Launch Email 4

5 essentials + 11 more Camden links you'll ❤

The email which stimulates you with ideas, events, culture and good reads, bubbling up from London's most creative and innovative neighbourhoods.

> Friday 7 August 2020

This is an unusual summer in the city, yet it's still choc-full of interesting and safe things to do, if you know where to look. Thankfully, we've listed loads of them here, from the big reads to the most skimmable golden nuggets of local knowledge. Give it 30-seconds or indulge for 3-hours, there are rewards below, waiting to be discovered...

 1. We're Looking for Team Members 

If you are (or know someone who might be) looking for a new challenge, is passionate about Camden and excited by the opportunity of playing a part in a brand new locally-focused media company, we’d love to hear from you. We’re building a team and want to hear from enthusiasts, from experienced sales/marketing execs, to talented multi-media journalists, and people just-out-of-school and keen to find a place where their skills can grow and flourish.

   2. Dive in to Camden Town's History  

One to bookmark right here, if you fancy getting thoroughly lost in the fascinating history at the heart of London's best borough, perhaps while sat in a deckchair over the weekend. Camden Town Local History is a website that grew from the Masters degree dissertation of author Mark McCarthy. Across various articles, he charts the area's beginnings as a 'Georgian suburb' through the canal and railway years and onward via assorted conservation efforts and demolitions, up to today. Great for history buffs and anyone who wants to discover loads of facts and surprises about where they live. 

   3. Local Acts of Kindness  

Camden's trailblazing weekly organic vegetable and fruit service, Kentish Town Veg Box, have been telling us about their experiences during lockdown. Self-isolation and supermarket shortages lead to a whopping 68% increase in memberships back in the spring, which while being welcome, was also a huge struggle to accomodate. In this heartwarming article, they remember just a few of the stories of community spirit and human kindness to emerge from the crisis, and the bright message this reveals about shopping - and sourcing produce - as locally and communally as possible in future.

   4. Cocoon Down in Piccadilly  

If four months cooped-up with kids / parents / flatmates has you yearning for some tranquility, but masked air travel or packed UK beaches don't exactly feel relaxing, there's an intriguing alternative in the shape the of sound-proofed, windowless 'cocoons' for £99 a night at the brand new

Zedwell Hotel

. Their big launch suffered a delay due to COVID, but the screen-based check-in and minimalist wellness vibes now seem perfectly suited to an alternative pandemic recovery staycation.


 5. Back to The City 

Just down the road but seemingly a world away, The City of London remains uncustomary quiet at the moment, so arts champs Culture Mile and their partners The Barbican, LSO and the Museum of London, have put together this guide, featuring walking trails, family activities and the latest news on attractions that have safely reopened to visitors again. If the weather is nice, why not make a real urban adventure of it and walk all the way there and back, too? 

  • New cocktail hangout Crossroads Bar launched this week in the former public toilets beside Camden Road Overground Station. Look out for foraged ingredients, seasonal drinks and home-made pickles from the husband-and-wife bar team.

  • The Brunswick Centre's cinema screens at Curzon Bloomsbury have just reopened, starting with a series of recent unmissable indie and arthouse films you probably missed due to COVID.

  • Seeing as everyone's being encouraged to get on their proverbial bikes, TFL have created an online cycle skills course, equally suited to those brushing up on their two-wheeled knowledge as it is for total newbies. Upon completion, you'll be rewarded with a 24-hour access code for Santander Cycles hire scheme, which sounds like a great summer offer.

  • 73-year-old veteran music promoter Vince Power has been telling the Evening Standard why he bought the famous Camden Lock venue Dingwalls during a pandemic. He's also just announced two socially distanced gigs by Van Morrison coming to The Electric Ballroom next month.

  • Portraits of NHS staff from UCLH that were drawn via Zoom during the lockdown have been revealed by Camden New Journal. The hospital's artist-in-residence, Simon Tolhurst, usually works with cancer patients, but switched to depicting frontline workers during an unprecedented time.

  • Although the annual Camden Inspire Awards won't take place as usual in 2020 (for all-too obvious reasons), the team behind them have instead launched a free pack of resources to help local shops, pubs, restaurants and market stalls recover after the forced shutdown. Look out  for #CamdenUnlock messages and remember how important it is to shop local and support all Camden's beloved small independent traders in a time of real need.

  • Are you still furloughed from work, or stuck at home due to ruined summer plans? This could be the moment to venture out on the wild side, as ZSL London Zoo is appealing for volunteer heroes to help out with their recovery plans in Regent's Park, and out at Whipsnade too. 

  • The future of our high streets is in sharp focus, with the effects of coronavirus impacting how we shop and live locally forever. Camden Council is keen for residents and businesses to get involved in shaping new policies via the Future High Streets project. It's running on the Commonplace platform, where you add comments and suggestions, and keep up to date with the latest plans and ideas.

  • From fashion design to football skills, Camden Summer University is a brilliant, very broad range of 100% free courses aimed at the borough's school kids, which kicked-off last week. Some are online and others IRL, but all are COVID-safe and should be popular after the long months of homeschooling. 

  • Mandy Yin, chef and owner of Holloway Road's Sambal Shiok Laksa Bar and new opening Nasi Economy Rice, has been writing in The Guardian about the huge challenges of recent months. It's another urgent reminder that we should choose independent operators over fast food brands when possible, if we want to see them - and our bright, innovative food scene - survive.

  • A pop-up museum featuring recollections from the hidden and eye-opening history of Somers Town can be found today and every Friday (plus assorted other days too) throughout August, pitched on Euston's Chalton Street Market.

Know a local business-owner?

Camdenist is here to support them with free media coverage (and maybe a £100 meal out, too). They just need to fill in a 3-min form about what help is needed, and we'll be in touch.

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