by Natalie Bennett
There was much excitement in a packed Kentish Town Community Centre on Saturday when the completed building project was officially opened.
The line-up of buggies outside looked like it was competing for a Guiness World Record, and inside many of their usual occupants were hard at play in the walled garden as their parents listened to the speeches inside the spacious, airy main hall.
Tribute were paid particularly to the staff who had stayed through the temporary move to Greenwood Place and back, and Cathy Crawford, the Chair of Centre, pointed out particularly to the politicians present (including Camden’s mayor, Abdul Quadir, whose chain proved a great attraction with the younger set, and local MP Frank Dobson) how the centre had listened to its users in designing its new shape, and how successful that listening had been in its growth in recent years.
Upstairs was a fine selection of artwork, including Kim Cunningham’s Portrait of a (London) village, a telling series of portraits of local people, and Jason Shenai’s hyper-real photos of local shops.
Pleasingly, the centre is committed to using china plates and proper cutlery, not disposables, and to that end has acquired two dishwashers, one from that excellent recycling source eBay, so that they can manage the flow. They were doing an admirable job keeping up with demand on Saturday – as a fine selection of finger food was whoofed down at great speed.
Anyone looking to get involved might want to look to the gardening club, meeting on the 1st Saturday of the month from 10-12. A fine board display discussed possibilities – from a haybale permaculture version to raised beds for wheelchair gardeners.