It’s the biggest day ever for the Wanstead Fringe today, following what has undoubtedly been its biggest week.
The Jumble Trail kicks off with more than 100 stalls around Wanstead (see the live updated map at wansteadfringejumbletrail.org) including a central starting point at the Corner House car park on the High Street.
It will be worth stopping by Images in Frames, next door to Tesco’s, to see sculptor Dan Woodley demonstrate his skills. A Wanstead resident, he is by day a sculptor for Madame Tussauds and will be showing what it takes to create a likeness – in this case, of his son Henry.
Tonight’s Kinema show is completely sold out [STOP PRESS – MORE TICKETS JUST RELEASED], but there are still things to see – including one for all the family.
The free parking slot drivers in Redbridge will be given where parking is controlled is to double from 30 mins to an hour, the council has announced in a move which it says will support local shops.
Additionally, coin parking machines across the borough are to phased in out in favour of the RingGo system or contactless payments.
Leader of the Council, Cllr Jas Athwal, said the one-hour free parking gwould benefit residents and business.
He said: “We are committed to supporting residents and local businesses and by doubling the free parking allowance on Redbridge high streets to an hour, it will make it much easier for people to visit our local shops and help businesses grow. This will be a real boost for our high streets and help revitalise the local economy whilst making sure there is still a good level of turnover in parking bays – giving as many people as possible the opportunity to use parking spaces to pop to the shops.”
On-street parking controls were introduced in Wanstead at the start of 2018 following a long period of dispute and debate. It is not known if Redbridge has undertaken any assessment of the impact on shops, but anecdotally it would appear that in Wanstead the restrictions have made it somewhat more possible to park for short periods during the day.
And the traditional opening big event for the Fringe – the Duke Street Party – is going to be everything we have come to expect: great music, food and company really getting things off to a magnificent start.
All the first day’s events are as follows (including tonight’s eve-of-fringe Stargazing):
This year’s Wanstead Fringe, which begins on Saturday, has live music for most tastes. Sadly there’s no thrash metal madrigals this year, but most other genres are covered, from classical recitals to jazz to folk to acoustic singer-songwriters. Details of all the events are below – some require tickets to be bought, but others are free.