Future developments on Christchurch Green, Wanstead, to be debated

The power of one playing a part of the greater whole should never be underestimated.

None of us are islands but all operate as part of a larger group called the human race. This in turn is part of nature – just one element interlinked with plants, birds, animals and the atmosphere to create the whole.

The Covid pandemic has been a time when many have rediscovered community. People have been looking out for each other.

There has been much charitable endeavour, whether supporting foodbanks or helping the homeless.

There has been support for those on the front line like NHS workers and teachers.

Over the past four years as a councillor for Wanstead, I’ve endeavoured together with fellow councillors Jo Blackman, Daniel Morgan Thomas, Sheila Bain and Paul Merry to help empower people and support our communities.

Back in 2018, we played a part in organising a large public meeting on the environment.

The Cleaner Greener Wanstead group emerged from that , which in turn spearheaded a number of local initiatives.

The monthly litter picks are another initiative, where a group of volunteers come together to help clean up the area.

Other groups in the area that existed long before we got elected, like the Wanstead Community Gardeners, the Wanstead Society, Wild Wanstead, the Wren Group and Friends of Wanstead Park all operate actively in the community working to make Wanstead a better place. Wanstead Climate Action is another valuable contributor. All have played vital parts in different ways.

Christchurch Green is in the centre of our community. It is the place where the Wanstead Festival and other community events take place and come to life. It is a space that belongs to us all – though with sometimes competing views.

There has been rancour amongst some over some recent developments. But nothing that cannot be resolved going forward.

Councillors have agreed to attend a meeting next month to discuss future developments on Christchurch Green.

Hopefully, this can be the start of a really positive dialogue, maybe a Friends of Christchurch Green group can be established, which empowers people to play a role in shaping the future of this green lung at the heart of Wanstead. It’s up to people to decide.

Paul Donovan is a Redbridge Labour councillor for Wanstead village and blogger. See paulfdonovan.blogspot.com


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