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Coming up in Earl’s Court: The K+K open their gardens and St Cuthbert’s throw their school fete…

Grab a slice of the summer sun in Earl’s Court this week with a series of events in and around the area…

K+K Hotel is opening its prize-winning gardens on Templeton Place with two evenings of live music. On Thursday, 1 June from 7pm a range of classical musicians including Alzabeta Klasova (saxophone with piano), Haeun Kim (cello), Dominique Bespalov (violin) will be playing one of the ‘hidden gems’ of Earl’s Court.

And on Thursday, 6 July from 7pm the gardens will host Ellis Percen (guitar), Kelly Lenahan (piano) and Martin Jeriga and Sarah Daramy-Williams for a string duet.

More events are planned for Thursday, 3 August, Thursday, 7 September and Thursday, 5 October. For information on these, do check out the Nevern Square Residents’ Association website.

On Sunday, 4 June the Earl’s Court Farmers Market will be rolling back the years with a Punch and Judy shows from 10am-2pm. 

And on Saturday, 8 July, St Cuthbert’s school will be holding their annual fete in Earl’s Court Square bringing fun, food, stalls and more!

And last but by no means least, there is the Earl’s Courtiers’ magical performance of the Wizard of Oz in Barkston Gardens from Wednesday 28 June – Saturday, 1 July. Tickets can be booked online, and more information can be found on the Noticeboard.

Guest feature: The National Army Museum reopens.

With thanks to the National Army Museum for the piece below.

The National Army Museum, located on Royal Hospital Road has reopened in March following a three year £23.75 million project (including £11.5 million from the National Lottery).

The bright new, free, Museum provides a 21st century visitor experience. As a bridge between the British Army and the public, the National Army Museum encourages greater public engagement with ideas of defence and security, openly asking questions to visitors on their thoughts of both soldiers and the army.

The new thematic galleries – Soldier, Army, Battle, Society and Insight – contain over 2,500 objects, two thirds of which have not been seen before. The temporary exhibition space War Paint: Brushes with Conflict displays over 130 paintings and objects whilst children aged up to eight years old can enjoy Play Base, the museums soft play facility. There is also a bright, new café that looks out onto Royal Hospital Road which serves hot and cold food and drinks.

An extensive public events programme includes events such as ‘Feminism Late’ on 14 June, the museums first ever late opening, exploring whether feminism has been good for the army. Building on this is a full day conference about women in the army on 24 June. There are also regular free tours and talks on topics such as Indian Independence and Passchendaele.

For more information do visit www.nam.ac.uk

The National Army Museum is open daily from 10:00 am – 5:30pm. Entrance is free.

This weekend: New music, stalls and more as New Youthquake takes over Portobello!

Welcome the bank holiday weekend with a new generation of traders as the New Youthquake takes over Portobello Market and Tavistock Square.

From 10am-7pm on Saturday, 27 May and 12pm-7pm on Sunday, 28 May, some of West London’s most creative and entrepreneurial young people will be pitching up with food, fashion, art, homewares and more, as well as live music performances from 12pm-5pm.

New Youthquake is part of the national Love Your Local Market celebrations in Kensington and Chelsea where the focus is on youth culture. Portobello and Golborne Road Market is taking inspiration from ‘Youthquake’, a term coined by British Vogue editor-in-chief Diana Vreeland in 1965 to describe a London-centred movement of youth-led music and fashion. New Youthquake aims to re-kindle and expand on that movement by giving opportunities to West London’s young business minds and creative talent.

And New Youthquake doesn’t stop at this weekend! There are a whole host of activities and events including the Love Your Local Market 16-25 video competition with a showing at the Portobello Film Festival as the prize for the winner. For more information, and to enter, please visit the Portobello and Golborne Markets website.

Exhibition: A Larry Smart RETRO-spective, The Muse Gallery: 21/6 – 2/7

Borough-based The Muse Gallery is hosting Larry Smart RETRO-spective, the first ever solo exhibition by iconic 60s pop artist Larry Smart. Coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love, this exhibition of original paintings and prints is the first time that the artist’s work has been brought together under one roof – in Larry’s former Notting Hill neighbourhood.

The exhibition features Larry’s famous and widely recognised images of 60s pop icons, landscapes and topiary images, as well as mandala paintings lit by a lightshow based on the original UFO Club performances. Following a global quest for missing Larry’s, the exhibition features works previously feared lost.

Larry Smart RETRO-spective revives the spirit of the Summer of Love in Portobello and aims to celebrate the work and life of Larry Smart and his role in British pop art history.

The exhibition is free and runs from 21 June – 2 July, daily from 12-6pm. The Muse Gallery can be found at 268 Portobello Road.

The Earl’s Courtiers present The Wizard of Oz, June 28-July 1 2017

Kensington and Chelsea residents, lions, tigers and bears! The Earl’s Courtiers are transforming Barkston Gardens into the magical and mystical land of Oz at the end of June, and helping to raise money for local charities in the process.

Starting on Wednesday, June 28 with a performance at 7:30pm every night until Saturday, July 1, you can follow the yellow brick road and the adventures of Dorothy, Scarecrow, Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion in this open air, summer evening performance.

The production has an even more local feel with over 120 borough-based schoolchildren auditioning, and 40 taking part in various roles.

Tickets are £10 for adults and £5 for under-12s with all proceeds going to local charities. These can be booked online or by getting in touch with Toby Brown via email or telephone 020 7370 4000.

Looking to learn more about the music industry? Catch up with some Local Legends with The Rhythm Studio – 24/05

Join North Kensington’s music academy, The Rhythm Studio, on Wednesday, 24 May for an informal chat with two leading West London music industry experts.

From 7:30pm-10pm, the Studio’s Local Legends series welcomes Caroline SM and Duncan Ellis at the Moncada Brewery (Middle Row, W10 5AT) to talk about their beginnings in the industry, their ups and downs and what keeps them at the top of their game.

Caroline SM is one of the leading figures in grime at the age of 22. Starting as an online content editor and radio presenter, Caroline is now A&R Manager at XL Records. Duncan Ellis is the Managing Director of Atlas Artists Management and Scruffy Bird Management and has helped launch the careers of musicians such as Young Knives, Foals and Kodaline.

The event is 16+ only with free, ticketed entry for people aged 16-18. Tickets for those aged 18+ are £5. All tickets can be purchased or reserved online via Eventbrite.

This Local Legends event is part of the New Youthquake celebrations, that form Portobello and Golborne Road Markets ‘Love Your Local Market’ activities this year. Taking inspiration from ‘Youthquake’, a term coined by British Vogue editor-in-chief Diana Vreeland in 1965 to describe a London-centred movement of youth-led music and fashion, New Youthquake aims to re-kindle and expand on that movement, with Portobello and Golborne at its heart. New Youthquake is designed to give opportunities to West London’s young business minds and creative talent. For more information on New Youthquake, do visit www.rbkc.gov.uk/newyouthquake

Crowdfunding returns! Help Chelsea’s SMART Centre renovate their community cafe and gardens

The Kensington and Chelsea crowd! Get ready as the SMART Centre in Chelsea are set to launch the latest crowdfunding drive to renovate and improve their much loved community centre and green space project on the World’s End Estate.

In 1985 St Mary Abbots Rehabilitation and Training (SMART) was registered as a charity to support people affected by mental illness on their path to recovery.

The founders recognised the importance of meaningful activity and training as a way to rebuild lives and give people purpose, confidence and skills. As the charity grew it also recognised the importance of friends, music, laughter and fun.

Launching this month, the project looks to raise nearly £15,000 for costs including gardening equipment, café furniture, new flooring and music equipment.

This will help them to provide relaxing activities for the community like arts and crafts, Yoga, mindfulness and chair based exercise, whilst offering a vibrant café and garden for families in the local area.

The project lead, José Veiga from SMART said:

“We hope that the improvements to our centre and green space will enable residents to learn from each other, develop new skills and build their self-confidence.  We’ve been supporting the local community for over 30 years and we hope locals recognise the vital work we do.  Please support our crowdfunding efforts!”

To pledge to SMART’s project, visit their project page on the civic crowdfunding platform, Spacehive: https://www.spacehive.com/chelsea-hub

AGM: Celebrate the achievements of the World’s End and Lots Road Big Local – 16/05/17

Something big has been happening in the World’s End and Lots Road area over the past couple of years, and recently it’s been getting a whole lot bigger…

The World’s End and Lots Road Big Local have just completed their second year of their 10 year quest to improve their local area. Made up of local residents, the Big Local Partnership are inviting everyone to share their successes and look to the future at their AGM and social on Tuesday, 16 May from 7pm-8:30pm at the World’s End Community Centre (16 Blantyre Street, SW10 0DS).

The Big Local initiative is supported by the Big Lottery Fund to help make lasting, positive change in areas. In the World’s End and Lots Road, the Big Local works towards improving the following themes:

  • Jobs, training and enterprise
  • Young people
  • Green areas and open spaces
  • Community events and activities

Already, achievements have included setting up a youth radio station, brightening up the World’s End with large marble planters, running activities for children and older residents, helping with life skills such as first aid training and of course, bringing everyone together with big events throughout the year. Just last month, all 6 local residents who signed-up to undertake SIA security training have passed the course and have future work lined up.

BigLocal3
4 of the 6 successful SIA students – congratulations!

And if that’s not enough to celebrate, a few more recent goings-on are featured in the latest Big Local Spring Newsletter [pdf].

If you are interested in attending the AGM, please email vanessa@welr.org.uk.

City Living, Local Life: Sing for lung health with Royal Brompton Hospital…

With the support of Stanley ward Councillors through City Living, Local Life, rb&hArts – a charity focused on improving the wellbeing of Royal Brompton Hospital patients and the local community – is getting AIRBORNE by singing for lung health and you can get involved!

The AIRBORNE team are looking for local people to take part as singers and collaborators to help design the composition and performance. The opportunity is open to all singing abilities, so there’s no need to be able to read music as it is all taught by ear.

Led by composer, performer and musical director Verity Standen, the rehearsals will be gently paced to allow for singers who live with breathlessness and limited mobility.

If this opportunity grabs your interest, please pop along to one of the taster sessions on Wednesday, 3 May OR Wednesday, 24 May from 5:30pm-7pm at Royal Brompton Hospital, Sydney Street, SW3 6NP.

Following this, rehearsals will be on:

Tuesday 13, Wednesday 14  and Thursday 15 June, 5:30pm – 8pm at Royal Brompton Hospital

The rehearsals include a warm up and tea breaks. During these sessions, Verity will teach all the music and develop the skills of the ensemble. AIRBORNE will be a totally new composition and devised and adapted to the group through these sessions, so please attend all three evenings to help shape the piece.

And then the performances will take place on:

Friday 16, Saturday 17 & Sunday 18 June

Performances will be short (5-10 minutes) in pop-up locations around the borough and easily walkable. We expect these to take place in short bursts with breaks between, for up to 2 hours each day.

If you have any questions on the project, please email arts@rbht.nhs.uk or telephone rb&hArts on 0207 352 8121 x4087.

Exhibition: Pink Floyd – Their Mortal Remains @ The V&A, opens 13 May 2017

From 13 May, Exhibition Road’s Victoria and Albert Museum opens the first international retrospective of one of the most iconic and influential bands in the world – Pink Floyd.

In keeping with the band, the exhibition is a unique audio-visual journey through music, design and staging from Pink Floyd’s 1960 debut to the present day.

Although the exhibition has an international focus, the foundations of Pink Floyd are very much rooted in North Kensington (which you can read more about in issue 17 of the CLLL-supported Colville Community History newsletter).  During the 1960’s, Ladbroke Grove was the place where Syd Barret’s Pink Floyd Sound held sound and light workshops, where they played their first gigs at the fledgling Notting Hill Carnival and where they dropped the ‘Sound’ from their name to become the band known across the world today.

Tickets are £20-£24 (concessions available) and can be booked online. The exhibition closes on 1 October 2017.

Exhibition: California @ The Design Museum opens 24/05

Kensington High Street’s Design Museum is taking a look across the pond from May with an exhibition focusing on the Golden State and the role of California in modern design and culture.

Starting in the 1960s and the counterculture movements to today’s Silicon Valley tech culture, via LSD, skateboards and iPhones, the exhibition will reveal how we’re all a little bit Californian.

The exhibition opens on 24 May 2017 and runs until 15 October 2017. Tickets are priced at £14.50 (concessions available) and can be booked online.

Image: Icon for the Apple Mac, 1984, Susan Kare notebook, kareprints.com

Donation: 2 ladders on offer for a local community group

Kensington and Chelsea charities, groups, churches and associations!

A generous local resident is offering two aluminium ladders for free, for collection. There is an 8ft single ladder and 2 part, extending ladder (2x8ft) on offer for pick up from their home.

If you are interested, do get in touch at locallife@rbkc.gov.uk

Imperial’s Festival of Science – 6-7 May, 2017

Join researchers, students, support staff and alumni from 6-7 May for a weekend of science at the Imperial Festival in South Kensington. The Festival – first held in 2012 – welcomed over 15,000 visitors last year and 2017 promises to be the biggest and best yet.

A huge range of events and activities are scheduled including a tour of Imperial’s Cancer Research UK facility. You will also have opportunities to run rings around your friends by learning about the current Cassini mission to Saturn, discover how science will change food over the next 50 years and come ‘face-to-interface’ with our future robot masters.

But it’s not all lab based as there will be a range of workshops, wellbeing activities, live music and food. With some of the most renowned researchers and scientists in the world, you’re sure to learn a thing or two (just don’t listen to the atoms – they make up everything).

To book your free tickets, please visit the the Imperial College website.

Portobello Live! The heart and art of West London: 30 April – 1 May

Portobello Live! returns to North Kensington for the third year running, bringing some of the best of West London music, cabaret, spoken word, performance and art.

Held over the May Day bank holiday, this year’s festival also takes a retrospective look at Rock Against Racism, a movement which sprang into life 40 years ago.

A stunning line up of new bands, performers, rock royalty and special guests will play out across the stages of Portobello’s iconic pubs, clubs and venues. This year, punk performance poet John Cooper Clarke is a headline act, along with Bandante (The Bad Seeds), Glen Matlock (the Sex Pistols), The Egg, Youth, Salad Undressed, Ben Volpeliere-Pierrot (Curiosity Killed The Cat), Don Letts, Rusty Egan and Noel Watson, with more to be announced.

Portobello Live! is embedded in the community, and the ‘It’s Behind You’ exhibition looks back over 25 years of the iconic Portobello Panto while local music academy The Rhythm Studio will hold drumming sessions.

Rock Against Racism photographer Syd Shelton will also reflect on the movement which came to public attention 40 years ago through music and marches, or ‘carnivals’, inspired by Notting Hill’s annual event. Portobello Live! also features the Oasis World Choir, composed of refugees from Sudan, Syria and Afghanistan.

Full access to all acts and venues can be obtained with a wristband (that is substantially cheaper than other weekend festivals!), and under 16s go free. All tickets can be booked online via the Portobello Live! website.

Spring and summer at Brompton Cemetery…

Grab a slice of spring and summer sun at Brompton Cemetery over the coming months with a lively range of free walks, talks and events…

Brompton Cemetery Gardening Group

You can help take care of the glorious grounds of Brompton Cemetery every Wednesday from 1:30pm, and the following weekend sessions from 10am-1pm:

 Saturday 6 May

Saturday 13 May |Saturday 3 June.

The meeting point is the South Lodge Project Office. To attend, you must register as a volunteer with the Royal Parks/Friends of Brompton Cemetery which can be done by emailing bromptonproject@royalparks.gsi.gov.uk


Catacomb Tours | Saturday 6 May and Saturday 15 July, 11am-4:30pm

Tours of the Catacombs take place every half an hour. A £5 donation to the Friends of Brompton Cemetery is welcome.


Brompton Bird Chorus by RSPB London Group | Sunday 14 May, 5:30am

One for the early risers. The meeting point is the South Gate of the Cemetery. Booking is essential via email: bromptonproject@royalparks.gsi.gov.uk


Walking with Trees | Saturday 3 June 2:30pm-4:30pm

Brompton Cemetery is home to over 600 trees, including 50 different species. Come and find out about this tree treasure trove with The Royal Parks’ Arboriculture Officer, Greg Packman.  The meeting point is the  front entrance to the Chapel.


Autumn Plants  | Sunday 3 September at 2:30pm-4:30pm

Join Roy Vickery of the South London Botanical Institute to explore the grasses and fauna within Brompton Cemetery. The meeting point is the front entrance to the Chapel.

For more information on all the events, do check out the Brompton Cemetery website.

Ask Me: Join the fight against domestic abuse with free awareness training…

Do you know how to spot the signs of domestic abuse or what a helpful response is when you hear of domestic abuse?

Free awareness training is being provided by Women’s Aid, Standing Together and Advance for anyone who lives or works in Kensington and Chelsea, Westminster or Hammersmith and Fulham and comes into the contact with the community. From bar staff to hairdressers, reception staff to window cleaners, dentists, doctors, pharmacists, retail staff and volunteers – whatever your role, you can help.

As well as increasing awareness of helpful responses, the training will also provide information to help you signpost people towards specialist support. The free two-day training will be held in Westminster and North Kensington.

The upcoming training dates are 5 & 6 April, 7 & 8 June and 21 and 22 June. 

For more information and to register your interest please email the Ask Me programme or call Laura on 07799 801642 or visit www.womensaid.org.uk/askme

Cultivating Kensington and Chelsea: Green fingers in Greenhouses

A group of enthusiastic local volunteers are busy growing a great range of herb and vegetable seedlings on a disused railway platform at Kensington Olympia station ready for the start of the new growing season.

Cultivating Kensington & Chelsea (CKC) is a charity that has been set up to promote community gardening and raise funds to support the Community Kitchen Garden scheme in the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea. One of the ways they raise funds, is through locally-grown plant sales…

Weekly plant sales will be held at Olympia Kitchen Garden site on Saturdays from 8 April 2017 – 11 am to 2 pm (entrance on the Russell Road side of Kensington Olympia station)

Seedlings are priced very competitively and proceeds will benefit the 74 kitchen garden sites that have sprung up throughout the borough and help grow the project.

image001 (4)
One of the new greenhouses at CKC’s Olympia Market Garden site

The project was started with an Innovation Grant from the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea about three years ago. To celebrate its success the volunteers and trustees of CKC hosted a visit by the Leader of the Council, Councillor Nick Paget-Brown and other guests on 14 February at the Market Garden Site. CKC also recently launched its first grant scheme and awarded funding to seven Kitchen Gardens in the borough.

For further information about the plant sales or the project please email secretaryckccio@gmail.com

For information about volunteering with CKC please email lisa.communitygardener@gmail.com or telephone 07542 718133

Put your best flipper forward and raise funds for Marie Curie at the 30th Swimathon – 7-9/4/17

Swimathon, the world’s biggest annual fundraising swim turns 30 this year, and Kensington Leisure Centre will be one of more than 600 venues hosting Swimathon events.

On Sunday, 9 April, the Centre will welcome swimmers to take part in the Swimathon from 9am-12pm and 1pm-4pm.

Swimathon challenges people to swim 1.5k, 2.5k or 5k solo, or 1.5k and 5k with friends. But don’t worry – if you decide to swim solo, you won’t be going it alone as a range of training plans are available on the Swimathon website, complete with tips from water wizard Duncan Goodhew MBE.

The entry fee for the Swimathon is £13 for individuals (any distance) and £26 for the team swims. Concessions are priced £9.75 and £19.50 accordingly.

Over £46million has been raised by Swimathon over the past 30 years, and this year the chosen charity is Marie Curie.

For more information, including registration, tips and a full list of the swimming pools taking part nationwide do visit the Swimathon website.

Registration closes at 11pm, Wednesday 5 April. 

Sherlock Jr – A night of silent film and a church organ at St John’s Notting Hill, 5/5/17…

The excellent, etheral sounds of St John’s Church organ will be returning for the next St. John’s Notting Hill Film Night – and this time the game is afoot…

On Friday, 5 May from 8pm-9:30pm, Sherlock Jr (1924) – a film directed by, and starring, Buster Keaton – will be accompanied by Donald MacKenzie, Resident Organist at The Odeon Leicester Square for an evening of laughs.

Sherlock Jr is Buster Keaton’s classic portrayal of the legendary detective long before Benedict Cumberbatch donned the deerstalker for the latest, modern incarnation. The classic comedy, famous for its technical wizardry and daring stunts, will be shown as part of a double-bill with Laurel and Hardy’s short comedy caper Do Detective’s Think?

This is the sixth film that has been shown at St John’s Notting Hill (Lansdowne Crescent, W11 2NN). All previous nights have sold out, so get your ticket in advance and come along for a rare showing of this classic silent film.

Tickets are £10 and can be ordered online. Tickets are also available at the Church, weekdays 10am – 1pm.

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