City Living, Local Life

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See Through Sound: Tickets still available for RNIB’s night of live music, 14 October 2016

Join the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) on Friday, 14 October 2016 for an evening of live music from leading artists such as Badly Drawn Boy, Newton Faulkner, Doc Brown and Kevin Simm and help to support RNIB and their work with people with sight loss.

The evening is being hosted at Cadogan Hall (SW1X 9DQ) at 7pm (doors open at 5.30pm). As well as the musical delights, all guests will be provided with ‘sim specs’ (glasses simulating sight-loss) giving an insight into living with sight-loss, and providing a one-of-a-kind visual experience.

Tickets are £25 (students £20) and can be booked via the RNIB website.

RNIB have been working to make daily life better for people affected by sight loss since 1868 through campaigning, direct support and education, training and learning. For more information on RNIB, please visit their website.

Culture Vultures: Checked out the borough’s museums late-ly?

Did you know that some of the world-class museums that are on your doorstep open for regular adults-only evenings?

These events are often free and usually feature talks, shows and interactive activities.  You can also spend your time perusing your favourite permanent exhibitions without much of the usual tourist traffic to contend with.  The specially arranged programme, based around a certain topic, is often complimented by live music or a DJ and pop-up bars.

The Science Museum Lates are every last Wednesday of the month (excluding December) and upcoming themes include Contagions, Crime – what’s stopping you? and Maths – 4+4=Lates, topped off with stand-up comedy and ‘the best silent disco in town’.

The Natural History Museum Lates and Victoria & Albert Museum Lates are both held on the last Friday of every month (excluding December).

And here’s Helen, part of the City Living, Local Life family to recap on the last Late she attended:

Last month, I attended the V&A Late which was centred around the theme of ‘Grow Your Own’ – with talks and interactive exhibits from a range of Londoners who are leading the revolution into food production in the city.

From budget home hydroponics systems soon to be available from IKEA that will allow you to grow plants and vegetables without outdoor space, to community gardeners and guerilla gardening groups convincing attendees that urban farming is not just the realm of hipsters, the finale of the event was a feast for the five hundred made from food redirected from landfill by food waste charities Feedback, Foodcycle and the Borough’s own Plan Zheroes, served under the gaze of Raphael’s cartoons.

The programme was the perfect way for attendees to discover innovative solutions, already being put into practice in the city, on how to feed an urban population sustainably.

But it is not just the larger museums that run late events – the next Leighton House Museum Late is on 28 October and this time features live music with a Middle Eastern theme as part of the Royal Borough’s Nour Festival programme.

Tickets for these events are usually free (with some of the special talks and tours available at extra cost) and are available on a first come, first serve basis at the door on the night.

And who said learning isn’t fun…

RBKC’s Small Grant Fund opens – 1 October 2016

The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea’s Corporate Services Small Grants Fund 2016-17 opens from 1 October and voluntary and community organisations working within the borough have until 12 noon on Saturday 22 October to submit their applications. This is the second round of the grant fund this year, and a pot of £15,000 is available to be divided between successful applicants.


Applications must meet the criteria and meet at least one of the following service priorities:

  • information and advice
  • community engagement
  • infrastructure and capacity building

For a flavour of successful applications, previous grants have been awarded for:

  • projects for youth peer-to-peer mentoring and employment training;
  • some costs for community events, including marketing materials;
  • essential computer equipment and technology, or for rental of such equipment;
  • training for volunteers and volunteer expenses; and
  • small scale improvements to facilities, refurbishment and repairs of buildings and spaces, e.g. installation of a chair lift.

Further information, including the application form, can be found on the RBKC website.

RBKC residents are being pressed for their apples…

Do you have an apple tree in your garden?

If so, you may have more apples than you will be able to eat, cook or gift this year as weather conditions have been favourable to this British classic crop and bumper yields are expected, though slightly later than usual.

Rather than letting any of these precious fruits go to waste, Kensington and Chelsea-ites are being asked to donate any surplus apples to the Ecology Centre where they will be put to good use at the centre’s Apple Pressing Day on Saturday 22 October.  Any variety of apple will be accepted – including windfalls or freshly harvested apples – as lots are needed.  One litre of juice requires 2kg of apples to be pressed.

This is the second year the Ecology Centre has run an Apple Pressing Day which provides visitors with an opportunity to learn about the importance and diversity of this fruit. The event which, will run from 11am to 4pm, will also include apple tasting sessions and games and craft activities for the whole family to enjoy.

If you have apples to donate please contact the Ecology Centre at

The Ecology Centre, based in Holland Park, provides a base for environmental education in Green Flag award-winning Holland Park – it gives both adults and children a firsthand experience of the natural world that exists locally.

Spacehive update: Transform your neighbourhood in Kensington and Chelsea

As civic crowdfunders Spacehive continue to enable local groups and organisations in Kensington and Chelsea to develop new ideas to enhance the civic space, lets take one more look at the ideas that successfully hit their targets this year.

Venture Centre Kids Carnival

The Venture Centre in North Kensington crowdfunded over £5,000 to send 40 of their kids to this year’s carnival.  Pledges went towards float hire, costume and materials.  The results were pretty impressive!  Read about the experiences of crowdfunding by project lead and Director of the Venture Centre, Naami Padi on the Spacehive blog.



1200 Cranes

1200 cranes, 600 hours, 500km of string, one community.  A collaboration project between Kindred Studios and Dalgarno Trust saw a successful crowdfunded public art project take place in the North of the borough, with the local community creating origami cranes to suspend from the Dalgarno Trust’s atrium for all to enjoy.  Over £2,000 was raised for materials and to produce this wonderful short film about the experience.


Golborne Festival

The longstanding community festival organised by the Golborne Forum wanted to raise over £10,000 to ensure all the fun-filled, family orientated street party featuring live music, international food, arts and crafts, children’s entertainment and more were free to the local community to enjoy.  And enjoy they certainly did.


Now what?

More and more ideas are going up on the Kensington and Chelsea Hive – if you have an idea to transform your neighbourhood, why not do the same and build up the support you need to deliver your ideas.

Having launched their own hive recently, Westway Trust are making grants of £4,000 to successful crowdfunding projects locally.  Find out more on the Westway Trust Community Grants Hive now!

City Living, Local Life: What’s been happening across the borough?

As we reach the halfway point of the 2016/17 City Living, Local Life year, it’s time to take a look around at the local projects that have been kick-started by residents, community groups and ward Councillors around Kensington and Chelsea. Over 50 projects have been funded already, and a full list is available on the City Living, Local Life website, but around the borough the initiative has been busy…

… working with the Brompton Association to conduct an underground survey of  Yalta Memorial Gardens in their efforts to revitalise the Twelve Responses to Tragedy;

bringing the Olympic spirit to Chelsea Riverside and the World’s End with the Chelsea Youth Festival in August;

celebrating with the Notting Hill Carnival Pioneers for their 50th year in Colville;

piloting complementary therapies at the Dalgarno Trust Food Bank with Monroe Health;

creating a pop-up Museum curated by children of St. Thomas’ Primary in Golborne as part of a year-long, school-wide programme;

lighting up Holland Park Avenue by supporting the Holland Park Village Traders’ to put up Christmas lights around the Underground station;

pulling no punches and helping out the Champions of tomorrow with equipment for Dale Youth Boxing Club in Notting Dale;

launching Senior Moments, a series of talks, classes and workshops for older residents at Christ Church Kensington in Queen’s Gate;

enabling the Earl’s Court Youth Club to create and enter films about local life in the second annual City Living, Local Life-supported Earl’s Court Film Festival in Redcliffe;

unearthing the unique Arts and Crafts history of Royal Hospital’s Holy Trinity Sloane Square with their first annual Arts and Crafts Festival; and

welcoming back the St. Helen’s Festival, organised by St. Helen’s Church.

City Living, Local Life exists to help local residents, community groups and charities to shape the area they live and work in through small pots of funding and lots of practical support. If any of the above projects have inspired you to start something good, get in touch with us at!

Stand up to Cancer with the Big Local Coffee Morning – 18/10

Join the World’s End and Lots Road Big Local for a coffee morning to help raise money for Cancer Research UK.

All proceeds from the cuppas, cakes and raffle tickets sold will go to Cancer Research.

When? Tuesday, 18 October 2016, 9.30am – 12:30pm.

Where? World’s End Community Centre, 16 Blantyre Street, SW10 0DS

How much? A tea/coffee and cake – £1.50, raffle tickets – £1.

If you are interested in lending a hand, or would like more information, please contact Vanessa or Ella on 07464971428


Sponsors: Kensington Borough FC needs your help!

Move over Hammersmith and Fulham-based Chelsea FC as The Royal Borough’s top team, Kensington Borough FC, have continued their rapid rise through the football league structure, through the Middlesex County Football League and into the South Midlands Spartans Football League Division One – the sixth step of the National Football League.

Established in 2010, the club is co-ordinated by Making Communities Work & Grow, a North Kensington-based organisation who seek to encourage young people into sports, build friendships and raise aspiration through the team.

But, as their short passing, quick movement football has seen them soar through the divisions, the costs involved in training, travel and hosting matches have become higher and higher.

To help them keep up their sterling record, the club are looking for sponsorship. The co-ordinator of the club, Ahmed Bhairien would be keen to discuss options for any level of sponsorship, which may include…

Your name in the weekly programme and Kensington Borough FC website – £300

Plus a pitch-side hoarding – £500

Plus your logo on tracksuits – £1500

Plus sponsorship of the home and away kits, free entry to home games, complementary drinks and a signed shirt – £2500.

For more information, or to discuss sponsorship options, do contact Ahmed at / 07814 517086.


Team Kensington and Chelsea: Make a difference at your local library…

Kensington and Chelsea residents! Love your library? Or wish you could spend more time there and help out other locals? If so, the Royal Borough’s Library Service are looking for people to volunteer to help them deliver a fantastic range of classes, services and sessions for residents of all ages.

There are a great range of opportunities available, each with varied time commitments and required skills/experience, including:

  • becoming an Online Assistant and helping people get to grips with things such as organising files, online shopping and using applications such as Skype;
  • helping to plan Children’s and Young People’s activities, particularly through half-terms and the Summer Reading Challenge;
  • mentoring in homework clubs for children between 7-11 years old and helping them navigate the Library’s collections.
  • supporting the borough’s Adult Learning programme in Libraries in areas such as literacy, numeracy and ESOL; and
  • planning and delivering weekly reading groups to share stories, poems and novels with others over tea and biscuits.

More information on these opportunities – and how to sign up – can be found online at the Team Kensington and Chelsea volunteer portal, along with other ways you can lend a hand in Council services.

Get ready for a magical time with The Royal Albert Hall’s Great Orchestral Adventure…

Parents of Kensington and Chelsea! The conductor of the Royal Albert Hall’s orchestra has lost his baton and is very unhappy. But all is not lost! He is about to embark on a magical adventure to find it and bring happiness back to the orchestra…

Join him on Wednesday, 26 October for a trip through faraway lands and mythical places packed with trolls, bears and mermaids.

Perfect for those aged 3+, the performance features stories, singing, dancing, a full orchestra and music from Greig, Wagner, Rossini, John Williams and more. Children will also help shape the performance by voting where the conductor goes next.

There are 2 performances on the day, with doors opening at 12.15pm and 3.45pm. Tickets start at £10 and can be booked on the Royal Albert Hall website.

Age UK’s Health Fair for those 55+, returns next month…

Now in its 19th year, Age UK Kensington and Chelsea’s Health Fair will be returning to Kensington Town Hall on Friday, 7 October from 12pm-4pm.

The event brings together local businesses, community groups, charities and public bodies to showcase the best of what the borough has to offer for locals aged 55 and over.

As well as information stalls and opportunities to sign-up to a range of activities, causes and initiatives you will be able to try your hand at potential new hobbies, have a mini pamper and enjoy a free lunch.

For more information on the Fair, do contact Kathe Jacob, Age UK Kensington and Chelsea at /  020 3181 0002.


CLLL: Pleasure in Labour – Arts & Crafts Festival at Holy Trinity Sloane Square, 16-18 September

With a little support from the Brompton and Hans Town and Royal Hospital Councillors through City Living, Local Life, Holy Trinity Sloane Square are launching a new annual festival to celebrate the rich Arts and Crafts history of the Church and wider area.

Running from 16-18 September, in association with Open House London, the festival is packed full of talks, hands-on workshops, performances and exhibitions.

So if you fancy trying your hand designing jewellery or photography, tour the Arts and Crafts inspired areas of the Church or learn more about the socio-political drive for reform that underpinned it all, check out the Festival Programme [PDF]!



CLLL: 1966 – Free history talks and exhibitions with Colville Community History

50 years ago to the month, Notting Hill was gearing up for its first community celebration of the century – apart from the odd bank holiday festival that was halted by the First World War – The Notting Hill Fayre.

This festival spread across Notting Hill, incorporating the range of people and communities that made Notting Hill their home. The Fayre became fundamental in bringing people together to celebrate; playing a role in shaping the Carnival that has drawn millions to North Kensington every year since.

To celebrate ‘the year the decade exploded’ in North Ken, the City Living, Local Life-supported Colville Community History Project are holding a talk and exhibition all about 1966 in the borough.

The exhibition runs from 27 September – 9 October at The Red Lemon Pub, 45 All Saints Road. For the early birds, there’s a free accompanying slideshow and talk on launch night from 6.30pm-8pm.

You can also download the latest Colville Community History newsletter which begins to reveal the historical, social and cultural changes that were going on in North Kensington that year.

Film: Watch Hitchcock’s The Lodger with a church organ accompaniment at St. John’s Notting Hill, 14/10

Join St. John’s Notting Hill for the next in their series of classic silent film complemented by their restored organ.

As the nights draw in, October sees Alfred Hitchcock’s ‘The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog‘ (1927) visit the church to tell the tale of a serial killer who murders on the foggy nighttime streets of London. While this is happening, a mysterious man (played by Ivor Novello) arrives at a housing looking for a room to rent – could he be ‘The Avenger’?

But don’t let this frightful tale put you off venturing into the Autumn evening, as the film starts at 8pm (running until 9.30pm, doors open at 7pm) on Friday, 14th October 2016. 

Tickets are £10 are can be booked on the St. John’s Organ project website. Tickets are also available from the church, weekdays 10am-1pm.

For more information on the project visit or email the silent film organiser, Jamie Singleton at


Crowdfunding opportunities to grow in Kensington and Chelsea with Westway Trust

Following a successful first year in which 131 organisations and individuals backed 3 projects in Kensington and Chelsea through The Kensington and Chelsea Hive, Westway Trust will soon launch their own hive as part of their Community Grants Programme to encourage local groups and organisations to crowdfund.

Westway Trust and Spacehive are holding a free workshop for local people who want to crowdfund for projects that benefit their local community. The workshop will take place at the Venture Community Association on Wornington Road on Wednesday September 7 from 2pm.

Westway Trust will make grants of £4,000 to successful crowdfunding projects locally.

The Westway Trust Community Grants programme makes up to £100,000 of grants to local projects each year. Last year 47 community organisations received funding for celebrations and events in the local community . Those events ranged from zumba classes for Ethiopian women to a celebration of the history of a local bowling club.

At the workshop, Spacehive will  explain how crowdfunding works and how to run successful campaigns. In addition Naami Padi, from Venture Community Association which successfully crowdfunded over £5,000 to enable 40 of their kids to appear on a float at this year’s Notting Hill Carnival.

Speaking about crowdfunding, Phil Nichols, Head of Charity Income and Impact at Westway Trust, said:

“Having seen crowdfunding work so successfully for many projects [and in Kensington and Chelsea] we want to see if we can support it make even more money available to local community projects.

“Apart from potentially helping groups to raise more funds, crowdfunding can also help raise their profile in the local community, and even beyond. It can also lead to other benefits like more volunteers asking to get involved, for example.”

Anyone interested in the Community Grants programme or coming to the workshop should visit

The Kensington and Chelsea Hive continues to remain available for great ideas to transform your neighbourhood.



CLLL: Gearing up for Carnival with the Notting Hill Nurseries Carnival 2016…

With support from the Dalgarno and Golborne Councillors through City Living, Local Life, the Children and Parents Carnival Association held the 31st annual Notting Hill Nurseries Carnival in August. The event enables children and families to experience their own carnival ahead of the world famous Notting Hill Carnival (28 – 29 August 2016), and here’s Charlotte Militello, one of the organisers, with a recap of the day…

The Notting Hill Nursery Carnival has developed to be much loved and looked forward to event that brings Kensington Memorial Park to life. It was a very colourful day as we decorated the park with lots of flags, balloons and piñatas. This year the theme was RIO!!

The children came dressed as beautiful brightly coloured birds from nurseries and playschools in Kensington and Chelsea and from our neighbouring boroughs to take part. There was lots of entertainment taking place on the day including Professor Clump the Clown, drums, bouncy castles and the Junior Steel Band Competition. The highlight of the day however was the Children’s Costume Parade, the children happily danced across the park in front of the judges showing off their costumes that they had spent so much time working on. The Deputy Mayor, Will Pascal, attended with his wife to hand out prizes to the children.

Next came the junior steel band competition which was amazing as we had 6 bands compete, which is the most we have had so far.  We also included a healthy zone where we had a fruit table available to the children with Go Golborne and My Time Active. The day was a huge success and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, it was a great day out for the whole family with plenty to see and do.

The Council has produced a number of booklets and resources for residents and visitors, including maps, information and advice for local people ahead of Notting Hill Carnival. These are all available on the RBKC website.

Dates for your diary: Silver Sunday – a celebration of residents aged 65+ begins 26 September…

Kensington and Chelsea residents aged 65 and over are invited to take part in a huge programme of free activities and events to celebrate their contribution to community life.

So why not take the time to relax and watch a match at Lord’s Cricket Ground, join the Chelsea Pensioners for a Tea Dance at the Royal Hospital,  plant up a pot for your windowsill or balcony at Sybil Thorndike House or visit 18 Stafford Terrace (the preserved Victorian family home of Punch cartoonist Edward Linley Sambourne). You can also experience glitz and glamour at a Best of Broadway concert at the Royal Albert Hall, watch a film screening of ‘Lady in the Van’ or get creative at the Community Kitchen Gardeners’ workshop at The Second Half Centre – these are just some of the events that you can choose from and a lot of the activities are also run throughout the year.

You also don’t have to go on your own – you can invite a friend, family member or carer to join you.

The programme launches in Kensington and Chelsea on Monday 26 September and more information can be found on the Silver Sunday website. The 2016 brochure will be published in hard copy and on the website in early September with the full range of activities and booking information where necessary.

World’s End and Lots Road residents! Thought of starting your own business? Get a free introduction to enterprise with the Big Local and Portobello Business Centre…

Have you been wanting to start your own business, but want some advice and guidance before you make the plunge? If so, the Big Local have teamed up with Portobello Business Centre to offer you just that!

A series of free events, workshops and one-to-one sessions are on offer to find out what being self-employed might be like.

So, if you want to dip your toe in the business water, get in touch with Vanessa Kelly, World’s End and Lots Road Big Local Coordinator at / 020 7460 5050. You can also book online.

The World’s End and Lots Road Big Local aims to achieve lasting change for local people based around local priorities. As well as employment support, check out the other local activities that are happening on the Big Local website –

You can also keep up-to-date with Big Local news on their Facebook page, which now includes photos of this month’s Big Local Summer Party!


Love me to Death: Romeo and Juliet reimagined by Intermission Youth Theatre…

Montagues and Capulets of Kensington and Chelsea! Borough-based Intermission Youth Theatre – a charity who works with 15-25 year olds who have either offended or are at the risk of offending – have developed their latest performance – a present day reworking of Romeo and Juliet.

Intermission’s aim is to offer an outlet for creativity and help build self-confidence, ambition and aspiration through reimagining Shakespeare’s work to reflect aspects of youth culture in London today. In Brompton and Hans Town ward, where Intermission Theatre is based, Councillors have recently supported them through City Living, Local Life to help continue their apprenticeship scheme.

Love me to Death runs from Wednesday, 26 October – Saturday, 19 November, every Wednesday and Saturday from 7:30pm at St Saviour’s Church (SW3 1SA). Each performance is followed by a talk-back with the young people involved.

Tickets are £16 (£11 concessions) and can be booked online. More information on the work of Intermission Youth Theatre can be found on their website.

Two boroughs alike in poverty, south and east, where we tell our story.

From past issues up to present gang wars, evading the laws to kill without cause.

Then he saw her, it was love at first sight, she caught a glimpse and was like, he’s alright!

But she’s from E8 and he’s from south east, and they got bare beef,

So that means no peace.

But these two lovers were prepared to fight, and tread the fearful tight rope of their plight.

Despite the backlash of the hood enraged, this passion was one lion they could not cage.

Engage, and with patient ears tell others, that our stage is full of Shakespeare’s lovers.

Bats, Minotaurs and more at Brompton Cemetery next month…

As summer draws to a close, why not make the most of the last bit of sunshine by checking out the new programme of walks and talks at Brompton Cemetery. From art exhibitions, to bat walks there is something for everyone, and all for free!

Brompton Bat Walk

Wednesday, 14 September – 6:30-9:00pm

Battle the myths associated with bats through this after hours walk at Brompton Cemetery. You will work with experts, using echo location to track and identify bats.

Please arrive at 6:30pm at Brompton Cemetery Chapel. The walk commences at 7pm – latecomers will not be admitted.

There will be an escort out of the cemetery at the end of the walk.

Booking: There are limited places for this event. To book a place for this free event, please email

Anyone under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Please wear suitable clothing for the outdoors.

Walking with Trees at Brompton

Thursday, 15 September – 5:00-7:00pm and Wednesday, 28 September – 12:30-2:30pm

Brompton Cemetery is home to over 600 trees, reflecting 50 different species. Come and find out about some of our most notable tree treasures, learn about the biodiversity and ecology of trees and the challenges of managing them within a cemetery site.

Booking: There are limited places for this event. To book a place for this free event, please email Please specify which date you prefer.

Anyone under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Please wear suitable clothing for the outdoors

Minotaurs of the Mind – The Second Coil Art Exhibition

Wednesday, 14 September – Friday, 30 September

A powerful series of sculptures and 2D work by Anglo-Brazilian artist Iluá Hauck da Silva will be displayed in the serene surroundings of Brompton Cemetery Chapel.

Please note: The exhibition opening times vary, please check the Brompton Cemetery website for more information  No booking required.


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