The Cultural Hotspot that is Leytonstone

Leytonstone in East London is ideally located with excellent transport links into and out of the city of London. Via London underground central line you can be in the City or West End within 30 minutes while the road network links well with the M25 and M11 motorways. Leytonstone itself, while being a London suburb, is surrounded by open space. Epping Forest lies to the north, Wanstead Flats and Park to the east, with Hackney Marshes and the Olympic Park to the south and west.  In the middle of this green space Leytonstone forms an island of largely Victorian terraced housing resulting in an area with a strong sense of identity.

Leytonstone Tube Station North By Northwest Mosaic

Within Leytonstone you will find:

  • Leytonstone Film Club
  • The Woodhouse Players Amateur Dramatic Company
  • The Stone Space and Mind The Gap Art Galleries
  • Leyton & Leytonstone Historical Society
  • Local Markets featuring local made/produced items
  • The Alfred Hitchcock Society – Alfred Hitchcock of Leytonstone Society
  • Several Active Residents Associations
  • Stone Rangers – Leytonstone Branch Women’s Institute
  • The East Side Jazz Club – East Side Jazz Club hosts the best musicians in London
  • Wanstead Flats Parkrun
  • News From Nowhere Club – monthly talks covering a wide range of topics
  • A regular Makers Market
  • An annual festival
  • Many great pubs and restaurants offering food, music and a wide range of other activities

This is a flavour of what Leytonstone has to offer. For a fuller list with links see our Lovely Leytonstone page.

Snippet from the Leytonstone Arts Trail July 2018

There were many excellent arts events during July in Leytonstone and sadly I was not able to visit them all. However, I would like to share my reflections on one entitled ‘Identity’ held above the Birds pub in Leytonstone High Road. Three artists Ellie Cox, Olmo Ramella and Paolo Ramella contributed works around this theme.

Viewing this exhibition brought to mind the framework or lense through which we visualise and make sense of the world. Very interesting ideas emanate from this concept. Here are some of the pieces that caught my eye.

[Best_Wordpress_Gallery id=”3″ gal_title=”Art Show July 2018″]

To find out more about the exhibition and the artists see http://www.leytonstoneartstrail.org/identity

For more on the other exhibitions in Leytonstone in July see http://www.leytonstoneartstrail.org/category/exhibitions/

Leytonstone Community Groups Come Together

Following a recent FORA committee decision, Martin Sepion & Tony Fernandes recently set up an inaugural informal meet up of representatives of local resident associations and groups such as:-

LARA
SLADA
CHARA 
FORA

We would like to include other Leytonstone groups in future including:-
FARA , Leytonstone Transition , BARA, Friends of Langthorne Park, Francis Road Group to name only a few.

The Purpose

To get to know what sort of dis/similar issues others might be facing, to connect and share resources and connections to improve the overall quality of life in and around E11, whilst still doing what each does in their own patch best.

Work together using the power of critical mass leverage to collaboratively and more effectively harness citizen power via campaigns, media etc. to progresss solutions to issues affecting us all , especially since council election are due in May 2018

To develop a platform for capturing and acting upon input feedback via a proper online /offline forum

A steering group for E11 such as can be described under such potential names as#RebrandDestinationLeytonstoneE11 #Leytonstonia #MyLeytonstone #CatalystLeytonstone # .The simpler and punchier the better . Your thoughts are welcome as always

AIMS

Raise profile of Leytonstone
Support local business /discount schemes /affiliation and cross utilization of same
Improve appearance and image of E11.Smarter .More welcoming. Using Hitchcock as an icon as also others Damon Albarn, David Bailey, Talvin Singh, Jonathan Ross, Derek Jacobi etc.
Leverage critical mass for campaigns such as https://www.facebook.com/CleanLeytonstoneE11/
https://www.facebook.com/LeytonStoneTubeAccessForAll/

Looking into the strategic town plan for E11 Big Picture if any?
Using the wisdom of the crowd to inform planning decisions rather than mostly parachuting them in via planners etc. who do not necessarily live here ?
To work with the people of Leytonstone to reboot E11 whilst working alongside local govt towards a better quality of life, joined up thinking and resources.

Using

Some issues mentioned include
CPZ Controlled Parking Zone
https://walthamforest.gov.uk/content/controlled-parking-zones-cpzs
Local transport/Traffic management
Parking for local businesses #ShopLocalCampaign
Local business mix and shopping planning
Contract management
Parish council concept and appropriateness for E11? Political or community driven or a mix of both ?

NOTE : FORA as a residents association has no political or religious affiliation and that will not change
https://www.theguardian.com/public-leaders-network/2016/may/11/urban-parish-councils-city-dwellers-control-local-issues
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parish_councils_in_England

Mini Holland –implementation and value/delivery /costs –bang for buck
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/consultation-and-pre-decision-matters

Need for free or pepper corn rent /low cost venues access for local groups non profit ie film club etc. , social prescription remit etc. which by reducing isolation etc. can save money by reducing the need for people to go back into the NHS, mental health services

Crime/Homelessness/

Looking at a Leytonstone Business Directory plus resources such as done by Wanstead Village Business Directory produced by Lee Marquis as also for Snaresbrook and South Woodford
Pan E11 /East London Discount scheme expansion potentially digitial and the need for a common logo etc. in shops windows and such to recognize them visibly and act as reminders and enticement to join up your local resident associations etc.

Support local charity groups to achieve by co-working, publicizing and utilizing under or unused resources in the community , which may be owned by local Govt or similar
Examples :Church and Harrow Green Libraries, soon to close Leytonstone Job Centre + , Ols Police Station , Old Learning Link by Birbeck Tavern and such
Need for a Lidl/Aldi type store to compete with the likes of Tesco Superstore etc. especially for those who don’t use cars etc. to shop elsewhere such as Morrisons in Wanstead and such
Using the wisdom of the crowd to inform planning decisions rather than parachuting them in from planners etc. who do not live here
RebootE11
Joined up thinking
Political education /Safe seat apathy / being taken for granted except at election times
To make local agencies of govt etc. to sit up and take notice of the power of consolidating our powers, reach and critical mass leverage to be more effective in getting things done in the borough etc
What are the coverage by numbers of various local resident associations and online groups
Promoting and publicising local initiative such as Hitchcock’s Home Pop Up’s Hitchcock Museum /Here’s to Hitchcock of Leytonstone Foundation. Leytonstone Festival etc .

Eco-heritage trail to include Wanstead, Hitch House, St John’s, Vestry House, Walthamstow Wetlands, etc.

Some models to look at?

http://localtrust.org.uk/about-us/
http://www.stjamesbiglocal.co.uk/
https://www.facebook.com/stjamesbiglocal/

Steven Saxby

News From Nowhere Club FREE Talk – Sat. February 11th 2017 @The Epicentre E11 4LJ

More Anglican than Anarchist: Christian Socialism and the Labour Movement

Speaker: Canon Steven Saxby : Waltham Forest’s very own Red Vicar will speak on the role Christians, including Anglicans, played in the formation of the Labour movement and the Labour Party. The Church Social Union, the Guild of St Matthew and the Church Socialist League all made important contributions to Labour. Stewart Headlam and Conrad Noel, notorious radical clerics, were leaders of a movement which challenged the Church and challenged the Party and was hugely

Steven Saxby

Steven Saxby

important to George Lansbury, sometime Labour leader. With reference to how the churches related to other Labour strands, including those inspired by William Morris, Canon Saxby will consider how the churches helped transform the UK at the turn of the last century and how they might again contribute to the social movement politics required to bring real change to Britain today.

Founded in 1996, the News from Nowhere Club challenges the commercialisation and isolation of modern life.
Meetings are monthly on Saturday evenings.

News From Nowhere 2017 Programme

At the Epicentre, West Street, Leytonstone E11 4LJ

http://leytonstoneepicentre.co.uk/contact/

7.30pm Buffet (please bring something if you can)
8.00pm Talk & discussion till 10pm & back to buffet 
Travel and Access
• Stratford stations & 257 bus
• Leytonstone tube (exit left) & 257/W14 bus
• Overground: Leytonstone High Road, turn right, short walk (from about Feb 2017 – best to check)
• Disabled access
• Car park / Bikes can be brought in
• Quiet children welcome.
• Phone to confirm the talk will be as shown
• Meetings open to all – just turn up
• Enquiries 020-8555-5248
Free entry: voluntary donations welcome

Historical Walk in Leytonstone

FORA members and friends were treated to a fascinating guided walk by Dr Neil Houghton of Walthamstow Historical Society on Saturday 21st May. Neil set the group the challenge of spotting the subtle differences in architecture which enable us to date houses and identify their original purpose. We learned about the wealthy families who lived in the area before the building of the Victorian terraced housing seen today. Characters such as two governors of the bank of England and an extremely rich slave trader lived in this part of Leytonstone. We identified the boundary between the forest royal hunting ground and land on which commoners had grazing rights during the medieval period. We heard of the four thousand year old flint tools found along the streams running through the area. We listened to the rich history surrounding the procurement and building of St Andrew’s church. Neil provided us with maps and information and helped us to become ‘eagle eyed’ field historians.

Some members of FORA have four legs

Some members of FORA have four legs

Participants gave very positive feedback on the event and on behalf of all I would like to thank Dr. Neil Houghton for his time, energy, entertaining delivery and thorough knowledge of his subject.