The popular Wanstead Fringe Jumble Trail returns next month and this year it will be doing its modest part to help protect our planet. Mark Herring reports
As usual, the Fringe will unleash a full and varied programme of theatre, comedy, music and art on the people of Wanstead, with new venues and plenty of old favourites.
That includes the one and only Wanstead Jumble Trail, which offers a brilliant opportunity to clear out your wardrobe and free up some space in the toy cupboard – assuming you dare to open it.
The trail also provides a great excuse to get out there and meet your neighbours, steal ideas for your garden or just have a wander around the area. Who knows who you might meet – or what you might find? And this year, the trail aims to be more eco-friendly than ever.
Without wanting to sound too right on, man, there’s a real sense of environmental awareness in the community. This year’s Wanstead Fringe hopes to reflect that by bringing a greater purpose to the jumble trail, a purpose even greater than following the kids around as they hunt for plastic toys to fill the space you’ve made by getting rid of their old ones. Yes, the trail encourages everyone to reuse household items and keep them in use for longer. This year, however, it will also introduce new opportunities to repair and recycle too.
An expert team of seamstresses will have their needles at the ready to treat split seams, care for wonky buttons and reinvigorate worn elbow patches – if you’re sure you really want to wear elbow patches. If there are any Cubs, Scouts, Brownies or Guides in your household, you may also be interested in their badge sewing-on amnesty. Life doesn’t get much more Wanstead than that!
The Fringe is going green in other ways too. Look out for the plant clinic hosted by the Wanstead Community Gardeners. They will answer any questions you have about your indoor or outdoor plants and also hold a succulent planting workshop for under-10s. As you probably know, botanists consider the succulent a kind of cactus, while those who grow the plant as a hobby often disagree. If you’re not quite sure which side of the debate you’re on, why not take home a succulent of your own? Simply turn up with a household item to be recycled and a (non-) cactus-style plant is yours for the asking.
You’ll find this year’s main Fringe central hub behind the Corner House on Wanstead High Street, where you’ll be able to pick up a jumble trail map. You will also find a variety of jumble stalls.
If that’s not enough, a fully qualified bike doctor will be on hand (and knee) to help you out with any repairs. What more fitting way to follow the trail?