That was January in Palmers Green – a round of news and events this month


The star of the month was without question Betty Wright, nee Walton, who got in touch to tell us that she had grown up on in the Town Hall with her family, and lived there until a few years after the war. If you haven’t read her two articles, they are a real treat and hugely recommended. Betty not only has a fascinating story and a great memory but a beautiful way with words – we hope we’ll hear more from her soon. Also this month, we related the extraordinary tale of how a childhood misdemeanour in his family’s Palmers Green garden led to the loss of a few of Dr Alex Comfort’s fingers.

Broomfield House and Park were constantly in our minds this month. Peter Brown of Broomfield Museum Trust gave a fascinating talk on the story of Broomfield House to a packed house at Trinity at Bowes, putting forward an interesting theory about the origin of the name Broomfield and another about where King James might have retired to read his new Bible!


Meanwhile we waited anxiously for the outcome of the Heritage Lottery Fund bid only to have our hopes dashed – no money forthcoming, which raises the question, what next for Broomfield House? Is it reasonable to go on hoping that it can be restored? And if not, what should be done? A letter over the weekend sounded more hopeful. HLF has told the council that they would be willing to meet to look at future options and next steps.

If you haven’t been to the Enfield Life exhibition at the Dugdale Centre, it’s worth a look, with some fascinating photos of the area and unfamiliar views of Palmers Green, as well a rare Constable pencil drawing. And perhaps also in memory of the man who did so much for the history of Enfield, Graham Dalling, who died aged just 63 on Christmas Eve.

Palmers Green is growing richer in the arts month by month. The Space Art Gallery in Southgate launched its second exhibition this month featuring Maciej Hoffman and a local group of artists. Open Studios announced the 29 artist who will be taking part in their 8-9 June event.

Meanwhile there was dancing in the aisles at the Talkies Cinema showing of Strictly Ballroom this month. The next show is Dan Ackroyd and John Belushi in The Blues Brothers, also at the Fox on 20 February. Talkies always try to offer something novel in addition to the film, and this time its music from the Vintage Blues Club …..Meanwhile the Around the Corner Cinema, initially set up as part of the N21 Festival, will be hosting two film nights in February with money raised going to the Samaritans: Some Like it Hot on 9 February and  F W Murnau’s 1929 film Sunrise, a song of two humans on 13 February. More information at

The Intimate Theatre will be playing host to Finchley and Friern Barnet Operatic Society’s production of Anything Goes at the beginning of March, and the St Monica’s players have put out a call for new aspiring actors who would like to try out for their production of the Madness musical Our House. Auditions will be on 10 and 11 February at Cannon House. For more information visit

A little way down the road, the wonderful Big Green Bookshop has secured funding for a Wood Green Literary Festival.  The team at the bookshop must be some of the hardest working, most community minded people for miles around. If you are always moaning about Amazon’s increasing market dominance and the loss of small shops, why not get your books from there? They do mail order so there’s really no excuse. And Tracey Thorn is giving a reading from her new book, Bedsit Disco Queen in March, pop fans!

Sadly, our suggestion that you might like to tell us what birds are lunching in your garden met with no response. Perhaps you were all out with your binoculars, trying to catch a gimpse of the peregrine falcon at Alexendra Palace?

Image (C) Sue Beard

Finally, local residents were rocked by news that Myddleton Road has sprung to life and begun tweating about the indignities of the way it is treated… Leakbusters made a bid for creating the brightest object in Palmers Green … and a shop in Southgate chose an odd way to describe its goods.

Thanking you kindly for your attention


Palmers Green Jewel in the North


Looking ahead

1 March Andrew Maxwell at the Electirc Mouse Comedy Club at the Fox

6 March Tracey Thorn in conversation with Pete Paphides at the Big Green Bookshop. Wow. Just wow.

5-9 March 2013 Anything Goes at the Intimate Theatre, presented by Finchley and Friern Barnet Operatic Society

12 March History and Mystery of Oaklands Road: Geoff Jacobs talks about his voyage of discovery researching this history of his road at the Friends Meeting House Winchmore Hill (Southgate District Civic Trust History Group)

18-19 May Grovelands Park Centenary Celebrations

8-9 June 2013 Open Studios and Art Trail weekend, Southgate and Palmers Green


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