It’s a bit of a comedown since the heady days of Horsfall and Wright, but estate agents Elizabeth Pryce is now comfortably settled in the shop next door to its former offices. As such it’s a bit of a zero sum gain for Wanstead High Street diversity, but on the plus side it does free up a very attractive corner office which should be tempting for all sorts of interesting shops (fingers crossed).
• The full list of artists participating in the Wanstead Art Trail – a fantastically enlightened bid to give Wanstead artistic buzz (rather like the regeneration-inducing Folkestone Triennial) – has been published by the Wanstead Society. It shows 63 venues in Wanstead which will be showing works by more than 130 artists, both professional and amateur. It will take place between 19 and 26 September and more details, including the full map, can be found at the Wanstead Society website.
• Rumours that the Metropolitan Police had started marking out the part of Wanstead Flats where they want to site their Olympic operational headquarters were scotched when it turned out the lines had been painted by the Showman’s Guild for the Wanstead Flats Fair. Opposition to the Met’s proposal is increasing in volume; the force is making its case online.
• Meanwhile, on Tuesday night, the decision will be made about the Arcelor Orbit sculpture, which, in June, Wansteadium revealed risks interfering with the Freeview TV signals of people living in Snaresbrook.Details here. It now appears that if there did turn out to be a significant effect, the Olympic Delivery Authority would be required to pay for corrective measures, though it’s not clear what this could be.
Four months after it shut its doors for good, and in doing so found a use for some of its range of padlocks, Andrews’ Builders Merchants, in Woodbine Place, has now been cleared out. It made for a pretty sorry sight. What the future holds for this unique building is not yet known.
With just about a month until the opening of the Oxfam bookshop in Wanstead High Street, the builders are in the former travel shop getting things ready. Other retailers seem happy at the news, with one expressing relief that predictions of a Costa Coffee or a Subway didn’t happen.
Oxfam area manager Mark Appiah told Wansteadium he was “really pleased the community in Wanstead is so enthusiastic about the bookshop” and asked anyone interested in volunteering in the shop to get in touch.
* Among the cuts forecast for Redbridge Borough Council are the complete closure of public toilets and the possible ending of lollipop men and ladies, the latter on the basis that most primary school children are accompanied to school anyway. It does mean there is a possible business opportunity for Christchurch Green, though. A former public toilet on Shepherd’s Bush Green became a trendy members’ club.
* After 50 votes, it’s neck and neck between The Lane and Purbani for Wansteadium readers’ favorite Indian takeaway or restaurant. Voting still open here.
* And finally. This poster (below, but without the number being obscured) was spotted on the old antique shop next to the pet shop on Wanstead High Street. Either someone with a sense of humour and a car to dispose of, or someone put out of work by the closure of Wanstead Sauna whose poster has been amusingly annotated. There’s only one way to find out – ringing the number – but perhaps it can comfortably remain a mystery.
Matt Longmoor, a 20-year-old Wanstead photographer, has charted some of the sights of his teenage years with his nifty Canon S31S. He cites the landscapes of Ansel Adams as one of his inspirations, and it’s not hard to see what he means. (Anyone interested in contacting Matt – for prints or even commissions – can do by e-mailing matthew_j_longmoor[at]hotmail.co.uk.