Author: Wansteadium

Fewer drivers than expected are driving polluting vehicles in the newly expanded Ultra Low Emission Zone, which includes Wanstead.

Good news for: Humans and other lifeforms in Wanstead and other areas inside the North Circular which are being exposed to less pollution. The zone expanded in October.

Unexpected consequence for: Transport for London, which had expected to raise up to £2m a day from charges for drivers who had not updated their vehicles to less polluting models. Cameras within the ULEZ recognise moving vehicles which are not compliant and charge owners £12.50 a day. TfL has lowered its financial expectations to £600m over three years because of “fewer journeys by polluting vehicles being made compared to original expectations”. (Quoted in the Standard here.)

Bigger picture: TfL has had its finances hit by the lockdown with millions of people staying at home rather than going on the Tube or buses. It’s appealing to the Government for extra funding and has warned that bus routes and even an entire Tube line might be closed to save money.

With Christmas approaching, happily events are taking place again (unlike last year, and – who knows? – unlike next year). And the best way to let Wanstead people know about an event is still the Wanstead Events Calendar. After years of faithful curation by Stephanie Pettigrew, it’s now possible for organisers to add and amend events themselves.

How to submit an event: On the links at the top of this page you’ll see “Wanstead Events Calendar”. Beneath that you will see a link which says “Submit an event”. You can also just click this link.

Just follow the steps. You’ll be able to add all details for your event – please add a picture too to make sure it gets noticed. All events have to be approved (to avoid spam) so there might be a delay until your item appears on the calendar.

The new building in its final stages

New shop: The rather impressive new building on the site of the former Joliffe Builder’s office is to be an establishment known as “D’vine Nature”. We don’t yet know what kind of business it will be, but a licensing application has been made to Redbridge for it to have an off-premises alcohol licence.

What is it? We’re trying, with our finger stuck in the air, to work out what it might be… An organic wine cellar? A wholefood shop? Something we can’t yet imagine?

Traditional: As ever, we wish the people behind the venture good luck and hope what they bring will add to rich texture of the High Street.

Flashback: The new building was approved after a previous application, which would have been known as The Cube and would have been clad in green, was rejected. This new development provides seven one-bedroom flats and six two-bedroom flats as well as the new shop.

It’s goodbye to Andrew Farress, longtime Wanstead resident and, for the past decade, manager of the Oxfam bookshop on Wanstead High Street. He’s leaving Wanstead to move with his partner to Taunton, Somerset, where he will be taking up a new role managing the Oxfam shop there.

Under his management, and with the support of volunteers and donors, the Wanstead shop has become one of Oxfam’s most successful and has helped raise hundreds of thousands for the charity. He has also been an enthusiastic supporter of the Wanstead Fringe, hosting several events in the shop over the years.

Good luck to Andrew, and thank you for your service.

Big poppy at King’s Cross. Not in Wanstead

The sale of poppies in Wanstead in the run-up to Remembrance Day is starting again this weekend for two weeks, returning to a more normal pattern of sales post-lockdown.

The details: All the shops on the High Street who normally sell poppies will do so, including Wanstead Station, Zoology,  Cafe Chi-Chi,  Daisy, Co-op, Harvey’s, Ginger Pig, Moments, Tesco, Nat West Bank, The Larder, Krishna News, Robins Pie and Mash, Heads and Tails, Toolbox, Snaresbrook News, Bare Brew, The Eagle, The Duke, The Nightingale and Snaresbrook Crown Court.

Street collections: Coordinator Susan Carroll says collectors will be on the High Street on two days – Friday 12th and Saturday 13th November. Scout groups will be joining in on the Saturday.

So completely back to normal? Not quite, says Susan. They are only being permitted the two days’ collection, whereas previously they had more: “It doesn’t seem particularly fair given that every other borough in the country has more time, but rules are rules and so we have to abide by them.”

Also: Poppy Man Jim, a longstanding seller, will this year be equipped with a card reader.

Culminating in: The traditional service of remembrance at the War Memorial on the High Street on Sunday 14 November.