Community talent celebrated at Colliers Wood Art Festival


A gallery and photo studio were set up on the high street.


By Sarah Aston

Residents of Colliers Wood enjoyed the pop-up experience last Saturday with a gallery and photo studio on Colliers Wood High Street.

The pop-up sought to highlight the photographic and artistic talent of Colliers Wood.

Including a selection of photographs entered into the gallery’s photo competition and stalls showcasing the work of local artists, a photo booth was set up by local photographer Derek Lomas for residents to take photographs of each other.

Mr Lomas, 52, said: “Art and photography is something that everyone can take part regardless of age or ethnicity.”

Saturday’s pop-up gallery was one of many events that are being held across Colliers Wood as part of the Colliers Wood Arts Festival.

Founded by local residents, the festival is run by the group Making Colliers Wood Happy.

Corinne Gautier-Capes, one of the organisers, said: “We want to foster a sense of pride in our community. Colliers Wood is more than an enormous retail park and somewhere to drive through.

“We believe that Colliers Wood is Merton’s best kept secret – we have a great deal of community spirit and so many activities already in place here but we want to show the rest of the borough just what’s going on here.”

Local businesses and residents believe that Colliers Wood has lots to offer and local artist Margaret Izbudak, 61, said that events such as the pop-up gallery were a great opportunity for local artists to showcase their work.

Frankie Godding owner of the local coffee shop, Coffee in the Wood, said: “Colliers Wood is just like a little village in London. It’s such a close community.

“It brings all ages together.”

As part of the day, five judges picked the winners of the photo competition. Winners included Iain Selwyn-Reeves for the 18+ category,  and Rachel Chung and Sebastiaan Maldonado for the12 – 17 categories.

The arts festival runs until the end of May. For more information about future events in Colliers Wood visit their website at

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