December 2020


Consultation on making Wanstead a Low Emission Neighbourhood


Redbridge Council has approved the creation of two Low Emission Neighbourhoods, covering Wanstead and the Oakdale area of South Woodford.

The initiative will involve measures to reduce vehicle emissions and promote sustainable living, including segregated cycle lanes – on Blake Hall Road, Centre Road, Lake House Road and Aldersbrook Road – and enhanced green landscaping. Traffic is also set to be banned outside schools at certain times. Consultations will launch in January.

More information and links to consultations will be published here when available.


Popular pre-Christmas litter pick in Wanstead Park

IMG_1964Some of the volunteer litter pickers in December

A pre-Christmas litter pick in Wanstead Park proved a popular event.

“About 40 people [more than double November’s turnout], including lots of children, turned up for our Wanstead Park litter pick on a cold Sunday in December – coincidentally the day the Roding flooded again – and enjoyed mince pies and a free Friends of Wanstead Parklands newsletter at the finish,” said Gill James.

Park users are now invited to join the Friends of Wanstead Parklands New Year litter pick on 3 January, meeting at 11am outside the Temple.


Catherine Tylney-Long (not that one) to roam Wanstead Park in three years


A pregnant cow which took part in the Wanstead Park grazing trial last autumn has given birth.

The female calf has been named Catherine Tylney-Long, after the last owner of the Wanstead mansion. Catherine is likely to have the opportunity to graze in Wanstead Park herself in three years’ time, subject to a risk assessment that is performed on each cow before they are allowed to roam freely.

Last September, her mother, Quinine, along with Nina and Naru, were the first cows to be allowed to graze in Wanstead Park in 150 years.


Community advent calendar: ‘we were overwhelmed by the response’

Screenshot 2020-12-21 at 13.02.19

The creator of a community advent calendar has thanked participants for making the project a success.

“We would like to send a heartfelt thank you to everyone in the community who supported our advent calendar initiative and donated to our fundraiser for The Corner House Project. We were overwhelmed by the response and raised an incredible £673! Thank you for bringing the calendar to life, Wanstead, and for helping us to support an incredibly worthy cause!” said Elsa Arnold.


Redbridge greenery survey


Redbridge Council is seeking feedback to help shape its Green Urban Landscape policy, which will create a plan for improving council greenery across the borough.

“This policy will update the old tree policy from 1996 and seeks to unify our approach to greenery… This policy is just one step on a journey to improving the environment within Redbridge,” said a spokesperson.

The survey closes on 15 January.



All talk, all walk, always…


COVID-19 brought a dormant Lake House Estate WhatsApp group to life. Then, group chat helped organise a jumble trail, a Halloween trail and an Advent trail. Now, Frances Hills hopes the chat will continue

It all started with a WhatsApp group. A sleepy WhatsApp group with a confusingly long name and rarely any messages. And then Covid-19 hit. Suddenly, there was a surge of activity; people wanting to help isolating neighbours, a more acute awareness of the need for the Tin in a Bin donations, and just a general need for checking in like there wasn’t before.

We all put rainbows in our windows and clapped on a Thursday night. But naturally, we started to check in on the WhatsApp group less and less. However, we had started something. Our small community, that isn’t quite part of Leytonstone, Wanstead, Forest Gate or Aldersbrook, had developed like it hadn’t quite developed before.

August came, and finally, we were given the go-ahead to host a socially distanced Jumble Trail, which was a huge success, and got the neighbours talking face-to-face again. I’ve got happy plants reminding me of what a nice (and very hot!) day that was.

The nights grew darker, and Halloween approached. I’d seen that Wanstead was doing a Halloween window trail, which looked perfect for the kids who would otherwise be feeling let down by a lack of trick or treating. I suggested we have one on the WhatsApp group, and the uptake was brilliant. One night with a lit-up window and suddenly the neighbours were chatting enthusiastically again, thanking each other for a lovely evening walk.

Time for another suggestion. This one was a big one though… an Advent window trail. I had no idea how this would go. Unsurprisingly, the residents were keen. It only took a few days for all of the dates to get signed up while the anticipation mounted.

For those that don’t know, an Advent window trail is where a different house decorates their window on one of the days of Advent and include the relevant date. Every day, there was a new window to walk to and admire, along with a lovely hubbub within the WhatsApp group. Neighbours were taking their children out for an evening stroll, spotting Christmas trees and numbered windows, and then sending lovely messages of thanks to each other on the WhatsApp group afterwards.

It’s started a bond within the community that wasn’t really there before, and we can only hope that long after the Covid-19 nightmare comes to an end, the community events and the sense of belonging within the group continue. There’s nothing better than feeling connected to your neighbours, especially in times like these. Thank you to all of the Lake House Estate residents for taking part.


When Santa came to town: local PTAs invited the big man to tour Wanstead

isantamage0Santa visited local streets aboard Steve Hayden’s milk float

A number of local school PTAs joined forces in December to organise a visit from Santa and his elves, who followed a trail across Wanstead and South Woodford.

“We all pulled together to sprinkle some Christmas magic into children’s lives during a time when we had to cancel a lot of our usual Christmas activities. Huge thanks to Parker Dairies, North London Loft Rooms and Terry Tew Sound and Light for supporting this event. And, of course, Santa’s elves who got drenched in the rain to greet delighted children,” said organiser Amy Moore.

Donations can still be made to support projects at the schools.



Whipps Cross Hospital: human wellbeing in building design

Whipps-design-sketch-1A concept of the new hospital from a presentation by lead architect Paul Bell of Ryder Architecture

The ‘things that make for human wellbeing in building design’ was the focus of a recent campaign meeting about the plans for the new Whipps Cross Hospital.

“Why daylight and views in our workplace help us sleep, how access to greenery in hospital grounds lets staff de-stress, that air pollution makes London children’s lungs on average 10% smaller. Of course, the new designs presented were the big focus,” said a spokesperson for the Sustainability Action for Whipps campaign group.

Watch a recording at


Family relaunches Wanstead puzzle created by the late Jill Stock


Jill Stock’s daughters have launched a website to enable residents to continue to buy the Wanstead-themed jigsaw puzzle their late mother created.

“Mum made a montage of Wanstead as part of the art trail when her nursing career came to an end. Encouraged to share her labour of love with the community, she made her montage – entitled Wanstead – a very Special Community – into a jigsaw puzzle, which she sold at the farmers’ market,” said Kate Gloudemans. Jill died in a road traffic collision in May 2019.



Wanstead cares: ‘the kindness of this community never ceases to amaze’

Screenshot 2020-12-21 at 12.53.07A drive-through for donations took place at Wanstead Cricket Club earlier this month

Organisers of the Wanstead CARES (Community Appeal Rough sleepers Emergency Survival Kit) initiative have praised the community for their generous response.

“The kindness of this community never ceases to amaze. We were blown away by all the donations this month… Nearly 600 gifts for children and adults of vulnerable families, local charities including The Magpie Project, Frank Charles’ appeal, Hestia and many others. We also collected over four carloads of donations – which will enable The Corner House Project to support the homeless this winter – as well as nearly 50 crates of food for Redbridge Foodbank. We could not have achieved this without you, our fabulous community and all our lovely volunteers, who were amazing. Thank you!” said Suzi Harnett and Juliette Harvey.