July 2018

Talk about WansteadTalk about Wanstead

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.

So, what is it about our village that offers event organisers easy pickings? What is that secret ingredient that gets bums on seats and people talking? I think I've answered my own question there: people talk. Communities talk. In fact, the more I think about it, the more important talking – or communication in general – seems to be as the foundation block of any community. If you take away the public venues, the annual festivals and the local clubs, you are still left with a functioning community, albeit one with little to do. But no amount of libraries, halls, talks or organised activities will be able to sustain an uncommunicative community. Communities work when communication works, and – if you will indulge me – I like to think this publication contributes in some small way to those inner workings.

With exciting events planned for this September's Wanstead Fringe and art trail, and with the return of Music in Wanstead Park this month, I have little hesitation in predicting their respective successes. If they are going to work anywhere, then they will work in Wanstead. And that's because Wanstead... works.