Here’s some of the January newsletter by Bankside Open Spaces Trust who maintain the Garden of Remembrance at Cross Bones Graveyard. For regular monthly updates on what’s happening, please subscribe to the newsletter via this page on the website:
Dear Crossbones supporters
Happy New Year! I hope you had an enjoyable Yuletide and are looking forward to the warmer days ahead. Already there are signs of spring as daffodils start pushing their way up through the soil.
The Lions part were hoping to be bringing Twelfth Night to Bankside on Sunday 9th January but owing to Covid, had to cancel. However, please visit their webpage, Facebook or follow this link to see Twelfth Night 2022 online.
The Lions part are also hoping to visit Bankside again in May this year, so watch this space!
Special thanks to Dan Taylor at Southwark Council’s Regeneration Team
Throughout the 18 years that Dan Taylor has been working in Southwark, he has been an excellent friend to BOST and the Crossbones project. He was instrumental in securing a monthly road closure for the Crossbones Vigil for Friends of Crossbones and has long been a champion of the Graveyard and all community spaces in SE1. He is moving with his family to the Lake District to work with the National Trust and we wish him all the best. We’ll miss you Dan – huge thanks for everything you’ve done and all the help and encouragement you’ve given over the years – please stay in touch!
Replicas of our Mizuko jizo statues need new home
We have been donated some replicas of our beautiful Mizuko jizu statues which need homes. We can’t install them at Crossbones as they are not weatherproof, but they’d be great indoors if you have room. They’re quite heavy and are made of plaster. If you’d like one, please get in contact.
Thanks again to our wonderful team of volunteer gardeners who take care of the Graveyard every Friday 12-2pm, lead by Barney. If you’d like to volunteer your time as a Crossbones warden or gardener, please get in contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
We have been busy planting bulbs, kindly donated by the Metropolitan Parks and Gardens Association. There are still lots to plant and we’ll be there tomorrow (Friday 14th) if you’d like to stop by and plant a few with us, and get a taste of volunteering with us.
Crossbones Opening hours
We are now back to our ‘normal’ opening hours of Wed, Thurs, Fri 12-2pm and some weekends when our fantastic volunteer wardens are available. If you’d like to become a warden, and help us extend our opening hours, please let me know.
Many thanks to the wardens who kindly donated their time to ensure that the garden was able to be opened over the Christmas period for quiet reflection.
Crossbones Vision detailed design and construction workshops
I know there are many new subscribers since the last bulletin, so I’ll bring you up to speed on these workshops! We’ve hosted the first three of a series of workshops, in collaboration with U+I (the developer responsible for the Liberty of Southwark development next to Crossbones and who will one day be our new landlord) which will explore how we create our Vision for Crossbones, and help to ensure that contractors working on site do so with sensitivity.
Our first workshop (Friday 12th November) was held at the Liberty of Southwark site which is next to Crossbones. MOLA Archaeologist Antonietta gave us a talk about the fascinating discoveries made on the site. You can follow the dig here.
The second workshop (Saturday 27th November) looked at the proposed construction of the boundaries on site. Sculptor Adrian joined us and shared his experience of metalworking and we looked at ways of involving the community in both the design of the boundaries and possibly even contribute to the features on the boundaries through community workshops. You can read the notes from the workshop here.
Note that the ribboned railings/’gates’ did not form part of the Boundaries workshop and will not be forming part of the Crossbones enhancements. TfL states:
“TfL have reviewed the ribboned gates and advised that there are no urgent works to be undertaken.”
The third workshop (Saturday 4th December) looked at the proposed structures on site: new ramps, a new goosewing shelter to mirror the existing one, as well as new shelters. You can read the notes here.
Volunteer warden Simon gave a talk on the history of ramps and shared his thought-provoking poem Wheel, which details his experience of the city as a wheelchair user.
Joel from YesMake was on hand to answer questions and listen to ideas about what the new ramps and shelters should be like.
The next workshop will look at Surfacing and will be held TOMORROW Friday 14th January, 10am – 1130am. Please email me if you’d like to attend…bear in mind that spaces are limited and I will be reserving spaces first for our regular Crossbones volunteers. If you are not able to join us, please let me know if there is anything you’d like asked on your behalf. I’ll continue to share notes from the workshops via the bulletin.
The last few workshops, looking at water and electricity, planting and a summary of our discussions, will take place later in January or February/March – look out for the Crossbones bulletin for more details.
Don’t forget that the Crossbones Vigil, held by Friends of Crossbones is on 23rd of every month at 7pm outside the gates on Redcross Way. For more information see: www.crossbones.org.uk/events
Got an idea?
As always, the best way to ‘weave Crossbones into the fabric of SE1’ is to get people involved on site. If you have an idea for an event, installation, tour, or other activity / initiative, I’d be delighted if you would get in contact with me via email, phone, WhatsApp, Signal etc. I’m also aiming to be on site most Fridays 12pm-2pm (my last day before Christmas is tomorrow, 10th December, then I’m back on 7th January) when the gardening team is there, so let me know if you have a positive way of spreading the Crossbones story, and you’d like to speak to me in person: email@example.com
Liberty of Southwark development
For those of you receiving this bulletin for the first time, the Liberty of Southwark development is the one adjacent to Crossbones and an exciting archaeological dig is currently being undertaken. You can also view the blog here and contact with the developer directly for information about the works on the site: firstname.lastname@example.org