IWM reveals programme for year ahead

15 December 2022
The Imperial War Museum
The Imperial War Museum, Elephant and Castle

The Imperial War Museum London (IWM) has announced its programme for 2023.

Highlights include Spies, an exhibition that will explore the role of deception in conflict. It will feature the gadgets, disguises and tools used to gain an advantage in warfare over the past century.

And, next summer, marking the 75th anniversary of the arrival of the Empire Windrush, the museum will commemorate the wartime service given by people from the Caribbean, many of whom also helped to rebuild Britain after the Second World War.

IWM is one of three museums in Elephant and Castle, alongside the Southwark Heritage Centre and the Cinema Museum.

Find out more about what’s in store at IWM for 2023

A new pedestrian crossing for the Low Line

8 December 2022
Elephant Road Crossing
Elephant Road Crossing

A new pedestrian crossing has opened this week on New Kent Road in Elephant and Castle.

The crossing, which has been planned for several years, will help people reach Elephant Road and Castle Square safely from Rockingham Street (on the north side of New Kent Road).

The crossing, which has been built by TfL, will play an important part in making Elephant and Castle a better place to walk. It will make it easier for pedestrians to reach the shops, cafes and restaurants in Castle Square and Elephant Park and should increase footfall and trade.

The crossing also adds another link to the Low Line – the walking route alongside the railway viaducts which is gradually being pieced together across north Southwark.

Find out more about walking in Elephant and Castle

Streets for People report approved

6 December 2022
Streets for People
Streets for People: join us on our journey

Walworth residents explain what the Streets for People project has done for them in a new video produced by Southwark Council.

Southwark Council’s Cabinet approved a new Streets for People report today (6 December). The report sets out the council’s plans to further improve the borough’s streets and deliver healthier neighbourhoods, cleaner air, thriving town centres and safer roads.

The ideas for the borough complement the local measures that are already being taken in Elephant and Castle and Walworth to make our neighbourhood a better place to walk.

The council has been rolling out Streets for People since 2020 and it hopes that the measures described in the video will serve as a good example for what can be achieved in future.

Watch the Walworth video

Find out more about Streets for People

Christmas Open Studios: 2 to 4 December

28 November 2022
Pullens Yards Open studios
Pullens Yards Open studios

Come and explore Pullens Yards this weekend.

From Friday 2 through to Sunday 4 December, Pullens Yards will throw open the doors for their annual Christmas Open Studios.

Featuring dozens of local artists and crafts-people, this is a great chance to visit this cluster of picturesque Victorian workshops.

You can expect live music, food, Christmas gifts, workshops, mulled wine, locally brewed beer and more. So come along for a bit of Christmas shopping or just to potter around and soak up the festive atmosphere.

The yards are open on Friday from 6.30pm-9.30pm and on Saturday and Sunday from 11am-6pm.

Find out more

Celebrate Christmas in Castle Square

11 November 2022
Christmas in Castle Square
Christmas in Castle Square

The Castle Square Christmas lights will be switched on by the Mayor of Southwark on Saturday 26 November.

Come and join the celebrations from 1-6pm for an afternoon filled with free, family fun including music, carols, food, Santa’s grotto and more.

There will be free Christmas craft workshops throughout the afternoon. Have a go at Christmas card making or decorate your own baubles to take home for your tree.

And on 25 November all the traders in Castle Square will be offering Black Friday deals, including up to 25 per cent off on retail.

Find out more

Help with the Cost of Living

8 November 2022
Cost of Living
Southwark Cost of Living Summit

The Leader of Southwark Council, Kieron Williams, was in Walworth today to announce three new council schemes to support people through the cost of living crisis.

These include a new Southwark Energy Savers advice service; Warm Spaces (which will be open to the public throughout the winter) and £2.7m for a second round of the Southwark Cost of Living Fund.

The announcement was made at the Southwark Cost of Living Summit held at Walworth Methodist Church. The summit brought together dozens of professionals from across the public sector, including the NHS, schools, voluntary, charity and community sectors.

Find out more

Halloween Spooktacular

12 October 2022
Castle Square
Halloween in Castle Square: 29 October

This Halloween, Castle Square will host a free Halloween event for the whole family to enjoy.

You can expect a celebration packed-full of spooky workshops, sweets, treats, music and more. The Upside Down Dance Academy will perform their version of Thriller and you and the kids can get involved in Halloween inspired workshops throughout the day.

And remember to keep your eyes peeled for special offers from the local traders.

Join in the fun on Saturday 29 October, 11am-4pm.

Find out more

Build the Bakerloo Line Extension to boost growth

3 October 2022
Back the Bakerloo
Southwark & Lewisham Back the Bakerloo

In response to the Chancellor’s Growth Plan, Cllr Kieron Williams, Leader of Southwark Council and Damien Egan, Mayor of Lewisham are calling on the Government to deliver the Bakerloo Line modernisation and extension.

The Government plans to make growth its “central economic mission, setting a target of reaching 2.5 per cent” and so Southwark and Lewisham Councils are renewing their campaign for the investment needed to extend the Bakerloo Line from Elephant and Castle to New Cross and beyond via Old Kent Road.

The Bakerloo Line Extension would yield over 110,000 new homes and support 130,000 jobs.

Find out more

Have your say on Browning Street

22 September 2022
Browning Street visualisation
Browning Street visualisation

Southwark Council is working with the local community to make Browning Street more people-friendly.

The work, part of the Walworth Low-Emission Neighbourhood project, is intended to make the street safer, healthier and a more attractive place to spend time.

The council wants to make the street safer for pedestrians and cyclists; improve the air quality and create a better environment for business.

The last consultation was held in June, now the team want to hear your thoughts on the final design proposal.

Visit the website and have your say before 9 October 2022

Colourful Elephant: 24 September

20 September 2022
Colourful Elephant
Colourful Elephant festival: 24 Sept

Join in the fun at Colourful Elephant in Castle Square.

Colourful Elephant is a free party for the whole community taking place in Castle Square on Saturday 24 September. Visitors can expect a day full of performances, activities, workshops, music and food for all the family.

There will be performances by SuperArts Dance Academy, a bubbleologist, free face-painting and art workshops from Art in the Park.

There will also be special offers from the square’s traders including Coma Y Beba, Original Caribbean Spice, Daddy O’s and Kaieteur Kitchen.

Find out more

New crossing for New Kent Road

9 September 2022
Elephant Road Crossing
A new pedestrian crossing at Elephant Rd

TfL is improving the New Kent Road/Elephant Road junction.

This will include a new pedestrian crossing on New Kent Road, linking two sections of the Low Line walking route.

TfL will narrow the entrance into Elephant Road and vehicles will not be able to turn into Elephant Road from New Kent Road. This will provide additional shared space for cyclists and pedestrians to use the new crossing (vehicles will still not be able to make the turning from Elephant Road into New Kent Road). The road at the junction will also be resurfaced.

Work will start week commencing 19 September and continue through to the end of November and access to Elephant Road from New Kent Road will be closed to traffic between 4–18 November.

Join a free tour of the new Southwark Heritage Centre and Walworth Library

1 September 2022
Southwark Heritage Centre and Walworth Library
Free tour and Q&A: Sat 10 sept

The new Southwark Heritage Centre and Walworth Library will host free tours of its exhibitions and heritage collections on Saturday 10 September.

The event is a part of this year’s Open House Festival and will also include discussions and Q&A sessions on the role of libraries in the community and museum collections within libraries.

Southwark Council’s Library and Heritage team will be joined at the event by the project’s architect, representatives from Lendlease (the developer) the exhibition’s designers and other museum specialists.

Find out more

£75k awarded to local projects

18 August 2022
ESOL class
Digital for ESOL by Ripe learning

Digital skills classes for ESOL students (English for Speakers of Other Languages) and disability support for the Latin American community are amongst the projects set to benefit from £75,000 of grant funding announced in Elephant and Castle today.

In total, eight local groups, will each receive a share of the £75k fund for projects throughout the neighbourhood.

The money comes from the Elephant and Castle Community Fund which was established by Lendlease and Southwark Council in 2012. This year Get Living have joined forces to increase the size of the annual fund from £50k to £75k.

Find out more

Join a free walking tour on 20 August

9 August 2022
Walking Tour
Free animated walking tour 20 August

Join the People’s Company for a free animated walking tour of Elephant and Castle.

Bringing local history to life, these tours are an opportunity to find out more about our fascinating neighbourhood.

Including music, speeches and performances all along the route, you will hear about famous residents, such as Charlie Chaplin and Charles Babbage, learn about the area’s long history and get an insight into the many amazing, diverse communities which have called Elephant and Castle home over the centuries.

There will also be a quiz and exciting food offers from Castle Square traders.

Find out more

30 Green Flags for Southwark parks

1 August 2022
Green Flags
Southwark has the third most flags in England

Southwark Council has received 30 Green Flag awards for its parks and open spaces.

This includes six awards for Elephant and Castle.

The flags – awarded annually by environmental charity, Keep Britain Tidy – set the benchmark for good  management of green spaces throughout the UK and around the world.

Southwark now ranks third amongst all of the 2,208 councils that took part across England and second in London.

The six council-run parks to receive an award in Elephant and Castle are: Victory Community Park, Geraldine Mary Harmsworth Park, Surrey Square Park, Salisbury Row Park, Pasley Park and Burgess Park.

Find out more

Urban Elephant Festival: this weekend 29-31 July

25 July 2022
Urban Elephant
Urban Elephant: a free festival from 29-31 July

Urban Elephant is a free, colourful, vibrant and unique community arts festival coming to Elephant and Castle this weekend.

This family-friendly festival will take place across several sites both in Walworth and Elephant and Castle (over the course of three days) and you can expect to see the very best in contemporary urban street art and theatre, including; music, circus, magic, dance, puppetry and much more.

The festival is being run in conjunction with the Elephant and Castle Business Forum (established by the Elephant and Castle Town Centre team) and aims to reconnect Walworth Road with Elephant and Castle and to promote trade throughout the whole neighbourhood.

The festival has been funded by Southwark Council’s High Street Recovery Fund with additional support from Lendlease, Get Living and Notting Hill Genesis.

Find out more

Tree House Open Day: 22 July

15 July 2022
The Tree House: Elephant Park
The Tree House: Elephant Park

Join the team at Elephant Park on Friday 22 July for the official opening of The Tree House and an afternoon of free, family activities.

The Mayor and the Leader of Southwark Council will cut the ribbon to open this stunning new pavilion, known as The Tree House, which has been built around one of the park’s mature London plane trees.

There will be free activities and events all day from midday to 8pm, so drop-in for yoga, face-painting, art workshops, gym sessions, food and live music.

Find out more

Give me the Sun 

4 July 2022
Give me the Sun
Blue Elephant Theatre 12-30 July

Give Me the Sun is a beautiful and compelling new play, exploring what happens when too much is left unsaid for too long.

Coming to Blue Elephant Theatre this month, the play reveals what happens when a seemingly perfect father-son relationship unravels to reveal grief, loss and loneliness.

The production is part of an Arts Council funded series of works exploring intergenerational relationships between London-born children and parents from a different culture.  

Written by Mamet Leigh, a pioneer of the Tehran Underground Theatre Movement, Give Me the Sun addresses the complexity of finding your place in a new country and how different that can be for each person.

The plays runs at the Blue Elephant Theatre from 12 to 30 July.

Find out more

£50k in grants awarded for local projects

28 June 2022
Inspiring Elephant cheques
£50k awarded from Inspiring Elephant fund

The Elephant and Castle Town Centre team and Get Living have announced the successful applicants for the Inspiring Elephant Community Fund.

This new, £50,000 a year fund provides local groups with grants to support both short-term projects and longer term initiatives in the community.

12 successful applicants have been awarded grants of between £2,500 and £4,950. These include Afro-Brazilian Arts and Cultural Exchange Institute, Superarts Academy, Silverfit and the Latin American Disabled People’s Project amongst others.

The money will be spent on projects that address inequality and support people with disabilities, older people and minority communities.

Find out more

Guided Walk: Under Southwark Today

20 June 2022
Roman Southwark
Roman Southwark

Join Dr Chris Constable from Southwark Council on a walk to explore the archaeology of Roman Southwark.

This free, guided walk complements the Southwark Today exhibition currently running at the Southwark Heritage Centre and Walworth Library in Elephant and Castle.

It will feature some exciting new discoveries, including the secrets of King Alfred’s statue and a once-in-a-generation find at Landmark Court.

The walks, which are on several dates through to the end of July, start at the south end of the Roman London Bridge and skirt the edges of Elephant and Castle, before finishing near Borough Tube station.

Find out more

Visit the Southwark Today exhibition

6 June 2022
Southwark Today exhibition
Southwark Today exhibition 6 to 29 June

A new exhibition has opened at the Southwark Heritage Centre and Walworth Library.

Southwark Today explores the experiences of the many communities who live in Southwark today and who will form part of the borough’s rich heritage in future.

Co-produced with design studio, Syrup, the exhibition was created with community groups from across the borough to help expand our understanding of Southwark’s recent history and its potential future. The exhibition includes art, film, photography and oral history – all of which draw upon the borough’s many diverse voices.

The exhibition is at Southwark Council’s new Southwark Heritage Centre and Walworth Library which opened last year. Delivered in partnership with Lendlease (as part of the Elephant Park development) this incredible, new Elephant and Castle venue combines a heritage centre for the whole borough with a local library for Walworth.

So, if you haven’t visited the centre yet, this is the perfect time to do so. The exhibition is free and runs until the end of June.

Find out more

Celebrate the Jubilee in Elephant and Castle

25 May 2022
Elephant and Castle Jubilee Weekend
Elephant and Castle Jubilee Weekend

Castle Square and Elephant Park will host free street parties and celebrations throughout the extended bank holiday weekend from 2 to 5 June.

Thursday 2 June
The celebrations get started with Bobo Social’s third, annual Welcome to the Gaybourhood party. Expect cocktails, great food and top tunes from the queens of pop, dance and disco.

Friday 3 June
Castle Square will hold a street party in the square. Come along for a day full of music, performance, activities and great food. The Castle Square traders will offer an exclusive Jubilee Menu priced at just £5.50 per dish and there will be a communal al-fresco dining area where everyone can join in the fun.

Sunday 5 June
Elephant Park will hold a party on Sayer Street. Bring your own food and drink or take advantage of the many international flavours on offer from Elephant Park’s fantastic, independent restaurants and cafes.

There will be free arts and crafts activities and Blue Elephant Theatre will perform their latest children’s play, Ana and Silly, in the park (at Elephant Springs) at 1pm, 2pm and 3pm.

There will be a Jubilee-themed best dressed dog competition (courtesy of Bobo Social) and over at Little Louie there will be a Jubilee Jump Up with DJs Dubplate Pearl and Mr Swing Easy.

Find out more

£75k available for your community projects

23 May 2022
Elephant and Castle Community Fund
2022 Fund now open

The 2022 Elephant and Castle Community Fund is open for applications.

To date, almost £350k has been awarded to projects, charities and community groups.

Grants ranging from £500 to £10k are available for community projects that benefit people who live, work or study in the Elephant and Castle Opportunity Area.

This is the tenth year of the fund which was originally set up by Lendlease and Southwark Council in 2012 to support the local community. This year, Get Living, the property management group behind the Elephant Central development, has also joined the partnership and the total fund available has increased from £50k to £75k.

The deadline for applications is 5pm Monday 13 June 2022.

Find out more

Join a free animated walking tour this May

18 May 2022
Walking Tour
Free walking tours

Join the People’s Company for a free animated walking tour of Elephant and Castle.

Bringing local history to life, these tours are an opportunity to find out more about our fascinating neighbourhood.

Including music, speeches and performances all along the route, you will hear about famous residents, such as Charlie Chaplin and Charles Babbage, learn about the area’s long history and get an insight into the many amazing, diverse communities which have called Elephant and Castle home over the centuries.

There will also be a quiz with prizes and exciting food offers from Castle Square traders.

The next tours are on 28 and 29 May 2022.

Find out more

Talk to the Town Centre Team

12 May 2022
ECTC Mobile Info stand
Information stand in Castle Square

The Town Centre Community Engagement Team has a new information stand in Castle Square.

The stand is somewhere that you can go to find out more about the Elephant and Castle Town Centre development.

The staff on the stand can provide you with updates on construction works, local businesses in Castle Square and Elephant Arcade, events and activities, what’s on at the Community Hub and more.

The stand is open on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8am to 1pm.

Find out more

The Elephant Magazine: out now

9 May 2022
The Elephant Magazine Spring 2022 cover
The Elephant Magazine Spring 2022

The Elephant Magazine is available throughout Elephant and Castle.

Pick up your copy in Castle Square, Elephant Arcade or at your local pub, cafe or library.

In this issue:

  • Urban Elephant festival
  • Summer in Elephant Park
  • Sunny Hodge on Diogenes the Dog

Find out more

The Cinema Museum signs new lease

25 April 2022
The Lambeth Workhouse, now the Cinema Museum
The Lambeth Workhouse, now the Cinema Museum

After a 15 year campaign, the future for The Cinema Museum is looking bright.

The museum has just signed a new four-year lease on its historic Elephant and Castle home (the former Lambeth Workhouse) with landlords, Anthology. The Museum has also been given an option to purchase the Master’s House buildings at any time over the next four years.

This presents a great opportunity to secure a permanent home for the museum and also save a unique heritage building, the workhouse that was once home to Britain’s greatest movie star, Charlie Chaplin.

Find out more

New Head for London College of Communication

21 April 2022
Kene Igweonu
Professor Kene Igweonu

Professor Kene Igweonu has been appointed University of the Arts London Pro Vice-Chancellor & Head of London College of Communication. He will take up post in July.

Kene, who is currently  at Middlesex University, said:

“It is an honour to be appointed to lead the world-class creative institution that is London College of Communication.

I am delighted to be taking on the role at an exciting time for the UAL community, with the launch of its ambitious new Strategy 2022-2032 – ‘The World Needs Creativity’, and as the College undertakes an unprecedented programme of change that will see it move into a new purpose-built campus in 2026.”

Find out more

Elmer returns to Elephant Park

8 April 2022
Elmer comes to Elephant Park
Elmer returns to Elephant Park

Ten statues, based on the much-loved patchwork elephant created by the late David McKee, have returned to the streets and green spaces of Elephant Park.

The statues originally formed an art trail as part of the Elmer at the Elephant celebrations in 2019. Each elephant has a unique decorative pattern which were designed by artists who worked in collaboration with local community groups three years ago.

Grab yourself a trail map from the new Southwark Heritage Centre and Walworth Library (just around the corner) or download a PDF , try to find all the Elmers and read each plaque to learn more about the unique designs.

Find out more

Easter in Wonderland at Castle Square

22 March 2022
Castle Square Easter 2022
Castle Square: Saturday 16 April 2022

Families are invited to join in with a jam-packed Alice in Wonderland themed event at Castle Square this Easter.

Activities will include face painting, bunting making and biscuit decorating. Visitors can get snap-happy at the totally instagrammable Wonderland dome or join the Mad Hatter and White Rabbit Easter Bunny for a tea party. The two characters will be handing out treats and vouchers as well as posing for pictures.

Entry is free as are all the activities.

Easter in Wonderland takes place on Saturday 16 April from 11am to 5pm at Castle Square.

Find out more

Blue Elephant Community Street Party

17 March 2020
Blue Elephant Street Party 2022
Blue Elephant Community Street Party

Join Blue Elephant Theatre for a street party on Saturday 26 March between 12 and 5pm.

The party, which takes place on the Wyndham Road side of the Jessie Duffett Hall, will feature free, family-friendly theatre  workshops and performances. It will be a public celebration and a chance to get to know this community arts organisation and everything they do.

The party, which has been funded by the Southwark Council Cultural Celebrations Fund, will include food stalls and the Theatre and its bathrooms will be open just a few minutes walk away.

Find out more

Work begins on Walworth Town Hall

7 March 2022
Walworth Town Hall
Walworth Town Hall General Projects CGI

Work has begun on refurbishing Walworth Town Hall.

General Projects is the operator of what will become a new flexible work space and community hub at the town hall. The team has spent the last three years carefully planning the extensive refurbishment of this important part of Elephant and Castle’s heritage and an independent management board has been established to help shape and oversee the new community space.

Conamar, a family-owned contractor with substantial experience in heritage projects, is undertaking the refurbishment which is due to complete by the end of 2023. The project will involve some demolition work, façade restoration, roofing and internal fit-out before finishing with landscaping outside.

Find out more

A decade of delivery at Elephant Park

1 March 2022
Elephant Park 2021
Water play area at Elephant Park

Since 2010, Lendlease and Southwark Council have been working in partnership on the regeneration of Elephant and Castle.

Lendlease’s Elephant Park development is now more than halfway through to completion.

Since planning consent was granted in 2013, the scheme has delivered over 2,000 new homes, more than 25 per cent of which are affordable housing.

Over 9,000 people were trained at the Southwark Construction Skills Centre while based at Elephant Park and more than 1,500 Southwark residents have been employed on the development.

The scheme has also created new retail premises for local businesses and more than 1,500 sqm of community space including the Southwark Heritage Centre and Walworth Library which opened last year.

Lendlease has published a full update (PDF) detailing all the key benefits delivered so far and what’s still to come.

Find out more

Time to visit the new Heritage Centre and Library

14 February 2022
Southwark Heritage Centre and Walworth Library
Southwark Heritage Centre and Walworth Library

If you haven’t had the chance already, now is a great time to visit Elephant and Castle’s brand new Southwark Heritage Centre and Walworth Library.

The centre has a permanent Story of Southwark exhibition, which explores the borough’s 2,000 year history from Roman times to the present, alongside a rolling programme of temporary displays. It also features a vast array of art, photographs, memorabilia and artefacts from the borough’s impressive heritage collection (including items last on show at the Cuming Museum).

It even has a quiet, copper-lined, Faraday Room (which blocks out electro-magnetic signals) dedicated to the legacy of local-boy-done-good, Michael Faraday.

Delivered by Southwark Council in partnership with Lendlease in 2021 (as part of the Elephant Park development) the centre also incorporates a local library for Walworth and there are 20,000 books for you to borrow; plenty of desk spaces at which to study and free wi-fi throughout.

Find out more

£250k Inspiring Elephant Community Fund

1 February 2022
Inspiring Elephant logo
Inspiring Elephant Community Fund

The Elephant and Castle Town Centre team and Get Living have launched the Inspiring Elephant Community Fund.

Over the next five years, the Town Centre team will distribute £50k in grants, each year, to support the local community. Applications are open for projects that work with local residents to increase community connections, improve health and wellbeing and engage young people in training.

Local organisations will be able to apply for multi-year grants of up to £5k each and a panel of local community leaders, including members of the Community Hub and representatives from Get Living and Southwark Council will consider the applications.

Find out more

Lunar New Year at Elephant Park

28 January 2022
Lunar New Year
1 February Elephant Park

1 February marks the Lunar New Year, celebrated by London’s Chinese and Vietnamese communities. amongst others. 2022 is the Year of the Tiger.

You are invited to join in the celebrations at Elephant Park to celebrate the occasion with a traditional Chinese lion dance.

On Tuesday 1 February from 3 to 5pm the lion dance will make its way through Ash Avenue and Sayer Street. It promises to be quite a spectacle and is free to attend. So come along and enjoy the show!

Find out more

Construction starts on next phase of Town Centre

10 January 2022
Town Centre
Town Centre (CGI)

Today marks another milestone for the Elephant and Castle Town Centre as construction partner, Multiplex starts work on the next phase of construction (due to complete in 2026).

This phase (on the site of the former shopping centre) will deliver 485 homes to rent; a new cutting-edge university campus for London College of Communication (LCC) and a new tube station entrance and ticket hall. There will also be shops, restaurants and leisure space.

The third and final phase of development will commence on the current LCC site once the university moves to its new campus. When complete, this will provide a further 498 new homes as well as retail and a 500-person capacity cultural venue.

Find out more

New Year Honours 2022

4 January 2022
New Year Honours 2022
Matt Jones and Diane Lees honoured

The New Year Honours list just announced for 2022 includes recognition for two pillars of the Elephant and Castle community.

Matt Jones the Principal of Ark Globe Academy school has been honoured alongside Diane Lees, Director-General of the Imperial War Museum.

Matt Jones has been awarded an OBE for services to education. Matt has been Principal of Ark Globe Academy, on Harper Road, since 2012. The academy, established in 2008, is now ranked in the top ten per cent of schools, nationally. 

Diane Lees has been awarded a DBE for services to museums and cultural heritage. Diane is responsible for all the branches of the IWM including its main museum here in Elephant and Castle, which has recently been revamped with new WW2 and Holocaust galleries.

Find out more


Read archived news from last year (2021)