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Horniman Museum and Gardens
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Cellar Door

Posts: 356
Joined: Oct 2007
Post: #261
14-09-2009 03:00 PM

Judging by bigbadwolf's comments over on the Sydenham forum, I suspect they are one of the users on SE23 that have their postings pre-moderated by admin.

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Posts: 1,796
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #262
14-09-2009 06:54 PM

I don't see why people should refrain from airing their views just for the potential approval of some on other forums. Its not the responsibility of posters to be place marketeers for Forest Hill.
I hope BBW is happy with se26 forum and the ED Forum. The latter I believe was recently the centre of considerable police attention and TV and press coverage following murder threats on the site hence its little wonder that moderators of such sites want to pre empt and prevent the same, and hence become even more stringent about content.

The number of people who participated in the online poll let alone vote for retention of the JCO is probably nowhere near the number of people who made formal complaints about problems caused. Not everyone would have participated in the poll. I do think people want to see events continued on this site, but as long as they are within the scale of the site which at the moment is licenced for up to 5000 only, for health safety, fire safety, and a range of other reasons to do with traffic and general congestion.

I have also had correspondence on this matter with Ms Vitmayer but understand from elsewhere that the Horniman have no desire to seek an increase their entertainment licence which would increase the numbers permitted beyond 5000, nor if they do would they be likely to obtain Council and police support, nor the extensive public support which they would need.

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Posts: 379
Joined: Feb 2008
Post: #263
15-09-2009 09:13 AM

According to the brochure for the 2008 cookout, attendance was 5000 in 2006, and 10,000 in 2007. Has this event therefore been in breach of the entertainment licence ever since it started, or the organisers (Fairweather Productions) exaggerating?

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Posts: 49
Joined: May 2005
Post: #264
15-09-2009 11:02 AM

Having lived in SE23 for over a decade, I have a deep affection for Fred Horniman's legacy - our free Museum, its surrounding 16 acres, plus his endowed funding. The current Trustees and Management team at the Horniman have also achieved much - masterminding & delivering the modern extension, future plans for the Gardens well advanced with the funding secured. If Fred lived today, he would also have planned how to get his increasing numbers of visitors to & from his premises. He knew his local area. He would not have caused problems to his neighbours. This is the one area in which the current Trustees & Director of the Horniman fail - and fail very badly. They need to get their act together. There is plenty of free expert advice & funding readily available. When are they going to start using these resources?

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Posts: 141
Joined: Nov 2007
Post: #265
15-09-2009 11:38 AM

totally agree scipio - and Roz, you absolutely hit the nail on the head with your post regarding the options open as the situation stands at the present time (in fact, thank you so much for all your posts here....reasoned, insightful, accurate and not tainted by knee-jerk accusations, hidden agendas or emotion. There are serious organisational issues that cannot be ignored with regard to this event: simple as that).
Foresters, the Museum Trustees report for 2007 (with regard to 2006 event) states that 'more than 5,000' people attended - and those of us living very close to the museum suffered severe inconvenience then - 2008 report states 'almost 10,000' people attending in 2007 - again, severe disruption and unnecessary aggravation for residents on neighbouring roads due to poor organisation. As for this year, after previous repeated attempts to engage the museum and council in dialogue to minimise disruption (lots of residents in the immediate area wanted to support this event, not ban it as some have suggested), we had a repeat performance, but much, much worse.
I am aware that a figure of (estimated) 8,000 attendees was given to authorities by the museum prior to this years event - whether they knew that alcohol was going to be sold, i don't know, but like everything else to do with the organisation of this event, they've had 4 attempts so far to find out, and that should tell you something......
Maybe the current administration could learn something from Fred, eh?

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Posts: 505
Joined: Nov 2007
Post: #266
15-09-2009 11:52 AM

Wow - looking at the brochure, they sure do have big plans, perhaps it should be held in Hyde Park!

After receiving a huge
demand to go national in 2009
we are expecting to expand
the jerk cookout, which will
take place in Manchester,
Birmingham and London. The
winner of the 2009 Jerk cookout
will be flown to Portland,
Jamaica to participate in the
biggest Jerk Festival in the

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Posts: 141
Joined: Nov 2007
Post: #267
15-09-2009 01:07 PM

Hmmm, think you'll find that the Royal Parks are a little more stringent about requirements for large events held in their grounds!
see below (from their events guidelines doc):

"6. Local consultation and liaison with other public authorities

The Royal Parks consults with people and businesses affected by events in our parks. We will coordinate local consultations about your event and will ask for your support in this process.

We will also assist you in working with other public organisations that will have an involvement in your event, such as the Police, Fire Brigade, Ambulance Service, local authority and transport providers. We hold regular Licensing & Safety Advisory Group (LSAG) meetings with these other authorities, which you may need to attend."

Not to mention Royal Parks requirement for organisers to have: event production manager, stewarding and security firms, health and safety consultant, site manager and event suppliers (staging, lighting, toilets....lets not even go there in terms of what happened inside AND outside the Horniman grounds this year due to lack of loos - disgusting)

Something else the museum management could learn from......

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Posts: 1,796
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #268
15-09-2009 04:32 PM

Just for the record, I did not feel particularly good about complaining about the Horniman as I am a frequent visitor and benefit greatly from it however felt that this was a step too far. Also they were probably taken aback re the attendance this year however the question does remain that if their limit was 5000 then why did they openly estimate 8000; surely they would have known that this was an automatic breach. Some records estimate a turnout of 20000 this year although not everyone was there at the same time. It certainly felt like it. They have apologised to local people so as far as I am concerned that is fine as long as future events fall within already sanctioned and approved limits.

I know the Horniman have plans for the future but hope that they decide against becoming a theme park. I hope the Jerk Cook Out events continue in appropriate sites and it certainly seems as if they will do having gained a spectacular momentum all of their own.

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Posts: 47
Joined: Apr 2008
Post: #269
18-09-2009 05:48 PM

5000 at any one time Ros, 8000 could have come and gone over the course of the day.

This is so depressing.

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Contrary Mary

Posts: 124
Joined: Oct 2008
Post: #270
19-09-2009 03:30 PM

Red67 mentions the "Royal Parks requirement for organisers to have: event production manager, stewarding and security firms, health and safety consultant, site manager and event suppliers .....

Something else the museum management could learn from......"

This is a good point. Horniman/Fairweather Productions learning from the experience of others is also roughly what I have previously been suggesting. Only to have the idea of such measures slapped down as "wonderful but impractical" "tinkering around the edges".

But I really do wonder: If Horniman/Fairweather Productions come up with proposals showing that they have untaken to learn those lessons, will the "Antis" in this debate be prepared to give them a chance?

Or will they just pick them to pieces before anyone gets the chance to see how much difference those plans would actually make?

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Posts: 505
Joined: Nov 2007
Post: #271
22-09-2009 03:30 PM

When did that horrible plastic Lottery Fund advert go up outside our Museum? It's gastly! I know we have gratefully accepted funding from the Lottery, but do we have to have Camerlot's plastic two finger emblem on our park wall?

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Posts: 50
Joined: Nov 2007
Post: #272
25-09-2009 11:23 AM

Moving away from the Jerk Festival controversy for a moment...for those of you who are interested, the planning application for changes to the museum and gardens is now available on the Lewisham planning website:

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Posts: 93
Joined: Aug 2007
Post: #273
08-10-2009 02:29 PM

Staying away from the Jerk Festival, the Horniman Museum is no. 25 on the top 1001 things to do in London before you leave, courtesy of [url=]Time Out[/url]

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Posts: 3,244
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #274
08-10-2009 02:41 PM

Time Out wrote:
Sneak down to Forest Hill for what might be (whisper it) London?s best museum ? the Horniman

I keep saying it; the Horniman is not a good 'local' museum, it is a world class museum that rivals many national museums.
Even better - you can get round it in an afternoon and still have time for a cup of tea in the park!

Seriously, other than museums in Kensington and the British Museum, are there any in Britain that are better than the Horniman as they would be well worth a visit?

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Posts: 285
Joined: Feb 2006
Post: #275
08-10-2009 03:13 PM

Much as I love the Horniman, my favourite museum in Britain is the National Museum of Scotland in Chamber St, Edinburgh.

I have many fond memories of days there as a child. And the extension that opened a few years back showed that even display cases and spaces can be stunning in their own right. The Andy Goldsworthy walls and the fabulous 'people' sculptures that hold some early jewellery are amazing.

Large parts of it is closed at the moment since the older half is being refurbished but when it re-opens next year, it's well worth a trip to Edinburgh (particularly given how many other things Edinburgh as to do too!) Smile

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Posts: 505
Joined: Nov 2007
Post: #276
08-10-2009 03:14 PM

But michael, you are speaking to the converted on here!

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Posts: 3,244
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #277
08-10-2009 03:53 PM

National Museum of Scotland in Chamber Street is actually the main museum that made me realise just how good Horniman is (admittedly before the extension opened and I hobbled round with a twisted ankle from walking up Arthur's Seat the previous evening at sunset).

Chambers Street reminded me strongly of the Horniman, or at least how the Horniman would have been in the 1950s. In most respects the exhibits in the Horniman outclassed those in the 'National Museum' of Scotland.

Perhaps I should reassess Chambers Street after 13 years. At least it is a good excuse for a visit to Edinburgh.

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Posts: 285
Joined: Feb 2006
Post: #278
08-10-2009 04:38 PM

They do have a similar 'feel' about them - probably why I'm such a fan of both Smile

But yes, the extension is rather good... I just hope that when it's refurbed, they've kept the whale skeleton which was always something to gawp at as a kid.

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Posts: 3,244
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #279
05-11-2009 01:46 PM

My understanding is that the Horniman has announced their decision that they are unable to host the Jerk Chicken in Horniman Gardens again due to the size of the event.

We should take some pride in the fact that a event that grew up in Forest Hill has now become too large for the area and I wish the organisers of the Jerk Chicken cookout the best of luck in finding a new venue - hopefully not too far away.

I hope that Horniman continue to host innovative events like this for local, and not-so-local people (subject to their legal limit of 5000 people, of course).

One thing I noticed that will be taking place in the Horniman in the next few weeks is a display of entries in the competition for public art on the wall of Sainsburys
From a leaflet I picked up at the last ward assembly I understand there will be a display at the Horniman from 13th November to 27th November (approximately - I don't have the leaflet to hand). A good reason to pop down to the Horniman in the next couple of weekends to see what is coming to Forest Hill.

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Posts: 3,244
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #280
11-12-2009 08:54 AM

The planning application for the gardens was approved last night by the planning committee.

This will allow the Horniman to continue in it's application for National Lottery Funding for improvements to the gardens.

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