Council meetings

Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: The Sydenham Centre, 44A Sydenham Road, SE26 5QX

Contact: Laura Luckhurst 

No. Item


Welcome, Introductions and Apologies


Cllr Curran welcomed everyone to the meeting and introduced new councillor Tom Copley.


Fun Palaces Engagement activity

  • Sydenham Fun Palace venues
  • Workshopping Fun Palace activities
  • Getting the word out


Cllr Curran introduced explained Fun Palaces which are a grass-roots cultural campaign to encourage everyone to explore and share their own skills, talents and enthusiasms.  A steering group had been set up to plan the Fun Palaces following enthusiastic response to the presentation at the March Assembly.  One meeting had already taken place.  Fun Palaces were being planned at 4 locations in Sydenham.  The organisers introduced themselves and said that fun-palace makers had already suggested activities at their venues such as:

Sydenham Library – Ilse Towler – Coding installation, jewellery making

Sydenham Centre – Sydenham Arts (Rachel D’Cruze) –collaborative art project and legacy for Sydenham Centre

Sydenham Centre – Jonathan Kaufman – Green screen/flying on magic carpet, participation in performance, creative writing etc.

Attendees at the meeting then broke up into four discussion tables which talked about arts and science-based Fun Palace activities, logistics and publicity.  Participants were encouraged to be creative and imagine themselves as responsible for delivering a Fun Palace.  There was plenty of enthusiastic discussion, resulting in many exciting and creative suggestions.  See Appendix A Report on Fun Palaces Making Session.

Points made in the feedback included making sure that the activities are not only aimed at children, asking supermarkets to support or sponsor, a direct approach to marketing i.e. inviting your friends and neighbours, and community organisations to talk about Fun Palaces to their members/service users.



Sydenham Summer Events


Updates were given on activities running at Sydenham Arts and Sydenham Library over the summer.


Safer Neighbourhood Team


Smart water (security device) had now been delivered to around 75% of the target group. Deaths from motor vehicle accidents have reduced but motorbike crime is increasing.  People are asked if possible if they witness a motorbike or vehicle crime to record the registration number.  The date of the next SNT Ward Panel was given as 21 June at 7 pm in Ray Champion Room.  Crime reporting should be called into 999, details will always be referred on to the SNT.


Ward Assembly Fund Support for Fun Palaces


It was agreed to provide £500 from Assembly Fund to support the Fun Palaces in October.


Community Updates

Including St. Philip Neri School, Hillcrest developments, updates on Post Office and Bell Green Gasholders and high street.



Cllr Tom Copley introduced himself as the newly elected councillor, joining Cllrs Best and Curran.

Our Lady and St Philip Neri
A number of objections had been made to the building on the grounds that the building, as constructed, did not comply with the drawings that had been given planning consent.  There were concerns over the building’s height, cladding and window frames.

For the Sydenham Society, Annabel McLaren stated that they were asking for a public Planning meeting chaired by a councillor, to take place before the summer holidays.

Matthew Ringham, OLSPN Head agreed that the school want the original plans to be built.  He stated that reports on social media that children were being put at risk and that the building was not insured for use were incorrect.

Annabel apologised on behalf of Sydenham Society if any incorrect information had been given out. 

In response to a question, it was clarified that the Diocese is the client of the building works, OLSPN are only tenants of the Diocese.

The feeling of the meeting was taken in a vote, with 40 in favour of a public meeting being arranged, 3 against and no abstentions.

Hillcrest Estate
An update was given on the two proposed developments affecting the Hillcrest Estate.  An Invitation letter was available at the Assembly to a Local Meeting on 28th June regarding the larger development of 17 flats.  A local meeting for Bluebell was in process of being scheduled.

Attendees voiced concerns about the effects on the water table and possible flooding.  Cllr Copley stated that an Environmental Impact Report would be produced.  Questions were also asked about the impact on the Great North Wood, and the availability of bike parking for current (not only new) residents.  Noted that these would be addressed in the meeting organised for 28th June.

James Ross Hunter Trust
Collet Hunter introduced the Trust which she had set up after her son was killed in a knife attack.  They are based at TNG and put on two community events per year.  The aims are to bring people together and a platform for young people to highlight their potential.

Sydenham Hill – traffic calming
LB Southwark and TfL had been carrying out some traffic calming and other measures including new yellow lines in the Sydenham Hill area.  LB Lewisham are liaising with Southwark to ensure that local Sydenham (Lewisham) residents’ views are taken into account.



Feedback and Close

Sydenham Arts Festival, Spontaneous Productions, Sydenham Library etc.


Atttendees were asked to complete feedback forms.  The meeting closed at
9.00 pm


Appendix A - Fun Palace Making Session


Fun Palace Making Session – overview

1 “Arts and Sciences”

People on these tables were asked to imagine they WERE the fun palace and had to draw on their own resources to produce the activities.  This challenge produced some exciting and creative suggestions, with people using “spider-maps”, and writing and drawing their ideas on large sheets of paper:

·        Singing/songwriting with sound loops

·        Eco-bricking using non-recyclable plastic

·        Parenting is a science

·        Sub/urban safari

·        Growing from seed

·        Simple science experiments




·        Radio Sydenham Live

·        Bike-powered electricity

·        Paper plane-making

·        Crafts

o   Jewellery making

o   Painting

o   Work with materials – dressing up, accessories

o   Knitting

·        Inspirational pictures - art appreciation

·        African dancer

o   Dance routine

o   Singing – karaoke

·        Dance-a-thon

o   Ballet, Ballroom, Salsa, tango, African jazz – 10 minutes of each


Advertising for Fun Palace – in Sydenham Life Mag – St. Barts

·        Hands-on Science activities for kids (and for us big kids?! – Ed):

o   Lemonade bottle rockets

o   Bicard soda volcanoes

o   Paper mache

o   Dyson – “cards” with example activities for people to take away

o   Located in Home Park

·        Making yoghurt

·        Water display – show what is what!

·        Experiment of some sort to show why it is important to be aware and involved

·        Recycling demo

·        Cooking food from the allotment …. Pizza oven? Mayow Park, Grow Mayow?



















































till life set up




















2 Resources and Publicity

We also had two tables where people discussed Resources and Publicity (or Nuts and bolts and Getting the word out!). Some surprising and fascinating ideas came from these tables including more ideas for activities!


·        Dog agility – police dog handlers

·        Singing for pleasure

·        Local history – young and old

·        Musical instrument

·        For the cultural salon I can provide lots of philosophers!!!

·        Face-painting

·        I could get 9th Sydenham Scout Association to do something

·        I could bake resources: Food J

·        Speakers corner – history, topics, anything

·        Sydenham Orchestra

·        Genealogy

·        Beekeeping

·        Footballers/authors engaged in reading support

·        Intergenerational football coaching or basketball coaching

·        Big Match in the yard

·        TNG – should be a Fun palace every week!



Publicity – on this table people were asked to think about a very isolated person who would be unlikely to get involved and how we could reach out to that person.... this is what they came up with….

Reserved: This person is not an organiser, but likes to talk and to have a laugh…
Reserved: This person lives locally and might be a carer for a family member, isolated, possibly stressed and very busy, has little time for themselves and will find it hard to take on more…












How to reach  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.