A rich cultural heritage
Catford town centre is going through a cultural and creative revival. Last century, our town centre had a variety of cultural offerings now lost to history including Eros Cinema, Gaumont Cinema, the Lewisham Hippodrome, the Savoy Ballroom and more recently, the Catford Greyhound Stadium.
With the Catford Arts Trail, artists’ studios in the Old Town Hall, Catford Free Film Festival and the Catford Beer Festival, the town centre is rapidly reclaiming its title as the cultural hub of the borough of south east London.
Once south east London’s cultural hotspot with three cinemas and two dance halls, Catford is now on the brink of reclaiming its cultural crown. In line with the draft London Plan (policy HC5, A4), the Council is using its vacant properties to support a vibrant and viable town centre and is in talks with a number of exciting leisure operators.
Set construction company Supersets have already moved into a depot on Thomas Lane and are using their expertise to renovate and revive the building, creating a workshop that will be used to create film and TV sets. The depot will also act as a community hub, with plans for a beach, a skate park, drive-in movie nights, evening classes and apprenticeships.
CATFORD FOOD MARKET
Catford Food Market is a monthly market set up run by Team Catford. It was developed as a direct result of feedback from Commonplace where the majority of comments about the retail in the town centre was for an improved offer, with many people stating that they would like to see a food market.
Launched in March 2018, it is already becoming one of south east London’s premier food markets. Boasting over 25 traders, most of whom are from Lewisham, it incubates new start business as well as hosting street food veterans.
As well food and craft traders, there are free children’s activities and live music. Traders and the free activities are all carefully selected to reflect Catford’s diversity and to complement the existing town centre offer.
For the past nine months, Team Catford has enjoyed a temporary home at 17 Catford Broadway with a pop-up shop stocking Catford merchandise including bags, t-shirts and craft goods made by local artists and producers as well as providing a space for conversation and engagement on the masterplan.
Closing this month, the space will be redeveloped over the summer to create new commercial space with homes above. Look out for Catford Cornucopia popping up in a new town centre location in the coming months, but in the meantime, visit our website to buy the Catford goodies.
the Catford gin festival
A year since we welcomed award-winning distillers and gin-lovers to Catford for the neighbourhood’s first ever gin festival, the second year saw the event bigger and better than ever, taking place in one of our most celebrated venues– the Broadway Theatre. Whilst last year’s event took place in an empty unit in Catford’s shopping centre, this year guests enjoyed the ambience of the historic building.
No less than 20 new and established gin brands were available for sampling and guests were invited to relax in the gin cocktail bar, swot up on their gin facts at the gin masterclasses and, of course, take away a bottle of Catford’s very own Tom Cat Six, scotch bonnet infused gin from the on-site shop, Catford Cornucopia. There was also plenty to keep rumbling stomachs satisfied with mouth-watering street food from Catford Food Market traders including Jerk Off BBQ, Croquette Man and Renee’s Plant Based Kitchen