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Calling for a cement mixer and generator for positive response to vandalism!

The Plaistow Orchard gets care and attention every Thursday by the Green Gym volunteers. The Orchard is a feel-good touch of wildness and nature on the Greenway to be enjoyed by everyone. Unfortunately a week after our fabulous harvest festival event at end of October, vandals destroyed hand-made benches, the water butt shed and damaged the wooden table. This was very disheartening for the volunteers and all at PSBL and the way forward wasn’t at all clear.

Amazing things have happened since the vandalism. Gas work contractors tRIIO and Skanka have widened our paths and mulched them, and Bernie of tRIIO has identified an on-site container to store our equipment and will fund its delivery. Volunteer Clive is building the shuttering for a concrete base and permissions have been granted.

It’s just that we need cement/sand etc, a cement mixer, a generator (there’s no electricity on site) and muscle on the day, which could be a weekend. Can you help? Have you got any contacts? We hope to keep on with the in-kind support which has been phenomenal so far. We see such potential for this small patch of nature. We want to carry out this work and get the container on site by the end of January if we can.

Since the vandalism we have done many positive things:

Please do get in touch if …… you would like to join the Thursday Green Gym sessions – we could always do with more help. 11-2 every week…… or you want to help with the hard work of making the concrete base……. or you know anyone that has a cement mixer and generator we could borrow, and local companies who would be willing to help with materials.

Please get in touch with volunteer Clive (07485 123556) , or Ros at PSBL (07957 534908 /


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Green Gym – fab harvest festival, goodbyes and a new year begins…

It’s exactly one year since PSBL started to support the Greenway Orchard Green Gym. It’s been a great year! Sadly we said goodbye to Amanda who has been the lead volunteer – she is emigrating to Portugal. We now leave the Green Gym in the capable hands of Eleanor and Clive and other locals, and we will continue to give support. The plan is that by 31st October next year, it is a totally independent group. See some photos from today – it was a lovely Autumn day and an opportunity to enjoy nature in Plaistow.

Lots of folk came along to say goodbye to Amanda

The Green Gym continues all through the winter: mulching the paths, pruning, planting and whatever projects they come up with. Unfortunately the bench was stolen this week and so a new one will need to be made.

A fabulous day with 16 visitors and workers 🙂 Just pop round or ring/text 07957 534908. Plenty of room for more!

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The Greenway Orchard now has water butt shed – so we want rain!

It’s been a problem for nearly 3 years now, which we hope we have solved.

The Orchard on the Greenway, a beautiful green space, with raised beds and all sorts growing, but no water!  It’s a 8 minute walk to the hospital with trolleys and wheelbarrows.  Clive , Eleanor and other volunteers put their heads together and came up with a solution.  We now have a water butt shed, and desperately want some rain to try it out and see how much we can harvest! 

We are at the Orchard every Thursday, 11-2.  It’s fun!  See some pics below from the last few months 🙂  For more info click here

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Saturday is the Youth Market & lots more! 1st June.

Bring your family and friends to the PYM on Saturday 1st June.  We are expanding the market following your ideas that we’ve been gathering.  There will be 14 traders including food, refreshments & cakes, plus Dr Bike, board games, picnic area, and activities for children and young people including non contact boxing and self defence.

The weather looks good!  The stalls are amazing! We are building up activities to complement the stalls!  You will also be able to ‘adopt a sunflower’ that are growing quietly behind the stalls and need some individual love through regular watering and weeding. You’ll get an adoption certificate and a ribbon to tie by the one you choose!

Saturday 1st June.  11-3.  Plaistow Youth Market and community day.

Greenway between Barking Road and Prince Regent Lane

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Announcing our new Development and Engagement Lead appointment

Following a recent Plaistow South Big Local (PSBL) recruitment campaign for a Development and Engagement Lead, we are delighted to announce that Denny Cornuaud – our former Chair, has been appointed to the role.

Denny brings with her a wealth of experience and understanding of Plaistow South and the wider community, as well as the Big Local National Lottery Community Fund.  

PSBL Steering Group members, supported by our Locally Trusted Organisation – REIN (Rights and Equalities in Newham), completed the recruitment exercise together with the help of an independent HR consultant who led the recruitment process.

Denny’s role will primarily focus on the following areas:

  • Managing projects and staff
  • Leading on the implementation of the PSBL Plan and associated budget
  • Engaging with our community
  • Supporting the PSBL Steering Group to deliver the Big Local programme and PSBL Plan
  • Delivering our legacy and sustainability
  • Reporting on progress and delivery

This is an important step for PSBL. We are looking forward to following up and gaining momentum to our work from here.

Denny started work this week and will be reaching out across our network over the coming weeks.

You can contact her at the following email address:

Congratulations to Denny and best wishes to her in her new role! 

Patrick Pieroni, Interim Chair, PSBL & Paul Leslie, Director, REIN

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Your support needed for a new community project in Plaistow South

Announcing an exciting new project for Plaistow South that we have been dreaming of for years.  We urgently need your help to reach 100 ‘pledges’ within 2 weeks! 

Mind, Body and Soul Food: Building a kitchen for a community café & social enterprise with therapeutic garden at REIN’s youth/community Centre in Cumberland Road to facilitate social enterprise, mindfulness, well-being & inclusion 🙂

This is a ‘crowdfunding project’ that relies on financial and practical support from large numbers of local people and organisations.  We need ‘pledges’ of £2 – £500+!   It is a partnership between REIN, Urban Mindfulness and PSBL  and would cost £113K for the first stage.

Here are the exciting advantages of the Mind, Body and Soul Food project.

  • New kitchen suitable for a community café and social enterprise.
  • Small therapeutic garden that offers a tranquil time out space for young adults and their families.
  • New floor to the community hall suitable for well-being classes, workshops and courses.
  • Free educational Mindfulness Course with a prosocial intention to each Secondary School in Newham
  • Free educational Self defence course with a prosocial intention to each Secondary School in Newham
  • Week long summer mindfulness school for youngsters and their families in Newham
  • Address diversity & inclusion as highlighted by the Mindfulness All Party Parliamentary Group Report “Mindful Nation”
  • Impact assessment to assess benefits & inform future application, including possible wider use e.g other London boroughs
  • Work with community/schools to identify individuals/groups who would benefit most and/or who are at greatest risk

We need your help to pass on the Word.  The SpaceHive crowdfunding website is here that you need to make your pledge on. If you need help with it, please do give us a ring or email. This can only work if we can build up a wonderful community body of support.  If you can tell your neighbours and friends, it would help a lot.  Schools, organisations, businesses:  please do also pledge support.

Our first goal is 100 pledges from local people within the next 2 weeks!!

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Calling all Plaistow artists and craftspeople!

A wonderful temporary art space in Plaistow will run again in 2019!

There will be an exhibition in the unique Tower Gallery in Memorial Community Church Barking Road from 4-17th July to showcase creativity in the Plaistow community. 🙂 It is open to anyone aged 11 upwards who lives, works, studies, worships or attends a community group in Plaistow.

Have you (or your group) done a painting/drawing/ photograph/ print/embroidery/collage or any other piece of creative work that you would like to put in to the exhibition? All items must be capable of being wall hung. Don’t worry it doesn’t have to be “professional” just something you enjoyed and feel proud of.

You can submit a maximum of 3 items. Submission is free but there will be a small charge of £5 per person if your work is selected, to cover overheads.(Under 19’s in full time education free)

For details/submission form please contact:
Eva Price on mob:07421235291 Whatsapp 07506854245 email Submission forms must be by email or Whatsapp with photo(s) of work (phone if this is a problem). Submission deadline is strictly 14th June.

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Hooray! Plaistow Youth Market re-opens on the Greenway for monthly markets

Saturday 6th April 11-3pm and every first Saturday through to September 🙂

We are delighted that the Plaistow Youth Market, known as PYM, is returning to the Greenway on Saturday  6th April. It will run on the first Saturday of the month through to September.  This is following on from a busy January market at NewVIc where some traders sold out!

We have 15 traders booked for April.  We are delighted that Adam is returning with his delicious locally made jams.  Our youngest trader is Zara aged 9 will be there with her bead creations – she was one of the traders that sold out in January!

Lora Toma, our youth enterprise worker: “We are excited to be running six markets in 2019.  The organising committee has agreed that we will also be looking to expand the event this year and bring in other elements to make it even more of an occasion!  So far we are looking into Zumba dancing, board games area, Dr Bike, and planting activities with my Green Spaces colleagues”

See you on Saturday 6 April and tell your Friends!

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Come on Bats. Green Gym has made a lovely bat box and can make more!

We are having fun at the Green Gym in Plaistow’s Orchard on the Greenway every Thursday. 

Things we have done over the past few months: pruned, weeded and mulched the apple trees, cut back hedgerows, prepared the location for a rain collection structure, planted blueberry bushes, Mulberry trees, harvested herbs, wild plants and veg, tasted Orchard pestos and jams, and recently made the first bat box.

Loads more coming up: weeding and re-planting wild flower meadow, growing veg, planting sunflowers and nasturtiums along the fence, more bird boxes and bat boxes, watering, wildlife surveys, litter picks …

Every week we do a warm up at the beginning, cool down at the end and have a break for a cuppa, chat and some lunch.

The Green Gym volunteers are on track to become an independent group of conservation volunteers by the end of 2019.  More volunteers needed to make this happen,

Just turn up at 11 on Thursdays. Or meet us at the shed (by the hospital) at 10.45.   The Orchard is on the Greenway between Boundary Road and Prince Regent Lane, at the Boundary Road end. The weekly session is 11-2pm

Call 07957 534908 for more info.  Or email

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The Safe Zone pilot in Plaistow South re knife crime and gangs

PSBL has piloted a project that aims to work with young people on the streets, in schools, PRU’s, youth clubs etc to raise their awareness on how to keep safe on the streets and avoid, guns, gangs and knives.

REIN youth workers have been working since November and have so far contacted 50 young people, with 20 attending workshops that include deconstructing drill music videos and increasing street awareness.

Part of the pilot is to find local shop keepers willing to be a Safe Youth Zone place, if a young person needs to get away from danger.  So far 5 shop keepers in Plaistow South have signed up.

It is a pilot and part of this is working out the sustainability of the scheme locally as well as the wider impact on youth safety whilst on the street.  We are so glad to be involved in this bigger pilot which is part funded by the Local Trust, to do something practical to address gun, gangs and knives.

We hope to feature a couple of local shop keepers that have signed up in a future blog, and our Facebook page.  We know our local shops are part of community life and it is encouraging when this community spirit can be seen in action.  You can already see these appearing in local shop windows, and more will be coming. 🙂  If you want to know more, get in touch.