Editor's Welcome

February 2019

Written by the editor Monday, 04 February 2019

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As divisive issues go, the cat versus dog debate is up there with Brexit, fracking and the best Beatles album. Everyone seems to have an opinion and many will go to extreme lengths (such as shoehorning the topic into the welcome address of a magazine off the back of an article about caring for cats – see page 34) to defend that opinion or to sway those slightly less entrenched in one camp to join them in their camp. I have no desire to quibble with anyone's Leave or Remain vote, to argue for or against the extraction of gas and oil from shale rock or to debate the Fab Four's back catalogue. But when it comes to cats and dogs, I have to speak my mind.

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January 2019

Written by the editor Monday, 31 December 2018

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This publication is no stranger to art. Quite the contrary, in fact. As diamonds are to girls, striking, two-dimensional creations by local residents are a community magazine editor's best friend, providing visually appealing – and geographically relevant – content. It's little wonder, therefore, that artists account for a significant number of article bylines in the history of the Wanstead Village Directory, which thrives on its community-contributed content. Each of those bylines represents a different set of inspirations, a different display of ideas and a different portfolio of talent.

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December 2018

Written by the editor Saturday, 01 December 2018

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Last month, I used this space to indulge in showbiz gossip. With rumours rife Sir Elton John would be leading the John Lewis Christmas TV ad campaign, the opportunity to open our November issue with a 'step into Christmas' pun was too good to miss. But now the rumour has been confirmed and piano sales are set to rocket, I wonder if I've peaked too soon with Elton song wordplays... let's find out

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November 2018

Written by the editor Saturday, 03 November 2018

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Shortly after this issue is published, our TV screens will once again be adorned with the work of those masters of Yuletide spin, the advertising creatives. And if rumours are to believed, Sir Elton John will be heading up John Lewis' latest entry in the seasonal TV ad battle. So, with festive theme tunes beginning to take over our audible surroundings and with the Wanstead tree set to light up George Green this month, it must be time to step into Christmas.

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October 2018

Written by the editor Sunday, 30 September 2018

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By the year 2050, for the first time in human history, there will be more people over 60 years of age than children in the world. Almost 700 million people are currently over the age of 60, but within just 30 years or so, two billion people (over 20% of the world's population) will be 60 or older. These United Nations statistics give some insight into the changing dynamics of the world around us. A UN analysis of these figures goes on to urge that "enhanced attention to the particular needs and challenges faced by many older people is clearly required."

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September 2018

Written by the editor Saturday, 01 September 2018

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Sometimes things look good on paper but lose their sparkle when seen in the cold light of day. The empty hotel swimming pool in a glossy travel brochure inviting you for a dip, compared to the crowded reality, or the much-hyped winter wonderland promising reindeer rides, compared to an emaciated donkey with strap-on antlers limping through slushy puddles. The more impressive the object of desire seems on paper, the greater the disappointment potential. The greater the expectation, the bigger the fall back down to reality.

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August 2018

Written by the editor Monday, 30 July 2018

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I'm not a football supporter. My wife is not a football supporter. My four-year-old daughter – who can hoof a ball over a five-foot fence – is not a football supporter. Through a general lack of interest in the competitive game, I'm ashamed to say we all missed England's opening match of the World Cup, which is apparently an important footballing event. But as the nation's hopes were raised, and as Tunisia and Panama succumbed to the prowess of Kane and Co, so too did the three of us succumb to the excitement of the prospect that football could be coming home.

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July 2018

Written by the editor Saturday, 30 June 2018

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If it's going to work anywhere, then it will work in Wanstead. That's a phrase I find myself saying often when in conversation about new events, initiatives or projects planned for the local area. It's said with a certain amount of bias, given this publication thrives on the success of what is a vibrant and proactive community. And it's become something of a cliché in the lexicon of Wanstead Village Directory speak as I find myself praising the responsiveness of Wanstead folk to new things more and more. But clichés are clichés for a reason. And this one has big names like Art Trail Wanstead and the Wanstead Fringe to prove those reasons are real

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