The Peckham Peace Wall

If you read my blog from last summer which talked about the London riots titled ‘Peckham is a real community‘, you’ll remember the photos of the ‘peace wall’. The wall of post-it notes put up by the local community sharing their thoughts on the riots and how it had affected Peckham.
The post-it notes were preserved and had been moved to the area outside of Peckham library in Peckham Square for a while but now they’ve been turned into a permanent ‘Peace Wall’.

Peckham Peace Wall by Louise Wilson

Every post-it note (ok, clearly the best have been selected) has been scanned in and turned into an organised wall called the ‘Peckham Peace Wall’. It was such a great surprise to come across the wall and be able to read the messages properly.

You can read about the project here:
Peckham Peace Wall by Garudio Studiage celebrates the wall of post-it notes of love and respect for the area which grew on Rye Lane following the disorder of last year, and launched on the 8th August 2012 to mark this one year anniversary.

Peckham Peace Wall up close photo by Louise Wilson

It’s amazing how a basic movement of messages has been transformed into a fantastic piece of art that brings the centre of Peckham to life.  It was even featured in Creative Review back in August.

I highly recommend going to have a look for yourself.

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Peckham is a real community

When I tell people I live in Peckham, I am often faced with the question ‘why?’  Known for being the home of ‘Trotters Independent Traders’ from the tv show Only Fools and Horses and the place where Damilola Taylor was murdered, I can understand the question but it’s clear whoever asks hasn’t visited!

It’s a very creative neighbourhood with Camberwell College of Art and Goldsmith College close by, the South London Gallery and numerous art projects – Frank’s cafe, the pop-up Campari bar on the NCP carpark is a great example of the creative projects happening in the neighbourhood.

Peckham was hit by the sad events of the London Riots – shops were vandalised and a shop and bus were set on fire.

Photo from The Guardian website

Photo from The Guardian website

The riots were heartbreaking, sad and scary but over the last couple of days an even stronger sense of community has emerged. Peckham clearly has such a strong sense of togetherness that people have turned the Poundland boarded up window into a place to stick post-it notes of their feelings.
Peckham Poundland, Rye Lane

I went down to have a look to see what messages people were putting up. It had drawn a crowd of people reading what the community had to say and it has turned into a real piece of artwork. Peckham felt colourful, full of life and meaningful. The following messages really stuck out:

‘Peckham is home’
‘I love Peckham. I hate rioters’
‘Need discipline’
‘Community, don’t do it’
‘Crime doesn’t pay’
‘Burger King will reopen and you are barred’

Peckham post riot messages

These messages are important, not only for people to get their feelings across to others but to strengthen the community, make the rioters realise that the critical mass of poeple is made up of people wanting to live in a pleasant place, that if we empower people to make a difference we can live in happiness. The riot clean up was amazing, I wish I could taken part to help clean up after the riots – I would say I’ll be there next time but my hope is that this community won’t allow this to happen again.

Message being written on post-riot board, Peckham

Message being written on post-riot board, Peckham