About us

The Peckham Business Forum was started by Tree Shepherd, a locally based charity that aims to support, enable and encourage entrepreneurs and businesses to thrive.

We are working with LB Southwark and Mountview as part of the GLA Future High Streets Fund to support the business community through the creation of a united voice to champion change and transformation.

The Peckham Business Forum is now recognised by the community as a strategic opportunity to grow the local economy, and 97% of those surveyed are willing to participate in its development. We will work with business owners who have a strong presence in Peckham, possess a desire to diversify and innovate their business. We understand the importance of making this forum appealing to our members, and we will prioritise flexibility, inclusivity, and innovation offering small business owners a supportive system that promotes growth, collaboration and shared success.

Meet the chair and committee members

Gloria Douglas, Chair

Gloria created Satizfaktion hair salon in 2006, transforming it into a unique establishment that combines a café, hair salon, and art gallery. She is the go-to person for anyone wanting the local lowdown.

She already holds annual “meet and greet” days for residents of the surrounding streets along with regular community groups from King’s Grove book club to lunches for Nunhead-based community projects charity Habitat for Humanity.

Gloria’s café is on the Nunhead Art Trail and showcases work by local artists and friends hanging on the walls.

She is keen to become the chair of the Peckham Business Forum to leverage her community connections, experience and ambitions for the area.

Cath Tomlin-McDonald

Cath is the owner of McDonald and Tomlin Funerals on Rye Lane. She is a seasoned professional with a unique background in legal indemnity underwriting and funeral directing

Her experience in risk assessment and mitigation from the legal and insurance sectors coupled with a compassionate role in the funeral industry, equips her with a holistic understanding of business challenges. She can leverage this dual expertise to foster collaborative problem-solving within the business forum, offering a fresh perspective on risk management, community engagement, and ethical business practices.

Cath is resilient and has qualities that are essential for navigating the ever-evolving business landscape. She wants to elevate the forum and empower local businesses to thrive in a dynamic environment. Working together to create a forum that not only addresses the needs of local businesses but also thrives on diversity, through shared expertise and an inclusive environment.

Asif Maxwell, Committee Member

Asif is a dynamic and passionate individual hailing from the business and political background. He has a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) degree in English, Computer Science, and Islamic Studies and a master’s degree in social Anthropology.

As a candidate for the Chair he is determined to empower and support the local business community. His vision revolves around providing them with a platform for expression and ensuring their voices are heard. Recognising the challenges faced by businesses, such as shoplifting, rising utility bills, business rates, and inadequate support from authorities, Asif aims to establish an effective forum where business owners can freely communicate their concerns, share their experiences, and collectively find solutions.

With his strong leadership qualities, coupled with his extensive background, Asif is poised to be a formidable advocate for the Peckham business community. Asif’s relentless pursuit of a comprehensive platform for empowered expression is a testament to his unwavering dedication to creating a brighter future for Peckham’s business landscape.

Leila Dunning

Leila’s experience as an architect and business owner specialising in retail, hospitality, and residential provides a valuable perspective on the challenges faced by businesses. Her leadership skills make her well-equipped to lead the Peckham Business Forum effectively.

Leila’s passion for supporting and working with local independent businesses in Peckham is an essential benefit. She is keen to understand their challenges and can contribute to creating an environment that fosters their growth and success. Leila’s talent for seeing both the bigger picture and finer details allows her to effectively prioritise the forum’s efforts toward the most pressing issues.

This skill will ensure that the Forum’s activities are impactful and address the needs of the business community.She is committed to giving back and feeling connected to the community, which will ensure that the forum remains focused on the happiness and well-being of business owners in Peckham, fostering a sense of unity and collaboration among forum members.

Josephine Francis

Josephine is a seasoned hairdresser with a 25-year career based in Peckham. With her deep roots and intimate knowledge of the area, she has witnessed the good and bad changes that have taken place.

Her experience as a business owner has given her a unique perspective on needs and wants. Her familiarity enables her to relate to the challenges faced by business on a personal level. With a strong network and longstanding connections within the community, she is well-positioned to advocate for the interests of all businesses.

Her vision for Peckham is clear: to create a welcoming, safe, and vibrant environment that appeals to residents and visitors alike. She knows the importance of a thriving high street, one that provides a positive shopping experience to people of all ages and backgrounds, reflecting the diversity that makes Peckham so special.

Jason Morris

Jason is a Peckham resident for over 35 years, moving from Reynolds Road to growing up on the North Peckham Estate.

Jason is a dynamic property professional with almost 20 year’s experience within the property industry. Learning and developing his career at corporate as well as independent agencies, Jason stood out from his peers, achieving and exceeding set targets, alongside other business-related objectives. Subsequently, he quickly progressed to management where he ran several successful offices throughout South East London.

With a desire to create a reputable brand, delivering a professional and first class service, JT Clarke London was launched in 2012 on the Queens Road of Peckham and has now been in operation for 12 years!

Specialising in Residential Sales, Residential Lettings and Property Management a distinctive, eye catching and professional brand was created as a direct result of Jason’s vision, creativity, leadership and drive; boasting significant plans for future growth and expansion throughout London’s capital and beyond.

Sophie Eglin

Sophie brings over two decades of experience in the Retail & Hospitality Industries with a background that includes managing start-ups, independent businesses, and holding leadership roles within renowned brands and complex landlord environments across London.

She has also dedicated her time to mentoring, coaching and hosting workshops for small business owners, working with key partners such as Enterprise Nation and local councils, among others.

In 2022 Sophie founded Market & Me, a supportive small business community on a mission to equip business owners and future founders with the necessary tools, confidence, and connections for long-term success. The community focuses on personal and professional development and provides a platform for small business owners to share, learn, and grow, where the ultimate goal is to empower business owners and enable businesses to achieve sustainable success. Sophie is dedicated to supporting the businesses in Peckham. She is passionate about elevating and empowering the incredible and diverse businesses that call Peckham home, leveraging her experience across the private and public sectors.

Meet The Team

Sandra Ferguson, CEO of Tree Shepherd

Sandra has been an integral part of Tree Shepherd since April 2018, bringing extensive experience in delivering socio-economic programs. With an extensive career in community regeneration and the housing sector, she focuses on programs that empower individuals and build economic well-being.

As the CEO of Tree Shepherd, Sandra leads the organisation in creating a world where everyone can actively participate in their local economy, working with diverse clients including the unemployed, low-income families, aspiring young entrepreneurs, and small independent businesses.

Under Sandra’s guidance, Tree Shepherd offers comprehensive enterprise training courses, workshops, and affordable workspaces, business mentoring programs, helping individuals refine their ideas and strategies. With market stalls and networking opportunities, Tree Shepherd fosters a supportive environment for growth.

Recognising the importance of effective engagement and networking, Tree Shepherd actively builds networks and forums for individuals and businesses to maximise their connections within and beyond their community. Tree Shepherd also extends its support to businesses impacted by regeneration projects, helping them navigate their way towards a future where they can achieve their business goals successfully. Tree Shepherd continues to make a positive impact on the lives of individuals and businesses, empowering them to thrive within their local economies and build a brighter future.

Rhian Letang, Business Development Manager

Rhian is a Business Development Executive, who is responsible for providing business support to local start-ups, micro and small businesses across London.

She is highly skilled in relationship building and engaging with key stakeholders. She is a problem solver and provides solutions within developing business communities.

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Natasha Simms, Administration and Outreach consultant

Natasha engages with the businesses in Peckham to ensure ongoing support, along with providing pathways to training and workshops along with other important information.

She is an enabler for change, supporting the acquisition of photography and marketing materials.