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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.

The Kensington and Chelsea Crowd – Help the Playground transform a bus depot into a theatre! Pledges open now!

Anyone who has taken a stroll down Latimer Road recently may have seen an old bus depot slowly being transformed into a community cafe and a theatre space for artists to practice, share and learn.

This is the Playground Theatre, and for a number of years artists have used this space to develop their talents away from public gaze – but the next stop for this former depot is to become a fully fledged, public theatre – and your help is needed!

The Playground Theatre are looking to raise around £47,000 to create this unique space for North Kensington and Notting Hill. The funds will be used to purchase everything that’s needed to open a public theatre, including staging, seating, sound and lights.

As well as bringing some of the best in international theatre, classical music and film to the area, the Playground are looking to embed themselves in the community and help tell the fascinating stories of local people.

Already the cafe/bar is becoming a hub for the local community, and you can help them take the next step by pledging a few pounds today at www.spacehive.com/playgroundtheatre.

As with all Spacehive projects, donations will only be taken should the Playground reach their target, so please share far and wide to help bring about a new community space in Kensington!

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.

City Living, Local Life focus: Dalgarno

It’s back up to the north of Kensington and Chelsea this month, as we take a look at City Living, Local Life activity in Dalgarno ward.

Forming the northern tip of the borough and the western side of Ladbroke Grove, Dalgarno ward was formed in 2014 and was previously part of St. Charles ward.

Despite being a 2-councillor ward (and therefore smaller in population than most wards in Kensington and Chelsea), Dalgarno is one of the busiest and most active in terms of interest in the programme and numbers of projects funded.

Supporting small and medium sized local groups is a theme in Dalgarno with organisations such as Just Solutions 123, The Dalgarno Food Bank, West London Bowling Club and Binbrook and St. Quintin’s Residents Associations receiving funding in the past.

Activities, opportunities and training for young residents of the ward has been a priority for ward Councillors. Through City Living, Local Life, Kensal House-based SPID Theatre has supported local young people in creative and performance arts, including animation. This is demonstrated in SPID’s award-winning High Above the Sky…

Older residents have also benefited from City Living, Local Life with a number of reminiscence projects such as West London Bowling Club’s ‘Stories from the Green‘ which explores the individual tales of one of London’s last remaining bowling greens.

Councillors have also made efforts to understand and address social challenges within the ward, including tackling local unemployment with Clement James’ IntoWork programme. The work of the Dalgarno Trust Food Bank has also been recognised with funding for refrigeration units and assisting Kensington and Chelsea Social Council’s work to understand the reasons behind the rise in food bank access.

mayors-visit-to-foodbank-2016
The Mayor of Kensington and Chelsea, Cllr Elizabeth Rutherford visits the Dalgarno Trust Food Bank in 2016

Celebrating and preserving the unique history and culture of the area is also a priority, illustrated by the support for the work of Dalgarno-based CAPCA to hold the annual Notting Hill Nurseries Carnival which helps to teach children about the origins, tradition and ethos of Carnival.

notting-hill-nursery-carnival-2016

If you would like to find out more, or to share your ideas for projects in Dalgarno, do visit the City Living, Local Life 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

Team Kensington and Chelsea: Volunteers wanted to mentor a young person in care

The Royal Borough are looking for locals who are interested in establishing a long-term friendship and mentoring role with a young person in care.

Independent Visitor Mentors are there to listen and support their young person, and to take them out on day trips and activities. As well as activities planned by the Mentor themselves there is a wider network of trips, events and training opportunities that Mentors can access.

To become a Mentor, you have to be over 18 years old, have plans to live in London long-term and be willing to commit to a minimum of 2 years. No prior experience with young people is necessary, but welcomed.

The role is suited to someone who feels they are a reliable, independent and consistent role model and can bring flexibility, fun and energy to the role.

Recruitment is ongoing. For more information, or to register your interest, contact Crystal Crawford, Independent Visitor and Mentoring Coordinator via email or telephone 07739 317367.

Fundraiser: Screening of I, Daniel Blake and Q&A with producer, Rebecca O’Brien with Nova – 11/05/17

Help raise funds for North Kensington-based adult education charity, Nova New Opportunities this month, with a screening of I, Daniel Blake and Q&A with producer Rebecca O’Brien.

Directed by Ken Loach, the screening of the BAFTA award-winning film will take place at the West Bank Gallery under the Westway at Ladbroke Grove and will be followed by the question and answer session.

Nova primarily work with vulnerable, marginalised and disadvantaged adults providing access to education, information and advice.

Event details:

Date: Thursday May 11th from 6.30pm
Location: West Bank Gallery, Bar and Kitchen, 3-5 Thorpe Close, W10 5XL.

Tickets are £35 with all proceeds going to Nova. Tickets can be purchased by emailing admin@novanew.org.uk or via Eventbrite.

 

Community Reporters: Novel approaches at the Harrow Club…

Piece by Stan Moorcroft. 

On a sunny morning in April a group of enthusiastic young people are waving a collecting tin and operating a market stall. Yet however are not receiving commission to collect for charity nor receiving any sort of financial reward, their enthusiasm and commitment are a product of The Harrow Club, the organisation for which they are collecting money.

Eamonn O’Keeffe, Senior Youth Worker at the Harrow Club explained that the stall was not just about raising funds but developing skills from salesmanship to money management. With experience in the retail sector himself Eamonn was passionate about passing on his skills to the young people attending the club. He explained how the club was “seeking to empower young people, to improve their lives to try new things and provide new opportunities and improve their prospects.” Having been donated some books they had come up with the idea of the stall to sell the books to raise funds and raise awareness of the club. Shamera, one of the young sales team, explained that she wanted to explain to people how important the club was for local young people.

At a time when youth services are being cut across the country it is vital to support the work of organizations like The Harrow Club.

More information about The Harrow Club can be found at http://harrowclubw10.org/

City Living, Local Life Focus: Courtfield

It’s further south we go this month, to South Kensington and Courtfield ward.

Stretching from Cromwell Road in the north to Fulham Road in the south, a key theme in Courtfield has been supporting residents to come together and shape the area they live in. This has included helping Ashburn Garden Square Garden Association gain a greater voice on local developments and the fledgling Courtfield Neighbourhood Forum to garner interest and membership.

Improving the area around Gloucester Road has also been a focus with residents coming together and organising flower baskets along the street and there are also plans afoot to replace the ageing fruit kiosk outside the tube station.

Recently, Evolve Housing’s Beacon House – a homelessness service for young people – was awarded funding to run fashion, art and IT workshops, culminating in an exhibition attended by the Mayor of Kensington and Chelsea.

If you would like to find out more, or to share your ideas for projects in Courtfield ward, do visit the City Living, Local Life website.

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: 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

Advance Notice: Road Closures for RideLondon, 30 July

Prudential RideLondon returns to the borough’s streets on Sunday 30 July 2017.

The annual mass-participation cycling event will, once again, attract many thousands of amateur and professional cyclists to the streets of London and Surrey.

While a great spectacle and exciting challenge for those taking part, many of whom are riding to raise money for good causes, the event does cause disruption to roads and public transport.

Residents, community groups and businesses planning any activities on Sunday 30 July need to be aware that there will be significant traffic disruption in the borough.

Last year, roads in Kensington and Chelsea were closed from 5am and reopened at about 8pm.

Final details of timings and road closures for this year’s event are not confirmed but the route is likely to be the same as last year which will mean the following roads will be closed:

  • Knightsbridge
  • Brompton Road
  • Cromwell Road (A4)
  • King’s Road
  • Ashburnham Road
  • Cremorne Road
  • Cheyne Walk
  • Chelsea Embankment

Other local roads will also be affected with restricted access. It is expected there will be additional disruption this year as a result of ongoing gas works on Fulham Road between Beaufort Street and Edith Grove. This work cannot be suspended on the day of the event, however the Council is working closely with National Grid and TfL on plans to help minimise the level of disruption.

As the route for the event goes through east, central and west London before heading out to Surrey it requires over 100 miles of road to be closed which will have a major impact on getting around the Capital. If you are planning any special events such as a wedding, or making a journey to or from an airport, it will be advisable to plan ahead. The event organisers also have a helpdesk which can be contacted for more information on 0345 894 9773 or via email at helpdesk@ridelondon.co.uk

Councillor Tim Coleridge, the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea’s Cabinet Member for Transport, said: “Prudential RideLondon is really growing in popularity. It’s a huge event involving thousands of cyclists of all abilities. With so many roads closed across London and the borough, the best way to minimise disruption is to put the date in your diary and plan ahead.

“I would urge any residents or community groups who have other plans on Sunday 30 July to check the event organiser and TfL’s websites for the latest information.”

Further information can be found on the organiser’s website www.prudentialridelondon.co.uk

TfL will have details of road closures and any alterations to public transport routes and timetables on its website www.tfl.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.

Kensington and Chelsea’s Small Grants Fund opens again on 1 April.

Charities and community organisations! The Royal Borough’s Corporate Services Small Grants Fund will open again on Saturday, 1 April 2017.

This fund is available to organisations working within Kensington and Chelsea that have charitable objectives. Organisations must meet the criteria and address at least one of the following priorities:

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

In total, £15,000 is available in this first round, with a further £15,000 available later in the year.

Closing date for applications will be Saturday, 22 April 2016.

Previous successful applications include funding for:

  • the provision of some costs for community events
  • communication materials
  • essential computer equipment/technology, including new computer systems and website upgrade
  • training for volunteers and volunteer expenses
  • small scale improvements to facilities, refurbishment and repairs of buildings and spaces, e.g. repairing of broken lift.

You can also look back at the organisations funded in the last round on this blog.

For further information, including the Small Grants criteria, and details of how to apply, please visit the RBKC website.

Kensington and Chelsea residents! Could you be a shared lives carer?

Do you have a spare room and the commitment to share your life with an adult who needs extra support? If you can help someone make choices, lead a meaningful life and develop their independence, then you could be a Shared Lives carer.

The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, along with Westminster and Hammersmith & Fulham, has launched a community service called Shared Lives which helps adults with learning disabilities and other social care needs.

The service is being delivered by the charity Grace Eyre and all carers will receive training, 24-hour support and payments of between £400 and £600 per person per week.

Cllr Mary Weale, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, said: “This is a very worthwhile project which will give greater choice to vulnerable adults. There is evidence which shows that this type of community-based support for adults with disabilities can help them develop skills to live more independent and active lives.

“I hope people who feel they have the time to look after an adult with learning disabilities will get involved and find out more about being a Shared Lives Carer and contact Grace Eyre.”

For more information please call 020 7924 0631 or email sharedlives3b@grace-eyre.org or visit www.sharedlives3b@grace-eyre.org

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