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The faces of Cressingham Gardens: Part 1 Meet David

A series I am lucky enough to be working on alongside Keith Lewis, Features Editor of the Brixtonblog, to appear in the coming months in the Brixton Bugle and on the Brixtonblog.  

Excerpt from December’s issue of the Brixtonbugle: 


This is the first of a series in which our Features Editor, Keith Lewis, along with Photographer, Jeannine Mansell, meet some of the residents of Cressingham Gardens.


‘The Old Curiosity Shop. That’s what my sisters call it,’ says David from his easy chair. He’s surveying his own living room in his one bedroom council flat on Bodley Manor Walk. 

His sisters had all moved down to Devon years back so he was on his own up here.

‘They’re into this, what do you call it… minim… min..?’

‘Minimalism?’ I interject.

‘Yeh, that’s it,’ he says. ‘Minimalism.’

But in David’s flat you can barely see the wallpaper for paraphernalia. And a large veneer dresser covers half of the back wall. On top of it sits a replica of a dark green LNER steam engine. And a model Laurel and Hardy.

I ask David how long he’s been here.

“Let me see. Since nineteen-eighty,’ he says. ‘Before that I was in that old tenement building up by Lambeth North station, before it was pulled down. Of course, I’m from Lancashire originally.’

That seems to explain the steam engine.

‘Been married and what have you. Got divorced. Lancashire was too small for all that,’ he laughs.

I notice two model barges on top of a pine bookshelf.

‘I used to run the canals,’ he tells me, and invites me out into the hallway to investigate. There’s a tea towel hanging on the wall with a map of the UK’s canal network on it. His finger follows the Grand Union, which David recalls with enthusiastic energy.

As we sit back down I notice a telephone which has it’s own fabric cover in the form of Disney’s goofy.

I ask David why he didn’t follow his sisters.

‘Could have got a place down there I guess, if I’d registered myself disabled. But I didn’t want to do that’ he says. ‘Anyway, I’ve always liked it here. I’m lucky with my neighbours.’ 

cont… at:


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