2011 has been a tough year for many people as the recession bit, but in Leytonstone there were some signs of hope and a couple of fantastic additions to the area.
First came the reopening of the Red Lion, as a community local which attracted me, my friends and neighbours. Often when I drop in, I’ll run into someone I know, and that for me is part of what a good “local” should be. The pub has some great ales, and holds live music events, so there are plenty of reasons to visit. At last there is somewhere to meet friends and to pause on the way home – just what the area needed.
Second came the new art gallery, The Stone Space. Run by many of the people who organise the annual Leytonstone Art Trail, along with a number of keen volunteers who invigilate during opening hours, The Stone Space is a wonderful venue which has already hosted a number of interesting exhibitions. They change roughly every two weeks. For more information see http://thestonespace.wordpress.com/ Next door to The Stone Space is Slate, an art display space in the windows of what used to be Waltham Forest Direct. To mark its new name the display boards have turned dark grey. It’s overseen by artists from The Stone Space, and I’m the co-ordinator. Exhibitions change every 6 weeks, and currently on show is a show of woodblock & linocut printmaking, and jewellery, by Somhairle Kelly. http://www.slate-arts.com/ So it’s not all doom and gloom. We end the year with some new venues which have much to benefit Leytonstone – and hope for 2012.
Wherever you are, I wish you a Happy New Year!