Open sesame

by ParkLifeEditor on October 17, 2014

Pop-up brunch restaurant Tahini opens this weekend at The Shop, 75 Chamberlayne Rd, NW10 3ND and will be in residence until the end of October…

breakfast photo

Local boy, Josh Talmud, will be debuting his travel-inspired food business with a two-week pop-up at The Shop. After eight years of managing high-end foodie heaven Melrose & Morgan in Primrose Hill, Josh took a year off with his family exploring and eating their way around Europe and Israel by way of campervan. Taking inspiration from his foodie escapades, from Saturday 18 October he is serving up his take on a traditional Israeli breakfast. Eggs cooked to order with delicious breads, chopped salad with oak-roasted tomatoes and za’atar, roast peppers, pine nuts and parsley, labneh and of course, lashings of tahini, ‘the life blood of the Middle East’ says Josh.

There’s also a series of supperclubs lined up combining classic Levantine ingredients and flavours with locally sourced British products from Queens Park Farmers Market and other local suppliers. The use of local suppliers is important to Josh who  developed great respect for the smaller artisan producers during his Melrose & Morgan tenure.

Saturday 18 October until Friday 31 October 2014: 9am–3pm weekends
; 9am–2pm weekdays
 Closed Mondays. Follow Tahini. Brunch for one £10.95. Brunch for two to share £20.

granola photoSuppliers

  • Rockwell End House Farm, Henley on Thames – free-range eggs
  • The Tomato Stall, Isle of Wight – tomatoes
  • Wholegood, Greenford – organic vegetables
  • Levain Bakery, South London – sourdough breads
  • White Lake, Somerset – goat’s cheese
  • Brinkworth Dairy- yoghurt and butter
  • Chegworth Valley Farm, Kent – fruit and juice
  • Melrose and Morgan, London – granola
  • Volcano Coffee Works, London – coffee

 About The Shop

Luke Allen and Ben Magid, the owners of The Shop, are old friends of Josh Talmud. Their cocktails, served in jars and milk bottles have built up a cult following, and it has long been a popular meeting spot for an evening drink. Josh, Luke and Ben thought it would be an equally great venue to host brunch. Like Tahini, The Shop puts a lot of thought into the suppliers they use and it was felt that hosting a brunch pop-up there would be a good opportunity showcase something new in the area and also for people to taste the great coffee they make, supplied by Volcano Coffee Works.


We have a very special health-improving retreat right in our midst that many of you probably don’t even know about. Wakeman Road was opened by Emma Sinclair and Richard Lamballe in 2013 with the mission of making us all healthier. As autumn is upon us, it’s the most important time of year to invest in our wellbeing, and this is the first in a series of posts about how to make the most of this little salubrious little members club on our doorstep…

Wakeman Rd

Thought I’d experience something I’d never tried before – Reiki. Without completely oversharing we’d had a sad family situation, which was fantastically draining. One session at Wakeman Road with Katie Light and I felt better, and the stomach and throat condition I’d developed from the stress started to get better. Lying on her treatment bed for an hour felt tantamount to a micro holiday on the Indian Ocean. Don’t expect me to give you a scientific explanation about why and how it worked – just believe me, after being prescribed various prescriptive medicines, it was Katie’s positive healing hands hovering over my body that seemed to somehow do the trick.

Reiki dictionary

katie-light-c‘Reiki is such a tonic for rebooting your energy – you can step out of reality for an hour, allow your body and mind to tap in, and recharge your batteries,’ says Katie Light. ‘The first time you experience Reiki, the body and mind accepts the energy flow and realigns; the second time it remembers, feeling safe to rest and recharge, and then it becomes naturally addictive. To feel calm, relaxed and to reboot with renewed energy is amazing – who wouldn’t want to feel like that all the time?’

 It’s a bit like plugging in your phone, recharging up to 100%, and then having enough energy to function properly. As Katie acknowledges, we only show 20 per cent of what is going on for us emotionally, so that 80 per cent needs some assistance for us to function. Don’t just listen to me, read the testimonials from all the other shiny, happy people touched by Katie’s positive energy.

Wakeman Road, 4 Wakeman Road, London, NW10 5BN (020 8964 6740). On Twitter, follow @WakemanRoad and @LightTechnique A 60-minute therapy costs £85. Membership is £417 a year or £29 a month and this can be redeemed against any of the health or beauty services (which makes membership free if you take full advantage). We love the NHS for being free, but this reaches the spot your GP might not be able to access – and what more worthy investment than your overall wellbeing?


wakemen road club




The storytellers

by ParkLifeEditor on September 19, 2014

Wondering if you should be capturing and documenting your family’s life stories from ageing loved ones, before it’s too late? It’s hard to know where to start or how to do it. A locally launched innovative new service is here to help immortalise those tales…

Love Your Stories
, a Kensal Rise-based start-up, has assembled a crack team of award-winning radio journalists to give families and individuals the chance to document a loved one’s life stories with the same skill, compassion and professionalism that would be applied to the latest item on the national media agenda.

With experience making documentaries and producing high-profile radio shows for the BBC – and with eight major radio awards between its members – this team of journalists conducts the interviews and records those precious memories and then edits it all into broadcast-quality audio features. These are hosted alongside photographs on an interactive web page to share with your nearest and dearest. Have a listen to some of Martin Levey’s stories.

rowan“Passing on the life stories and learnings of those closest to us is a  hugely important and enriching legacy for family, friends and future generations. While we’re constantly bombarded with stories about the lives of others, often the stories of our own family, friends and our ageing loved ones, remain untold and undocumented. So we’re excited to provide people with the best radio journalists to document these stories that matter so much,” says Kensal Rise-based founder, Rowan Wilkinson.

For every set of memories documented, Love Your Stories will donate a memory-aid product – such as memory-stimulating puzzles and games, as well as memorabilia packs, art books and music CDs – to a local dementia centre to help a sufferer who is struggling with memory loss.

“The importance of memory is central to Love Your Stories. Sadly the number of people with dementia is steadily increasing in the UK. We want to help improve the quality of life for those affected by those experiencing the loss of the ability to think and reason

clearly, and we hope to help the work at some of the brilliant care centres in and around London.

Check out the site here: and follow them on Twitter @lvyrstories.



Charlotte Packe lights up our lives

September 16, 2014

In Queen’s Park Design District during London Design Festival, Charlotte will be showing her lights at 9 Lonsdale Road NW6… Lighting designer Charlotte Packe lives in Queens Park and and runs her lighting studio here. Her long-term collaborations are with our favourite stylish places to stay, Firmdale Hotels has seen her designing and fabricating custom lights [...]

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Lexi makeover: new bar, same magic

September 11, 2014

With its arty lights and peanut-butter (!) popcorn, we didn’t think our local cinema could get much better. But the innovations of architect Laura Clark and artist Jesse Wolpert have spruced up our spellbinding, social-enterprising Lexi into a gallery, library and bar too… Laura specialises in creativity within small spaces as well as sustainable building practice, exemplified [...]

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Queens Park Design District in #LDF14

September 5, 2014

This year’s London Design Festival (15–20 September) sees the spotlight on Queen’s Park Design District… Thanks to a collection of local creatives and designers led by Bill Amberg, a district has been created within the London Design Festival right on our home turf. Those in the know recognise the area as a long-established hub of creativity, but now [...]

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He’s coming home, he’s coming home: Mark Twain’s coming home

September 4, 2014

It’s always seemed slightly surreal that Mark Twain, America’s greatest literary figure, should have taken time out of his busy schedule knocking off classics such as Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn to cut the ribbon on little Kensal Rise Library in 1900. But he did, and now, in a sense, the unofficial patron saint of the library is [...]

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Road trip in Queen’s Park, Saturday night!

September 3, 2014

Not swarming off to Bestival this weekend? Kids back to school this week? Tan beginning to fade? STOP PRESS: it’s all going to be OK… The September sun has come back for us – and so has Lewis the Camel. How better to beat autumn anguish than under the stars with Susan Sarandon this Saturday night? Popping up [...]

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Local hero gets so much love on Facebook!

August 18, 2014

We saluted a local hero, Andrews at Kensal Green train station, on our Facebook page after being inspired by Alex Pawlowska’s Instagram account, and it’s elicited so much LOVE… Have a look. It’s incredibly touching.  “Meet Andrews. He is 51 and smiles all the time. He gives people a smile that comes from his heart. Andrews [...]

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Casual sexual harassment: your thoughts?

August 3, 2014

Hello Park Life readers… I am a 22-year-old female who has lived in the area all their life. A few days ago, I passed the local primary school on the corner of Okehampton and Chamberlayne Road. It was just after midday and a group of builders working on the school were sitting in the playground, [...]

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