My wife Isobel and I have started a new folk club in Charlton. it’ll be on the first Monday of each month, upstairs at the White Swan in the Village. We had our first evening last week and had a wonderful musical time, attracting singers and musicians with a love of traditional music plus some locals who just came in to listen. It was them that suggested I get in touch with you and we are keen to attract more people. Would you give us a mention?
We certainly can…
The next one will be on New Year’s Day at 8pm, with £2 admission. Feel free to get in touch with Jim and Isobel via the Roving Folk Club Facebook page in the meantime.
(You may know Jim and Isobel from their band Bruise.)
Many long-term residents have already left the estate, with the buildings currently being used for temporary accommodation. Across the three estates, 1,064 homes originally built for council rent will be replaced by 1,500 homes with 35% as “affordable”, a catch-all for range for tenures from shared ownership, through proportions of market rent to “social target rent”.
New plans mean the estate will be empty by late summer, with demolition set to begin in autumn, a year ahead of schedule, residents’ group representatives at a “stakeholders’ forum” last week were told.
The Charlton Champion emailed Greenwich Council’s press office for more information about the plan, but has not been sent a response.
It would also cut the number of new homes to 771. It is not known how many would be for social rent or “affordable” – the previous scheme had just 13% “affordable” homes.
The announcement was made at a “stakeholders’ forum” of representatives from residents’ and amenity groups last week and tweeted by council deputy leader Danny Thorpe.
These are the images from the original Rockwell scheme in # #Charlton (28 storey tower) and now the new proposals – buildings a max of 10 storeys, improved public transport, public realm, play streets and the east-west link #greenwichpic.twitter.com/Z5GgnTqNMr
One in four of the bank’s branches are being closed after parent group RBS said use of its branches by customers had fallen 40% since 2014.
The Old Dover Road outlet – the nearest bank for many Charlton residents – has been known as the Blackheath & Westcombe Park branch since the 1990s, when it took on the responsibilities of the closed Blackheath Village NatWest.
NatWest branches in Greenwich, Lewisham and Woolwich will remain in business.
The closure means Barclays will be last remaining bank at Blackheath Standard. The former Woolwich Equitable building society and the long-gone Greenwich Building Society – swallowed up into Portman, now part of Nationwide – also once had branches there.
The last bank remaining in Charlton itself – a Barclays – was demolished 20 years ago to accommodate a new exit for Charlton station.
Hundreds of people turned up on Thursday morning to be among the first to rummage through the racks at Charlton’s new Primark store, which was opened this morning by Charlton Athletic players Johnnie Jackson and Ben Amos, along with club ambassador Keith Peacock.
The 47,000-square foot store is Primark’s 183rd in the UK and 21st in London. It employs 216 staff (there are still 16 vacancies), with 50 in their first ever jobs. Among their tasks will be looking after 243 mannequins.
It’s been a huge effort for the retail giant to get the store open – staff only got the keys last Wednesday, and have been busy unpacking 14,000 boxes of stock.
A little look around before the rush…
More stats: there are 50 fitting rooms, 20 cash desks, two “recharge” seating areas and a coffee shop. Like we said, it’s a retail giant.
Proud store boss Sunny Vadhar thanked his staff at the opening…
See, he says “Charlton”. They say “Charlton”. Unlike some of the other chains in the retail parks, the Primark team know where they are and are proud to be here.
After a few words from from Primark chief executive Paul Marchant, the outsized scissors came out…
…and then the moment the crowds were let in. It’s a perfectly choreographed moment. You can see why people who have opened scores of stores in their careers were still looking genuinely excited.
And they kept coming. 400 people? 500 people? We all lost count.
So there it is. Primark’s arrival completes the Brocklebank Retail Park, and we’ll have to live with the traffic jams it’ll bring. We’ll deal with all that another time, but for now, we’ve a plush new clothes store on our doorstep that’s given lots of people employment. And one that was kind enough to invite us and show us around, rather than just imposing themselves on the area and pretending their store is in Greenwich.
So go and have a look. Maybe leave the car at home, though…
Primark Charlton is open for business from 9am-8pm Mondays to Saturdays, 11am-5pm on Sundays. Thanks to Primark for the invite and the tour.
Charlton and Woolwich Arsenal stations will lose direct trains to Charing Cross from December 2022, according to the Department for Transport’s plans for the new Southeastern franchise, which have been published today.
The invitation to tender sets out what the Government expects of the firm which wins the new franchise, which due to begin in April 2019. It sets out the basic service the winning operator is expected to provide.
Currently, six trains per hour run from Charlton to Cannon Street via Greenwich, with two running to Charing Cross via Lewisham.
But from 2022, those Charing Cross services would be rerouted to Cannon Street, calling additionally at New Cross and St John’s. Passengers who want Waterloo East and Charing Cross will have to change at London Bridge.
Looking in the other direction, there is also an option given for bidders to extend one set of Greenwich line trains to Maidstone West, while Belvedere and Erith may see a cut in services, with bidders asked to provide only a minimum of four trains per hour. The planned Thameslink trains are not set to call at those stops.
Arthur asked The Charlton Champion what was going on. So we asked Network Rail.
A very nice spokesperson told us: “The footbridge at Charlton Lane has been taken away for major refurbishment and re-painting. We aim to get it back in position before Spring 2018 and in the meantime if people could use the level crossing we would appreciate their patience and understanding.”
A bit inconvenient if you come at a time when there are multiple trains coming, but hopefully a brighter and less creaky bridge will be back in place soon.