Category Archives: Eltham Arts

A Library, a Gallery and a Pub scoop first-ever Eltham Arts Awards

Three community-minded contributors to the cultural life of Eltham scooped awards recently. The first-time ever Eltham Arts Awards 2016 were made at a finale celebration on 20 November marking the end of the three-week long Eltham Arts Winter Festival 2016.

We made our Awards to three local organisations for outstanding contributions to community arts. Awards were presented – by Eltham MP Clive Efford and Greenwich Arts & Culture Councillor Denise Scott-MacDonald – to St Thomas More Secondary School’s innovative SE9 Container Gallery, to the hard-working Eltham Library and also to the White Hart pub for their support and community fundraising.

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Presenting the Eltham Arts Award for the SE9 Container Gallery to Andrew Downie, the Head of Art at St Thomas More, Mr Efford said, ” As someone who has visited the SE9 Container Gallery at St Thomas More School many times and purchased a piece of art displayed there I was pleased to give the award.”

We made this Award because the SE9 Container gallery has brought art to the centre of Eltham with exhibitions of a high quality. This has also given students a chance to display their work and engage in community projects as well as providing wider artistic perspectives to the local population.

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Dedicated Eltham Library staff Paula Bellamy and Miriam Storey received their award from Councillor Denise Scott-MacDonald who paid tribute to their work saying, “I get really positive feedback wherever I go…so many people are so proud of the library and excited by the work of staff there.”  Paula Bellamy said she was, “Thrilled to bits to win. We are proud to serve wonderful Eltham!”

Alex Mayers, Co-Director of the White Hart Pub, received the award on behalf of White Hart owners Simon Hinchley-Robson & David Hinchley-Robson.  We think this that this popular Eltham-based pub was an excellent example of how local businesses and the arts can work together. The White Hart not only works closely with the Bob Hope Theatre, it provides quiz nights which support many local groups including Eltham Arts, enabling arts events to take place.

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Chuffed with the recognition, the White Hart reacted that, “From day one we always wanted to be a hub for the community… It was only when being told when receiving the award we realised how much we do. Within the time we’ve been here we are proud to have raised over £65,000 for local charities with our community supported activities. It brought tears to our eyes when these things were acknowledged and we are honoured to serve such a close knit community.”

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The unique Awards were specially-commissioned by Eltham Arts and made by Eltham glass work artist Jean Bright

The Awards were a fitting conclusion to the Eltham Arts Winter Festival this year which saw hundreds of visitors enjoy the art, live music, theatre and cultural activities which the SE9 area had to offer. The finale party and Awards Ceremony on 20 November took place at Eltham’s White Hart pub and saw singers-songwriters perform their original songs.

It was great to see so many supporters attended, including a number of local Councillors.  Clive Efford MP said, “It was a really great night. Lots of laughs and really talented musicians.” The Eltham Arts Committee were delighted once again to see such community spirit on show and for the arts to be taking centre stage in Eltham.

You can keep up to date with the latest arts & culture happenings in Eltham at:

Twitter: @ElthamArts
Facebook: www.facebook.com/ElthamArt
YouTube: Eltham Arts YouTube Channel

The Eltham Arts Winter Festival is over!

Last Sunday we celebrated the end of three exhilarating weeks of Festival art, music, theatre and much more. We had so much Festival fun and hope you did too! We were pleased with the comments we received from visitors some of whom said they didn’t realise we had so much going on in SE9. You can follow the action as it unfolded on our Festival Facebook page and on Twitter.

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Just a few of our Festival events – how many do you recognise?

Many friends, supporters and musicians gathered in the White Hart on Sunday 20 November to mark the end of the Festival with singer-songwriters performing in a Song Challenge and to congratulate the winners of the Eltham Arts Awards.

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Festival Finale: L-R Susan Turner, Dave Kenningham, Zahira al-Zahira, Keith Ferris, Gaynor Wingham

For their outstanding contributions to community arts, our Awards were presented – by Eltham MP Clive Efford and Greenwich Councillor Denise Scott-Macdonald – to St Thomas More secondary School’s innovative SE9 Container Gallery, to the community-minded Eltham Library and also to the White Hart itself for their support and community fundraising.

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Eltham Library scoops Eltham Arts award: Paula Bellamy, Clive Efford MP, Miriam Storey

We want to thank all the many artists, community groups and organisers who took part in the Festival and made it a great success! Thank you too to all the supporters who turned up to events and to those who promoted it. We’re taking stock now (and sorting our photos and videos!) but if you still have festival-fever you can always explore the films on our You Tube channel as well.

Our Festival may have drawn to an end but there’s still plenty of creativity around Eltham for you to enjoy especially in the coming festive season. And of course, we’ll be back with more creative enticements soon! Keep in touch and watch this space!

The Festival is in full swing!

The party has truly started! We’re in Week Two of the fabulous Eltham Arts Winter Festival which runs to 20 November. How many of the creative community events have you been to?

The community kicked off the Festival in style at a lively opening event in Passey Place on 29 October. We overcame the roadworks and enjoyed the Mayor opening the proceedings, the ebullient Make a Noise Choir and Hulviz‘s Peter Pan cast aswell as a host of musicians including the Pytchwood folk duo. There’s a reminder of this and just some the other events which took place in Week One in our one minute highlights film:youtube-front-snipThere’s still plenty more events to go.  Join us for more inspiring community art, music, theatre, walks and talks up until 20 November.

We’d also love to see you at our Festival Finale celebration on 20 November at the White Hart, from 7.30pm, with entertainment from singer/songwriters from our Festival Song Challenge. We’ll also be making Eltham Arts Awards to recognise some special people and places in our community.

See our special Festival page here for full listings, or our Festival Facebook page, or follow us on Twitter.

Thank you to all the great artists, musicians, organisers and venues who are doing a great job!

As ever, we are grateful for support from Greenwich Visitor, our free community newspaper. Pick up the November issue from around Eltham – including Sainsbury’s and the Eltham Leisure Centre – for full printed listings and interesting articles about the events and artists involved.gv-bothfrontpages-snip

Countdown to Eltham Arts Winter Festival!

It’s almost here – are you ready? Our Arts Festival kicks off this weekend. Three weeks of live music, arts, drama and fun all over the SE9 area. progsnipslantedIt all starts this Saturday 29 October from 11am to 3pm with a pirate-themed Festival Opening Day in Eltham’s Passey Place. Bring your little, or big (!), pirates! There’ll be live music, crafts and kids activities. The cast of Bob Hope’s Peter Pan will even be visiting – come along and have a photograph with them!

Visit our special Festival page to download the full programme and venues and also details of our special Arts Trail.

Pick up October’s Greenwich Visitor  (special supplement p8 onwards)- free in local outlets including Sainsbury’s and the Eltham Centre – to read articles about the Festival and get the full printed programme.

Come and support our great community – see you there!

Eltham Arts in 2016

Since last year’s successful Winter Festival, the Eltham Arts committee has been busy planning its activity for 2016.

Winter Song CD
Some of you may remember we organised a Winter Song Competition as part of the festival, in which songwriters performed their songs at the finale at The White Hart on Eltham High Street, on 22 November. We’re pleased to let you know that we are planning to record a CD of the 10 Winter Festival songs, which will be available to buy in due course.

Winter Festival 2016
We’re also delighted to announce that the second Eltham Arts Winter Festival will take place between 29 October-20 November 2016.

We’re working on the format now, so if you have any creative ideas, or would like to be involved, do let us know.

Eltham Arts Winter Festival hailed a great success

Eltham Arts Winter Festival logoThe Eltham Arts Winter Festival, which ran from 31 October to 22 November, created a first-ever platform for local creative talent – existing, emerging and new, to showcase the rich artistic and cultural life of this part of the Royal Greenwich borough.

The 23-day arts fest offered more than 120 events from art exhibitions, music competitions, crafting, literary and historical tours, beer festivals and theatre. The diversity of venues reflected the community with events taking place in community halls, local pubs and retailers as well as established arts and historical venues. The offerings also included a first-time Art Trail including over 18 different venues around the SE9 area. The varied programme also featured a tour of the Avery Hill Mansion House as well as various healthy walks with Greenwich Get Walking.

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The Eltham Arts Committee out in force at the festival’s opening event on 31 October

The Festival was organised by Eltham Arts, a voluntary community organisation, who responded to a suggestion by its network of individual artists and artistic groups. Taking up the call several months ago, the Eltham Arts Committee started busily putting together the eclectic programme of events and the Art Trail. An array of artistic talent was unearthed of existing arts practitioners, of emerging artists but the call also sparked creativity in those needing a bit of encouragement and confidence.

The celebratory opening event on 31 October in Eltham’s Passey Place, set the tone with its playful poetry, mellow music and children’s crafty fun, the latter in conjunction with nearby Eltham GPO pub. The costumed cast of Wizard of Oz, a regal town crier and some friendly visiting local police added to the fun.

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Local MP Clive Efford at the Festival’s closing event

At the closing event on 22 November at the White Hart on Eltham High Street, local MP Clive Efford agreed on the important role of the Festival and said: “Too often we don’t recognise the talent which exists in our community and events like the Eltham Arts Winter Festival have an important role in this. Not only has it led to a wider appreciation of existing artistic venues such as the Bob Hope Theatre but it has highlighted the contribution of local pubs, a longstanding fine tradition in British life.”

Meanwhile as the umbrella of the Festival closes for this year, the artistic and cultural life of Eltham continues with plenty of ongoing artistic happenings.

Eltham Arts has so far organised many creative events in the local area including a short story, poetry and postcard competitions, live music events, talks, tweetups, conferences and quizzes.

Follow @ElthamArts on Twitter and www.facebook.com/ElthamArt on Facebook to find out about Eltham Arts’ future activities.