The Archibald Corbett Society was launched on Thursday 3 October at Torridon Road Library, Catford.
The Society is the idea of local Hither Green resident, Peter Ranken, who recognised there were many residents in the area who wanted to protect and promote the heritage of the estate – once described by eminent Victorian social historian, Charles Booth in his book ‘Life and Labour of the people in London’, as a ‘new Garden of Eden with young married people and no public house.’
Local MP Heidi Alexander and the Mayor of Lewisham joined over 80 local residents at the launch.
Sir Steve Bullock, the Mayor of Lewisham and President of the Lewisham Local History Society, acknowledged the unique nature of the Society which aimed to preserve the legacy left by Victorian philanthropist and property developer Archibald Cameron Corbett, while simultaneously regenerating the housing estate he built at the turn of the 20th Century.
Local MP Heidi Alexander said the Society, together with the three housing associations on the Corbett Estate (all new associate members of the Society), was an excellent example of partnership working that combined the skills of local people for the benefit of an area of social and historical interest.
The Society will work with local schools to produce educational packs designed to teach pupils about the heritage of where they live, work with Lewisham Council to ensure Corbett Houses are retained for their original purpose as family houses, promote Corbett’s desire for a healthy living society and raise funds to regenerate the area and re-create an estate identity.
The Society will hold its inaugural Annual General Meeting at the Catford Assemblies of God Church, Glenfarg Road, SE6 1XN on Monday 4 November at 7.30pm where all residents on the Corbett estate can find out how to get involved.