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PSBL Community competition – win a voucher a week!

During the time when some of us have to self-isolate, and all of us are required to practice social distancing, it is important to show solidarity , and make an effort to communicate with our neighbours by other means.  We have seen many an image of window displays in the social media for passers-by to enjoy or engage with.

That is why PSBL wants to invite all of you South Plastonians to take part, and SHOW US YOUR BEST DECORATED WINDOW!

There’s a different category every week for 4 weeks. This week post the photo of your ‘dressed’ window to our Facebook page (or email to us and we will post it – and our FB followers will pick the winner by posting ‘Likes’- the window with most ‘likes’ gets the prize.

The winner will receive £25 Newham bookshop voucher (to support the local Newham economy – open for online orders), or a £20 voucher of your choice. Deadline Thursdays 5pm.

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What is self-care?

Self-care is any activity that we undertake in order to take care of our mental, emotional and physical health. Good self-care is key to improved mood and reduced anxiety, as well as a path to a good relationship with oneself and others.
                         Here are a few simple ways to practice self-care at home: 

1. Make sleep a priority
Sleep is incredibly important for how we feel both emotionally and physically. Any disruption to our nightly routine may cause a havoc with our health. Avoiding consumption of caffeine and sugar just before bedtime, minimising distractions in the bedroom (TV, telephones, laptops) and light-blocking curtains will all help to drift asleep and stay asleep. Also, sticking to regular timings when it comes to going to bed and getting up helps to assure a fair amount of sleep every night. If you still find yourself stressed and unable to switch off, having a calming bath will assist in relaxation and calming the mind.
2. Take care of your gut
The types of food you eat crucially impacts the bacteria that live in your stomach – an unhappy gut can lead to unhappy person. Eat a fair amount of fruit and vegetables, lean protein like fish, chicken or turkey, coupled with yoghurt or cheese and some wholegrain carbohydrates will ensure your gut is functioning to its optimum. Minimising overly spicy, highly processed food and alcohol ensures that your stomach is not subjected to unnecessary strain while digesting. Having a herbal tea after a meal (fennel, peppermint, chamomile) also aids digestion.
3.Exercise daily
We all know exercise is good for you, but what is our exercise when options are limited? There is a plethora of exercise videos available online, and some TV channels even broadcast daily exercise routine with few well known sports coaches. If that is to strenuous for you, simply walking up and down the stairs several times a day could get your heart rate up. Alternatively, going out for a walk (with a member of family or a pet) is bound to lift your mood and refresh you. If you are lucky enough to have a garden, some time spent gardening, pruning and repotting, as well as planting some easy-growing herbs and vegetables will leave you feeling serene (and there is an added bonus of growing your own food).
4. Make time for relaxation
Faced with a situation that is beyond our control, every one of us will react with elevated levels of stress and anxiety. Such a state is not beneficial for either our mental or physical health. If at all possible, best practice is to allocate some time every day for a relaxing activity, something that makes you take time out from your daily duties and focuses your attention on here and now. Good examples of such an activity are: doing crosswords/puzzles; reading an engaging book, undertaking a craft project (knitting, painting, sewing, jewellery making), meditating or writing a diary.
These simple points will hopefully remind us that self-love is the most important aspect of self-care, and without it we cannot be expected to help ourselves or others.
Milena Rouse, green spaces community worker, PSBL

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Green Gym volunteers to run a special litter pick session 27 February

The Greenway Orchard Green Gym volunteers pick litter on the Orchard site every single Thursday. In recognition of a recent and generous TKMaxx donation, they are doing a special litter pick at the PSBL shed on 27 February 11-2. The site is very littered and overgrown.

The Greenway Orchard Green Gym is now an independent community group in its own right. The inaugural AGM was held at The Mix on 19th February, with support from PSBL. The Officers (Clive, Eleanor & Nathalie) and the committee (Jaqui, Lucy & Will) have decided that they want to devote a whole Green Gym session to litter picking. This will take place on Thursday 27 February, 11-2, on the corner of Prince Regent Lane and the Greenway. See the flyer below. If you want to come, just turn up or ring -07957 534908

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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.