People of Clapham Park

This is our way of getting to know the people that live, work and play in Clapham Park. Through conversations about memories, local histories, meaningful places, and reflections on the value of community, the portraits and short stories are an evolving snapshot of the people that contribute to this place and the things that matter to them.

This activity is produced by Creative in Residence Marcia Chandra. Other contributing photographers and story collectors include Stella Barnes, Chris Harder.

La’Tia and La’Tavia look out over Agnes Riley everyday

Agnes Riley Gardens is right behind our house. We can see it when we look out the window. We are always there on Tuesdays, it’s got a sense of community and there’s lots of football. When it’s summer, you see everyone out there. — La’Tia & La’Tavia with mum, Vanessa, are Clapham Park neighbours — […]

Jacquie likes to be around people

I used to live on Weir Road, for 15 years. I moved 18 years ago but I’m still close by. I really enjoy coming for the Tai Chi and it’s nice to see people because now I’m on my own. You need to get out and see people.– Jacquie lives near Clapham Park and is […]

Bernard, Janelle and Seraphina love the park

Our favourite place is the park near our house. We visit our friends there and we like going on the playground, especially the roundabout. Bernard, Janelle and Seraphina, Clapham Park residents — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Metropolitan Winter Warmer in December 2017.

Gordon brings people together through music

I’m a DJ and producer—GW Jazz—and a resident of Clapham Park. I have my own radio show that started in the local community called “Jazz Morning”; now it’s called “Jazz in the Present Tense.” I have a new project connecting people through music, starting with older people but it will be intergenerational. The essence is […]

Justin works creatively with communities

I have been working with communities for 20 years doing everything from schools’ projects to large scale festivals. I also work with artists and have taught at universities for the past 10 years. I’ve been living in Hackney for 27 years and from around 2014, I was part of a project called Everyday on Canalside, […]

Margrit likes being near her children

I’ve been on the Estate for over 50 years but I’ve moved around a lot. It’s been 7 years where I live now and it’s my favourite because it’s refurbished. I’m on the second floor, my son lives on the third floor, and my granddaughter lives with me. It’s nice they’re close because I’m a […]

Kristina values local events and opportunities

My favourite place is my home. It’s where I feel safe and comfy. And I enjoy living in this community, there’s a sense of togetherness here. I have been a resident for 13 years now and I’ve participated in a few courses and projects, and many community events. It’s nice to meet new people, gain […]

Ada goes shopping with her neighbour

It’s very quiet here. It’s alright if you have good neighbours. Some people just keep to themselves. Me and my neighbour, Enid, we go shopping and things together. That’s alright. – Ada has lived in Clapham Park over 40 years and is a member of the Over 50s Club — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at […]

Kelly is working to rebuild trust

I’ve been working at Metropolitan Thames Valley for over 5 years. Although I’ve only been based at Clapham Park for two years, I’ve been involved in the area as part of my previous roles in MTVH and with other organisations. The community spirit here is boundless and plentiful. I absolutely feel a part of the […]

Joy comes here to visit her friend

I live in Thornton Heath but I come all the way here all the time to see my good friend, Enid, who lives in Clapham Park. Twenty odd years we’ve known each other. We worked together in a nursing home and we retired together. So I come and we do the Tai Chi and the […]

Joyce keeps her daughter busy with local activities

I like the summer camp for children. They are very educative, informative and entertaining, and they do borough activities. Last time they went to Thorpe Park. Where I’m from in Ghana you can leave your kids with the neighbours. But you can’t do that here. And as my daughter is an only child, I like […]

Latonia and Xaviera spend time outside

My favourite place in Clapham Park is the playground because my daughter so much enjoys playing there with her cousins. On the grassy area we have picnics and play games, and just chill.— Latonia and Xaviera are Clapham Park residents — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Metropolitan Winter Warmer, December 2017

Thérèse came to London to find work

I moved to Clapham Park with friends in 2011. We moved from Ireland in the height of the economic recession when there were few jobs for recent graduates. I got two job offers on the same day in London. The first was to be an assistant window dresser at Fortnum & Mason and the second […]

Eden values home

My favourite place is home, because I know I can always come home and relax.— Eden is a Clapham Park resident — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Metropolitan Winter Warmer, December 2017

Victoria doesn’t like to stay still

I’ve been living in Brixton for a long time, 30 to 40 years, back when there was no station. I remember it was built in 1971… I was a dress designer for 55 years and I enjoyed it. But my daughter said, “No more, you need to rest.” We enjoy ourselves here at these lunches. […]

Carla, Joana and Damian like all the trees

Clapham Park feels very green and that’s why we like it. There are lots of trees all around, on every avenue.Carla, Joana and Damian are Clapham Park residents — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Metropolitan Winter Warmer, December 2017

Stella on creating the My Neighbour’s Keys installation

I didn’t know Clapham Park much before I started my creative residency here as part of Clapham Park Creative Co-op. So the idea for the My Neighbour’s Keys project really came from spending time with the Over 50s group. They talked a lot about their relationships with neighbours with most describing a stronger sense of […]

Grace used to cook for the Over 50s Luncheons

I remember the first Over 50s Luncheon at Langholm Close, can’t remember when but sometime ago. Candice was there I think, also Charles one of the community workers. And Ken, who died now but he was very active. We got together to bring the community together. We did it monthly for a long time. It […]

Phil learned a lot at Homework Club

My favourite place is the Community Resource Centre because I went there for 5 years of Saturday classes to do Maths and English. I met lots of new friends there. Now I really want to get into music. — Phil with mum, Emilia, are Clapham Park residents — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Metropolitan […]

Nighat, working with and for women on the estate

I only registered New Vision 4 Women two years ago, but I’ve been running it as a volunteer for 5 years. This Women’s Day event is about bringing creative women in the community together and celebrating. I’m from Clapham Park — I’ve been here since 2008 — but there’s a mix of residents and neighbours […]

Alfred wants more for older people

They are just tearing this place down and building it for young people. They should keep more things for older people. I live on a neighbouring estate but I like to come over here to some of the Over 50s events. I like to get out and see what’s going on.– Alfred is a neighbour […]

Louis, Agnes Riley Park has everything

We like Agnes Riley Gardens because it has everything there, all in one park — gardens, playground, sports, even a paddling pool. — Louis, Neueam and Jacob are Clapham Park residents — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Metropolitan Winter Warmer, December 2017

Theresa loves her job working for the community

Clapham Park is my home. It has been a part of my life for 26 years and the life of my family. I am glad to see all the many changes that are happening, like the new buildings. One good thing about the regeneration process is that people have really gotten to know each other […]

Joyce has lived all over the estate

I’ve been all over Clapham Park these 40 years. I used to live in Freeman House—when it was still Lambeth owned—until 2007 when my husband was sick so we moved to a ground floor flat in Perry House. He’s passed away now. Around 2007 there was a refurbishment in Perry House so we moved to […]

Veronica, ‘it’s fabulous!’

I’ve been living here for 17 years. Clapham Park is simply a fabulous place to live.— Veronica is a Clapham Park resident and works for Metropolitan Thames Valley — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Metropolitan Winter Warmer in December 2017

Francesca is adapting to change

There have been a lot of changes in the 20 years I’ve lived here. Clapham Park went from being part of the Council, then to Clapham Park Homes, and now Metropolitan. We had to move to a new building five years ago as part of the regeneration. It’s good because it has a lift and […]

Caroline appreciates the diversity and architecture

I don’t live here, but lots of my in-laws live on the Estate and have done for over 18 years, and I work here at the Metropolitan office. The diversity and the architecture, with all the pathways and routes through it, make this estate wonderful.— Caroline is a neighbour of Clapham Park and works for […]

Josephine still does Tai Chi

When I came from Malaysia, I first lived in Lancashire for training but there was just nothing there, it was all industrial. I never saw the sun! Later, I worked at Hackney Hospital as a staff midwife. But I got married at 40 years old, and gave up my job to run a grocery shop […]

Thaddeus drove neighbours to the grocery shop

When I worked for Clapham Park Project and drove their van, I used to take the elderly women shopping every Thursday. They used to love it so much. I also used to drive the young boys to the football matches. I distributed information around Clapham Park to residents: changes to meetings, flyers, etc. I served […]

Sarah sends her kids to the Homework Club

What I like about my neighborhood is that my children get to go for extra maths and English classes every Saturday, which I find very useful for improving their academic studies. — Sarah, with her children & friends, is a Clapham Park resident — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Winter Warmer, December 2017

Jelion and Mickel enjoy barbeques

In summer, Agnes Riley Gardens comes alive. We go there to have barbeques and parties. It’s my favourite part of the Estate.— Jelion and Mickel are Clapham Park residents — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Metropolitan Winter Warmer, December 2017

Aboyowa, Sholayemi and Semaye play right outside

Behind our house there is a place we can ride our bikes and scooters, and relax on the hill. We usually have our parties there.— Aboyowa, Sholayemi, and Semaye (with their dad, Tony) are long-time residents of Clapham Park — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Metropolitan Winter Warmer, December 2017

Thomas relaxes in the park

Agnes Riley Park is my favourite place on the Estate. I can sit there and no one bothers me. Otherwise, if you’re sitting out near the flats, people think you’re looking in!— Thomas is a Clapham Park resident — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Clapham Park Winter Warmer in December 2017

Lydia helped get a New Deal of Communities grant for Clapham Park

In 1999, there was an opportunity for one community to be selected in Lambeth to receive an award to regenerate their community. So six of us residents got together and made a compelling case about how abandoned this area was. In 2001, we were awarded a £56 million New Deal for Communities grant to regenerate […]

Shirley grows fruit in her garden

This is an apple tree, I can tell because of the blossoms. I’ve been gardening in my own backyard for a long time. I’ve got strawberries, runner beans and a few other things. When the kids come over they start eating them before they’re ripe, I don’t even get to eat them. One of my […]

Susan’s neighbours took care of her son

I’ve lived in three different parts of this estate over the years. I was very fortunate as I always had good neighbours that were friendly and helpful, but not over-friendly, if you know what I mean. When the kids were little, we all used to go to the park and the paddling pool together. And […]

Lesley is part of the local support network

I don’t live on the Estate but I’ve been a neighbour since 1997, and part of the Over 50s Club since 2005. I’d tell new people to the area to investigate all the services that are available and don’t be too proud to ask for help. The Tender Loving Care group go visit older people […]

Yirgalem supports families

I’m a Family Outreach Worker for Clapham Park Project. I’m just here today helping to cook for the Over 50s lunch. I really enjoy my work because I like helping people. Some of my clients write really nice compliments about me and that makes me proud. I’ve been living near Clapham Park for almost 4 […]

‘Elia’ would like more space

I’ve been living here for 45 years. But I’d really like to get out of my flat and into a house now. I well deserve it!– ‘Elia’ is a long-term Clapham Park resident and member of the Over 50s Club — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Over 50s Luncheon, Clapham Park Community Resource Centre, […]

Lawrence was a champion weightlifter

People call me ‘Laurie’ or my Italian friends call me ‘Lorenzo.’ I was the English weightlifting champion for 12 successive years, and four-time British champion. I was a good athlete but I stopped competing in the mid-70s. I was also a licensed cab driver starting in the 50s for almost 40 years. For 21 years […]

Elizabeth ‘Minnin’ moved here from Jamaica

I first came to London in the 1950s but I didn’t like it because of the icy cold. So I went back to Jamaica, and my husband stayed here to work. But I finally came back to live here in 1997, to Clapham Park. I liked it better actually, everything had changed, but it was […]

Malcolm, neighbours sharing during wartime

Getting together is important for community. It builds spirit and brings it back to what it used to be like before the War. People shared things before. My mother used to share the food parcels she got with the neighbours. And at birthdays, people used to make toffee apples and share them around because sugar […]

Jean loves dancing

I came to the UK in 1963 and I’ve been in Clapham Park for 41 years, but even longer in Lambeth. I really like the social activities and the friendliness of the community. I first started coming to the Community Centre in 2004. There was a group that did dancing then, like ballroom dancing. My […]

Ruth likes King’s Avenue

I like King’s Avenue… because I’m used to it.— Ruth with her mum, Olushola, both Clapham Park residents — Photographed by Marcia Chandra at the Winter Warmer in December 2017

Enid gardens for the community

When I first moved to Clapham Park over 50 years ago, I was the first black person around here. So I’ve lived here a long time. I keep busy; I help with the Over 50s Coffee Mornings and I do the Tai Chi. I also do a bit of gardening in the space in front […]

Nuria came from Spain and fell in love

I came to the UK from Spain in 1970 to learn English and to escape the Franco regime. I loved it here, the diversity, the culture. I love travelling. I met my husband, Lawrence, 30 years ago, and it still feels like yesterday. We moved to the area in 1997 so it’s been 20 years […]

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