I’ve been a resident in Sydenham for getting on for 6 years - 3.5 years off Kirkdale (Kelvin Grove) and now in between Syd and Penge High Street.
Don’t think I’m speaking out of turn or offending anyone but I don’t think anywhere in particular “missed out” compared to others with See3 in the 2 Sydenham locations (Kirkdale and High street) as from the outside it doesn’t seem See3 contributed that much to either (or perhaps they did contribute to short-lived unsuccessful things I missed entirely?) with their logo sporadically appearing on various posters for certain events (e.g.: the recent Halloween trail I think). No idea if they do actually do a lot behind the scenes or merely have funds that are only available and accessible by certain people who have the knowledge or ability to access?
I also have a weird funny feeling in the back of my head that the “ghost signs” ended up being done by someone off their own back as they were fed up with nothing happening regarding funding and organising of things etc. Something that keeps being seen time and time again across various other aspects of Sydenham re: councillors or society plans.
Again my memory is a bit rubbish so I may be misremembering the ghost sign thing.
To the new resident - Sydenham and it’s people are generally great and much like anywhere there are things that could be better or you wish would change a bit but I would honestly say the one thing I wish would change (and it’s related to the chat so far) is there is definitely less of a community feel/spirit compared to Penge and Forest Hill (not to say there isn’t one!). Again just from a person living here point of view (I don’t have a business or work in the area or anything) I wonder how much of that is to do with a lack of traders association (or similar) to which I believe both Penge (they have a BID - Business Improvement District) and Forest Hill have which seems to actively address the things that the traders/high street needs (or wants) to make things more attractive to shoppers and people coming to the area (whether it be paving, shop fronts, events etc.) which benefits all. Without this Sydenham appears to have councillors, society members or others choosing specific things they want or don’t want to do perhaps regardless of what shops/shoppers/residents as a whole might like to see.
Penge as an example had I think 29 local businesses signed up to the Halloween trail which was all mapped out for people to enjoy. They recently had Pengefest (Octoberfest) which served in part as a fundraiser for the BID and had local butchers doing sausages, local brewers and coffee roasters selling their product alongside other mostly locally based organisations. The whole community are backing all the street art there - giving permissions for walls etc for hundreds of changing art works to be on display etc.
We have other things in Syd which are great that places like Penge don’t (Events at Syd arts, Kirkdale books, poodle club, ignition taproom etc.) but these aren’t ongoing group things run by the community for the community; more individual organisations doing their own thing which would be nice/beneficial (eg: Poodle Club recently hosted a fundraiser to get some new Christmas lights for the high street - why isn’t that something that the whole community / traders /council / society should be bandying together to do [like the Kirkdale tree] rather than a single resident setting up a fundraiser and asking for help/organising things themselves)
Apologies for the long message - Just wanted to get my point across with a bit of evidence without looking like a ranty keyboard warrior or anything!