On Easter Sunday after a hearty breakfast and lots of chocolate eggs, we took the underground to Liverpool Street and walked the short 5 minutes to Spitalfields. This area of London, home to the original weavers and tailors and the rag trade for many years has now been gentrified some what but still has that edge that makes a place exciting to be in.
The entrance to Spitalfields has mainly been taken over by High Street eateries such as Giraffe and Pizza Express but there are one or two remaining shops that show the history of this fascinating area.
As you walk through the market into Brick Lane you discover the original heart of Spitalfields, where some of the first Asian immigrants settled. Brick Lane is full of Indian and Asian restaurants all vying for your custom and here you will find some of the best Asian food in London, from Street vendors to award winning restaurants, it’s all here.
The market is held from Thursday to Sunday when each day is given over to a different theme. Thursday is antiques day, Friday fashion and the weekend vintage but to find full details check the Spitalfields market website. If you are a vintage lover by the way, you will find everything and anything vintage here over the weekend. As well as the markets, there are basement sales and vintage fairs and shops such as Rokit and Absolute vintage. My 17 year old son bought, shoes, two jackets and a shirt for under £80.
The history of the area is still evident and some of the original Huguenots houses remain and are open to the public for tours. On my next visit in June I am hoping to have a tour of Dennis Severs house, an artist who completely restored 18 Folgate, Spitalfields to recreate the house as it would have been when inhabited by a weavers family. The silent tours which take place sound fascinating and full of atmosphere. You are asked to remain silent whilst you wander through the candle lit rooms, with open fires burning, and take in the atmosphere, which is filled with the sights, sounds and smells of a fictional family.