Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

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rod taylor
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by rod taylor » 29 Sep 2017 10:38

Willy wrote:No, I think people feel Sydenham is a dump because of all the pound shops, betting shops, nail bars, empty shops, and the eyesore at Cobbs Corner that some people want to block development for.
I've read a lot of moaning about the lack of chains, Willy.

appletree
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by appletree » 30 Sep 2017 00:07

Sydenham feels a dump not because of no chains, but because of empty, derelict premises, cheap fried chicken shops, nail bars, run-down messy and unpleasant streets, etc. I have no desire for big chains except insofar as they indicate a willingness of someone to invest in this area. The fact they don't suggests they think there is no prospect that there will be a clientele here even for mid-market merchandise. That's depressing. Where I previously lived people orotested chains because of the excellent range of independent businesses, boutiques, restaurants, etc. If we had that here now I would not be eager for a Nero or a Nando's. But we don't, and those we do have are often snuffed out, as in Fig and Pistachio being for ed by its landlord to close.

From Mr. Taylor and others I get a sense of resentment at anyone new with different tastes moving in, including someone like me who moved three years ago from a much more prosperous area of north London in hopes that this area would improve. It never will if Lewisham drags its feet and listens to people who resent any improvement because it represents change.

syd
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by syd » 30 Sep 2017 09:58

appletree wrote:Sydenham feels a dump not because of no chains, but because of empty, derelict premises, cheap fried chicken shops, nail bars, run-down messy and unpleasant streets, etc. I have no desire for big chains except insofar as they indicate a willingness of someone to invest in this area. The fact they don't suggests they think there is no prospect that there will be a clientele here even for mid-market merchandise. That's depressing. Where I previously lived people orotested chains because of the excellent range of independent businesses, boutiques, restaurants, etc. If we had that here now I would not be eager for a Nero or a Nando's. But we don't, and those we do have are often snuffed out, as in Fig and Pistachio being for ed by its landlord to close.

From Mr. Taylor and others I get a sense of resentment at anyone new with different tastes moving in, including someone like me who moved three years ago from a much more prosperous area of north London in hopes that this area would improve. It never will if Lewisham drags its feet and listens to people who resent any improvement because it represents change.
Hello Appletree, Wheni moved here Sydenham had the potential to be the next Streatham or at a push Brixton. Not as twee as forest hill or East Dulwich but with good property stock nice parks and a good mix of people from all walks of life. There seems to be a complete lack of ambition for the area although I must say my street is now being swept for the first time in 15years!

I don't know why the gas holders are grabbing the attention of the protesters when the whole high street needs to be upgraded. I can think of one other area in Zone 3 which hasn't changed dramatically in the past decade. We pay the same council tax as Deptford, Catford and Lewisham residents but we definitely don't get the same level of investment. It's outrageous.

rod taylor
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by rod taylor » 30 Sep 2017 11:48

syd wrote:Wheni moved here Sydenham had the potential to be the next Streatham or at a push Brixton. Not as twee as forest hill or East Dulwich but with good property stock nice parks and a good mix of people from all walks of life. There seems to be a complete lack of ambition for the area although I must say my street is now being swept for the first time in 15years!
Hello Syd and Appletree.

I just want to point out: we have a difference of opinion, no more, no less. :D

Syd likes Streatham and feels Sydenham would be improved if it were more like Streatham. I disagree with Syd. I dislike Streatham profoundly - its chain ubiquity and ring-road blandness is something I wouldn't wish upon Sydenham. Streatham doesn't feel well-healed, it feels naff. If you want Sydenham to be like Brixton and Streatham why didn't you move to Brixton or Streatham, Syd?

I'm not sure why I'm accused so often of a lack of ambition for essentially disagreeing about the direction of SE26. I'd like to see all sorts here - all of it way more ambitious than a branch of Cafe Nero.

There's another trope that gets trotted out: something along the lines of 'no wonder businesses don't want to invest here with attitudes like that'. It's just an opinion, people, Nandos won't make their decision based on the opinion of Rod Taylor. All those multi-nationals use complex demographic formulas.

And Appletree, how do you read resentment ? - I disagree with you, I don't resent you.

So, could we please stop reading simple disagreement as a range of low-level pathologies?

syd
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by syd » 30 Sep 2017 12:42

rod taylor wrote:
syd wrote:Wheni moved here Sydenham had the potential to be the next Streatham or at a push Brixton. Not as twee as forest hill or East Dulwich but with good property stock nice parks and a good mix of people from all walks of life. There seems to be a complete lack of ambition for the area although I must say my street is now being swept for the first time in 15years!
Hello Syd and Appletree.

I just want to point out: we have a difference of opinion, no more, no less. :D

Syd likes Streatham and feels Sydenham would be improved if it were more like Streatham. I disagree with Syd. I dislike Streatham profoundly - its chain ubiquity and ring-road blandness is something I wouldn't wish upon Sydenham. Streatham doesn't feel well-healed, it feels naff. If you want Sydenham to be like Brixton and Streatham why didn't you move to Brixton or Streatham, Syd?

I'm not sure why I'm accused so often of a lack of ambition for essentially disagreeing about the direction of SE26. I'd like to see all sorts here - all of it way more ambitious than a branch of Cafe Nero.

There's another trope that gets trotted out: something along the lines of 'no wonder businesses don't want to invest here?
Ok Rod, Im just giving examples of comparable areas and ask why is Lewisham Council letting us down. Streatham isn't well heeled and never will be and I like that, I prefer somewhere mixed.

Catford Deptford, Honor Oak, Forest Hill, Brockley and even New Cross have seen great improvements this century. Sydenham has had no major investments and I see that as a big problem and I'm asking what are they doing with my council tax.

Tell me Rod if you were god for a day what changes would you make here?

Pally
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by Pally » 30 Sep 2017 18:03

Rod ...you Sa say you'd like to see all sorts here way more ambitious than Neros...interested to know your thoughts and apologies if you have given them previously and I have missed them

Maria
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by Maria » 30 Sep 2017 21:08

please stop reading simple disagreement as a range of low-level pathologies

:D brilliant, Rod.

Ghlpc
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by Ghlpc » 1 Oct 2017 13:00

SE23life is fairly new , it's still riding the wave of optimism and enthusiasm.

Give it time and it will inevitably decend into the moanfest and trolling that most forums end up being! The East Dulwich Forum for example is a joke sometimes...

Jollylolly
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by Jollylolly » 1 Oct 2017 18:56

This forum is very positive compared to the East Dulwich equivalent!

stuart
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by stuart » 1 Oct 2017 19:35

We have a number of good independent businesses in Sydenham who are very rarely mentioned or championed on here. With what seems like the majority of posters referring to Sydenham as a dump.
Did you spot that @thebookshop appeared today on the front page as it was it's 51st birthday - congrats to arguably our finest independent business.

If other fine businesses are not appearing on this website - whose responsibility is this?

The majority of posters think Sydenham a dump? Are you sure?

Stuart

stuart
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by stuart » 1 Oct 2017 21:52

I think you will find the person with the inkwa problem is from Forest Hill. But then worrying about views of someone who has difficulty distinguishing Adolf Hitler from Jeremy Corbyn is something you need to think about.

Would you prefer censorship or ridicule?

Let's be serious about this. Kirkdale Bookshop is an excellent business. So it Trat Raff, so is Sugahill, so is Syd DIY. Has anyone of those ever had a bad review here? I can't remember one. And if there was then there would be a response. Just as there was with Inkwa.

People respect excellence. Good businesses also know how to deal and use criticism whether justified or not. That's part of what a good business is.

The Poodle Club? There is history there that hurt some people. If it turns out to be a great business then that, hopefully, can be put behind it. But hurt feelings can work both ways.

Stuart

rod taylor
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by rod taylor » 1 Oct 2017 21:54

decchips wrote: I find it disheartening and I know others do too. Rather than a forum that shares ideas, promotes events and shares news its degenerated into quite a miserable and argumentative place.
You are rather ignoring the huge amount of sharing ideas and news and promoting events this site does, decchips.

There’s the odd unreconstructed comment, but on the whole people cheerlead for SE26. But if criticism needs to be made I’m not sure why those who make it have to be called miserable.

Jenny_Cee
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by Jenny_Cee » 1 Oct 2017 22:14

So... I know that social media of all sorts, including online fora, encourage criticism and bickering and all sorts of frustration. But it's Sunday night, and I and a whole lot of other people are back to work tomorrow. So here is something positive in the midst of the disappointment.

My partner and I moved to Sydenham from East Dulwich just over a year ago. We originally came to London because of my work, and we moved to East Dulwich to find somewhere we could afford to rent, with trees and greenery, and some kind of cultural life. There's plenty of good to be said for ED, but I also found it to be very excluding - I never felt wealthy enough to fit in. Which in itself is a laughable thing - I'm extremely fortunate for everything I have.

In the year that we've lived here in Sydenham, we've come to know more people in the community than we did in the previous three that we lived in ED. I can get into Central London more quickly and easily than I ever could before. And yes, Sydenham sometimes looks a bit grubby; yes it has pound shops and takeaways and betting shops, but you know what? It also has everything I need. A wonderful independent bookshop; a delightful wine shop with staff so friendly they've become good friends of mine; a really lovely restaurant cum wine bar with delicious things to eat and drink; several great places for breakfast or lunch; a hardware store where I can find things I need to stock my home; a good butchers/fishmongers; a health food store that stocks fresh bread; a stationery shop; a post office (seriously rare in these straitened times); most banks that I could name; a pet shop; a decent pub; proximity to gorgeous parks, and one of London's very few 50m swimming pools. Catch the High Street on a sunny day and it looks stunning. There is life and verve in Sydenham. It has history. It has life. Of course it isn't as gentrified as Forest Hill or ED or Crystal Palace, but that is why we were able to move here in the first place. I don't want to compare it to anywhere else. It's where I have my home. I believe in it.

Happy Sunday, all.

appletree
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by appletree » 1 Oct 2017 22:39

Jenny, that's really nice. Makes me ashamed of myself.

Nigel
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by Nigel » 2 Oct 2017 08:56

Stuart makes a good point re existing business - nearly all the established places are genuinely really good - Kirkdale Books obviously and Sydenham DIY but also Billings Fresh and Fruity , Stationery Box, Angie's Flowers , on the hoof, the dry cleaner at the top end , the shoe repair place , Cake Store ( need to improve service speed a bit ) Dolphin , Woodfalls, Hilltop Cafe - Dilz ( though preferred Semas), Sugahill , cherry and ice ( not my bag but popular) , the cafe in the park and of course " Pete's" newsagent and Blue Mountain .
My point is the big chains have added nothing - especially Tesco , and we just need more of the same to keep building on recent success .
I am not a total Nando-Naysayer though I will defiantly not set foot in there , but I think it's potential to boost the high street is over rated .
A very good morning
Nigel

PackOfDusters
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by PackOfDusters » 2 Oct 2017 09:27

Jenny_Cee wrote:So... I know that social media of all sorts, including online fora, encourage criticism and bickering and all sorts of frustration. But it's Sunday night, and I and a whole lot of other people are back to work tomorrow. So here is something positive in the midst of the disappointment.

My partner and I moved to Sydenham from East Dulwich just over a year ago. We originally came to London because of my work, and we moved to East Dulwich to find somewhere we could afford to rent, with trees and greenery, and some kind of cultural life. There's plenty of good to be said for ED, but I also found it to be very excluding - I never felt wealthy enough to fit in. Which in itself is a laughable thing - I'm extremely fortunate for everything I have.

In the year that we've lived here in Sydenham, we've come to know more people in the community than we did in the previous three that we lived in ED. I can get into Central London more quickly and easily than I ever could before. And yes, Sydenham sometimes looks a bit grubby; yes it has pound shops and takeaways and betting shops, but you know what? It also has everything I need. A wonderful independent bookshop; a delightful wine shop with staff so friendly they've become good friends of mine; a really lovely restaurant cum wine bar with delicious things to eat and drink; several great places for breakfast or lunch; a hardware store where I can find things I need to stock my home; a good butchers/fishmongers; a health food store that stocks fresh bread; a stationery shop; a post office (seriously rare in these straitened times); most banks that I could name; a pet shop; a decent pub; proximity to gorgeous parks, and one of London's very few 50m swimming pools. Catch the High Street on a sunny day and it looks stunning. There is life and verve in Sydenham. It has history. It has life. Of course it isn't as gentrified as Forest Hill or ED or Crystal Palace, but that is why we were able to move here in the first place. I don't want to compare it to anywhere else. It's where I have my home. I believe in it.

Happy Sunday, all.
This with bells on! Great post! I very rarely post on the forum but agree with this so much that I felt compelled to log on to express my enthusiasm. I think Sydenham is great as it is. Admittedly it could be a bit cleaner, and yes, there are a lot of empty units at the moment. But it's a useful, extremely friendly high street. It's all very well having lots of high-end gift shops,
but not if you can't afford to shop in them (which is what places like ED feel like to me)!

rod taylor
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by rod taylor » 2 Oct 2017 09:55

syd wrote:Tell me Rod if you were god for a day what changes would you make here?
Pally wrote:...interested to know your thoughts and apologies if you have given them previously and I have missed them

Apologies for being slow to answer, because in truth it is a very difficult question to answer. It is definitely easier commenting when proposed developments come up.

It’s partly difficult to answer because what I would enjoy is not necessarily what other people might enjoy - so in order to be fair I have to think what the people in the streets around me might want. In other words ‘advocacy’. That’s why it is often easier to stick to myself and for me a whiskey bar that stayed open until dawn with dimly lit booths to read in would be amazing. But that might be a niche of about ten people.

Of course I’d love to see an art house cinema but I’m sure if you polled the last 30 people to pass my window they would say they wouldn’t use it.

So the safe option is to criticise blandness and conformity because they aren’t good for anyone.

The ideal option is one that is almost the opposite to the current direction of travel. That is: a tech-savvy, environmentally-friendly artisan manufacturing on the high street. The internet is used as a shop window and the former shops on the high street are used to manufacture the products, whether they be chocolate, wigs or trousers. The street becomes a hub for people who can alternate shopping with using bars and cafes, theatres, clubs, cinemas. The high street becomes a place where people go to be with other people. In other words a universal roll-out of the hipster cliché.

Because the reality is we need to stop consuming. We don’t need things. Food and clothes and a roof over our heads and the kindness of strangers - that is it. Much more than that and you’re in an unsustainable consumer industry that has to blow up at some point and render famine all around.

Buy a pair of trousers and keep them for a decade.

The chains are the most obvious example of this unsustainability. They sell products too cheaply.

All of this is long-term, however, so I understand if people get frustrated at my objection to chains when the only alternative seems to be empty shops. Sorry if this is an irritatingly abstract answer - reading it back it does seem to be.

Hissing Syd
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by Hissing Syd » 2 Oct 2017 10:28

Really lovely post, Jenny, thank you.

rod taylor
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by rod taylor » 2 Oct 2017 13:08

decchips wrote:
My point is none of the good businesses mentioned come on to this forum. Why? Is it their fault then? or is it because they've read reviews describing their food as inedible dust or coffee like mud. Or describing someone who is investing in the area as going about it in a shitty manner.
Ok decchips. Do you want a forum which only has positive posts about local businesses?

This is a discussion forum: trip advisor, trustpilot, all of those sites wouldn’t get very far if they only solicited positive posts. I value information about local businesses and I’m not sure that is served if all I get is something that just warmly welcomes all new and existing businesses to the area.

I think you’re overstating your case, decchips. The vast majority of posts are positive. I, for example, pretty much only post positively about new businesses, but reserve the right to criticise where I deem it necessary. The Poodle Club was one of those cases.

You seem to prefer a forum that offers puff pieces for new businesses. Do you work in PR?

stuart
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Re: Sydenham too tatty for Caffe Nero

Post by stuart » 2 Oct 2017 13:40

decchips wrote:Stuart - Adolf Hitler and Jeremy Corbyn? Sounds like the mad ramblings found in Town Pub. A section of this forum I'm glad is locked away. I don't need to spend my time worrying about the interpretation of that..
Mad rambings are not restricted to the Town Pub but I thought all registered members had access to it anyway. Has that changed?
decchips wrote:My point is none of the good businesses mentioned come on to this forum. Why? Is it their fault then? or is it because they've read reviews describing their food as inedible dust or coffee like mud. Or describing someone who is investing in the area as going about it in a shitty manner. .
Let's take the first two I mentioned by doing a simple search. Kirkdale Bookshop has over 400 mentions mostly very positive. Do look through and find any that are not. Trat Raff. ONLY 252 mentions. Any mention of inedible food? I think not - but do feel free to find any.

Frankly a recommendation from a respected user is worth a hundred puff pieces by the business. On the whole good Sydenham businesses get that. On the other hand a business responding to criticism in a positive manner should earn brownie points. I've seen that - just as I've seen missed opportunities.
decchips wrote:Also interesting to see Sugahill mentioned as a good Sydenham business. Who on here knows that Sugahill has put on evening events throughout the summer? Who on here came and had a look or commented in a positive manner?
Me.
decchips wrote:How about Cherry and Ice open Mike? The live music every weekend at Golden Lion.
The GL did that many times. I've enjoyed it many times BECAUSE THEY DID THAT. Have you promoted Cherry & Ice? - I probably wouldn't have noticed it because open mike isn't one of my things.

Sorry but it seems you are running down Sydenham based on prejudice rather than fact. The irony is it is you complaining about how Sydenham is portrayed here when I see you as a culprit.

For me its probably the least worst place in London to live on my income. Yep, that's a negative too. But at least its a least worst negative. Plus Sydenham is in walking distance of Forest Hill, Penge and Crystal Palace for many of us which must make it the ideal central location for those who prefer the alternatives ...

Plus the 176 puts East Dulwich and, eh, the West End on your doorstep 24/7.

Stuart
Last edited by stuart on 2 Oct 2017 14:04, edited 5 times in total.

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