Cultivation in the time of Covid

Activities like gardening and wildlife management have proved to be of immense benefit to the constrained life of many during the past year. The subsequent increase in volunteers, when restrictions were relaxed, has had a beneficial impact on Dulwich’s green spaces.

The Friends of Sunray Gardens had a busy spring with the creation and planting of new flower beds to augment the services supplied by Southwark Council. Nearby, in Dylways, a small area of woodland is providing a fascinating area for local children to study nature at close hand. Bessemer Grange School, also in Dylways had already sown a wildflower meadow the length of Greendale which displays a huge diversity of native wildflowers.

Elsewhere in this magazine you will read of groups of volunteers working in Bell House, College Road, garden and in the Upper Wood in Farquhar Road. The Friends of One Tree Hill, the Friends of Dog Kennel Hill Wood, the Friends of Dulwich Park are among many doing rewarding and enjoyable tasks for the local environment.

Dead (recycling) Centre

The thoughtlessness of Southwark Council in placing a large electrical item recycling bin against the Grade 2 listed railings of the Old Burial Ground is beyond belief. Not only that, but the spot chosen is bang in the middle of the Dulwich Village Conservation Area which the Council is required to maintain. This is clearly something that the Council needs to reconsider.

Scruffy Dulwich? - North Dulwich Station piazza

Regrettably, there is another example of the poor siting of recycling receptacles. At North Dulwich Station forecourt -, where a lot of money and effort was spent on York stone paving and restoring the exterior of the listed building, the first thing you see is a row of recycling bins, some of them covered in graffiti. Is that what we want visitors to remember us for? And why should the view of the Dulwich Picture Gallery from Gallery Road be ruined by rows of wheelie bins parked on the pavement - they could easily be parked on site behind the fence.

Dulwich Grove or Grave?

The road crossing at the junction of Dulwich Common and Lordship Lane, called in days of yore, The Grove, must surely be the most dangerous in London. While Southwark Council or TfL sit and ponder which shrubs to plant in their new parklets, no thought appears to be given to provide a pedestrian controlled traffic-light system at this point. Anyone hoping to cross either road takes their life into their own hands. There is nothing to stop cars (who descend at 30mph - the legal speed limit on the South Circular Road) and coming down from the Horniman Museum area turning left onto Dulwich Common while northbound traffic on Lordship Lane is held at a red light. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then the photograph shows the hazard in a flash. Pity the poor family, pushing a buggy and having to dash across in order to take a stroll in Dulwich Woods.

Another honour for Stanley Martin CVO

Dulwich Society member, Stanley Martin CVO has been awarded an OBE for services to British diplomacy. He served as a diplomat for 35 years, First Assistant Marshal of the Diplomatic Corps and Associate Head of the Protocol Department of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. He continued as special adviser for many years after his retirement. He was appointed Extra Gentleman Usher to the Queen in 1996. He is a former Chairman of the Royal Overseas League. Stanley Martin is the author of The Order of Merit: One Hundred Years of Matchless Honour for which HRH The Duke of Edinburgh contributed the Foreward.