The Dulwich Society Journal for Autumn 2015.
Abbeyfield Dulwich - Sheltered Accommodation In Dulwich/Herne Hill
The Abbeyfield Dulwich Society Limited is a well-endowed independent local charity operating under the rules ofThe Abbeyfield Society, a country-wide organisation set up in 1956 to provide the lonely elderly, requiring some measure of support, with sheltered housing or housing with care.
Abbeyfield Dulwich operates at 89/91 Stradella Road, Herne Hill, SE24 a comfortable sheltered home - a home from home - comprising of seven residential units,. The home consists of a pair of Edwardian semi-detached houses joined together, with a large, very attractive and well-maintained rear and south facing garden solely for the residents’ use .
In the early days of Abbeyfield, it was not unusual for those living on their own, having reached state retirement age, to move into Abbeyfield homes for companionship, security and support. Now they tend to move in much later, often in their late seventies and eighties. It is common nowadays for people to try to remain in their own homes as long as possible, in line with Government policy, relying on the over-stretched social services for support and only moving when social services cannot meet their needs or they have reached the stage when they no longer feel they can continue living on their own. A number of our current residents are parents or other elderly relatives of people who are out at work all day, live locally and wish their relatives to move into a nearby comfortable home where they can have regular meals and are close enough for visits and outings.
Two meals are served to residents each day and residents are provided with supplies for breakfast which they take in their own rooms The meals are prepared from fresh ingredients by a housekeeper and served by her in a communal dining room and lounge which leads out on to a patio, shaded by a retractable awning, overlooking the garden
The residents live in self contained flatlets, all with en suite toilet and shower facilities and a separate bedroom except in the case of one bed-sit also with en suite facilities, on the ground floor and near the dining room, which is convenient for people with mobility problems. The upper floor is equipped with a chair lift for those who find climbing stairs difficult. Residents provide their own furnishings other than the carpets and a microwave and fridge which are supplied. Social events are organised and contacts with the local community are valued and encouraged. The house is not a care home and so no nursing or care facilities are provided but if care is required, residents can make their own arrangements for domiciliary carers to attend them as often as they may wish. The staff and volunteers provide support to the residents and are ready to advise on issues as they arise. Support plans for each resident are prepared and are updated every six months.
Abbeyfield Dulwich is run by volunteers who live locally and many of whom have relevant professional qualifications .
The Abbeyfield Society now centrally manages many Abbeyfield houses and offers limited management support to independent Abbeyfield societies such as Abbeyfield Dulwich. It does concern itself with ensuring that high standards are maintained throughout the Abbeyfield movement. Tensions sometimes arise as The Abbeyfield Society believes that the future of the movement lies in operating large houses, with at least 40 units, mainly offering care facilities and is inclined to the view that small-scale family-like homes such as ours, on which the movement was founded, have become unsustainable. Our volunteers have no wish to run a large institution of 40 or more units and in any case sites of sufficient size to develop such an institution are not available in Dulwich.
Because most of the management is undertaken by volunteers, Abbeyfield Dulwich is able to offer accommodation and meals at very reasonable rates for a high cost area such as Dulwich. Our largest flatlet, which would suit a couple, currently costs £1,710 per month all included; the bed sit is £1,386 and the other 5 flatlets are £1,445 each.
Anyone interested in applying for accommodation should contact the Applications Secretary Mobbs Pitcher on 01435 865376 or 07721 672623; email
Chairman Abbeyfield Dulwich
The Dulwich Players present Murder in the Cathedral by T S Eliot
Wednesday 11 November to Saturday 14 November At St. Bartholomew’s Church Westwood Hill, Sydenham.
The Dulwich Player’s production of T.S. Eliot’s ‘Murder in the Cathedral’ will bring the dark and dangerous world of medieval England to St. Bartholomew’s Church, Sydenham
Candlelight and live choral music will provide the atmospheric setting for Eliot’s verse drama that dramatically tells the story of the assassination of Archbishop Thomas Becket in 1170.
Thomas had clashed with Henry II seven years earlier and fled into exile. Now, returning to England he knows he will almost certainly be killed, and struggles with the temptation both to avoid martyrdom and to embrace it for the wrong reasons, before facing the accusations and physical brutality of his death at the hands of four knights.
The play is held together by the Chorus of women who, as in Greek drama, reflect on the unfolding tragedy in some of the play’s most beautiful and searing language. Music arranged and composed especially for this production will also bring a vivid and emotionally enriching layer to the drama.
Written originally for performance in Canterbury Cathedral, against the backdrop of rising Fascism across Europe, the play provides a compelling call for resistance in the face of intimidation and holds much that is relevant to the 21st century.
The Saint Bartholomew’s Restoration Appeal (SABRE) is currently seeking to raise £6-700,000 for urgent repairs. This will also enable us to enhance the use made of the building by the surrounding community, through such improvements as a renovated, fully accessible crypt and new gallery
Programmes will be sold in aid of the St. Bartholomew’s Restoration Fund.