Ceremony: Memorial Bench for Vivienne Barloga

25th of November, 1pm, Hillside Gardens Park, picnic area

Vivienne Barloga spent her childhood in Streatham, growing up at 156 Downton Avenue, close to our beloved park.  In the 1950’s, she immigrated to Canada, and afterwards spent the rest of her happy life in the States near Chicago.  Now her children, Mitch and Karen, have donated a bench in memory of their mother to Hillside Gardens Park, a bench that soon will arrive.  They imagine her sitting in the park as a young girl, playing with her friends and enjoying being out in nature.  And to honor this vision and to remember their mother, they have donated a bench to Hillside, the first bench ever to be donated to the park.  The bench will be located in the picnic area along the path. And Mitch is coming now from the US to see the bench with his son, Sam.  We will have a little ceremony on the 25th of November, 1pm at Hillside, and we would love to invite you to come along.  Below are some pictures of Vivienne and her family.

Vivienne Barloga

Vivienne Barloga 1990 (above)

Viv Barloga @ Granpa's Bench

Vivienne on the memorial bench for her father, Maurice, in Eastbourne (above)

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What to read next? A Most Unladylike Occupation – Lisa Wright

Few parks in the world can keep up with the literary output of its people. After Tony Emerson’s “Looking Down, Looking In” (link here), another member of our community has put out a book: Lisa Wright has written “A Most Unladylike Occupation – Lucy Deane, one of the first women factory inspectors”. Lisa happened to discovered the amazing story of Lucy Deane when her diaries where passed on to her, and she felt immediately compelled to write her biography which celebrates her as one of the true female pioneers, breaking gender barriers and caring for the health and safety of factor workers. Several members of the friends of Hillside read the book, which Lucy also presented at our last friend’s meeting, and all friends strongly recommended the book. Maybe also a great gift for the holidays? Below the official text from the publisher, but first buy the book here.


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Winter is almost here, so let us celebrate autumn

Emily Brontë once wrote these wonderful lines about autumn, which is now starting to leave as well. So, why not read this wonderful poem and then linger a bit on the pictures of our Nature Garden, taken by Stuart Patel, and remember this glorious autumn.

Fall, leaves, fall; die, flowers, away;
Lengthen night and shorten day;
Every leaf speaks bliss to me
Fluttering from the autumn tree.
I shall smile when wreaths of snow
Blossom where the rose should grow;
I shall sing when night’s decay
Ushers in a drearier day.


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Friends of Hillside Gardens Meeting (10th September 2018)

Hello Friends,

we had a meeting on the 10th of September 2018. Most of the discussions centred again around the Section 106 money allocation. The meeting agree to setup a steering committee, look into the costing of the most desired projects, and consult with people like you and me, who regularly visit the park what they would like to see the money spend on. Let u know in the comments if you have an idea. You can find the minutes here: Meeting Minutes 10. 9. 2018. As usual, we thank Nigel for taking the minutes. Please let us know if you have anything to add, or anything you would like us to know. And below a picture of the Nature Garden, taken recently by the wonderful Stuart Patel.

Hope to see you all soon, Andreas


What to read this summer? Looking Down, Looking In by Tony Emerson

Are you wondering what to read next? Which book to take to the beach this summer? What to give to a friend as a special gift? Look no further. Beloved Tony Emerson, long-time Friends of Hillside committee member and our chair for five years, has published a fictionalised family saga. Many of our members have found this book super interesting. And things get even better: Tony will donate all but the first £3 of the purchase price you pay to the Friends.  The retail price is £6.99 but he will sell it to you for as little as £5.  He will also personally deliver a signed copy to you. Now that is customer service! Email Tony ( to get the book that deputy chair Thomas described as “an ideal holiday read, as easy to dip in and out of’ over the summer break. Click to read more.

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Friends of Hillside Gardens Meeting (15th July 2018)

Hello Friends,

we had a meeting on the 15th July 2018, hosted by Rosena and Dino. Most of the discussions centred around the responsibilities of the committee members, and the Section 106 (alias Megabowl) money allocation. We founded a sub-committee to ensure that we get the most of this amazing opportunity. You can find the minutes here: Meetting Minutes15.07.18. As usual, we thank Nigel for taking the minutes! Please let us know if you have anything to add, or anything you would like us to know.


Megabowl money update

Dear Friends,

Over the last few months we have been discussing with the council what we feel the priorities are for the park.

Lambeth have identified a large sum of money from local developer contributions (106 money) which (subject to final approvals) has been allocated to the park.

To guide how this money is spent a management plan has been developed and you can download a copy here…

2017.12.03 LL Annual Management Plan – Hillside Gardens Park 2017-18

How we got to here…

  • late in 2016 we discussed priorities for the park at our meeting – many of which have been included in the plan – e.g. signage, improving sports pitches
  • in spring 2017 several members of the committee did a walk around with Iain Boulton from Lambeth to look at specific areas
  • the management plan was drafted and a version was distributed at the last meeting
  • friends members have been invited by email to input into the process
  • a meeting was held with the local councilors and the head of the parks department, the friends chair, a representative from the one o’clock club, a representative of the tennis club.

What happens next…

  • please download the management plan and have a look at whats in there!
  • please come to our meeting on Wednesday 6th Dec – 7:30pm@ st simon st jude church hall
  • we will let Lambeth know that we are happy with the management plan
  • the 106 money will be formally allocated
  • some work will be carried out as soon as possible
  • bigger work such as refurbishing the tennis courts and upgrading toilets and other buildings will be looked out once Lambeth have appointed a project manger. The project manager will work with the Friends and other stakeholders like the tennis club and the one o’clock club one the details of the bigger work programs.