I am a painter originally from Edinburgh but I have lived in London since 1973. I now live in Brockley close to Hilly Fields. I have a wonderful studio in my garden and exhibit regularly in lots of groups shown Britain, Europe and USA.

How long have you lived in the area?

I have lived here for 19 years and did not know of the area until I saw my flat.

What brought you here?

I was searching for a larger two-bedroom property with good light and in a quiet area. I was immediately attracted to the large Victorian houses and the amount of greenery in all the streets.   Also most of the streets are very wide.

What do you most value about the area/street you live in?

I most value two things one, that I have enough space to have a studio in my garden and two the quietness of this area the space it offers, lots of trees and its wonderful park Hilly Fields at the bottom of the road. The park is well used for sports, general picnickers, children’s football, cricket and once a month they have a family run all around the park, which is very popular.

What’s the one thing you couldn’t do without?

It is the general friendliness and wide range of cultures in this area that gives a rich sense of community and belonging and caring. I find this very important and I value the amount of space there is all around..

Do you know your neighbours?

Yes I have got to know lots of people in the area and we often meet for coffee or at the various local events throughout the year. All my neighbours are very friendly and try to look out for each other when necessary. So many events are run by volunteers in the Brockley area that it is not difficult to meet your neighbours.

Where are you likely to be found on Saturday?

We often go to the Brockley Open Market for coffee or lunch. They have excellent selection of food, vegetables, cheeses, breads, cakes, etc., as well as good takeaway food. It has also become a good meeting place and regularly catch up with friends.

What is your favourite place to eat?

We have several, theaward-winning Brockley Rock for fish and chips where we try to go there every Friday when we can. The Orchard Pub in Brockley has excellent food and also hosts night quizzes, The Talbot Pub at the bottom of my road also is a very friendly place to eat and they also host many events from craft fairs to meetings of many groups.

Coffee or tea? Where?

The best hot chocolate I think in this area is in the Brockley Mess on Brockley Road I also think the Cafe in Hilly Fields Park is amazing as it is open very early in the morning and are extremely friendly with superb sandwiches.

Where’s your favourite place to walk?

Walking around the area has a wonderful selection of houses and curiosities to look at. We are particularly fond of the Brockley Cemetery which is full of history and when in season the best place for blackberries. Interestingly in our street Tyrwhitt there are many plum trees and often produce great amount.

When I want to relax…

We are very close to the Picturehouse cinema, which is always fun to visit and have a range of good films. It is calming walking over Blackheath Common and then into Greenwich Park. Which has a special deer section something I only recently discovered.

If money was no object…

I would buy one of the houses overlooking Hilly Fields not only because of the space you would have in the front of your house but as it is on a hill you get a superb view over London.


Exhibition at Jeannie Avent.

This article first appeared in the June 2017 issue of SE22 magazine