Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Wild Horses and Peacocks on Sydenham Hill

There was some speculation in the comments to an earlier post about the mysteriously run down mansion on Sydenham Hill -a mystery partially solved by this strange story from the South London Press last month (23 Feb 2009):

'The Asbo owner of a mansion that was home to The Beatles has fled to the US owing thousands in court costs after mistreating animals. Tracey Thier, 48, had horses, peacocks and more than 60 Alsatians roaming around her 50-room Beltwood House home in Sydenham Hill, Dulwich. The animals attacked each other and people visiting or walking past the building. One woman’s injuries were so severe she needed plastic surgery.

Dogs would escape and attack members of the public, get electrocuted on railway lines and run into roads, causing traffic accidents. When Southwark council officers went to the Grade II listed mansion, there were so many puppies on the premises it was impossible to count them. Thier was given an Asbo banning her from keeping animals in December 2007, but breached the order four months later. Before she could be sentenced for the breaches, she fled the country and is believed to be hiding in the US'.

Apparently Beltwood House was sometimes used for club nights as La Funk Royale . There seems to be some doubt about the extent of The Beatles connection. At Sydenham Town Forum somebody quotes The Beatles Diary which states that on 29 August 1969 'George and several busloads of journalists attended the Apple Press launch of the Radha Krishna Temple’s first recording, 'Hare Krishna Mantra', in the gardens of a large country house in Sydenham. Indian food was served but no alcohol' - the assumption being that this was Beltwood House. Anybody know any more?

(there's some more pictures here).

Update: some discussion on this at East Dulwich Forum - apparently Beltwood was a students residence for radiography students at Kings College Hospital/Normanby College in the 1980s (and maybe earlier). Some memories of parties there too.


Ian said...

Excellent background info there, thanks!

Some of those peacocks of hers must still be roaming around, as I managed to pick up the screeching of one while recording the dawn chorus in Sydenham Hill Wood nature reserve this morning.

Graculus said...

It would seem that the Beatles link was the George Harrison Krishna event and the Apple Birthday Party at The Wood 16 Sydenham Hill, in research confirmed by The woods owner's son who was present and met the Beatles there, and a family friend who ran a Rolls Royce business from the stables at No. 16