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Southwark Park Reminiscence Project

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Tuesday 1 December 2009 8.59am
Good Morning.

To let you know The Friends of Southwark Park have been awarded a grant by the Heritage Lottery Fund to carry out a reminiscence project. The idea is to tell the history of the park in the words of local people, culminating in a book, “Our Park”, which will be published next summer. We would like to hear from people, of all ages, who are willing to either be interviewed or to write something for us. Do you have any memories of using the park when you were a child? Or the lido? The Rose Garden? What about the park's future? Or anything you care to recall! All contributions will be considered for inclusion in the book.

If you are interested in getting involved in the “Our Park” reminiscence project please contact us through this forum or on [email protected]

Look forward to hearing from you.

Pat Kingwell
Volunteer project co-ordinator
Tuesday 1 December 2009 9.31am
I remember the dishy lifeguard at the Lido, he was the original hunk, he used a mixture of iodine, vinegar and oil togive him a tan! and all the girls loved him...
Tuesday 1 December 2009 10.45am
Jan - you made me laugh! I suggest to bring back the Lido (but only if we also get the dishy lifeguard!)
Tuesday 1 December 2009 10.12pm
Jan that made me laugh, so thanks for that memory. What period are we talking about - 60s; 70s perhaps? Do you remember the cafe at the lido?
Tuesday 1 December 2009 10.33pm
Hi Tattie - did you use the lido? If so what did you think of it?

As you probably know the site now contains a children's playground and an art gallery.
Wednesday 2 December 2009 8.42am
I loved the lido as a kid and it is such a shame it went (although i think the big blue fountain is still there hid behind the big slide). Having said that my son likes the kids play area as it is a vast imrovement on the old-the only problem being it gets really crowded in the summer and should have been bigger given the size of the park.
Wednesday 2 December 2009 9.26am
Morning Dee Dee - yes a lot of people regret the closure of the lido. It seems to have warm memories for people, perhaps warmer than the water, which I hear tell was freezing?

The lido was opened by the London County Council in September 1923 as a public works project to help overcome the terrible unemployment in the area. It was closed for good by Southwark Council in 1992.
Wednesday 2 December 2009 2.55pm
Pat I think that was about 1962/3 ish.i'll put my thinmking cap on later ....
Wednesday 2 December 2009 4.43pm
I was not around in 1962... and have only moved to London 5 years ago. But it did conjure up some images in my head!
Wednesday 2 December 2009 7.47pm
Remember the Duke of Suffolk on Hawkstone Rd. All the park keepers used to drink there. Real family pub but used to do well from the football teams and american football teams that played on the astroturf and came across for a pre-ordered buffet and put a kitty behind the bar. And the police were given a case of scotch every christmas to keep them sweet, and the doors would be locked at 11pm and a pool or dart tournament went on until 3/4am. Poker games with a foot high of banknotes. I could tell you some odd stories about the shenannigans that went on there. You could buy absoluely anything from the various dodgy characters that frequented. Turned into flats now.
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