and a two-course meal at Clapham’s @Bar Laurent Perrier Brunch.

39, Sydenham Hill, SE26 6RS.

14 February, 6-8pm or 8-10pm sessions, 165 Clapham High Street. From £25.

Garage royalty and fried chicken combine at The Artful Dodger Brixton Brunch on 1 February. With food available from just £5, bottomless winter cocktails and the biggest names in UK garage performing under one roof, you and bae can kickstart Valentine’s early.

If music be the food of love, then French is definitely it’s language - and cheese it’s favourite nibble. Go tres Francais this V Day with afternoon tea at Champagne + Fromage and enjoy a cheese board, macaroons and biscuit roses to boot. Very gouda.

Midday-5pm, Brixton Jamm, 261 Brixton Road. From £11.25; over-18s only.

Treat the beer lover in your life to a Cask ticket, as the festival of all-things-keg comes to Peckham for its biggest celebration yet. 30 breweries will pop up at Copeland Park - including London favourites Howling Hops, Anspach & Hobday and Pressure Drop - along with the capital’s best food vendors. Cheers! 21-23 February. £35 (ticket includes all beer).

@Bar Laurent Perrier Brunch

3-5pm daily, Unit 10-11 Brixton Village. £27pp.

As the ol’ saying goes: chocolate and wine go together like… well, like nothing better. Deep dive into this dreamy partnership at a pairing workshop courtesy of Melange Chocolate on 13 February and start Valentine’s as you mean to go on.

8pm, 2 Maxted Road, Peckham. £40; email info@themelange.com to book.


Valentine’s Day Friday 14th February 3 course set menu with a complimentary glass of prosecco only £44.95 per head

Live Music from 8pm Mother’s Day

Sunday 22nd March Mother’s Day specials available

257 Rotherhithe Street, London SE16 5EJ - 0207 231 8838 www.theblacksmithsse16.com

South London Larder

MIAMI - without the vice The Urban Fox heads to Near & Far for brunch with a booze-free twist…


By Cara Cummings

nce upon a time, anyone suggesting an alcohol-free bottomless brunch would get a quick response from me: “Why?” The whole point of brunch is its thrilling disregard for time and rules. Unmoored from dour breakfast and snippy lunch alike, it’s the only meal where quite literally anything goes (kedgeree: case closed) and you can have that mimosa because, y’know, toast. Hell, brunch was invented so loose morals could prosper - Edwardian writer Guy Beringer conjured the concept to avoid a crushing hangover. He’s long gone to the bottomless Buck’s Fizz in the sky, but his theory still stands: supping booze and bacon is the ultimate escape from reality. And after some seriously wobbly years - I’m looking at you, Brexit - is it any wonder we’ve flocked to bottomless brunches in droves?


But can it ever be the same without a dash of debauchery? The founders of Near & Far at Peckham Levels think so. Last month, they launched London’s largest non-alcoholic drinks menu featuring more than 20 booze-free mocktails, beers, wines and even 0% spirits. To celebrate - hmm - the range is now served alongside a 100% veggie and vegan menu as part of a dry bottomless brunch, available at weekends. I convince three friends to join me in giving it a whirl. The fact that it’s January probably helps; everyone’s flirting with dietary intolerance. “I’m doing dry Jan/Veganuary/sugar-free/no dairy but cheese a bit...” April might be the cruellest month, but January’s the most annoying. It’s also helps that Near & Far is officially South London’s Most Instagrammable Venue (a thing, honestly). If we won’t be on the lash, we may as well go for likes. It’s easy to see why Near & Far draws the ‘Gram crowd. Full of stylish furniture, feature wallpaper, plants – that’s a real palm tree – and a central bar that wouldn’t look out of place at a Miami pool party, it’s cool. Very, very cool. And with domed windows throughout, you’re guaranteed beautiful views. It’s a gorgeous space for whiling away an afternoon. The food menu is refreshingly simple, featuring just four completely vegan choices, with the option of adding eggs and halloumi for committed protein fans. The no-booze drinks list, however, is the opposite. With 6 mocktails, ‘alt’ gins, whisky and rum and even alcohol-free sparkling wine, its astonishingly. Why bother boozing with virgin beers, No-Groanis and non-gin and tonics to

choose from instead? Something I’m immediately grateful for, as one by one my friends opt for the alcoholic brunch on offer instead. Cheers, guys. Now the only sober vegan at the table, I decide to go all in with a Feragaia Sour and vegan pancakes. The ‘alt. whisky’ mocktail is as fresh and zingy as its boozy cousin, if not better. (We try a straight shot of the ‘whisky’ later: so densely peaty and aromatic, it could be the real deal.) It beats the Virgin Mary I try next, which despite liberal additions from Near & Far’s fun ‘tweak your own Bloody Mary’ station stocked with horseradish, Tabasco and even sundried tomatoes, lacks punch. Our food arrives: every dish looks sensational. Who knew some of the most stylishly presented brunch in London could be found six flights up an old car park? My pancakes are perfectly cooked; fluffy clouds piled merrily with tart jam, fresh fruit and generous lashings of maple syrup. As for the added granola - I’d feared the result might taste like one breakfast accidentally tipped onto another, but it’s a triumph of textures. My friends, meanwhile, fall into rapt silence over their plates of pan-fried mushrooms on sourdough, and roasted butternut squash with sweet peppers, tahini and pomegranate. Given they’re three Aperols in, that’s saying something. In fact, the bread is so good, they ask our waitress for details of the supplier. I worried I’d feel left out as the designated bruncher. But the only difference between my friends’ experience and mine is that after we trot happily off into the afternoon, I can remember the name she gave us. Dry brunch? Consider me converted.

South London Hemisphere

Romantic atmosphere Royal Observatory Greenwich astronomer Ed Bloomer


Q: I may have forgotten about Valentine’s Day, and wanted to take my lovely partner to romantic Venus on a special getaway trip. What fun activities can I expect when I get there? A: Well, thanks for the aptly-timed and totally-notmade-up question! Emphatically though, this is not a great idea… Yes, the second planet from the Sun is indeed named after the Roman goddess of beauty and love, but I’m afraid it is a rather unwelcoming, inhospitable place. To begin with, the ground temperature is almost five hundred degrees Celsius, and the atmospheric pressure on the surface is more than ninety times that of the earth: trying imagine being inside an extremely hot oven while simultaneously being submerged deep in the ocean and you’ll begin to understand the general unpleasantness. Further, the atmosphere is largely carbon dioxide; no good for breathing, and above the lower layers are thick clouds of sulfuric acid. Perhaps a romantic moonlit walk? Sadly not really an option. Venus has no moon for starters, and thermal inertia means that the whole planet stays at pretty much the same temperature, day

or night. The small axial tilt results in little seasonal variation, which at least means that it won’t get much worse at different times. Not to say that we haven’t given visiting a try, notably the robotic probes of the Soviet Venera programme, some of which were able to obtain a handful of pictures from the surface of Venus itself; a rocky, broken landscape quickly fading into the distance due to that thick, poisonous atmosphere. Well worth a look, but probably not the sort of thing you’d like on a souvenir postcard. The conditions quickly rendered the probes inoperable. Space agencies certainly won’t be encouraging people to journey to the planet any time soon. Any argument about whether would-be explorers would be melted, dissolved or crushed first would be interesting, but of little comfort. However, NASA has been working on some further automated exploration; a probe designed to operate in extreme temperatures that could also see service on Mercury. But for the foreseeable future, robotic investigations -rather than romantic visitswill be the source of data about Venus.


Outstanding La Retraite La Retraite is a vibrant Roman Catholic school and Sixth Form with a mission to provide the highest possible standards of education for all our students, delivered in the context of Gospel values and teachings of the Church. We are recognised as ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted, and have produced consistently excellent exam results. La Retraite has been selected to offer two new T Level courses – Digital and Childcare & Education – from September 2020. On Thursday 27th February, we are hosting a T Level Information Evening to give prospective students, parents and employers an insight into these innovative courses. T Levels are brand new two-year qualifications designed to give students a head start towards the future they want, bringing classroom and work placements together on a course designed in collaboration with the best employers and businesses, including Google, Comensura, EDF and ISG. Equivalent to 3 A Levels, T Levels aim to shape the workplace of the future by giving students the

skills that businesses need to grow and thrive. We invite interested students and parents to attend our Information Evening, featuring talks on the importance of education and industry working together and alternative routes into the workplace, followed by an open event where you can find out more about these and other courses on offer at La Retraite. We will also showcase our excellent enrichment provisions, including our outstanding Scholarship Programme and the opportunities we provide to ensure all students reach their fullest potential.

We are also seeking partnerships with businesses in Digital, ICT, Media, Education and Childcare industries to offer placements for T Level students. We invite employers to join us at our Information Evening and networking session to learn more about the benefits and support available to businesses. For employers offering industry placements – nweekly@laretraite.lambeth.sch.uk For general inquiries – schsec@laretraite.lambeth.sch.uk www.laretraite.lambeth.sch.uk


It’s a jungle in there


iNTERVIEW BY CARA CUMMINGS ran Bailey is the founder of Dulwich florist The Fresh Flower Company and house plant emporium Forest, which stocks pots, plants and lifestyle products in its East Dulwich and Deptford stores. Her floral empire specialises in seasonal, high quality plants - with a secret rooftop vegetable patch to boot... I started out as an event florist doing flowers for weddings and parties. I’ve lived in East Dulwich since 1992. The Fresh Flower shop opened in 2006 - I was looking for a floristry workshop when I found what’s now the Forest East Dulwich site. It had been a bakery in Victorian times; the landlord who owns it is from the same family. There’s still an old bread oven and a flour chute down there. I work with two of my daughters - my youngest also helps out on Saturdays - and my brother. It’s a real family endeavour! My Dad is Dutch and came over in the ‘50s to set up a plant nursery and garden centre, so it’s in my family. We started selling plants and pots when the trend for houseplants was just starting in 2013. Forest has evolved because of how massive that’s become. I saw it the first time round in the ‘70s, when every student’s flat was filled with plants. When I started floristry in the ‘80s, minimalism was in and house plants weren’t in fashion; now we have loads of Goldsmiths students coming into the Deptford shop and in Dulwich, lots of stylists and mums who want a plant instead of a new cushion! 20-30 year olds have really gone mad for houseplants because they enjoy growing, nurturing and propagating them. It’s reflective of what’s going on in the wider world, where people are keen to be more environmentally focused. I try to lead an eco-friendly life. We grow vegetables on the roof above the East Dulwich store - there are tomatoes, courgettes, a pear and apricot tree up there! We try and support local growers and cut down on air miles by buying from Holland and Kent, rather than Kenya and South America like most of the flower trade. Greenery has been proven to have a calming effect on your senses. Plants are also air cleaners, which NASA found out that when they were building space stations. That’s important

because toxins can build up within our homes from things like soft furnishings, paint and cleaning products. If people have respiratory problems, or eczema, it can become a problem. We’re very proud of selling good quality plants and giving really good advice. Number 1 top tip is: don’t kill your plant with overcare. It’s like overfeeding your puppy or children. Only water your plants when the compost feels dry. If the leaves are drooping, it might need some water - but feel the compost first. Talk to the person who sells you a plant. Ask what its requirements are - some prefer bright light, others shade. A leafy rainforest plant likes high humidity and dappled shade; if you can find that space in your house, put it there. If you have a cactus or succulent, it needs light and will love a hot sunny window, but will suffer in a cold corner. It all depends on what you’re home is like. A big sunny flat needs plants that will enjoy that sunlight. Rubber plants love sunlight; the fiddle leaf fig is a great option too. It’s large growing and will be lovely in an open flat. If you’ve got a Victorian terraced house, or a basement flat with more shady conditions, ferns and calatheas are a good bet. It’s a case of matching the plant to the conditions - there’s lots of choice out there but we’re here to help. The Fresh Flower Co, 39a North Cross Road, East Dulwich, London, SE22 9ET studio@freshflower.co.uk / 020 8693 6088

Fran Bailey



Keen to keep the kids entertained this February half term? We’ve got something for everyone in our round up of south London’s best school’s-out activities...

3 1





Little ones live for Frozen? Kids’ drama company Perform have got the perfect holiday course for Elsa-obsessed 4-10 year olds: The Ice Queen. Over three magical days, your pint-sized performers will sing, dance and improvise about all-things Frozen. At £225, it’s an expensive treat - but packs enough brownie points to last all year.

Dulwich Picture Gallery offers creative clans the chance to immortalise themselves in portrait form this half term. Family Friday: Museum of Us will build an exhibition of self-portraits made by participants in the Gallery itself - with an exhibition catalogue that will feature the works forever, too.

Let your mini-Attenboroughs loose in the hidden oasis of the Centre for Wildlife Gardening, an award-winning wildlife hub tucked within a quiet Peckham street, at this free family event for Southwark residents. Track animals through the garden’s mini-habitats and enjoy games and crafts in the greenery.

1 A treat for tiny ice kings and queens

17-19 February, 10am-3pm. Goose Green Centre, East Dulwich, SE22 9AT

2 Make your own chocolate bars

Help the kids create their very own chocolate bars at this hands-on workshop from The Museum of Chocolate - aka the only museum you’ll never struggle to get them into. Choose flavours, toppings and even design your own wrappers before taking your treats home.

21 February, 11.00am-12.30pm. 187 Ferndale Road, SW9 8BA. £14.50pp, book in advance.


3 Draw yourself into the history books

21 February, 10am-4pm. Gallery Road, SE21 7AD. £5 adults; under-18s free.

4 Own a pony for a day

Serve the kids a slice of country life - without leaving the big smoke - at Vauxhall City Farm, where young pony fans can spend a day learning horse care skills including grooming, tacking up and mucking out, before spending the afternoon in the saddle atop their loyal steeds.

18th and 20th February, 10.30am-3pm. 165 Tyers Street, SE11 5HS. Ages 8-14, £80.

5 Become a nature detective

18 February, 10.30am-3.30pm. 28 Marsden Road, SE5 4EE. Free, but book in advance.

6 Southbank: The children’s take over

The Imagine Children’s Festival returns again this February, as Southbank transforms into a cultural playground for 0-11 year olds and their grown ups. Feed dinosaurs, go on an adventure with Pippi Longstocking, play in giant sandpits, solve mysteries and introduce kids to their favourite authors.

12-23 February. Full line up (including ticketed events) at southbankcentre.co.uk

Join us during half-term at the Elephant and Castle Shopping Centre for Carnival themed Arts & Crafts

FREE Arts & Crafts

Each day of half-term we are hosting creative workshops for children to create their own masks, costumes and headdresses. Located outside the Community Hub, on the Upper Floor of the Elephant and Castle Shopping Centre, opposite Jenny’s Burgers, SE1 6TE

Monday 17 February - Friday 21 February 11.00am - 3.00pm # FollowTheElephant @whatsonatelephant Brought to you by the













Located on the Upper Floor of the Elephant and Castle Shopping Centre, opposite Jenny’s Burgers, SE1 6TE @whatsonatelephant





# FollowTheElephant



It’s that time of year again!

Greenwich life coach Carrie Brooks shares her tips

Carrie on… with those new year health resolutions



ello and welcome. The month of February is challenging in many ways, we are well into winter, feeling the cold and damp and most of all, this is the month that our best intentions for the new year normally start to wane. More than likely we have spent January trying to stick to our new regimes of exercise, healthy eating and general life improvements. When it comes to February the novelty has worn off and for most of us, we are still not seeing significant results, so it’s easy to let the old habits just slip back into our everyday lives. Ok! This is the time to dig deep. Remind yourself why you wanted to make these changes to your life in the first place. Write them down in a bullet point list and stick this list somewhere where you can see it. Talk to yourself positively about how well you’re doing and how proud you are of yourself. Positive self-talk is the key to being successful in any endeavour in life. If we keep things positive, we can be resilient and weather any storm. What usually takes us off track and often has us giving up, is negative selftalk, such as, this is too hard, I’m not seeing any results, I’m fed up with it all, I’m just useless! Be attentive when these thoughts first appear and be aware of their negative impact. Go back to your positive list of why you want to make these changes in your life, read it out loud, never mind who’s listening and get right back on track! Just because you might miss a day or two or have

a bit of a binge, this doesn’t mean that you’ve failed and or that it’s time to give up, tomorrow is another day and decide that you’re going to get straight back into your positive changes. Most people give up because they have one slip-up but remember this is only one wrong turn and hold on to the positive benefits you have had up until now. By getting back on track again you are proving to yourself how easy this is and that you can do it. This encouragement is essential to being successful. Whenever we give up on anything that we have set our heart on, it makes us feel very low and also this has a strong negative impact on our selfesteem. So, for our emotional and psychological wellbeing, stay positive and keep it up. You’ve had successes before, and you can do it again! There is another point that may have to be considered if you are struggling to maintain your new routine, have you taken on too much? I used to be a Manager of Yoga Studios and every January there would be a massive influx of new students, many coming 5 or 6 times a week. These numbers would half by the beginning of February, and we would return to our average by March, so 95% of these new students we would never see again. This is the classic ‘launch yourself at a fitness regime with unrealistic targets’. If you are a person who has not had much of an exercise regime, to suddenly take on a commitment of 4 or more times a week, will more than likely result in you not being able to keep it up. We are creatures of habit and by introducing a new routine, we are in essence embarking on installing new habits into our life. We cannot go from 1 to 10 and expect such a radical change in our everyday habits to be successful. Gently does it wins the race. Start with twice weekly exercise, introduce new eating habits for a couple of days a week and when you feel comfortable with being able to maintain this routine, you can then always choose to increase it if you wish. Rely on how you feel and ensure that you are maintaining positive thoughts about this new change. At the end of the day we all want to look and feel the best we can. This is very personal and different for all of us. While one person wants to run 10k marathons, another person may just want to be able to keep up with the kids and wear the clothes they like. This all comes down to knowing what you want in your life. Ignore all outside pressure about how you should be looking and feeling and stubbornly decide what is right for you. This is the only way to feel fulfilled and satisfied. Trying to keep up with Social Media’s ideas of what we all should be looking like, will inevitably lead to a life of insecurity and always feeling not good-enough. Time to empower ourselves and choose what feels right for us. In the end we need to understand why want to make these positive improvements in our lives, whether it’s for our health or simply wanting to feel good about ourselves. We need to ask the question… Is it just social pressure or is this a change that I really want to make for myself? If the decision to make life improvements comes from a place of personal growth and a commitment to yourself, go for it and you will succeed, I promise!



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surgeries, and doctors in Southwark strongly encourage parents to book the free vaccine today.

EXTRA EXTRA GP GP AND AND NURSE NURSE APPOINTMENTS APPOINTMENTS available available at at two two locations locations in in Southwark Southwark

Is your child aged 2-3? See us to help protect AM flu. them from AM

Flu can be horrible for little children and if they get it, they can spread it around the whole family.


to book an appointment to book an appointment

If your surgery is closed, call 111. an appointment IfBook your surgery is closed, call 111. today. The Extended Primary Care Service (EPCS) provides The Primary Care Service (EPCS) provides extraExtended GP and nurse appointments at these locations: nhs.uk/fluvaccine extra GP and nurse appointments at these locations: Lister Health Centre Spa Medical Centre Lister Health Spa Medical SE16 Centre Peckham, SE15Centre 5LJ Bermondsey, 4BN Peckham, SE15 5LJ Bermondsey, SE16 4BN

You need to be registered with a Southwark GP to use You need to be registered this withservice. a Southwark GP to use this service. This service covers most of the things you’dcovers normally see This service most ofyour the GP or things nurse you’dfor. normally see your GP or nurse for. If you’re not sure whether the Extended Primary Care Service If you’re not sure whether the is right for you, ask your Extended Primary Caresurgery. Service is right for you, ask your surgery.

Find out more at www.southwarkccg.nhs.uk/8to8 Rachel Keith, Nurse

Registered All those aged 2Find and 3out (but not 4 years or older) on 31 August this year. more at www.southwarkccg.nhs.uk/8to8 HUHY19-41 © Crown copyright 2019

IF YOU feel unwell this winter, your local IF YOU feel thisplace winter, pharmacy is unwell the best to your startlocal for pharmacy the and bestremedies. place to start for health care is advice health advice and Your care pharmacist is aremedies. qualified healthcare

They can advise on things you can do at home to They can advise things youifcan do problem at home to help yourself andon will tell you your is help yourself andyou willdo tell youto if see youryour problem more serious and need GP. is more you do need to You serious can visitand your pharmacy at see anyyour timeGP. during You can hours, visit your pharmacy at anyto time during opening without needing book an opening hours, without needing to book an appointment. appointment. You can also get your flu jab from your pharmacy. You can also get your flu jab from your pharmacy.

Get involved and help give the flu jab a boost

Your pharmacist a qualified healthcare professional who canisrecognise common winter professional cancolds recognise common winter illnesses like who coughs, and sore throats, and illnesses likemedicines coughs, colds and sore throats, and recommend to help. recommend medicines to help.


Seven Seven days days aa week week

Contact your GP for a free flu vaccine, whichyour is usually just Contact GP surgery Contact your GP spray. surgery a quick and easy nasal

PHARMACY PHARMACY OPENING OPENING TIMES TIMES FOR FOR CHRISTMAS CHRISTMAS AND AND NEW NEW YEAR YEAR Pharmacies in Southwark are open every day over the festive period, Pharmacies in Southwark are open every festive including Christmas Day, Boxing Dayday andover Newthe Year’s Day.period, including Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Find your local pharmacy and check its opening hoursDay. at Find your local pharmacy and check its opening hours at www.nhs.uk/service-search or see below www.nhs.uk/service-search for Christmas and New Year opening times. or see below for Christmas and New Year opening times.

PHARMACY NAME ADDRESS AND PHONE lu jab uptake in Southwark is PHARMACY NAME ADDRESS AND PHONE low. Lower Aylesham than Centre, other parts MORRISONS Rye Lane, PHARMACY SE15 5EW Centre, Rye Lane, MORRISONS Aylesham of the UK. What can we do to 020 PHARMACY SE157639 5EW0483 020 7639 improve uptake? We0483need your BOOTS Units 8-11 , Hays Galleria, THE CHEMIST Counter Street, help. BOOTS Units 8-11 , Hays Galleria, SE1 2HDStreet, THE CHEMIST Counter 020 SE1 7407 2HD 4276 7407 4276 Join us at the020 Southwark LLOYDS 80next Dog Kennel Hill, SE22 8BB INSIDE SAINSBURYS 020 7733 6195Hill,Group LLOYDS 80 Dog Kennel SE22 8BB Patient Participation INSIDE SAINSBURYS 020 7733 6195 ASDA 464-504 Old Kent Road, SE1 5AG Network (SPPGN) meeting PHARMACY 020 7500Old 7910 ASDA 464-504 Kent Road, SE1 5AG for GP surgery staff and PHARMACY 020 7500 7910 BOOTS 11-13 Surrey Quays Shopping patients 5pm toRd,Quays 7.45pm, THE CHEMIST Ctr, Redriff SE16 7LL BOOTS 11-13 Surrey Shopping 020 7252 0084 THE CHEMIST Ctr, February Redriff Rd, SE16 7LL Wednesday 26 2020 020 7252 0084 BOOTS 20 Rye Lane, SE15 5BS at Jimmy Butterworth Hall, THE CHEMIST 020 7639 1544 BOOTS 20 Rye Lane, SE15 5BS THE CHEMIST 020 7639 1544 Church, Walworth Methodist BOOTS 289-291 Walworth Road, SE17 THE 2TG 54CHEMIST Camberwell Road, London BOOTS 289-291 Walworth Road, SE17 020 THE CHEMIST 2TG 7703 4356 SE5 0EW. 020 7703 4356 V.E.LETTSOM 84 Vestry Road, Camberwell, London, 8BQCamberwell, V.E.LETTSOM 84 VestrySE5 Road, 020 7701SE5 9250 London, 8BQ 020 7701 9250 HARFLEUR PHARMACY 107 Tower Bridge Road, SE1 4TW Road, HARFLEUR PHARMACY London, 107 Tower Bridge 020 7407SE1 0051 These are meetings any London, 4TWfor 020 7407and 0051 GP surgery staff JAMAICA ROAD 182 Jamaica Road,patients North PHARMACY SE16 4RT JAMAICA ROAD at Southwark, 182 Road, North in registered a Jamaica GP 3483 surgery 020 7237 PHARMACY Southwark, SE16 4RT 020 7237 3483

What is Southwark Patient Participation Group Network?


times a year and give patients a 10am to 4pm 10am to 4pm to get involved to help us 10am to 4pm 10am to 4pm get results that work for everyone.


10am to 6pm

11am to 5pm

to 6pm with 11amyour to 5pmGP Do you want10am to work surgery to have a say CLOSED 9am to 5pm 9am to 5pm about the issues that affect CLOSED 9am to 5pm 9am to 5pm and matter to CLOSED 9amyou? to 6pm 10am to 5pm CLOSED 9am toin 6pmSouthwark 10am to 5pm GP surgeries

are who their CLOSED 11am to 5pm Groups 11am to 5pm Patient Participation (PPG). CLOSED to 5pm 11am to 5pm Joining the11am PPG helps you stay CLOSED to 5pmmore connected 11am andto 5pm find11amout CLOSED to 5pm 11am to 5pm about how 11am your GP surgery and 8.30am 8.30am to affect you as a localto NHS services 8.30am to 8.30pm 8.30pm 8.30pm 8.30am to 8.30am to 8.30am along to 8.30pmto Southwark 8.30pm patient. Come 8.30pm PPG meetings to share your views 8.30am to CLOSED 4pm to 8pm 8.30pm 8.30am and tocontribute to plans improve CLOSED 4pmto to 8pm 8.30pm services. Find out more from your 8.30am to 8.30am to 8.30am to 8.30pm 8.30pm 8.30pm surgery. 8.30am to 8.30am to 8.30am to 8.30pm

always looking CLOSED 11am to for 5pm patients CLOSED CLOSED 11am to 5pm CLOSED in would like to get involved



For For more more information information about about how how to to stay stay well well this this winter, winter, please please visit: visit: www.nhs.uk/staywell www.nhs.uk/staywell URBAN FOX 29


Going for a song



t’s Wednesday night in Vauxhall and I’m stood next to a 71-year-old Chelsea Pensioner belting out Lady Gaga’s Pokerface. We’ve only just met, but reader: he ain’t bluffin’ with his muffin’. Around us, 25 strangers are p-p-p-p-p-p-p-pPokerfacing with similarly reckless abandon. No one is in the right key; no one can follow the word s; and no one, absolutely no one, gives a monkey’s. I’ve come to a session of Tuneless Choir, London’s first ensemble for the proudly tone deaf. ‘Sing like nobody’s listening’, proclaims the joyful slogan. But honestly? I’ve been dreading it, because nothing petrifies me more than singing in public. In fact, it’s the scenario I live in fear of most, more than climate change, being murdered and waking up next to Wayne Rooney combined.Even my anxiety dreams ooze the fear: I’m on stage at a packed Wembley, the lead singer, inexplicably, of Boyzone, and I’ve forgotten all the words. In short: joining a choir isn’t my idea of a wellbeing boost. But science disagrees. Multiple studies have shown group singing releases endorphins, improves immune


systems, reduces depression and squashes anxiety. It can even help you live longer. Lovely. I’m still terrified. Before the event, I call Talibah Rivers for reassurance. She’s a professional singer who brought the Tuneless Choir concept to London in 2018 and now leads its twice monthly sessions. “It’s not about how good or bad you are,” she explains. “It’s more about confidence, enjoyment and socialising; I’ve seen people really come out of their shells. Lots of our regulars say, ‘This is my therapy’.” There’s a palpable buzz as people arrive for tonight’s session. Everyone’s smiling, saying hello to each other and chatting to strangers. Am I still in London? I’m quickly adopted by a table of four friends who met through the choir. A motley crew of all ages and walks of life, they love Tuneless’ social side. “It’s the community that’s great for you,” says Ingrid, who joined to meet new people. “My friends say, ‘Aren’t you improving?’ It’s a tuneless choir - of course not! I’m rubbish, but I love it.” “I enjoy singing, but I’m desperately bad,” agrees Joan, on her second visit. “You can let rip here without fear of how it sounds.” Any advice for a nervous newbie? “Wine helps,” says pensioner Alan, nursing a glass. Talibah calls everyone together for a brief physical warm up to an ominously funky bassline. She’s positivity personified, but I feel sick. Suddenly, we’re launching into the first track - ‘Que Sera’. Whatever will be may well be, but I’m not opening my mouth. Track two, and things take a swift turn: it’s Etta James’ ‘I Just Want To Make Love To You!”, aka the most embarrassing song to sing, ever. Stock still and barely mumbling, I stand out like a sore thumb as everyone else gets their groove on. But something happens as Adele’s ‘Rolling in the Deep’ kicks in: I can’t help myself singing along. “I love this song!” I say to Ingrid. “You did,” she deadpans back. Around me, the atmosphere is already joyous. People laugh and whoop as

a man with a large beard debuts some fierce interpretive dance. It feels like a family party warm, safe, silly. You can’t help but join in. I feel welcomed and encouraged by these carefree strangers, more so than ever before in London. By the time Madonna’s ‘Like a Prayer’ rolls round, I’m bopping from side to side and belting my heart out for the first time in decades - and it feels fantastic. No one can shut me up for the rest of the session. I’d expected to be bowled over by waves of song-induced serotonin after leaving Tuneless Choir but the truth is, it’s the social side of the concept that really hits home. It’s hard enough to come together with strangers in this tough city, let alone to embrace your imperfections for pure enjoyment and nothing more. We could all do with dropping the Pokerface and bursting into song, every once in a while. www.tunelesschoir.com

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Holding out for spring Jackie Power is a horticulturalist and herbalist who lives in Southwark ©©Pictures: Christian Fisher



ecember weather was cloudy and grey with average temperatures and occasional bright, cold sunny days. January has been much the same – but cooler conditions may be on the way as we head into February. Gardening in the city is often restricted to window boxes or containers on balconies or patios; gardens can be a rarity and maybe shared, small or shaded by buildings and trees. This presents a challenging growing environment - but there are a range of plants that will tolerate limited light as long as there is some sun during the day. To ensure plants thrive - the soil needs to be kept in good condition - free draining and not compacted or waterlogged. This can be achieved by aerating and mulching in spring and autumn, and top dressing plants in spring to maintain fertility and soil structure. Shade tolerant plants include:-

• Ivy is often overlooked because it is so common and can just arrive in the garden by itself! There are lots of different varieties such as Helix Hedera ‘Goldheart’ which has a splash of gold on the leaves; generally Ivy has a robust habit and needs to climb either against a wall or fence. It also attracts wildlife.

• Bamboo is a vigorous shrub; there are lots of different varieties to choose from –

including Golden Bamboo, Bisset’s Bamboo or Umbrella Bamboo. This is quite an invasive plant; confine the roots in a pot when planting to slow underground spread. It can break out and quickly take over a small space.

• The flowering quince (Chaenomeles) is an attractive, low growing shrub that produces white, peach or red flowers in January - and ornamental fruits in autumn.

• Impatiens or the Busy Lizzies are cheerful, bright annuals which last through the summer months and provide a splash of colour, they are also drought tolerant.

• Vinca is an evergreen ground cover plant and tolerates dense shade; it produces pretty flowers during the summer – purple, mauve, blue or white depending on the variety.

Some bulbs grow naturally in a shady environment such as Snowdrops and the Autumn crocus. Other flowering shrubs such as Choisya and summer flowering Jasmine will flourish in light shade. The evergreen Choisya is a trouble-free plant and flowers several times a year. It can be clipped to keep compact. Jasmine is a vigorous climber producing clusters of white fragrant flowers. Other useful evergreens are Holly and Box.

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Rent at Royal Mint Gardens

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Positioned behind the Tower of London on the edge of London’s famous Square Mile, Royal Mint Gardens provides corporate and professional tenants with a sophisticated selection of apartments taking in commanding views of Tower Bridge and St Katherine Docks. Apartments are expertly designed to a high specification with balcony views. An expansive piazza leads into a hotel-style lobby and 24 hour concierge. On-site amenities include a swimming pool, jacuzzi, gym and private cinema, communal roof terrace and landscaped gardens. Just across the road is the fashionable cluster of restaurants, bars and shops that make up St Katherine Docks. They overlook a picture-perfect marina, complete with jetties, luxury yachts and historic sailing craft. “We are receiving plenty of new instructions from landlords at Royal Mint Gardens”

says Mark Wellington, Area Manager for Benham and Reeves who have two nearby lettings branches serving the location. “We have good stocks to meet the strong demand from city workers who want to live here. We’ve a good choice of studios, one, two and three apartments which are all letting quickly at full market rentals from £425 per week up to £800 per week”. Part of the success here has to be the location as Royal Mint Gardens is supremely well-connected.

The Zone 1 Tower Gateway Station is two minutes’ walk away and is one of the main starting points for the DLR transit system that links to Canary Wharf, London City Airport and Stratford. Phone: 020 7680 8900 Email: info@benhams.com www.benhams.com


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