Old News around HUG (check to the left menu for new)


HUG AGM - Wednesday, 28th November

Good meeting with new directors appointed and officers re-elected.  2013 looks like it is going to be an interesting year - get involved as much or as little as you like.  This is a community within a community. We look forward to seeing you soon.

Saturday, 8th September

Fantastic afternoon activities for children at Ham Library. Celebrating it's 60th anniversary. Bulb planting and fancy dress with prizes.  Starting at 3pm in the garden.

Saturday, 2nd June

Ham & Petersham Tea Party celebration the Diamond Jubilee. See the events page for details.

Saturday, 26th May

Today the Bird & Butterfly Garden and the Community allotment received a visit from a Green Flag Community Award judge.  This award recognised high quality green spaces looked after by voluntary group. We really enjoyed meeting our judge Moira who gave us some useful tips. More importantly, talking about what HUG has done in the community made us realise how much we have achieved. Thank you to you all and we look forward to a summer full of fun. See their website for more information.  http://greenflag.keepbritaintidy.org/about-us/

Celebration for LCZ Street Champions

Tuesday, 27th March 2012

Street Champions will be meeting to celebrate the end of the Low Carbon Zone project that has taken place in Ham & Petersham over the past 2 years.  This has been a true community project and if one thing has come out of it, it has been how engaged residents are in caring about Ham & Petersham.  Look out for our activites that will form Part II.  Thank you to all those involved in the Ham & Petersham Low Carbon Zone.  It is these small steps that help us care for where we live.

Carol singing at Ham Library

Saturday 10th December 4-5pm in the Library garden, if the case of bad weather we will raise the library roof with your voices. 

FREE Bike Workshop

Now operating at Ham Youth Centre, Ham Close - every 2nd Saturday.10-12am. Come and learn how to take care of your bike with Jonathan Rowley.

Eggs for sale

Freshly laid eggs from the Grey Court Community Chickens are available for purchase every Saturday morning from the Community Allotment between 10h30 & 12h00.  Entrance is through the gate between the zebra crossing & Tolemarche Alms Houses.  Or order from the Jenny at Images hair salon (opposite Grey Court School) every Tuesday & Wednesday.  £1.50 per 1/2 dozen.


Eel Monitoring at Teddington Lock

HUG has joined forces with the Zoological Society of London's Thames survey to monitor eel movements at Teddington Lock. This work is a vital part of their conservation work in Britain and accross the world. 

The Thames is often thought of as dirty, polluted and barren but this couldn’t be further from the truth as it plays host to 125 species of fish, is an
internationally important migratory route for birds and is internationally
recognised as one of the cleanest metropolitan highways in the world.

ZSL works with local communities to help preserve and promote sustainability. If you are inerested in getting involved then please email us. You get to 'don' a very fashionable, latest model life jacket - we are looking for models!


Allotment News 

It's time to start 'waking up' the allotment after its winter sleep. Of course, it is too early to be planting seeds but there is much we can do now. Work has already started clearing and preparing beds, and Mary Pitteway will be glad to hear from anyone who would like to be involved in working on the Allotment during the busy time ahead. 

We are changing the dates of the Saturday working sessions. First Saturdays and 3rd Saturdays clashed with many people's other commitments. So we are moving the sessions to 10:00 on the 2nd & 4th Saturdays of each month.

For April, that will be April 9th & 23rd.

All newcomers are very welcome, so if you have a few hours to spare, please contact Mary at: allotment@hamunitedgroup.org.uk


 Press Release  25/11/10 

Congratulations to Grey Court School.  Last night they won their funding for Grey Court Community Chickens on The People's Millions.  Grey Court and School Food Matters send a great big thank you to everyone who picked up the phone and voted for the project and now the school can look forward to introducing the feathered friends in the new year.

ITV kept the school on tenterhooks, only announcing the winners live on ITV London Tonight. The students nearly lifted the roof off the school building when they saw reporter, Sally Rourke, arrive carrying a very large cheque.

This has been the most wonderful community effort.  Staff, students, families, local businesses, food campaigners, chefs, environmental groups and local charities have banded together to make the Grey Court Community Chicken project a reality.  Bring on the first dozen free range eggs!

Go to our Photo Album at: http://e-voice.org.uk/hamunitedgroup/photos/ to see images from this event.


Our First Barn Dance in Ham

On Saturday 20th November 2010, about 200 people of all ages came along to Ham Youth Club to enjoy a Barn Dance with live music from Chris Shaw and his EC1 band.

The event was great fun and we thank organisers Bettina and Peter Rixon and their team of helpers, Danielle, Georgina, Sue, Shirley, Jean, Janice and Briony for working in the kitchen, Andrew for being on the door and Ben for getting the Youth Club ready for the dance. Special thanks also to Kath and Ken for encouraging lots of families to join us.

Due to its success, HUG intends to make this an annual event. Yeeehaaa! 

To find out more about this event, please go to: http://www.hamunitedgroup.org.uk/calendar/view (Andres edit: changed link)   where HUG member, Briony Rowland, describes her first barn dance.

Then go to our Photo Album at:  http://e-voice.org.uk/hamunitedgroup/photos/ to see images of this event.


Street Champion Co-ordinator, Chas Warlow, organised a HUG Event designed to help residents learn more about how to save both energy and money. 

               Take the 20% pledge... Cut your energy consumption by 20%!

According to the Energy Saving Trust, people who monitor their energy use typically see reductions of 5-10% per year (£40-80), just by being more aware of when things are on, and how much each appliance uses. In a typical home, turning your appliances off rather than using standby can save up to 8% (£64) off your annual electricity bill, so it’s not that hard! HUG is running the Street Champions project to help and encourage our community to become more energy-efficient – and on Saturday 27th November 2010, Chas hosted ‘Cut your energy bills by up to half’ at Ham Youth Centre, from 3pm to 6.30pm. The event included: Free draughtproofing workshops and materials, a presentation and home energy advice from a respected home energy advisor, and a presentation on how one local resident has cut his energy consumption massively in just one year. Plus a prize draw.


Tree Planting in Ham

HUG's Tree Planting Project is a great success! On Saturday 13th November, 2010, HUG members and volunteers got together to plant trees in three areas of Ham: in the grounds of St Richard's School, Rednap House and Ham Close. 

The Project was conceived and carried out by HUG and Richmond Housing Partnership (RHP) with support from the Low Carbon Zone (LCZ), which provided welcome refreshments.

A community tree planting pack of 105 fruit trees was purchased from the Woodland Trust and these will, in years to come, provide residents with fruit to make jams, jellies, chutneys and cordials.

Our thanks to those HUG members and volunteers who have put in so much work to make Ham a more beautiful and sustainable place to live.

To see photos of the tree planting, please click on:  http://e-voice.org.uk/hamunitedgroup/photos/

For more information about the work of the Woodland Trust please go to:



Garage Sale and Guerilla Gardening - a special HUG event to celebrate 10.10.2010

Both the Garage Sale and Guerilla Gardening events were well attended and much enjoyed by all. Our thanks to everybody who participated and contributed to making this a very successful day.


          HUG Annual General Meeting 2010

The purpose of the meeting, on 24th September, was to review - and celebrate - HUG's accomplishments in the past year as well as forecast some future activities.

All four of HUG's original officers have stepped down this year and at our AGM we elected the following new officers:

Chair - Mark Brand

Vice-chair - Andrew Beedham

Secretary - Carol Hegedus

Treasurer - Jean Loveland

We thank our outgoing officers for their outstanding contribution during HUG's formative years, as we congratulate our new officers on their appointments and look forward to working with them on both existing and new projects.


Community Allotment at Grey Court School


It has taken a long time but the allotment is finally built! Of course, we have missed early planting this year but there is still plenty of time to plant crops that will be ready for harvest this year and next.

Our official Opening on Saturday 17th July went very well. Visitors saw that several of the raised beds are well-stocked with growing produce such as courgettes and french beans and volunteers could admire  the healthy plants which have developed from the seeds and seedlings they planted weeks ago.

The Allotment was opened formally by Zac Goldsmith who picked the first blueberry. Please go to our Photo Album to see photos of both the Opening Event and the gradual progress of the Allotment's development.

Following the Opening Event, vegetables were harvested for the first time and taken to Redknap House for residents to enjoy.

Our thanks to Mary Pitteway and all the other volunteers who have worked so hard over a long period of time to take forward this important community project. 

Every Wednesday, from 13:15-14:45 we have been holding ‘Weeding Wednesdays’. These events offer Grey Court students the opportunity to work in the allotment and learn about growing fruit and vegetables. Volunteers (at least one per day) are needed to supervise.

Weeding Wednesdays took a break over the Summer holiday but started again in September. For further details, or to volunteer as a supervisor, please contact:

Mary Pitteway: allotment@hamunitedgroup.org.uk

Volunteers are also needed on an ongoing basis to plant, weed, water and harvest. Knowledge and experience of growing fruit and vegetables is useful but NOT necessary. We are all learning together!  Please bring your gardening gloves if you have them. We have some but not enough. All other tools will be provided. We also need volunteers with ‘carpentry’ skills for building compost bins, installing tool racks in the shed etc.
To volunteer or request more information 
please contact:

Mary Pitteway: allotment@hamunitedgroup.org.uk


Ham Library Garden and HUG's Community Allotment

On Saturday 22nd May from 2.30pm, HUG organised a group weeding of Ham Library Garden. We made a good start but there is still work to be done and we need more help to clear thistles and other weeds, both in the Library Garden and at the Allotment. We welcome volunteers, so if you have some time to spare and would like to take part, please contact Jean Loveland by email: info@hamunitedgroup.org.uk  or Mary Pitteway at allotment@hamunitedgroup.org.uk


Old is New Fashion Show at Grey Court School

On Friday 7th May, students from years 7 - 11 at Grey Court School held a fashion show featuring their own designs. Go to our Community Events Page at: http://www.hamunitedgroup.org.uk/calendar/view to find out more about this innovative event.


HUG Stall at Ham House Community Day

This event, on Saturday 24th April, was very enjoyable. Alongside other local community groups, HUG members manned a stall giving information about their Low Carbon Zone and Ham Hydro Projects.


Bird, Bee and Butterfly Garden

Our wildflower planting at Ham Library on Saturday 10th April was a great fun. 200 wild meadow flower plugs, kindly donated by Ham Amenities Group, were planted by enthusiastic adults and children. Watch the Bird and Butterfly Garden to see them grow!


Fitpoint on Ham Green

Fitpoint has now been installed on Ham Green and the opening event on Saturday 27th March was a huge success. There was an excellent turnout of local residents and councillors. We were also fortunate to have a visiting celebrity, Hannah Beharry, who is Britain's number one female boxer in the 48kg category and twice European Union bronze medallist.

Several people signed up for taster sessions, which are free and will be run by a personal trainer at a variety of times to suit everybody. However, if you missed the opportunity to sign up and would like participate in a taster session, please contact Rachel Salter on 07825 972 485 or rachel.salter@hotmail.com.

Our thanks to Project Leader Nick Gale, and Yvonne Kheller of Richmond Council, for making this happen. More information can be seen on our Fitpoint Page.

A Screening of the Documentary CRUDE

On Thursday 25th March, HUG held a screening of the award winning environmental documentary CRUDE. This was organised and hosted by Chas Warlow, HUG member and Project Manager of Ham Hydro.

The film describes the disastrous environmental and human impact on the Ecuadorian Amazon following three decades of drilling for oil, firstly by Texaco and later Chevron, when the two companies merged in 2001.

This is a shocking and thought-provoking film, which follows the Ecuadorians' search for justice in a landmark class action lawsuit. For further information go to: http://www.chevrontoxico.com/about

Our thanks to Chas Warlow for making it possible for us to see this important documentary in Ham. We hope that HUG will soon be screening more films - so watch this space!


HUG receives Green Guardian Award

HUG are the proud winners of Richmond's Green Guardian Award for Best Environmental Group/Project. On Friday 26th February, two HUG representatives attended the regional Green Guardian Awards Ceremony. Although HUG lost out to Transition Town, Kingston, we are delighted that they won as we have been working closely with them and look forward to continuing to do so in the future.


Coming soon to Ham - a Community Farmers' Market

HUG is planning another new venture in Ham! HUG members want to start a Farmers' Market where residents will be able to buy locally grown produce. 

Watch this News page or the Events Calendar for further details....


 Shopping Bus

Ham and Petersham Neighbourhood Care Group are now running a weekly shopping bus which will pick residents up from their homes and transport them to a local supermarket. The service operates each Thursday (except public holidays such as Christmas) and residents are picked up between 10.00 and 10.45am. There is an assistant on the bus to help with shopping and the cost of the round trip is £2.00. To book a place, please call the SOS office: 020 8948 1090


Grey Court Community Choir

There is now Community Choir at Grey Court School. It takes place on Tuesdays at 7.30pm in the Music Room. All are welcome, so if you enjoy singing, please come along and join in.

Green Drinks Richmond upon Thames

Green Drinks Richmond upon Thames is a social event open to all eco-conscious people living or working locally. It takes place on the first Monday of each month at 6pm in the Fox Pub, Church Street, Twickenham, TW1 3NR.

For more details visit: http://www.greendrinks.org/


Ham Photos - one man's detailed and fascinating view of Ham

Local resident, Matthew Rees, writes about his blog which shows photos of Ham:

"Ham Photos started in February 2007 with a few broad objectives. I wanted to create a record of Ham as it is today as it is constantly changing and I am always trying to remember things like the previous name for a shop on Ham Parade. I also wanted to capture many of the good things in Ham that I simply could not find anywhere else on-line. There are lots of pictures of Ham House but try finding any of Gordon House or Avenue Lodge or Parkleys. And finally, I wanted to capture Ham through the seasons as the colours change.
Originally I planned to keep a record for just a year taking one photo every day or so but I keep finding new things to photograph or old things to photograph in new ways. The site has now grown to almost 1,400 photographs and is still growing.
I love compiling it as it gives me an excuse to explore every nook and cranny of the area (and I'm still find some new ones). The more I explore Ham the more that I find interesting things to enjoy and I love the area immensely. There are a few things that I do not like and I mention these too. The site is my view of Ham and I say what I feel about everything, good or bad. Luckily most of it is good!"


Green Drinks for Ham - more chances to plan and plot over some fine ales

Every second Tuesday of the month, at the Hand & Flower opposite Ham Common, from 6pm onwards - meet and discuss what's happening on the eco front in your local area.