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Campaign group says ‘come dine with us’ in Wanstead Flats

PUBLISHED: 08:00 23 January 2012

Campaigners at the Take Back Wanstead Flats protest in November 2010

Campaigners at the Take Back Wanstead Flats protest in November 2010

Archant

Campaigners who attempted to block the use of Wanstead Flats as an Olympics police base want people to come dine with them in June.

The Save Wanstead Flats group met last Wednesday (January 18) to discuss their future after failing in their bid to halt an 8.6 acre base being erected during the Games.

To celebrate Wanstead Flats status as a much-loved open space, members will hold a community picnic on June 10, loosely based around the Channel 4 hit show Come Dine With Me.

They are inviting people to join them and bring food to their event in the fairground site in the south-west corner of the Flats before it is closed off for 90 days.

The group will also have a picnic there to welcome the Flats back to full open access following the Games.

Campaign spokesman Kevin Blowe said: “People seem to be very enthusiastic about the picnic.

“I think the emphasis [of the campaign] will now be more on monitoring.”

Redbridge Council granted planning permission for the base last February including a 3.4metre high perimeter fence and parking for up to 375 vehicles.

A legislative reform order was used in Parliament to override the Epping Forest Act which protects the Flats use as a public open space.

Last Friday, the City of London Corporation, who act as “conservators” of the land, said they would not back similar legislation in future.

Paul Thomson, the City of London Corporation’s Superintendent at Epping Forest, said: “The Parliamentary debate underlined the unique nature of this use of Wanstead Flats.

“The Corporation have always stated that under no circumstances would it support a legislative reform order in future.”

An online form is going to be included on the Save Wanstead Flats website to allow people to report any problems resulting from the police base.


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