Friday, 18 October 2013

Lambeth - What's on for the family - October 19th/20th 2013

I’m back – fingers crossed that I can keep this up for a while! But, hey let’s get back to the weekend. It’s that lovely time of year when the leaves turn brown, a chill hits the air yet there are still things to do outdoors.

So what’s on?

SATURDAY (19th October)

Head to the Southbank and make friends with some grazing goats! From 12pm head up to the wildflower meadow on Queen Elizabeth Hall roof gardens. There will be seed and woodworking activities with tea and food in the garden.

The 59 and 68 to Waterloo will take you there. Or catch the tube or overground.

Fancy traveling further afield? Then head up to Russell Square for the Bloomsbury festival. Family activities on offer include:

  • ·          The Indonesia Kontemporar at SOAS, University of London (10 Thornhaugh St, London WC1H 0XG) featuring music, dressing up, storytelling, crafts and food.
  • ·         Turn your doodles into cartoons at the Cartoon Museum (25 Little Russell Street, WC1A 2HH) from 12pm to 12:45pm and 2pm to 2:45pm.
  • ·          Lots of walking tours – check the programme for more details. Great for parents with little babies in buggies or slings.
  • ·         Love anything underwater? Then take a look around the Grant Museum of Zoology, (UCL, Rockefeller Building, University Street, London WC1e 6DE) from 1pm to 4pm, for their Life Under the Waves activities.

The buses 59 and 68 will take you to Euston which is close by. Festival continues through to Sunday.

And one more for those who want to stay closer to home, pop over to Myatts Fields for the Big Draw! From 1 to 4pm, draw with chalks around the bandstand and enjoy live music!

Myatts Fields on a rainy day.
Myatts Fields is located on Cormont Road( SE5 9RA). Buses 36, 185 and 436 to Camberwell New Road, Buses 3, 59, 159  and 133 along the Brixton road. It's a ten minute walk from there.

SUNDAY (20th October)

Heading back into Lambeth, take a stop at Streatham Common Community Gardens, located next to the Rookery and enjoy their Apple and Squash day. From 12pm to 4pm, you can make juice and eat squash. Yum! Buses up that way include the 417 and 249. 

More apples? Then head down to the Globe to catch the Lion’s Part perform… as part of October Plenty and Borough Market Apple Day. There will also be traditional games, storytelling and an apple orchard. To get to Bankside on bus, the 45 which passes through Brixton stops at Blackfriars Bridge Road. Alternatively, there is always the tube to Southwark.

Green Man at Lion's Part performance

And finally if it’s raining, check out A Family at Wartime exhibition at the Imperial War Musem (Lambeth Rd, London SE1 6HZ). It tells the real experiences of a family in Stockwell. The Museum is open from 10am to 6pm. The 3, 344, 59 and 159 buses pass the museum.

Have a good weekend!

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Remember, Remember the 5th of November

It's that time of year when autumn has truly taken hold: dark mornings and darker evenings; the beautiful blue of a sky with the Sun sitting ever lower. The russet and golden tones dominate the trees; leaves litter the streets; scarves are pulled from the depths of the wardrobe to shield us against that autumnal chill; and when I catch a glimpse of the Houses of Parliament I think "what if?"

Now whilst I'm not sure how I feel about burning Fawke's effigy on a bonfire, I do think it gives us a reason to stop, think about and admire the stunning architecture that surrounds us here in London. I for one am thankful that the plot was foiled. 

With this in mind, I've been having a little look to see where you can catch some fireworks this year and boy have you been spoilt. With offerings from Vauxhall and Crystal Palace, to name just a couple, there is plenty of choice (and if you fancy braving the cold, you can definitely catch more than one display).

In what seems to be a controversial decision, Lambeth Council has organised this years event to take place in Brockwell Park once again. Despite some concerns over transport links (or lack of) it's set to be a good-un. This years theme is 'The Four Seasons'; different zones will be located on the park to represent Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter and to top it off, the display itself has been created by the team behind the London Olympics fireworks!

Part of a two-week Fire Festival, Vauxhall Pleasure Garden will have a full evenings entertainment. Beginning with the lighting of the bonfire, you can expect gymnasts, artists and parkour dancers to provide an insight into the origins of fire. 

Hopping out of Lambeth, Battersea Park's popular display has a 'Shrieks and Skulls' themed night - what with it being so close to Halloween and all. Unlike other events organised by their respective Council, this is going to cost you and the sooner you book your tickets the better (£6.50 until 27th October and then the price increases). Under 10s go for free, but be aware that they still need a ticket!

Southwark Park's night kicks off at 5pm and throughout the evening you can expect to see fire and light performances as well as enjoy the family fun fair. Southwark, like Lambeth, have been able to host another Bonfire Night that is free - a good choice if you are saving those pennies for Christmas!

Perhaps the most family-friendly of all the offerings however, is Crystal Palace Park. With not one, but two displays, you may feel happier about having your little one out after dark. Whilst the main display is set to music and is full of the loudest fireworks you could imagine, the children's display will be using those that are quieter and more colourful. 

You can see all the events below, with as much detail as is humanly possible! So take a look and let us know which event takes your fancy. Perhaps you've heard of another event that pips these? Don't be shy, sharing is caring and we'd love to hear what you're thinking of doing or not doing as the case may be!

It's also important to remember that safety is paramount on Bonfire Night. Keeping you safe are the good people @BonfireSafety; a beautifully designed, as well as informative, document has been filled with some little known facts, with some handy 'dos & don'ts' to keep you safe. Be sure to check it out here.

**If you are interested in going a little further afield then take a look at the spreadsheet created by IanVisits, he has gone the extra mile and collated all the information for you**


DATE: Saturday 2nd November
GATES: 18.00
BONFIRE: 19.30
DISPLAY: 20.00
PRICE: £6.50 until Sunday 27th Oct // £8 from Monday 28th October - Friday 1st November // £10 Saturday 2nd November before 6pm (buy tickets online), Children under 10 years go free, but still need a ticket.


Dulwich Road
SE24 0NG

DATE: Tuesday 5th November
GATES: 17.00
PRICE: Absolutely free


Thicket Road
SE20 8DT

DATE: Tuesday 5th November
GATES: 18.00
PRICE: £6 Adults // £4 Children (3-10yrs) // Children under 3 years go free.


Gomm Road

DATE: Tuesday 5th November
GATES: 17.00
DISPLAY: 19.00
CLOSE: 20.30
PRICE: Absolutely free!


SE11 5HY

DATE: Friday 1st November
GATES: 18.30
BONFIRE: 19.00
STORY: 19.00
DISPLAY: 20.00
PRICE: Absolutely free!


And then there were four...

With Ruth and Toddler Boo back in town and Baby A and me in tow, there is lots to be looking forward to as far as Little Lambeth is concerned. I for one am very excited!

Since moving to Lambeth a few months ago, I've struggled to find things to do with Baby A. It wasn't until I was pointed in the direction of this here blog that I realised just how much was going on. 

Thanks to Ruth, I'm now able to give a little something too and I'm glad that I have a very valid excuse to get out and about to experience things I might have been too nervous to do before. 

Keep an eye on the blog, there are lots of ideas floating about for up and coming posts - as well as a few drafts waiting in the wings. In between all of that, we'll try to keep you abreast of things happening in the local area. Don't forget Half Term is just around the corner so we'll be keeping our eyes and ears peeled for fun things to do with the family.

For now, check out the Sure Start Children Centre's page. We've been adding a little something, something for you all by linking in activity timetables for CC's across Lambeth. Hopefully to make it a little more convenient for you to access the information - it is a minefield!

We've signed up to Instagram (@LittleLambeth), it would be great to see your photos from around Lambeth. As ever, there is the Twitter (@little_lambeth) and Facebook presence so 'follow', 'hashtag', 'like', 'tweet', 'comment' and 'tag' away - it's always good to hear from you.

**In other news**

The creator of Little Lambeth has a new venture! By the sounds of it, Sarah is baking up a storm and I'm hoping to get my hands on some of her artisan gingerbread very soon. Have a gander at her Facebook page for Honey and the Moon and show your support for one of our own. We wish you the best of luck Sarah!

Friday, 11 October 2013

Taking Baby for a Swim Part 6: A review of Peckham Pulse Healthy Living Centre

Right, I’m back – just briefly though. Baby Boo is 18 months and is pretty much toddler Boo. So we thought we’d go and try out a few more pools for you. I can hear you thinking that this should be easier!

So where did we visit? Yes, Peckham Pulse with its hydrotherapy pool, had been a ‘to do’ for a long time.  It was so near to us and yet so far. However even though we are now living in the far reaches of Beulah Hill (technically Croydon) we thought we would head to the Pulse to satisfy the Little Lambeth readers.

Journey was fine. Our money was swapped at the desk for a ticket only to be told that the Hydrotherapy pool was closed. You WHAT? Yes I did think about going home but, no readers,  we were not here to just test the pool but to look at all the facilities that either make it heaven or hell.

So we decided to take the plunge (get it!) and go for a splash regardless. The changing rooms were easily sign posted and there were several decent size family rooms – one with a baby change piece of furniture. There were also lots of spaces to lock the buggies up as well as a few large lockers that looked like they could accommodate a folded pushchair. 

If you had visited with a tiny baby then there is space to change the baby and keep him/her with you in a family room. If you have come with a toddler, the family changing room offer the chance to let the kid run around without wandering off. 

We put our belongings in a locker and headed towards the pool. A quick ‘whoosh’ of the body under the shower and then we went to face the big, "full of kids because it’s the school holiday", pool!! One section had been roped off and had some floats. This was also the section with a small set of steps leading into the pool. But I wasn’t sure what the deal was so once the mum with the big kid realised I wanted to get into the pool, I went down the ladder with my child firmly clasped to me. 

So this wasn’t too bad but because we don’t really do the floaty baby seat thing or even the arm bands, I had to hold her which would be fine if she didn’t want to fight me and  escape.  My poor arms – water is my place to go to relax but not with a little one in tow! 

We carried on splashing around – or rather she splashed and I held onto her for dear life.  Lots of kids barged pass me and bumped into me. Really wasn’t too much fun but this wasn’t the fault of the visitors. Realistically I should have been in a baby pool.

So swim swum.  And splash sploshed. We got out, didn’t showered (as I was exhausted by this point), found the family room and changed with a minimal amount of wailing and fighting from my daughter.

So what do I think then? So really good basic facilities: big lockers, pushchair spaces with locks and large family rooms with baby change. Well done Peckham Pulse. I will be back to visit your hydrotherapy pool, one day ….soon.

Peckham Pulse Healthy Living Centre Information

Peckham Pulse Healthy Living Centre is located at
10 Melon Road Peckham, London, SE15 5QN

At the sports centre, adults (non-members)  pay £4.40 (peak) or £4.10 (off-peak) per swim and  junior (non-members) pay £1.50 (anytime), Family Swim (2 adults /2 children) is £9.10.

The centre can be contacted on 
0844 893 3888

The opening times for parents and toddlers are:

Monday       3:00 to 4:00pm (Hydrotherapy Pool)
Tuesday       3:00 to 4:00pm (Hydrotherapy Pool)
Wednesday  12:00 to 1:00pm and 3:00 to 4:00pm (Hydrotherapy Pool)
Thursday     3:00 to 4:00pm (Hydrotherapy Pool)
Friday          3:00 to 4:00pm (Hydrotherapy Pool)
Saturday     1:00 to 2:00pm (Hydrotherapy Pool)
Sunday        8:00 to 9:00 and 1:00 to 2:00pm (Hydrotherapy Pool)

It's always worth phoning the pool to check it's open or that there hasn't been a change to the timetable.

Want to know more about swimming with babies in the Lambeth area and beyond? Read the following: