What’s being done about the demolition of The Chocolate Shop and its twin – and above all what’s being done to punish the man who destroyed it? Those were the most repeated questions asked by Wanstead residents as they stopped off at The Wanstead Society stand at the Festival on Sunday, September 13. They need to know that the wrongdoer who destroyed this beloved little piece of our past will be punished and, hopefully, the building replaced as best as is possible. Please note, Redbridge Council.
The Festival is a wonderful opportunity for the Society to find out what the community cares about. Next burning topic was the Kinema. It’s meaningful to us, part of our heritage and we don’t want it demolished – help us do something about it, folk told us. We do try.
Rivalling this for attention was the delivery bay in front of its shop which Tesco was reportedly pressing for. Our petition against it was very busy all day. News is that our Council has turned it down. Cross fingers that will be the end of it.
But, as reported elsewhere and on this website, the brightest spotlight was on our shops – and the glamour and cheer they bring to our High Street. To focus attention on, first, how lucky we are to have them, and secondly, what a feel-good-factor it gives when shops are well-kept and nicely presented as befits a Conservation Area, the Wanstead Society stumped up £500 as a token of thanks to the shop which residents voted the smartest. The winner was Dennis the butcher. But as he would be the first to admit, it was a narrow win and plenty of other shops look very good too and deserve our thanks and support.
The main thing is to keep up appearances and – with the community’s support - get through this recession.