Val Shawcross, London Assembly member for Lambeth & Southwark, has officially opened the revamped farmyard at Surrey Docks Farm.

“I was delighted to be invited to open the new-look farmyard at Surrey Docks Farm,” said Val.

“The farm is a fantastic local charity and a real jewel in Rotherhithe’s crown. It’s fascinating fun to come and watch all the animals, and this morning as usual there were a number of children having a great time making friends with the goats. T

“he new surface in the yard will make cleaning and drainage easier and makes it very clear that visitors need to wash their hands after being in the animals’ area.

“Gary Jones the farm manager and his team have done a fantastic job – this project has been a real team effort, with input from staff, volunteers and farm committee members. Everyone has shown a great deal of perseverance which has paid off today.

“If you’ve not visited the farm before I highly recommend it – it’s a great day out for anyone of any age.’

The farmyard refurbishment project was funded by the Biffa Award scheme, the Worshipful Company of Farmers and British Land/Surrey Quays Shopping Centre who donated the proceeds of their 2012 Christmas Appeal.


Southwark guiding group celebrate their ‘MBE for volunteering groups’ – the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service

The 1st St James’ Rainbows, Brownies, Guides and members of the Senior Section (STARS) and their Leaders could be the newest MBE holders in Southwark. They celebrated in style on Tuesday 2 July as they received the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service 2013, an award for voluntary groups which is equivalent to the MBE for individuals.

Rainbows, Brownies, Guides, members of the Senior Section and Leaders celebrated at Bacon’s College in Rotherhithe with Girlguiding chief executive Julie Bentley. The award was presented to the group by deputy lieutenant Jenny Bianco.

More than 160 girls from around Southwark meet at the same time every week. This includes 33 Rainbows, 56 Brownies and 63 Guides, and a team of 26 volunteer leaders supported by 30 members of the Senior Section of whom 18 help every week! This means they are one of the biggest guiding groups in the entire UK, giving girls the space to have fun and a chance to make their own choices and have their voices heard every week.

Shania, 10, from 1st St James’ Brownies, said: “I loved the presentation evening tonight – the best bit was seeing the Award and reading the letter from HRH Countess of Wessex. It made me feel really proud to be part of something so big. Our leaders are great fun and make our meetings really exciting.”

1st St James’ guiding family of units is led by Lesley Marsh who said: “The award nomination is made by a member of the local community so we were very surprised and delighted when we found out. Some of the leaders were invited to a Garden Party at Buckingham Palace and when we told the girls they decided that it would be great to have another celebration and say “thank you” to our local community. The girls asked if we could have a cake to celebrate and we did!”

Pip McKerrow, chief commissioner of Girlguiding London and South East England, said: “What an incredible achievement for an amazing group of Girlguiding leaders and girls. We’re proud of the 1st St James groups who offer girls their own space to build friendships, have fun and develop their own voices week-in, week-out, with some of the largest guiding groups in the region!”

From Time & Talents:

We are looking to recruit a permanent, full-time Director to ensure Time and Talents continues to thrive despite the current funding challenges facing all multi-purpose community organisations.

Key tasks for the new Director will include identifying new sources of income, developing contracts and services, and exploring how best to work with and alongside other local organisations.

For more information and how to apply please visit our Charity Jobs page

This week’s creation of a magnificent Dr Salter snowman provides a timely reminder that the Salter Statues campaign to replace the stolen statue of Alfred Salter and create a new Ada Salter statue to complement it has recently added an online donation facility to its website.

Time and Talents is a small charity based in Rotherhithe and founded over 125 years ago. Today it runs our own projects (including those for older and younger people) and offers space for a range of groups and individuals to use as well as providing volunteering opportunities for the whole community.

Time and Talents offers :

  • Guaranteed Gold Bond places
  • Fundraising and training advice
  • Your own web page
  • A team running vest

Minimum sponsorship required £1500

Register on the Time & Talents page at or call 020 7232 5660 for more information.

See also

Chair of Trustees

Time & Talents, a 125-year-old multi-tpurpose charitable organisation based in Rotherhithe, is seeking to recruit a Chair of Trustees.

The Board is particularly interested in hearing from people with :

  • Excellent organisational, communication and interpersonal skills
  • Inspirational leadership skills
  • Trustee and committee experience
  • Ability to think strategically and exercise objective judgement
  • Commitment to the vision and values of the organisation

The Board estimates the role will require a minimum of 1 day per month.

If you feel you have a contribution to make, please email
Elaine Ray, Vice Chair [email protected] for an application pack

Closing date for applications: 27th July 2012

Simon Hughes MP was in Southwark Park on Sunday morning as the official starter of the Girls v Boys 5k run which is expected to raise £10,000 for Breast Cancer Campaign.

England rugby sevens star Chris Cracknell and fitness expert Sarah Maxwell captained teams of girls and boys for the fundraising 5k – and also led a warm-up for the 83 charity runners.

Simon Hughes, MP for Bermondsey and Old Southwark, joined in the warm up and said: “I supported, and people ran Girls vs Boys, to remind others that more than half a million people in this country have breast cancer and 12,000 die from breast cancer every year. However by putting money into research there can be cure.

“We came [to Southwark Park] for a positive reason – to reduce the pain, reduce the anxiety and have a better future.”

The close-run race was ultimately won by the girls team who posted an average race time of 32 minutes and 13 seconds compared to the boys’ 37 minutes and 2 seconds.

A team of 20 young people and staff from Salmon Youth Centre in Bermondsey are taking on the adventure of a lifetime next weekend to climb the highest mountains of England, Scotland and Wales – within 24 hours.

Joining staff from Standard Chartered Bank, the gruelling challenge will see the team scale Ben Nevis in Scotland, Scafell Pike in England, and Snowdon in Wales to complete the renowned Three Peaks Challenge between Thursday 24 and Friday 25 May.

Despite the obvious challenges, Miranda Haslem, a Youth Worker at Salmon, is looking forward to it. She said: “We’re all very excited about it as none of us here at Salmon have done it before so it will be well out of our comfort zone. We’re lucky to have the experienced guys from Standard Chartered with us to guide the way!”

Also excited is 16 year old Jack Clayton, a young volunteer at Salmon. He said: “I was going to do the London Marathon this year until I found out I was too young for it, so I set myself a challenge to do this instead and raise money for Salmon along the way.

“I’ve been coming to Salmon since I was 14 and being here has really changed me a lot – I’ve developed skills such as timekeeping, team work and leadership which will help me in future for jobs. I’m looking forward to completing the challenge in under 24 hours – with some time to spare!”

The team is hoping to raise £10,000 to help fund Salmon’s work with disadvantaged young people. To find out more and to make a donation, please visit