Subscription Holiday

We hope that all members of the Tewkesbury Lodge Estate Residents’ Association have been keeping well during this difficult time. Although the AGM had to be cancelled due to restrictions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic, the committee is continuing to keep an eye on the area, particularly our hard-working Crime Liaison officer Christine Noon. We welcomed our new treasurer, Kate Morris, who has taken over from Dagmar Vesely. Other members of the executive are continuing in post: Valerie Ward as chair, Stuart Checkley as co-chair, Tina Hildrey as secretary, Carole Abrahams as membership secretary. Accounts for the year ended 31 March 2019 are available on request.

The TLERA Executive Committee decided that no subscriptions would be collected from existing members for the year 2020-21. The need for social distancing has meant that the Association hasn’t been able to hold the usual events for members, so there haven’t been the usual expenses.  We also agreed that there are health considerations to delivering newsletters and collecting subscriptions.  We continue to welcome new members; they are asked to pay £5 to join but this will be carried forward to 2021-22.  New members will be able to receive Crime Cascades and other news, and will also be eligible to join our closed Facebook group.

Social distancing continues to make it pretty much impossible to hold any of our usual social events, but we’re really pleased that parts of the Estate have set up WhatsApp groups and organised a few local events. The Association is working on ideas for alternatives to our annual programme of events which can be held for all members, and any ideas would be welcome.    

We are hoping to send you a regular short newsletter via Mailchimp, so watch this space!  And please send us any feedback and suggestions. Above all, keep well and stay safe.

NGS Gardens Open for Charity Sunday 19th May 2019 1pm – 6pm

Six members of our Garden Group are once again opening their beautiful gardens to the public for charity as part of the National Garden Scheme.  These dedicated gardeners have participated in the scheme for many years and work extremely hard to put on a good show every year. The Association is very proud of their efforts which raise hundreds of pounds for charity each year and we are very privileged to have so many stunning gardens to look at on our small patch of south east London.  As an added incentive there are extra attractions at some of the gardens (see below), including: tea and delicious cakes; live music; and plant and art sales.
So please do come along for a lovely afternoon on the Hill and see these very different, but equally wonderful, gardens.
Combined admission is £8 (children free) and tickets are available at all the gardens.  The gardens participating this year are:
53 Ringmore Rise  (teas and music); 27 Horniman Drive (plant sales); The Coach House, 3 The Hermitage (sales of gardne sculptures & ceramics); Hilltop, 28 Horniman Drive; 25 Westwood Park; and 7 Canonbie Road (plant sales).
Donations go to St Christopher’s Hospice and Marsha Phoenix Trust.
More details can be found here 

AGM & Aircraft Noise

The Tewkesbury Lodge Residents Association will be held on Tuesday 12 March between 6.30-8pm at Horniman Primary School.

Some residents have noticed a change in the pattern and regularity of aircraft overflying Forest Hill as well as an  increase in noise levels. Please click the link below for our news sheet giving further details.

Aircraft Noise

Valentine’s Day Butterfly

Today, February 14th, I saw my first butterfly of the year. It was large and lemon coloured and against the clear blue sky it was a thing to behold. Or that is what its behaviour was intended to impress upon male rivals and female potential mates. The Brimstone is usually the first butterfly of the year to emerge. Today’s one would have hibernated through the Winter in evergreen cover such as Holly or Ivy and then the sudden warmth of today’s weather would have awoken it from hibernation.
When the female is eventually fertilised, she will lay her eggs on the leaves of a buckthorn bush or small tree. These have small white flowers, thorns, and later in the year simple leaves and then black berries: beneath the bark the wood is yellow. The next time you wonder about removing a small inconspicuous shrub that is growing at the back of a border look out for the tell tale yellow below the bark. If it is a Buckthorn keep it, for the sake of the Brimstone.

Image result for brimstone butterfly
And as our climate changes for the hotter, more of these delightful insects will survive the Winter and so become part of our Spring time garden life.
Stuart Checkley

The TLERA Tree Project Explained

Why are we planting trees?

Three years ago we were concerned about the state of our pavements. We decided to look into this concern and determined that most of the damage to our pavements seemed to be due to trees which either were much too big for our pavements or else were the wrong type of tree for a pavement: the vigorous type of cherry that is so plentiful on our estate has very superficial and huge roots that are obviously pushing up the pavements.

The cash strapped Council can do little other than to prune the worst culprits and there is little that the Association can do about that. (Sometimes they remove trees.) The good news is that many of our problem cherry trees are coming to the end of their natural lives, and will eventually die.

What we can do is raise funds for much smaller trees which still have lots of colour and interest throughout the year, but which will not spoil our pavements. Nearby streets in East and West Dulwich manage to do this very well, and at our AGM two years ago we decided to emulate their good practice.

What have we done so far?

Members of the Association have responded enthusiastically to this situation and over two years we have raised the funds for the planting of 26 trees. Some of this has come from external funding which we have been able to raise from the Forest Hill Assembly and the Greater London Authority but most has come from the generous support of our members. Members have also offered to water these trees and the first year’s trees were watered very well throughout an extremely hot summer in which many trees elsewhere in London suffered badly. We have also tried out a variety of small trees in different habitats, such as the windier or the sunnier parts of our Estate.

In all this we are working closely with the voluntary organisation Street Trees for Living which works with the Council to plant street trees. Street Trees for Living has facilitated the planting of 400 trees across the different parts of the Borough of Lewisham over the last two Winters and we have been involved with this wider initiative also.

Can you help us?

We are now asking all of our members to consider supporting the project either by contributing towards the cost of a tree or by offering to water a tree.

Each tree costs £270 which includes the cost of surveying the site, buying the tree, planting the tree and insuring it. £270 is a bargain and one nearby Borough charges £450!

Each tree needs 20 litres of water given all at one go into an irrigation tube each week through the first two growing seasons. This water ensures that the tree’s roots grow deeply and do not come up to the pavement in search of water.

If you are able to help in either of these ways please let your street rep know. You will find their address at the back of your Newsletter and you can return your leaflet to them. Alternatively you can contact Stuart directly using his tree email address which is

Autumn Lunch and Fruit Pressing

The TLERA Autumn Lunch and Fruit Pressing event returns to 28 Horniman Drive this Sunday 14th October from 1pm-4pm.  Do come along and enjoy delicious homemade soups and cakes all made with seasonal fruit and vegetables, as well as the mulled cider (adults only!).  Although the local apple trees have produced very little fruit this year we have gone further afield to make sure we have enough apples to keep the apple press going.

There will also be ideas for how to use seed heads and berries to make your own arrangements/ Christmas decorations.  Meanwhile, the children will be busy creating leaf and seed pictures, planting bulbs to take home, listening to autumn inspired tales in the story hut, and playing autumn-themed games.

The event is free to members.  If you haven’t yet renewed your membership, just bring £5 along in an envelope with your name and address on it.

We look forward to seeing you.


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