Love Lewisham; First of Many!

Part One.

There are now plenty of excellent Enviro-Reporting apps to choose from. The best and most popular, of course is FixMyStreet, launched back in 2007 as ‘Neighbourhood FixIt’. Others include the excellent LitterGram and LoveCleanStreets, commissioned with funding from London Councils ‘Capital Ambition’ programme in 2010.

Love Lewisham was the first public app for reporting environmental problems, launched in February 2005. The origins of this idea go back to 1998/99 with the ‘Lewisham-VisibleDifference’ initiative. This was a web application I built to allow residents to post photos of problems that could then be resolved by the Council’s frontline workers (graffiti removal operatives, cleansing staff etc).

As you can see from this screenshot, the public ‘Before’ and ‘After’ photo was a key element of this early project;

With the rapid development of mobile technology and the introduction of Microsoft’s Windows Mobile Operating system in 2003, I was able to create a mobile front-end application for the new Compaq Ipaq PocketPc This app, known as Cam2Web became the beta version of LoveLewisham while we tested a public version of the mobile app during 2004, with Lewisham Cabinet Member for Environment, Andrew Brown and local resident and journalist Adam Tinsworth.

We launched LoveLewisham to the public in 2005 after commissioning a ‘professional’ version of the app from a local IT Trainer (the local IT Trainer I shared the idea with when we commissioned training from them in 2004). You’ll see from this clip (at around 1:17) that we were still using Cam2Web as the admin back-end after the launch!

to be continued….