Restaurant review: Welcome Friends, Addiscombe

Posted on March 10th, by Andy Ellis in Culture. 1 Comment

Great for twelve, perhaps not so good for two

4 Bingham Corner, Lower Addiscombe Road, Croydon CR0 7AA

Time from East Croydon:  25 minutes,  8 minutes to Addiscombe then  1 minute

I’ve walked past the long established Welcome Friends Chinese restaurant many hundreds of times. It was only when recently invited to a party booking with a local organisation that I finally set foot within.

Welcome Friends is a … Read More »



Restaurant review: Tram Stop café, Addiscombe

Posted on February 28th, by Andy Ellis in Culture. 6 comments

A satisfying selection from a local favourite

231 Lower Addiscombe Road, CR0 6RD

Time from East Croydon:  25 minutes,  8 minutes to Addiscombe then  1 minute

Ambling home after a stroll around South Norwood Country Park and contemplating lunch possibilities, we happened to be passing the Tram Stop café on Lower Addiscombe Road. Having previously been here for coffee but not for a meal, we decided to give … Read More »



Event review: Wife after Death by the Shirley Players, Friday 25th November

Posted on December 14th, by Andy Ellis in Culture. No Comments

One of Croydon’s lesser known amateur dramatic groups provides an entertaining night out

Eric Chappell’s play is set shortly after the death of a fictional popular comedian by the name of Dave Thursby. As last respects are paid, however, some unexpected truths emerge. The play was performed by the Shirley Players in Shirley Parish Hall on Friday 25th November.

We received a friendly greeting as our … Read More »



Love Croydon, hate gluten? Here’s where to eat

Posted on August 18th, by Andy Ellis in Culture. 1 Comment

Andy Ellis’s essential guide to coeliac Croydon

Let’s begin with a few words about gluten. It is a mix of proteins found in wheat, rye, oats and barley and, by extension, common foods such as bread, cakes and beer. It also finds its way into numerous processed and packaged items. To avert a common misconception, gluten does not occur in corn, maize, rice, buckwheat or nuts.

Read More »



Event review: Much Ado About Nothing by Croydon Operatic and Dramatic Association, performed in Wandle Park, July 2016

Posted on August 10th, by Andy Ellis in Culture. No Comments

“Don’t believe me just watch (Shakespeare)”, says Andy Ellis

Despite having gone to the same school as Shakespeare, I actually knew very little about his comedy, Much Ado About Nothing, and approached this open air production with no preconceptions.

Let’s start with the venue, which was the bandstand in Wandle Park, just a short work from the tramstop of the same name. On arrival we were … Read More »



Restaurant review: Chef’s restaurant at Croydon College

Posted on June 3rd, by Andy Ellis in Culture. 2 comments

Chef’s is where Croydon’s culinary students hone their skills. Andy Ellis enjoys the results

Croydon College, College Road (but use Park Lane entrance), Croydon CR9 1DX

Time from East Croydon:  5 minutes

We happened to be passing Croydon College on our way to lunch in Croydon’s Old Town when we were approached by a young lady smartly clad in black with a … Read More »



Event review: ‘The Ladykillers’ by Theatre Workshop Coulsdon

Posted on April 15th, by Andy Ellis in Culture. No Comments

A mis-timed sound effect caused chuckles, says Andy Ellis, but a great time was had by audience and cast alike

I had never seen nor read The Ladykillers, a stage adaptation by Grahame Linehan of the Ealing comedy of the same name, and so entered Coulsdon Community Centre with no idea of plot or even of genre. I wasn’t even quite sure how to get … Read More »



Restaurant review: the Oval Tavern

Posted on February 10th, by Andy Ellis in Culture. No Comments

From traditional pub staples and hearty roasts to vegan and coeliac-friendly treats, dining at the Oval hits the spot for Andy Ellis

131 Oval Road, Croydon CR0 9AS

Time from East Croydon:  10 minutes or  5 minutes 197, 289, 312, 367, 410

Situated in an Addiscombe back street adjacent to a school playing field, the Oval Tavern dates back to the nineteenth century. The … Read More »



The Addiscombe Fan Dance

Posted on September 29th, by Andy Ellis in Culture. 3 comments

Andy Ellis explains the strange whooshing noises coming from Addiscombe

If you are crossing Ashburton Park on a Saturday afternoon you might hear a curious rasping noise.

Following the sound to its source in the shadow of the old library building, you realise that it comes from bright red silk fans opening and closing in unison as they are wielded by half a dozen or … Read More »



Why Croydon should be inordinately fond of its stag beetles

Posted on June 10th, by Andy Ellis in Culture. 4 comments

Andy Ellis encourages Croydonians to overcome understandable feelings of alarm and to take care of our local stag beetle population

Around the middle of May I spotted a familiar shape bumbling its way across my lawn. Closer inspection revealed a female, probably in the first days or even hours of her life. This year’s stag beetles have emerged!

Stag beetles are Britain’s largest insect, … Read More »