Alexandra & Ainsworth Estate

Tenants and Residents Association

News & Events

Come to the Alexandra Road Park re-opening event!!

Event Poster take 2 FINAL

You are invited to celebrate the completion of the fantastic restoration of Alexandra Road Park, located in the heart of the Alexandra and Ainsworth Estate.

Thursday 3rd September, 4-7pm, in the ‘Bowl’.

There will be great music, entertainment and live performances from the ARC youth club.

There will be light refreshments but please do bring a picnic with you.

Everyone is welcome!

NEW – South Hampstead Ballet Club

Try your first class Free!
Classes for children and for adultsballet class on Rowley Way NW8

Starting on Wednesday 22nd October 2014 in the Tenants Hall, Rowley Way Wednesday afternoons

3.30pm – 4.30pm Children’s Ballet Class
(Parent or guardian must be present)

4.30pm – 5.30pm Adult Beginner Class

£3.50 per class

Contact: 07866 246 859 if you have any questions


Enrolment week 8-12 September 2014

Choose among the new free courses on offer at the SHELL Centre: “English for Speakers of Other Languages’, ‘Photoshop for Beginners’, ‘Preparation for employment’ and many more….

Enrolment week will take place from 8th-12th September 2014 at the Shell 1 & 2 centres

Good News for Rowley Way Honey Bees!

  aa_honeyjarsAfter finding that our 3 hives had died over the winter we now have two new colonies which we’ve had for a couple of months now. Hive N. 1 was a bit of a worry as we were pretty sure we lost the queen, this happens however a new queen was born and is now viable and we noticed last week that there is new broad which is all a very good sign. We expect to see this hive improve over the coming weeks. Hive 2 however is a completely different story and doing so well it is amazing.  Last week The ‘Super’ which is the box where the honey is made was so heavy that one person alone could not lift it! We quickly knocked up some more frames and have put a second super on. This all means we will have some honey this year, not as much as last year but you never know – anything can happen with bees! Just hope the weather stays good and the bees can get out to forage.

beesWe look at the bees every Thursday evening at 7.30pm on the roof of the tenants hall and if you ever want to come up and have a look you are more than welcome to do so.
Sara, Ron, Kate and Ben



Our Park Restoration Project – Works have officially started!

janet-jack_28_whole-site-1983-2-1A group of residents got together a few years ago with the idea to re-vamp our lovely park. At last,works have  started on our long awaited Heritage Lottery Funded park restoration! Completion planned to be around February 2015!

During this time, the whole park (apart from the sports pitch) will be closed – that way the works will be able to happen quicker.

In a nutshell the park restoration project will result in:

new purpose made playgrounds to replace the original ones (which have all been removed). There will be 4 new playgrounds in the sunken walled spaces: one for young children, one for older kids, a playground with all different types of swings – as well as a space for ball games. Lots of the children living on the estate have helped us with the design of these, and we are really excited about them!

restoring all the paths which have become bumpy and uneven over the years so they are suitable for all – including for pushchairs and wheelchairs – so everyone can get to more of the park. This includes creating a few new or improved paths as well.

revitalising the planting with new plants, shrubs and trees as well as managing better the original planting. This will reinstate the original planting scheme with a few additions to bring it up to date with the latest plant types – the original park designer Janet Jack has been helping us with all the details of these proposals. There will be much more year-round colour and less bare soil, and we’ve also been thinking about how to incorporate planting which is good for our wildlife.

For more information visit

attachment-1There are already massive improvements to the way the park is being run and looked after. The park has a Head Gardener called Ian Judd who has been working on the estate for a few months already. Ian and his team will play a big role in looking after the park once it’s been finished.

We have also just helped Camden to appoint an activities coordinator for the park who will be organising all sorts of activities in the park over the coming years for residents and the local community.  Find out more at

Follow the Friends of Alexandra Road Park on Twitter here..

twitter link for the friends of alexandra road park

September 2014


 Our Annual Dawn Chorus Walk

dawn chorus walk

On Sunday 27th April 20 intrepid residents got up at dawn to take part in our third annual Dawn Chorus Walk led by Andrew Peel of the Marylebone Bird Society.

This is a magical walk and to really appreciate the gave the opportunity for locals to appreciate the beauty and variety of birds that live in our park. After the walk they all went along to the Tenants Hall for a well earned coffee and breakfast. If you did not make it, see you next year!

May 2014

South Hampstead Judo and Jiu Jitsu Club

Members of the TRA have successfully applied for funding from Sportivate to expand this wonderful club to older children and also adults. The funding will both subsidise costs and ensure we can build a really successful neighbourhood club. Watch this space for more information soon.

We have a wonderful new community club based in London, UK, open to children aged 5-12, teaching Judo and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

Classes take place every Friday at 4:30-5:15 (for children 5-7) and 5:15-6:15 (for children 8-12). These classes take place in the fantastic space of the Tenants Hall on the Alexandra and Ainsworth Estate, a big, light and airy space, wonderful for training in.

Classes run on a ‘pay-as-you-play basis’, and only cost £3/class. Also, your first class is free – and if you bring a friend to your second class, your second class is also free!

You are most welcome to just turn up and watch (or, even better, join) a class whenever you want, though to avoid disappointments we recommend you first drop us an email to, or text our instructor, Glenn, at 07738 226853.

For more info you can visit our new website

April 2014


High Speed 2

A few weeks ago, a group from the TRA joined forces with representatives from some neighbouring blocks and made a formal petition to Camden about our concerns with the HS2 proposals and the impact they will have on the area.

Our biggest concerns are:
• The construction of a large vent shaft on the corner of Loudoun Road and Langtry Walk, which will replace the building with the laundrette, dry cleaners etc and lots of flats with a completely blank building. The ugly design will be out of keeping with the listed estate, cause lots of disruption while it’s being built, and takes away important facilities for residents.
• The risks of the tunnelling underneath the listed estate which could potentially cause subsidence and problems with the buildings because of their unusual foundations and construction techniques. We have asked Camden to commission independent engineers to fully assess the risks.

The good news is that Camden listened to our petition and now have included these specific issues in their objections on the project. We also sent a formal objection from the TRA directly to HS2 covering the same points. Next, the proposals go before parliament so the TRA may do another petition to parliament.

April 2014

SHEF CO-OP – Three years old!!

Our very own Estate Food Co-op sells organic fruit and vegetables right here on the estate. Anyone in the area is welcome so come and see us.

alexandra and ainsworth food co-op

Every Saturday morning from 10am to 12pm in the Tenants Hall.

The coop is run by volunteer residents and other people living in the area. It’s non-profit and great value, and a very sociable place. So far over 100 people have come along to buy fruit and veg. Just pop along to the Tenants Hall any Saturday between 10am and 12pm. You can also have a cup of tea and a chat, do a book swap, or pick up some free childrens books and even play a little table tennis. All welcome.

This is your Food Coop!

Volunteers wanted!

The coop runs entirely through the work of a team of volunteers. We do everything from ordering the fruit and veg, setting up on the day, or coming along to help out – this may involve doing some sweeping, putting boxes away, serving people, making tea etc. We have a dedcated team of people both living on the estate but also from the area generally – some from West Hampstead, others Swiss Cottage. Soem bring their kids along and we have lots of art supplies and toys (as well as brooms and mops) to keep everyone busy. Some people come every week, others once a month, whatever people can fit into their busy lives. We always need and welcome more volunteers so if you’d like to come and give it a go please contact us on the email address below.

New SHEF Website

WE now have a new website built and maintained by members. This has more info on the coop plus will have recipes, details on how to order and much more. Please come visit us now at

To find out more you can email us on

Follow us on twitter…. follow shef co-op on twitter

May 2014

A Wonderful Dance and Film Project on the Alexandra and Ainsworth Estate

Dance on Rowley wayfilming on Rowley Way, Alexandra and Ainsworth EstateAdult dance workshop on Rowley Way, Alexandra and Ainsworth Estate

Children dance on Rowley Way, alexandra and ainsworth estate

In the autumn half term residents might have been puzzled to see some odd looking creatures stalking the Red Brick Road on Rowley Way, or dancing among the trees in the park on the estate. Infact, these were children living here who were participating in a film and dance project. Visual artist Jana Koelmel and dancer Lauren Bridle ran a wonderful project with children and adults using film and dance to explore people lives. The groups made two films, one by children and one by adults. These were devised, choreographed and shot entirely by residents with the expert support of Jana and Lauren. You can find out more about the project and see more photos byvisiting the blog about the project.

This was a fantastic project for people living here and the two films were launched at a packed Tenants Hall On November 3rd, 2013. The films have a wonderful energy and are brimming with ideas and really brought the people together. The film made by the children is available to watch below, look out for the film made by the grown-ups very soon.

You can find out more about the project on the Royal College of Art website here.

Thanks very much to Jana and Lauren for all of their work.

and now you can watch the two films…….

November 2013

Remembering John Rolfe

John Rolfe

This message is for those residents who knew John Rolfe, former Hampstead District Management Committee Chair, who sadly died in September. For many years John was a respected and active member of the community, inspiring conversations at local and borough-wide forums on issues concerning Camden Tenants and Leaseholders.

We have just been informed by the family of John Rolfe that a Memorial Service will be held at the Swiss Cottage Community Association on 7th December at 11am. Access to the venue will be available from 10am where refreshments will be available. A lunch buffet will be served at 1pm. The family has asked that we pass this onto anyone who may wish to attend.

November 2013

Article on the importance of our Estate in The Guardian newspaper

There’s an interesting article in today’s Guardian written by Owen Hatherway on the importance of our estate and others like it built by Camden in the 1970s as part of a “spacial redistribution of wealth”. In particular how Sydney Cook and a team of architects working for Camden at the time were committed to building high quality council housing. As Hathaway says “Under the borough architect Sydney Cook, Camden in particular built possibly the finest working-class housing ever provided in British history – estates such as Highgate New Town, Alexandra Road and Branch Hill, all of them low-rise, sharply (but not bleakly) modernist, based around pedestrian streets, and finished to an exceptionally high standard”. As residents we are glad and proud that our estate is getting full recognition, not only for the excellent design, but also for the democratic ideas that lay behind it. Let’s hope that councils can one day once again start building places like it in the centre of our cities.

Read the full article here.

October 2013




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s