Saturday, 29 October 2016

Is The Ravensbourne Arms to Close?

Brockley Central, which always has its ear to the ground, reports that pub company Antic London are selling The Ravensbourne Arms (opposite St.Mary's Church on Lewisham High Street).
It is not clear yet whether any new owners plan to develop the site or to retain pub use.  In August 2015 an application to turn the upper floors of the building into flats was granted by LB Lewisham.  Recently LBL has adopted a policy to safeguard pubs from conversion to residential use where the pub is a 'going concern', as The Ravensbourne clearly is, so hopefully there are ground for resisting any such application.
Robert Sheppard

Monday, 17 October 2016

Wonderful, wonderful Ladywell Fields!

Ladywell Fields, from Ladywell Road bridge (17 Oct 2016)
Here in Ladywell we are blessed with a number of wonderful local parks.  Our two largest parks offer a wonderful contrast - we have Hilly Fields at the top of the hill and, at the foot of the hill between Ladywell Station and the Hospital, we have the evergreen Ladywell Fields.
For those of you not already aware, until about a century ago Ladywell Fields were watermeadows used for grazing animals (see photo to the left, looking east from Ladywell Station towards where 'The 'Playtower currently is, and this one from the Borough archives).
Ladywell Fields, at around the turn of the 19th century, looking north
from approximately where the 'curly bridge' over the railway now is.
In 1889 the area was purchased by the London County Council and Lewisham District Board of Works, with further land purchased later, and was opened as Ladywell Recreation Ground. Because the area was liable to flooding, the River Ravensbourne was straightened and enlarged, weirs were added, and the meadows were drained and landscaped.
Over the last decade over £2m of investment from the European Union and the London Development Agency has seen the renaturalisation of the River channel and other significant improvements.  The park has two children's playgrounds, a skatepark, an adventure playground, The Ten Thousand Hands Cafe and, quite uniquely, the River Ravensbourne in which kids can safely paddle, under supervision(!), during most of the year.  So what's not to like!
To get involved with the Friends of Ladywell Fields email or have a look at the Ladywell Fields blogspot.
Robert Sheppard

Ladywell Tavern Refurb Underway

It seems the new owners of the Ladywell Tavern are giving the building the t.l.c. it's needed for a few years now. Scaffolding is up and builders were today repairing the parapet at the very top of the building.

Whilst we're aware there's a planning application awaiting determination (weblink below), LVIG is keen, as are many Ladywell residents, to know what the owners' plans are (e.g. for the first and second floors) and, perhaps most importantly, when the pub will reopen!

You can find the planning application - for "the demolition of two outbuildings and a garage to create a beer garden to the rear of the Ladywell Tavern . . . together with the erection of timber gates fronting onto Slagrove Place and new glazed doors to the function room" - here on the Lewisham Council website.

Robert Sheppard