It been all action this week. After our Contractor cleared the site for us and installed vehicle access, we’ve been able to start picking up reclaimed materials we’ve been storing at various locations in order to bring them to site. One of the difficult things about trying to use recycled and reclaimed materials is you don’t know when they’ll be available or from where. Usually an offer of materials comes up just when someone needs to remove them from their site so they need you to come and pick them up right away. We’ve hence had to beg and borrow storage space while we organised access to the site. Being able to pick up everything we have collected so far and bring it to Church Grove is a big milestone for us.

The community hub team would like to send a big thanks out to everyone who has donated materials to us so far. In particular thanks to Nick from Brockley who donated external doors and a window in excellent condition last week and also helped move them when we under-resourced a pickup. Note for the future – double glazing is heavy! And also a massive thanks to the wonderful Jon Broome who has been storing timber for us for well over a year and will soon have use of his car-port again.

So our material pickup is happening over two main weekends. We had a small but dedicated team pick-up from 3 locations this weekend. Thanks to Mike, Robin, Arturo, Gordon, Megan, Annie and our van driver Gus. It was an epic afternoon, especially when an illegally parked car at one location meant we had to lug materials about 100mm to the road rather than being able to drive into the compound as hoped. See our photos below of the team at work.

Next Saturday 20th is our even bigger pick-up day and we still need volunteers to sign-up. We’ve had a great response so far but we’ve got a lot to do and the more people the lighter the work and the more fun in the pub afterwards. So if you’re up for either; helping pick-up & move timber, dismantling an artwork made of adobe blocks or painting a hoarding then get in touch at We’ll be sending out further details to those that can help next week.

What we learnt this week: Always assume things are heavier than they look and never work later than the scheduled time for the pub – you risk a volunteer rebellion!