Working the Night Shift at the Museum of Homelessness

9 Goodgymers helped their local community in Islington
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Monday 16th October 2023

Report written by Simon Fitzmaurice

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Goodgym Islington are thrilled to visit a new organisation in the borough- The Museum of Homelessness in Finsbury Park (set up by Arbor Projects).

On Monday evening, Area Activator Simon met up with a top crew of Goodgym runners at the Arsenal Community Hub (including first timers Laura and Lucy- welcome!), staying out of the cold in the nice warm reception area. After a chat and bag drop, we performed a dynamic warm up towards the stadium concourse, and ran the 1.6 mile journey towards Manor House Lodge (zig-zagging through quiet low traffic zones to avoid busy pavements).

Upon our arrival, we met with Ellie and Harry (and a 9 month old Lurcher cross puppy called Keith) at the entrance of the impressive Victorian park lodge building. Wheelbarrows, spades, buckets and gloves were all on hand ready for our evening task.

The Museum of Homelessness is a community outreach project for local park users (housed or unhoused) that is due to open in 2024. As part of the hub, a disused garden space is currently being developed by volunteers and users of the homelessness centre. Goodgym Islington have come down this evening to lend a hand with some of the heavy lifting!

Team 1 (those with effective head torches and clip lights) took hold of wheelbarrows and buckets to collect large piles of fresh wood chip from the North East side of Finsbury Park, depositing the chippings along a newly resurrected pathway in the Museum gardens. Team 2 (using our industrial work lights) helped with digging out the rest of the pathway, edging the overgrown grass verges, laying down compostable cardboard and shoveling wood chip on top. Within 45 minutes, we had successfully laid out an entire pathway, and ferried over 6 full wheelbarrows of chippings into the new gardens. Well done everyone!

To complete an excellent evening, our group split up between walkers and cyclists, and runners joining AA Simon for a jog back the Emirates Stadium via Sobell Road (a tidy loop around the borough). We decided to keep our headtorches on hand, and the enjoy a fun downhill run through Finsbury Park in the dark (a rare opportunity- the space is typically packed!), before continuing over to the stadium (approx 1.4 miles). Top stuff!


The Green Classroom Morning Gardening Sessions

Wednesday 18th October, 10am - midday, Newington Green

An open invitation to attend a wonderful gardening session hosted by Lizzy and Decibel of The Green Classroom, a wild cultivation space in Newington Green.

Sessions are available on the following dates:

Wednesday 18th October

Wednesday 1st November

Wednesday 8th November

Compton Terrace Gardens Volunteer Open Morning - October

Saturday 21st October, 10am -1pm, Union Chapel Islington

A friendly gardening group started to look after the park about 10 years ago. We are always looking for more help - with planting, mulching, pruning, and all the other things a garden needs.

Everyone welcome, no special skills needed! Lots of fresh air and a nice chance to meet local people. We meet once a month on a Saturday morning near the shed in the middle of the Gardens.

GG Race Team- Met League Hill Training Sessions!

Thursday 26th October, 6.30pm, The Pembroke Castle, Camden

Goodgym Cross Country is back! We will be returning to the Met League in 2023 and 2024!

If you have never tried cross country, it is amazing muddy fun. A definite challenge, but accessible to all who want to give it a go, and are part of a UKA affiliated team (like the Goodgym Race Team).

To coincide with the events, Area Activator Simon Fitzmaurice (who is a UK Athletics Coach in Running Fitness or CiRF for short) will be hosting a series of hill interval training sessions at Primrose Hill over the Autumn and Winter months.

The Pembroke Castle, 150 Gloucester Ave., London NW1 8JA, and we will run to Primrose Hill together to start our session.

October 26th

November 24th

January 5th

January 26th (aka February fixture session)

Penn Road Gardens- Open Gardens Volunteer Morning (October)

Sunday 29th October, 10am-12 midday, Penn Road Gardens

Every last Sunday of the month, the residents of Penn Road invite keen volunteers to help with maintaining this lovely community spot just off Holloway Road.

Local volunteers will be on hand to direct anyone who arrives to offer their help between 10am- midday. Come on down to enjoy a lovely morning community task!

Follow this link for more info:

Ghoulgym Halloween Headtorch Run (Hampstead!)

Tuesday 31st October, 6.30pm, The Bull and Gate, Kentish Town

Fancy an evening of spooky running in North London?

Area Activator Simon will be leading an approximate 10km run through Hampstead Heath, starting and finishing at the Bull and Gate pub in Kentish Town. Running in the darkness of night is a wonderful experience, and really good fun with running friends.

Queen's Park Harriers Liddiard Cup Cross Country (75th Anniversary)

Saturday 4th November, 1:00pm - 5:00pm, Kingsbury Free Church (Baptist), NW9

Classic muddy running fun in Fryent Country Park!

Queens Park Harriers invites clubs to compete in the annual Liddiard Cross Country Trophy race which will be run under UKA rules.

This will be the 75th running of the event as no events were held in 2020 and 2021 and we hope to see many of the teams who have competed over the years, plus new ones.

There will be a unique, 75th anniversary medal for all competitors.


Met League Cross Country - Wormwood Scrubs

Saturday 11th November, 12:45pm - 3:45pm, Claybury Park

Met League Cross Country is a set of five 7-8km races organised by London race clubs. They are held in parks and forests around London with the routes including a mixture of grass, gravel and a fair bit of mud (it is XC after all!)

Cross Country is for everyone! Wonderful fun- sign up here for more information!

Session Leader
Lucy Tyson
Laura Lapadat
Patricia Davies
Adam O'Riley
Caitlin Rollison
Simon Fitzmaurice
John Shirley
Patrick Luong
Join us on our next session
The Garden Classroom, Market Road Gardens - Volunteer Morning
🗓Tomorrow 10:00am

Friday morning drop-in community gardening sessions with The Garden Classroom

Constanza Diaz
One GoodGymer is going

Discuss this report
John Shirley

Tue 17th Oct 2023 at 11:15am

That Creos task was last Sunday (15th), but presumably there'll be another next month

Simon Fitzmaurice

Tue 17th Oct 2023 at 11:18am

Thanks John. I have edited now