Closed White Swan pub becomes asset of community value again

White Swan
Mendoza bought the freehold to the White Swan in March 2015

The White Swan pub, which closed suddenly just before the coronavirus pandemic, has been registered as an asset of community value by Greenwich Council after a request by the Charlton Society.

The designation means that if the building is put up for sale, a six-month block can be put on the sale to allow a community group to bid to take it on.

It is the second time the pub has been given the status – six years ago the society successfully applied for the White Swan to be made an asset of community value, but the designation was allowed to lapse.

The pub’s owner, property company Mendoza, has insisted it will find a new tenant for the pub. Work has taken place on the site since the company repossessed the building in March.

A decision is due on a planning application by Mendoza to build a house on land at the back of the pub – shaving off a section of the beer garden to build an access road.

The village’s other pub, The Bugle Horn, was designated an asset of community value in June 2015, though that status expired last month.


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Could you help parkrun come to Charlton Park?

Charlton Park
Fancy a run? Or a walk?

It’s been on hold since March, but in normal times it gets hundreds of SE Londoners up each Saturday morning for a run around the park. Or even just a brisk walk. It’s helped transform people’s fitness and wellbeing, and has become a global phenomenon. So why not have one in Charlton? CLARE CRAWLEY is looking for volunteers who can help bring parkrun to Charlton Park…

Heard of parkrun? It’s the global phenomenon that sees weekly runs in 20 countries worldwide, totally free, with a focus on inclusiveness and run entirely by volunteers. And myself and a group of Charlton residents are looking to establish a parkrun (or two) in SE7!

Parkrun is a simple format. The Saturday ‘run’ is 5k (although walking or slow jogs are just as welcome) and there is a Sunday event for juniors (ages 4-14) which is 2k. We may have to try starting with one, depending on the interest and enthusiasm we find!

Hilly Fields parkrun
Parkrun at Hilly Fields in Lewisham

One major decision is where we could hold the parkrun and we have scoped a route in Charlton Park. We have contacted parkrun HQ about its requirements for a venue to check suitability. We are also in conversation with Greenwich Council and the Friends of Charlton Park, both of whom are very supportive of the idea.

So how could you help? Well, we have a handful of committed volunteers who can form the basis a steering group to take the planning forward, but we need more! Meetings will probably have to be virtual at first, because of Covid-19. If we are successful, we will also need volunteers to help set up and support each weekly event. Parkrun could not survive without its volunteers, the ‘hi-vis heroes’!

Interested? Contact Claire on crawley_claire[at]yahoo.co.uk.

More information on parkrun (Taken from the parkrun UK website):
“Parkrun is a positive, welcoming and inclusive experience where there is no time limit and no one finishes last. Everyone is welcome to come along, whether you walk, jog, run, volunteer or spectate. There are so many reasons to take part! Whether you walk, jog, run, volunteer or spectate, you can learn new skills and enhance your health and happiness in the great outdoors whilst making new friends, feeling part of your local community and improving your fitness. Still not convinced? Check out loads of inspirational stories from parkrunners on our blog, or watch them on our YouTube channel.”

Currently, the nearest adult parkruns to Charlton are Hilly Fields, Catford, Avery Hill Park, Victoria Dock, Beckton and Southwark Park. The nearest junior parkruns are Hilly Fields, Eltham Park South and Lesnes Abbey Wood.


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Charlton Lido reopens to swimmers after lockdown: What’s it like?

Charlton Lido July 2020
Charlton Lido at opening time on Sunday morning

Charlton Lido became one of the first outdoor pools in the country to reopen this weekend, after the government lifted some restrictions on exercise and recreational activities on Thursday. The centre’s operator, Better, have made some changes to accommodate new guidance on safe operation in the new, Covid-aware world – we went along for a dip to find out more.

 

The first important change is that you need to book online or via the Better app – no walk-ins at the moment. I made a booking very easily via the app using my membership but know that some others have had issues; anecdotally, the centre are resolving these quite quickly. Swim sessions are 50 minutes, with 10 minutes presumably for cleaning.

Swimmers enter through the reception in the usual way and exit post-swim from one of the poolside fire exits. The indoor changing rooms are out of action, but the toilets are available, along with the poolside cubicles, showers and lockers.

Swimming is adults-only at the moment, and the pool has been divided into five lanes, each going in an anti-clockwise direction. Under government guidance butterfly and backstroke aren’t allowed (presumably these are either too splashy or they bring increased risk of contact with other swimmers). The car park is now pay-by-mobile.

From my experience the new system was working well, and I was impressed by the staffs’ efforts in explaining the new processes to swimmers as they came into the centre and again poolside. It was emphasised that the centre is going through a learning process, and the above may change over time – as may government guidance. We’re told that ‘full service’ resumes on July 25 but they are hopeful of running some outdoor fitness activities including spin classes before then. In the meantime, we advise keeping an eye on the website for the latest opening hours.

Charlton Lido


PLEASE SUPPORT THE CHARLTON CHAMPION

We tell the SE7 stories you won’t read elsewhere. We can’t do it without your help.
– Please tell us about your news and events
– Become a monthly supporter at presspatron.com/charltonchampion
– Advertise your business with us from just £9.80/per week
– Celebrate our neighbourhood and order postcards or a print