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Wanstead's annual Art Trail concludes on Sunday
Buy this photo » Artists gathered outside Wanstead Library.
An art event, which has seen local people given the chance to display their work to the public, has been praised for galvanising community spirit.
The Wanstead Art Trail, now in its fourth year, has seen more than 100 artists exhibit in shops and public spaces since September 4 and is due to end on Sunday.
Organiser Donna Mizz, of Rectory Crescent in Wanstead, said: “This year there was a really great reception towards it - really warm and enthusiastic.
“It allows the artists to have somewhere to show their work, it jazzes up shop fronts, increases footfall and makes it more pleasant for people going shopping.”
The spirit of the event was embodied in workshops introducing children to various forms of art at Wanstead Library, according to artist Richard Pratley, who displayed pottery and wooden earrings at children’s clothing store Bambini.
The 66-year-old, of Blake Hall Crescent, said “They’re educational, entertaining and eye-opening.”
“They give people the opportunity to say ‘I think I’ll do that.’”
Participating businesses say they get involved to bring people together, rather than boost trade.
Aaron Hebdon, manager of J D Harvey in Clock House Parade, said: “We don’t display the art hoping it will make us busier, we do it for the community spirit because it’s for the benefit of a community as a whole.”
Dill Puneet, manager of The Art Shop in High Street, said: “For us we’re doing it as a service.
"We’re doing it for up-and-comers who could be famous one day.
“It creates awareness and free publicity for budding artists.”
A party is taking place at The George pub in High Street, Wanstead, on Sunday to mark the end of the trail, beginning at 7pm.
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