Newsletter Archive

MEOTRA has been going since 1974 and has published over 140 newsletters and rising. 

Over 136 of these have now been digitised and these documents illustrate the extensive changes that have occurred over the last half a century to this little pocket of the east end. It is ever-evolving, but common themes raise their head and are voiced by an ever-changing cast of characters. So take a wander around our virtual MEOTRA streets. Keep an eye out for the dog poo, the rat running, the traffic and parking problems, be inspired by spirited locals battling AND WINNING against ill-conceived plans to level the area; but enjoy tales of  children performing and directing  the Lord of the Ring Trilogy over three nights, real east enders rubbing shoulders with EastEnders from the Beeb, steam trains, Fun Days, Carols with illicit mulled wine and some rather weak jokes along the way. 

In 2000 Meotra published Changing Places which gives a sense of place, but above all else a taste of the people. These newsletters too capture the characters who have walked and lived or worked on these fourteen streets of ours over the last half a century or more.

Typically there are three MEOTRA newsletters each year: before the AGM; Summer Fun Day and the Carol Singing.

Newsletter Issue


December 2021

AGM & Constitution Changes; Carols in the Square: In COVID Times; Crime: Bow West Ward Panel; Filming in MEOTRA area; Planning: Liveable Streets; Rewilding Holy Trinity Churchyard; TSG: Survey    

December 2020

Event: Carols - COVID-19 Doorstep Carols             

October 2020

Events: Covid Curbs MEOTRA's activities; COVID-19: ZOOM AGM            

December 2019

History: 75th Anniversary of First Flying Bomb             







June 2018

People: Russell Stone; Planning: TfL redesign of Mile End Junction            

March 2018

Bow Police; Crime: Burglaries; Planning: Plastic Windows; Planning: Texaco site - 53 Grove Road; Traffic       

December 2017

Crime: Safer Neighbourhood Team; Planning: Article 4 Direction on Grove and Burdett Road; Planning: Benjy's Towers          

June 2017

Event: Bow Church Open Days; Planning: 562 Mile End Rd; Roman Road Neighbourhood Forum; Traffic Problems: rat running; TSG: Appeal for info.         

April 2017

Planning: 48-52 Grove Road; Planning: Benjy's Towers; TSG Bulb Planting          

42461 2016

Bow Book Group; Event: Carols in the Street!; Crime: Bow Police Ward Panel  Planning: Grove Rd Texaco Planning Application; TSG Bulb Planting       

December 2016

Planning: Roman Road Neighbourhood Plans; Planning: Territorial Army Site; TSG: Bulb Planting          

June 2016

Planning: 562 Mile End Rd; rear of 48-52 Grove Rd; Roman Road Neighbourhood Plan             

December 2015

Event: MEOTRA Mums; Planning: CS2 Upgrade; Play: Common Women          

April 2015

Crime: Plant Theft; Fly Tipping; Planning: Cycle Superhighway CS2; Planning: Road Works - Mile End Road; Planning: Tree Felling on Bow Rd       



December 2014

Crime: Theft, Litter & ASB             

June 2014

Balcony Gardening; Bow Drama Group; Heritage: Post Box; Planning: Art Pavilion applies to be wedding venue; Planning: St Clements, Community Land Trust       

March 2014

History: Meotra; Photo: Margaret's Garden; Planning: 5 Coborn Rd; Planning: Mile End Park Art Pavilion as wedding venue; Police Walkabout; Rubbish Collections      

December 2013

Planning: 5 Coborn Rd; Planning: Benjy's Site; Planning: Coborn Arms; Play: Bow Voices         

June 2013

History: St Clements; Planning: Why SO SLOW!; Play: Bow Voices; TSG: Opening Hours         

April 2013

Bow Drama; Crime: Burglaries; Filming; People: Michael Rowan Thanks; People: Nigel Glendinning RIP; Planning: Central Foundation to become residential      

December 2012

Planning: Central Foundation School for Girls; Planning: Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL); Planning: St Clements; Planning: Trees         

June 2012

Olympics; Planning: CFSfG; Trees and Shrubs to support wildlife          

April 2012

Air Pollution; Crime: Burglaries; FOMEP; Gardening Club; Night Flights       

December 2011

East End Life; Gardening Club            

June 2011

Event: Bow Pageant; Friends of Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park; Gardening Club; Traffic: Olympics; TSG: Alcohol Use       

April 2011

People: Rev Michael Peet RIP; TV Aerials & Satellite dishes            

December 2010

Crime: Anti-social Behaviour (ASB); Farmers Market at QM College            

June 2010

Event: Carless Boot Sale; Planning: Green Bridge Takeaways            

March 2010

Planning: Hindu Temple in Rhondda Grove; Planning: Local Development Framework            

December 2009

Crime: Car Vandalisation; Grove Rd Crossing; Planning: Club E3 Update          

June 2009

Event: Carless Boot Sale; Petition: Grove Rd Pelican; Planning: Club E3 license suspended          

April 2009

Planning: Street Furniture; Sikh Temple Fire; Snow          

December 2008

Bancroft Library Saved; Parking; Planning: Club E3 Silenced; Planning: Onyx House         

June 2008

Bow Book Group; Carless Boot Sale; East End Women's Institute; Friends of Mile End Park         

March 2008

Filming in the Square: Part II; New Community Gym; People: Philomene Verlaan; Tredegar Square Area Traffic Planning         

December 2007

Aircraft Noise; Book Group; Carless Boot Sale; Filming in the Square         

June 2007

Event: Carless, Bootless Car Boot Sale!; Dirty Dogs; Home Information Packs; Mile End Park: Children's Play Area; Planning: MEOTRA response to Central Area Action Plan; Play: The Nightmare before Christmas      

March 2007

Mile End Park Rangers; National Childbirth Trust Coffee Mornings; Neighbourhood Watch; Play: The Nightmare Before Christmas; TSG: Playground Poll       



June 2006

Play: Meotra Youth; Planning: Council TSCA Guidelines; council planning user group idea            

March 2006

Bow Book Group; Crossrail; Grove Rd crossing; Mile End Park Rangers; Play: The Lord of the Rings Part III: The Return of the King       

December 2005

Crime: Safer Neighbourhoods; Event: MEOTRA Pub Quiz: Lord Tredegar for St Joseph's Hospice; Mile End Park: Michael Rowan Award; People: Elaine Kowalsky RIP; Play: Lord of the Rings Part II       

September 2005

Biodiversity: Buckthorn bushes & the Brimstone Butterfly; Crime: How to report Crime and Public Nuisance; Meotra Quiz Night at the Lord Tredegar in aid of St Joseph's Hospice; NCT Coffee Mornings; Neighbourhood Watch  loses dedicated officer; Planning: Development and Meotra      

June 2005

Event: Meotra Quiz Night at Lord Tredegar; NCT Coffee Mornings; Planning: Crossrail; Play: Lord of the Rings II: The Two Towers; Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park: Bow Beastlies       

March 2005

Aircraft Noise; Play: The Two Towers; Neighbourhood Watch; Crossrail; Bow Book Group       

December 2004

History: Mile End Old Town (Andrew Reid); People: Michael Rowan Mile End Park; Play: Lord of the Rings; Police Horses in Mile End Park         

December 2004

CRIME: Loop Card Readers; Mile End Park: Green Flag Award; Planning: Crossrail Mile End Park; Planning: Ropery Rope Factory; Play: Lord of the Rings Part II       

August 2004

Bow Book Group; Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment (CABE); National Childbirth Trust (NCT) Coffee Mornings; Neighbourhood Watch; Planning: Grove Rd Crossing; PLAY: Fellowship of the Ring; Youth Activities    

March 2004

Bow Book Group; Bow Crossword; CFGS Community Sports Centre; Friends of Mile End Park; Guidelines on living in a Conservation Area; Holy Trinity: History of the Church by Michael Peet; Play: The Fellowship of the Ring    

December 2003

Central Foundation Girls School: Awarded Performing Arts status; Compost Bins; Grants: For Listed Buildings; Mencap; Planning: Crossrail; Planning: MEOTRA and GLA; Play: Dick Whittington; Postal Service Problems; Street Cleaning; Traffic & Speeding

June 2003

BBQ & Bonfire nuisance; Bow Book Group; Dog Poo Fines; Friends of Mile End Park; History: Memories of Mile End Old Town; Mile End Park: Security; New Harley Grove Sports Centre; Rat Running through MEOT   

March 2003

Guardian Angels Church Restoration; History: Nicky Hilliard on moving to Tredegar Sq in 1961; London City Airport; Mencap Fundraiser at the Lord Tredegar; Play: Dick Whittington & His Cat; Postal Problems; Weekly Recycling    

September 2002

Aircraft Noise; Flood Plains and Plans; Lichfield Rd Golden Jubilee Street Party Committee raises £4,200 for charities; Neighbourhood Watch; People: Dr Thomas John Barnardo (1845-1905); Street Litter and Rubbish      

June 2002

Heritage: Georgian Ice House in Tredegar Sq, digital video; Noise: Night Flights; Our Queen's Golden Jubilee: Lichfield Rd street Party, featured in The Times; Ragged School         

March 2002

Grove Rd Crossing; History: 401 Mile End R, Onyx House, Essex House, CR Ashbee; History: Charles Robert Ashbee (1836-1942); The Queen's Golden Jubilee         

December 2001

Aircraft Noise; People: Coborn Corner: Paresh & Mina Patel; Neighbourhood Watch; Dog Poo; Furniture: Quakers; Golden Jubilee Celebrations; History: Changing Places Book Launch; History: Prisca COBORN; History: TSG; People: Russell Stone

September 2001

Bow Rd street furniture repainted and repaved; Changing Places Book Launch; History: Central Foundation Girls School; History: The Morgan Dynasty; Missing Boundary Marker to be replaced; Planning: Holy Trinity Church receives £336,500 lottery grant to convert crypt  Planning: New Conservation Guidelines Issued    

June 2001

Aircraft Noise; Conservation Corner: Stucco; Friends of Mile End Park; Heritage Lottery Fund: Mile End Old Town book; History and Places: The Regents Canal; London Open House; Neighbourhood Watch; WJ Meade Opens at Green Bridge; Planning: Street Design Guide; Stepping Stones: Foot and Mouth Outbreak

March 2001

Heritage: Ironwork, Railings, gates & street lamps; History: Malmesbury Junior School; Mile End Park: Forming a Friends Group; Neighbourhood Watch; Planning: Saxon Hall; Traffic: Rat running      

December 2000

Conservation: Front Doors; Crime: Poplar Boundary Stone STOLEN; Grants: Housing Repairs; History: Mile End Old Town; Kids MEOTRA; Kirtland Centre      

September 2000

Grant: £4000 Heritage Lottery Fund for MEOTRA Millennium Book; Heritage: Painting Sash Windows; History and Planning: Holy Trinity Church renovations; Mile End Park:  Fountain Broke and gardens tatty already; Stepping Stones Farm; WJ Meade: S-Club 7 competition winners      

June 2000

Conservation Corner: Sash Windows; Millennium Photo Exhibition: Book of the Exhibition; People: PC Brian Mitchell; People: Russell Stone; Places: Territorial Army Centre; Street Litter; Super S-Club 7 Competition    

March 2000

Photos: Millennium Photography Exhibition; Play: Annie; Rubbish Collection; Traffic: Rat Running         

December 1999

Millennium Calendar         

December 1999

History: Pre-Millennial Thoughts; Millennium Celebrations; People: Russell Stone; Street Cleaning         

October 1999

Disunited Kingdom; Fortune-teller: Future of MEOT is good; Planning: Mile End Park Funding Awarded; Stepping Stones Farm at 20         

July 1999

Event: Fun Day: Fancy Dress - the last 1000 years!; Grove Forum: Rubbish, Parking, safety!; History: James Warren, engineer and inventor; Local History Sources; Planning: Mile End Park; 48-50 Grove Rd; TSG: Council to erect Christmas Tree; TSG: Pupils to plant bulbs, general wear and tear    

March 1999

History: Of the MEOTRA area (continued); Mile End Park; Millennium Ideas; Rents         

December 1998

Event: Christmas Carols in the Square; Council Tenants; History: MEOTRA Area; Mile End Park; Millennium Events Information; Planning: Conservation Guidelines      

October 1998

Aircraft Noise; Balloon Launch for Asbestos Charity (OEDA); Millennium Photography Project; Planning: Mile End Park Update; Planning: Traffic Schemes; rat running; Recycling: One Year On; Streetline: Dog Fouling; litter, street lighting    

June 1998

Approved Mini-cabs Scheme; BBQ Smoke!; Planning: Acoustic Wall north of Lichfield Rd railway; Planning: Help with Applications         

March 1998

Millennium Party Plans; Noise: Cabs; Photos: Millennium Photography Project; Planning: Holy Trinity Church Hall Opened; Planning: Mile End Park Wind Turbines       



December 1997

Dog Poo; History: Bow's Industrial Past; Holy Trinity Church: New Testament Church of God Church Hall completed; Noise; Planning: Barnardo's Tredegar Sq       

October 1997

History: Bow's Industrial Past; New phone Services Arrive; Parking: CPZs arrive; Planning: Mile End Park Funding Awarded         

February 1997

History: New Testament Church; History: The Coborn Inheritance; Planning: Holy Trinity Church to be restored as Church and Community Hall; Planning: Mile End Park £15 million plans; TSG: Let down by the council       

November 1996

Agenda 21; History: Coborn, Morgan & Tredegar Estates; Neighbourhood Watch; Parking: Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ); Planning: Harley Grove; Sikh Temple; extensions; Planning: Mile End Park      

July 1996

Barnardo's Boys Residential Unit, (27-28) Tredegar Square; History: The Welsh Connection; Holy Trinity Church: New Testament Church of God moving from Grove Rd; Mile End Park: Millennium Fund Funding; Noise: Mini-cabs, aircraft; Planning: 43-49 Grove Rd, 14 Grove Rd, Mews Flats for Tred Sq, 53 Tred Sq (Eileen & Sam's old café), Rhondda Grove Bingo Site; Survey: Sports Facilities for CFGS    

April 1996

Grove Rd Zebra Crossing; Street rubbish            


TSG: Survey for residents regarding Tredegar Square Gardens             

December 1995

Event: Christmas Carols; Event: Christmas Party: Coborn Arms; Grove Rd Zebra Crossing; Parking; Street Litter       

October 1995

Dog Poo; Noise: Car and burglar alarms; aircraft   Planning: 63 Coborn Rd; 22 Rhondda Grove; 43 Morgan St (Playwright's Arms); 17 Bow Rd; 30 Aberavon Rd; Planning: Mile End Park Millennium Funding Bid including Map; Residents Parking Plans Paused; TSG: Results of the survey      

June 1995

Barnardo's Boys Unit; Funday: Fancy Dress - the Wild West; Grove Rd Zebra Crossing; Holy Trinity: Arts Centre or New Testament Church of God?; Planning: 4 & 14 Grove Rd, 439-445 Mile End Rd; 21 Harley Grove; Planning: Meotra's role; TSG: Late night ASB and park patrols; VE Day Celebrations   

February 1995

Event: Christmas Party at Coborn Arms; Crime: Anti Social Behaviour (ASB) by CFGS; Grove Rd Zebra; Noise: Heathrow; TSG: Worn Grass       

November 1994

Aircraft Noise; Event: Fun Day Writeup: Croquet; Bouncy Castle theatrics and woes; Grove Forum & Bow West Forum; Planning: 14 Grove Rd; behind 1-67 Lichfield Rd; 32-38 Lichfield Rd   TSG: Encouraging football in Mile End Common       

June 1994

Dog Warden; Grants: Railings; History: Doodlebug bomb with photo; Neighbourhood Watch; Residents Parking; Speed bumps; TSG: Use Mile End Park for ball games instead    

March 1994

Grants: Railings; Residents Parking            

November 1993

History: Bow's Development, Cooper's Company; Residents Parking Survey Results; Tower Hamlets Choir          

September 1993

2-page (Fund Day and Land & Co) some missing?             

June 1993

Grove Rd: Zebra Crossing; Introduction of residents parking; Neighbourhood Watch; Photo: Aberavon Rd 1979 Carnival Float Photo; Planning: Crossrail; TSGG: No ball games!      

April 1993

Event: Fun Day Notice; History: St Stephen's Church & Rd; Land & Co sponsorship starts; Planning: Bus Lane Introduction; Planning: Crossrail; Planning: Parking Zones Introduction      

November 1992

Event: 999 Spectacular; Crossrail; Events: First Carols in the Square; Events: Report on first FUN DAY; Grants: Railings; History: History of your House; Noise & Air Pollution; Unitary Development Plan   

March 1992

History: Charles Booth, "Bow is the Clapham of Tower Hamlets"; Mile End Lock by Peter Coker (1949)            

November 1991

Dog Poo; Mile End Rd: Green Man Too Fast!; Neighbourhood Watch; Planning: Unitary Development Plan; Party Walls; Central Foundation; Street Litter; Traffic: Rat Running      

November 1991

Neighbourhood Police reports from across the borough, including Bow             

July 1991

Mile End Hospital Casualty to close; Neighbourhood Watch; People: Canon ffrench-Beytagh RIP; Planning: Unitary Development Plan         

February 1991

Event: Christmas Party at Bates, Tredegar Terrace; History: Underground Shelter in Mile End by Edmond Kapp; Kirtland Centre: Mencap at old Post Office site          

December 1990

Event: Car Boot Sale; Crime: Neighbourhood Watch; Noise: Traffic, Planes, Cars, Alarms, Neighbours; Planning: Holy Trinity Church, Victoria Park Housing Association (VPHA); Planning: Tower Hamlets Unitary Development Plan; Post Box      

July 1990

History: Bow Heritage Trail; Neighbourhood Watch; Planning: Difficulty crossing Mile End Rd due to light timings          

March 1990

Parking; Restricting Car Use; Traffic          

December 1989

Bow Neighbourhood; Event: Christmas Party: Julie from EastEnders; Competition: MEOTRA Logo; MEOTRA Objectives; Planning: Crossrail; Trees      

September 1989

History: Bow Neighbourhood Blue Plaques Controversy - Morgan or Snow?; Heritage: Pillar Box Saga design; Planning: Holy Trinity Church for school teacher and sheltered housing?; Planning: Morgan St Closure Meeting (For or Against?)         

June 1989

Event: Central Foundation Fete; Planning: 49-51 Tred Sq; 51-53 Bow Rd; 43-49 Grove Rd; Planning: Proposed road across Vicky Park          

March 1989

"Meotra's malicious misinformation?"; Neighbourhood Watch; Planning: 49-51 Tredegar Sq          

December 1988

Bow Area Improvement Office: Grants for Home Repairs; Event: Christmas Party; History: Sausage Makes of MEOT; Holy Trinity Churchyard: Litter; Neighbourhood Watch; Planning: Clinton Rd 100 homes; Residents Forum    

September 1988

Building Tips; Estate Agent Prosecuted; Heritage: Railings; History: WWII Bombing Report on MEOTRA Area; MEOTRA Residents Forum; Rent Assessment Survey; Trees    

June 1988

Campaign for a post-box within MEOTRA; History: Tredegar House, Newport; Spring Checks for your home          

February 1988

Crime: Neighbourhood Watch; Planning: 401 Mile End Road, Besso House; Planning: 49-51 Tredegar Sq vacant site  Planning: Coach House demolished without permission         

November 1987

Cable TV Arrives: 25 channels!; History: Lichfield Rd in 1863; Local History Working Group; Neighbourhood Watch; Planning: Coborn St Coach house       

September 1987

History: Coborn Rd Station; Planning: Coborn St, Coach House Saga; Post Box Saga; Residents' Skills Swap; TSG: Works almost complete!       

July 1987

Event: Historic Walk with Gail Durbin; History: 401 Mile End Road & CR Ashbee; Neighbourhood Watch; TSG: New landscaping complete. No dogs allowed!         

April 1987

History: Street Names; Planning: Article 4; Planning: Street Lights; Planning: TSG; Traffic       

December 1986

Event: Christmas Social; Housing Action Area; Neighbourhood Watch; Planning: 49-51 Tredegar Square; Planning: Article 4 Direction; Planning: Lampposts; Traffic    

July 1986

AIM: Area Improvement & Modernisation; New period lampposts; Noise; Planning: 49-51 Tred Sq site for sheltered housing?; Planning: Article 4 direction; TSG: £78,000 allocated      

February 1986

Crime: Neighbourhood Watch; Planning: Clement Attlee Statue in Mile End Park; Planning: Forkhurst Site  plans 12 flats and 3-bed house; Planning: GLC commits £200,000 to MEOT improvements; Planning: Old Coach House; TSG: £5k saving loses £10k grant      

November 1985

Grants: £50,000 for railings, street lamps, litter bins, trees?; Home Improvement Grants; Neighbourhood Watch; Trees: Good & Bad!; TSG: Improvement delays       

May 1985

Dogs; Forkhurst Site; Heritage: Buttermilk Stucco; Holy Trinity Church: Emergency Repairs; Housing Grants; Pavement Complaints; Refuse Collections    

February 1985

Holy Trinity Church: Now closed for worship, housing?; Planning: Commercial Sites; Planning: Tredegar Mews; Police Horse falls in Lichfield         

October 1984

Dr Barnardo's Boys Home; Grants: GLC Funding Issues; Heritage of Tower Hamlets; Planning: Five Mews Cottages for 11A College Terrace site; Trees; TSG: Public Meeting and Designs      

August 1984

TSG: £15k funding for gardens             

June 1984

Dr Barnardo's move into 27-28 Tred Sq; Grants: Railings; People: Michael Cashman resigns; Planning: Buttermilk is the agreed colour!; Planning: Kipper Project for 16 young homeless move into 417 and 419 Mile End Rd       

May 1984

Barnardo's move into Upton House; History: Coborn Road: aka Cut Throat Lane; Dog Poo; MEOTRA Supports GLC; Planning: Kipper Project, 427 and 429 Mile End Rd       

February 1984

Event: MEOTRA Exhibition on plans and grants             

January 1984

Bow Traffic Plan - 40 years before Liveable Streets!; Planning: £190k Grants from A.I.M/GLC; Planning: Cinema Sold on Bow Rd - rumours of office block and 24 maisonettes; Planning: MEOTRA gets CA extended to Grove Rd instead of Rhondda Gr; Planning: New houses on corner of Lichfield and Grove Roads; Planning: TSG to get £15k refurb      

August 1983

One sheet newsletter: Poor response Notice!             

July 1983

Planning: GLC to build 6 houses on Lichfield/Grove corner; Planning: Grants for railings and stucco repairs and temporary parks            

June 1983

Planning: AIM Action Area - £200k for MEOT improvements; Planning: MEOTRA gets all copies of all local planning applications            

April 1983

History: Mile End Old Town (MEOT)             

May 1976

Lucky Draw: £5 Prize; Planning: Aberavon Rd; Planning: Empty Houses & Squatters, 12 Tredegar Terrace empty for 14 years; Planning: Tredegar Terrace, paper processing plant; Planning: Trees; Reducing Teenage Unemployment      

March 1976

Convert vacant sites to gardens whilst long planning processes take place; Planning: Coopers School Site Shambles: Houses threatened with demolition; Prefabs in Rhondda Grove and Tredegar Sq; TSG: Playground in disrepair         

June 1975

Planning: Cooper's Site - MEOTRA fights demolition of 50 houses for playground; Planning: MEOTRA prepares plans to improve Aberavon Rd houses; TSG: First MEOTRA Festival - Punch & Judy, disco, Indian dancing          

December 1974

Planning: Aberavon Rd Slum Clearance; Planning: Alloway Rd Slum Clearance; Planning: Cooper's School; Social Night

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