Poppy Pantry, the cafe set in the grounds of the City of London Cemetery which has hosted innumerable funeral receptions and contemplative moments, has shut after the Corporation of London ended its lease.

Paul Charters, who has run it for several years, vacated the premises on Sunday following his lengthy but unsuccessful campaign to persuade the authorities he should be allowed to stay.

He collected more than 6,000 signatures from supporters, and also hoped that his support for the Royal British Legion and other causes would help support his case.

To Paul and his staff, though, go the thanks of former customers.

Redbridge residents can now recycle additional items in their household collection, the council has informed them. It is now possible for people to include:

  •  Plastic Pots, Tubs and Trays (e.g. yoghurt pots, margarine tubs, meat /ready meal trays and fruit/veg punnets – but no black plastic as it cannot be recycled).
  • Empty aerosol cans
  • Clean aluminium foil and foil trays

This is welcome news – it’s all good. But it comes as a bit of a shocker to Wansteadium which thought some of these items could be recycled already. Still, now we know. And in case there is any doubt, we’re including the complete list below. The council is also offering these updated tips:

Here are some tips and important things to remember when recycling:

  • Always rinse out any food waste. Food contaminates – making your recyclables, unrecyclable
  • Stacking or carefully packing plastic pots, tubs and trays will allow you to fit more into your recycling boxes
  • Rinse and scrunch up any foil for recycling
  • Black plastic can’t be recycled so please don’t put it in your recycling box.

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The eighth Wanstead Fringe concluded at the weekend and, though Wansteadium has a vested interest in this, was a huge success. Many hundreds of people took part in events ranging from comedy to open air film to book talks to the Jumble Trail to a groundbreaking spoken word night.

Giles Wilson, chair of the Wanstead Fringe Association, said: “The Fringe was a massive success this year – there was so much pent up appetite for events that nearly every event sold out. Thank you to the event organisers, venues, sponsors, volunteers, and ticket-buyers – none of it could have happened without you. 

“And now is the time to be thinking about what Wanstead Fringe 2022 might look like. If you want to get involved, or even plan your own event, please do get in touch now with us via info@wansteadfringe.org.”

Ibizo Lami at the Spoken Word night
Film critic Ben Walsh talks about the great days of British horror
The BBC’s Rory Cellan-Jones on technology and social media

Wanstead’s new mural in development.

It came about through the good offices of organiser Kathy Taylor, the hospitality of India Garden, and the skilled brushwork of mural specialist Gavin McPhail. Kathy has been running the Mini Festival of Nightingales, something which we hope will grow in years to come.

Attendees to the Wanstead Festival (one of the largest in recent years, surely?) were among those seeing Gavin working at first hand as he put the finishing touches to the bird.

So far… we’re only half way through. Do send any pics you get to info@wansteadium.com.

Photographers Geoff Wilkinson, left, and Stefan Rousseau talk about some of their favourite photographs

Some more things to watch:

On Saturday, author and actor Joseph Elliott is speaking at the Library:


And the ever-popular Graeme Matthews, aka BAM BAM will be doing children’s comedy on Saturday afternoon.


And on Sunday it’s the Wanstead Festival with all the attractions we have come to know and love. But this year there’s a greener tinge than usual, with the High Street being closed and dedicated to being green. In particular there are bike riding events which you will need to pre-book for.