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Tlon Books: another Elephant triumph

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Monday 5 February 2007 9.49am
Really sad to read that Tlon books has closed. One of the few good things in the Elephant shopping centre, and it's gone. So that's the best restaurant (Pizzeria Castello) and the best shop closed down. RESULT!

Am I the only one getting cynical about the E&C "regeneration"? So far we're losing all the good independent businesses, and the much-vaunted lighting scheme that went up a couple of years ago is falling into decay. About 50% of the glass globes no longer work, they're all filthy and some are full of water. The new "decant" flats on St George's Road will destroy one of the few play spaces for children in the area.

And the final insult is that hoarding at the top of London Road, illustrating a load of fictional shops. Some of us remember when there were REAL shops there, which were closed down & squeezed out, the buildings allowed to rot by South Bank who wanted to knock them all down. Now we have "virtual" shops instead.

Oh, I could go on...
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Monday 5 February 2007 10.37am
Yep, very sad to see one of the only decent shops go
Monday 5 February 2007 10.42am
I've been in touch with the people at Tlon who ask that we should write to our councillors to express our dismay at the closure, and to say that Southwark should fulfil its pledge to keep small businesses in the Elephant running in the face of the regeneration.

Three appropriate councillors (as well as your own) would be:

Dora Dixon-Fyle
Email [email protected]
Telephone Number 020 8693 3755 or 07939 537 642

John Friary
Email [email protected]
Telephone Number 020 7564 8766 or 07960 255 330

Christopher Page
Email [email protected]
Telephone Number 020 7708 0897 or 07903964015
Monday 5 February 2007 10.47am
Last week the council executive received this report about business continuity at the Elephant:

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Monday 5 February 2007 12.12pm
So sad.
Our main reason for visiting the Elephant Shopping Centre gone.

Tuesday 6 February 2007 6.02am
Gosh what a I to rely on WH Smith?
Tuesday 6 February 2007 8.16am
Please also write to the landlord, St Modwen, expressing your concern over the closure, which has been necessitated by an increase in rent.

[email protected]

Mr A Glossop, chair, St Modwen
Tuesday 6 February 2007 10.33pm
Tlon Gone? not yet!

It was nice to see so many nice things about my shop. There is a possibility of it re-opening.

Basically this is a regeneration problem. In the last 5 years, income has gone down badly, as local offices have closed and flats emptied. The area has become blighted, and demolitions have commenced. The council has repeatedly pledged to keep the small businesses in the shopping centre going, but has done little of substance. In the meantime, most of my costs, and especially the rent, have gone up or stayed the same, The result is obvious, and the same problem faces all the traders in the Centre to some extent. If something is to be done about this the council and the landlords need to be persuaded to be more accommodating.

Incidentally, it's not strictly correct to say that my rent has increased, although the landlord is seeking to increase it.

What can you do about it all? As Rupert suggests, you can contact your councillors (there is a full list on and express your concern, and you can write to St Modwens in the same terms. There's also Simon Hughes to write to. It's up to you whether you emphasize this shop, the shopping centre, or the community in general. It's all the same issue really.

If you want to contact me, send me a message at:
[email protected]

There will be an e-mail petition available soon. The address for this should be
[email protected]
-keep an eye on the posters in the shopping centre.

On Wenesday the 7th and 14th of Feb, I'm being interviewed on a local internet radio station
please listen!

Thanks very much to all of you for your kind words and thoughts. Lets see if we can generate some good news for once!
Wednesday 7 February 2007 10.04am
I have received lots of emails from people about the closure of Tlon Books from far beyond the local area and can see that clearly it has very loyal customers who value it greatly. I certianly support the view that Southwark Council should do everything it can to support local busiensses in the area while the regeneration is going on.

I am more than happy for people to continue to contact me about this, but wanted to make people aware that Cllrs Dixon-Fyle, Friary and myself represent Camberwell Green ward. The Councillors who cover that part of the Elephant and Castle are:

Cllr Kirsty McNeill (Labour)
[email protected]
020 7708 0163

Cllr Jane Salmon (Liberal Democrat)
[email protected]
020 7252 5684

Cllr Martin Seaton (Labour)
[email protected]
020 8209 2775
Wednesday 7 February 2007 10.21am
Thanks, Chris, and apologies for giving the wrong councillor names.
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