Verdict on the parklet

Wanstead’s parklet is nearly a year old, and people’s views on it are now being collected. A research project by the University of Westminster is asking residents what they make of it by taking part in an online survey.

Officially known as the Wanstead Mobility Hub, the parklet was installed last Spring and initially (we thought) looked rather attractive, though the woods and plants are in need of a bit of TLC. But it’s the mobility aspects the survey is really interested in (see pic below), and the survey raises the prospect of the hub only being there on an experimental basis.

The survey is here:

Before and after – pics from Google Streetview via

Pet shop stays

Wanstead’s pet owners – and indeed its pets – can breathe a sigh of relief.

Heads n Tails, Wanstead’s longstanding pet shop, will be remaining after Mas Beg’s imminent retirement. The shop is being taken over by owners of a nearby pet shop whose intention, we understand, is to continue the tradition he has set.

We wish them, and of course Mas (left), all the best.

Wanstead digs deep

Pic: Wanstead Village Councillors, Facebook

A crowdfunding effort to make good the damage to the playground in Christchurch Green following a fire last month has raised more than £5,000 from Wanstead residents.

It was much more than was needed to replace the equipment (and squidgy ground) and, as promised by the crowdfunded’s organiser Paul Canal, the surplus has been donated to the Wanstead Fringe to help fund this year’s activities.

Giles Wilson, chair of the Wanstead Fringe Association, said it was hoped the donation would help fund some theatrical activity at this year’s Fringe. “We’re really grateful to all the donors whose generosity will be further helping the cultural life of Wanstead – and also to Paul who helped it happen.”

This year’s Wanstead Fringe is taking place between 10 and 25 September, with the Wanstead Festival happening on Sunday 18 September. The open air Kinema will be on Saturday 10 September and the Jumble Trail on Saturday 17th.

Hedgehogs still exist in Wanstead

Wansteadium has a special affection for hedgehogs, as longtime readers know. It’s not so much the animals themselves as the indication that living things were here when Wanstead was all woodland and fields and farms and the like.

For a number of years we’ve invited readers to send in pictures of hedgehogs, though in the past couple of years there haven’t been very many sightings of them, dead or alive. But reader Ruth King has just kicked the season off in style.

Eighteen months ago she bought a trap camera to see if she could find evidence of hedgehogs. But it wasn’t until last week that she set up a feeding station – a plastic storage box with a lid – and put some meat-based cat food and water inside. Then she waited.

For two nights.

And these photos are what she discovered in the morning (click/tap picture to enlarge).