Changing scape

Olympic and Paralympic site - June 2007

Olympic and Paralympic site - January 2008

Olympic and Paralympic site - December 2008

Olympic and Paralympic site - January 2010

Olympic and Paralympic site - June 2010

Olympic impact

Old Kensitas factory


The date 7/7 (2005) is generally remembered for the London bombings. Sadly, those atrocities blotted out memories of the previous day, 6th July 2005, when the anouncement was made (to the astonishment of most - especially the French, the expected victors) that London had won the Olympic and Paralympic bid. Most people in the area (though not everyone) saw this as a wonderful chance to sweep away a derelict and generally awful area for good.

Fag End

Of course, not all has been sweetness and light (e.g. the infamous Orbit sculpture, security police taking over the Flats and the whole ticket allocation process), but generally the promise has so far held good. Waterways have been cleaned up, toxic ground strata have been excavated and cleared, the twin sets of pylons have been demolished and power lines buried deep. Anyone remember the old Kensitas (cigarette) factory off Stratford High Street, deserted in the nineteen-sixties, later taken over as an annexe by the local polytechnic, and final abandoned twenty years ago? Testament to vandalism and rot, it symbolised the decay of the area. Now it is gone. Forever.

Lea fisherman

Keep fishing

The photos on the far left, taken from roughly the same point facing north-east along the River Lea, show the erection of the stadium over three years. It is a dramatic change. People rightly worry about how long some improvements will last. Transport facilities? The Westfield Shopping Centre? A grand stadium for West Ham United? Perhaps Woodgrange Web can follow the changing fortunes over the coming years. Let us at least hope the fishermen are not driven away ....

Get involved

The Olympics and Paralympics themselves will be an exciting period (though some people think the best thing would be to go far away for the duration). There will probably be a high demand for temporary accommodation and Woodgrange is in a prime spot. So perhaps there will be opportunities to let or provide lodgings. Take part in discussion about this in the Woodgrange Web Forum. Those still hoping to get tickets should look HERE. There may also be work opportunities and chances for volunteering.