I am Rebecca Hunter, a local artist from Forest Hill who is a co-founder of Drawn Together Art Collective, a duo of artists whose work is inspired by London and nature.
How long have you lived in the area?
I have lived in Forest Hill for 5 years, I used to visit the Horniman Museum a lot as a child and didn’t return until my mid 20s. I love how green the area is, and the views of London.
What brought you here?
It was by chance really, a friend’s brother was moving to New York so needed someone to take over their tenancy temporarily – however, they fell in love with New York so never came back, which worked for me as I fell in love with Forest Hill.
What has changed most during that time?
I’m really enjoying seeing more and more independent shops open up on Dartmouth Road, so many antique stores and boutique, it is really giving the road some vibrancy.
What do you most value about the area/street you live in?
I think the Victorian architecture is my favourite thing about the road I live on, every building is designed so uniquely.
What one thing would you change?
House prices – I’d love to buy here, but it’s proving difficult!
What’s the one thing you couldn’t do without?
The Horniman Gardens – having that open space so close was an absolute lifesaver during lockdown. It has also inspired much of my artwork.
Do you know your neighbours?
I know the people who live in my building well, other than I’m very familiar with faces who I pass regularly on the street and in the local shops.
Do you belong to any groups?
I follow the Forest Hill Society on Facebook and enjoy their history talks they put on, but I’m yet to go to a meetup.
Describe your perfect weekend
Popping over to the Horniman museum for the farmers’ market, followed by a walk in Sydenham Woods, then by a pub lunch in The Signal or Sylvan Post.
What’s your favourite place for a night out?
I really love going for dinner at Rocca in Dulwich Village, followed by a drink next door in the Crown and Greyhound.
Coffee or tea? Where?
I love to have a cuppa at The Teapot or at St. David’s Coffee House.
The best meal I’ve ever had..
Sadly, it wasn’t open very long – but Lazy Peach on Dartmouth Road used to do a Vietnamese spin on a British breakfast and it was pretty incredible.
The best kept secret…
One Tree Hill! I thought it was just a small wooded area, but during lockdown I discovered how extensive the woodland is with exceptional views of London. I also found out that the church hosts movie nights and live music events which I’d love to go to once life is back to normal.
You can find examples of Rebecca Hunter’s artwork including prints inspired by Forest Hill & Dulwich here: www.drawntogetherartcollective.com
This article first appeared in the November issue of SE23 magazine.