Almost three months have passed since we closed our doors to the public, however we’re pleased to announce that we’re beginning the process of reopening over the next few months.

Beginning in early July we will host new twice-weekly drop in Come ‘n’ Grow for anyone interested in community food growing. This will be followed in August with a new summer programme for young people age 6+, announced at the end of June. At the same time, our sister venue Deptford Lounge will open for a limited library service from July.

Over the last three months we have kept our buildings open for emergency use, including for a school, charities and the NHS. We have continued working with our communities, supporting participants and artists, and launching new programmes online and offline including the Meet Me on the Radio show. We will continue to do all of this but feel that it’s equally important to reopen our buildings as part of the need to bring people back together in the local area.

Safety is paramount for our staff and building users, and we have looked at the best advice in the UK and internationally to inform our plans. We have made changes, including one-way systems for social distancing and continual cleaning of all spaces, and we will communicate new protocols to anyone using the building.

It feels like the perfect moment to share a short film – made by local film-maker Khevyn Ibrahim. It was made as part of a project called A Question for the People of Deptford earlier in the year and feels like a love letter to our local area where “these international streets show us the culture of a hundred worlds.”. We’re looking forward to a day when we can bring people together like this again.

We are currently expecting to open the building and café properly in September and are planning a programme of special events for the autumn. Our website has details of all our work and we’re active on social media – please do get in touch with us if you want to find out more or have any suggestions.

As for many of us the recent period has been a struggle as we try to survive and keep working. If you’d like to make a donation to keep the Albany going you can make a donation here.