Spitalfields Travel Guide

  • Quiet Street in Spitalfields
    Quiet Street in Spitalfields
    by barryg23
  • Christchurch from Brushfield Street
    Christchurch from Brushfield Street
    by srichmond
  • Goulston Street
    Goulston Street
    by barryg23

Spitalfields Things to Do

  • Petticoat Lane market

    The Petticoat Lane market has been around for over 400 years and is one of the most well known of London's markets. Clothes are the main commodity at the market though on Sundays it’s anything goes and you’ll find plenty of interesting things as you browse. There is a market here 6 days a week though Sunday is by far the busiest day. On Mon-Fri the...

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  • Christ Church

    This is the heart of Spitalfields. This is one of the most splendid Hawksmoor buildings built in 1729. It's a key piece of London architecture. You can visit this church most day. It was resently restored to its former glory

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  • Christ Church

    Christ Church Spitalfields was built in 1729 by Nicholas Hawksmoor and since then its been one of the most recognised and renowned buildings in Spitalfields, if not London. It stands in the heart of Spitalfields on busy Commercial Street and it's imposing white steeple can be seen from all around the nearby streets.

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  • 19 Princelet Street

    19 Princelet Street is a fascinating museum of immigration. Immigration has played a huge role in the history of Spitalfields down the centuries and this museum tells the story of many of the different groups who have made Spitalfields their home down the centuries. Appropriately, the building itself is an old Huguenot house, linking it to the very...

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  • Brick Lane

    Originally it took its name from the brick manufacturers who lived on the street, but now Brick Lane is best known as the heart of the Bengali community in London. It's also home to a huge number of curry houses, and attracts large number of visitors, especially on weekends, for good value curries. If you walk down the street any evening you'll be...

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  • Goulston Street

    Goulston Street, the street where I live in Spitalfields, is well known for its association with the Jack the Ripper murders in the 19th century. It was here in 1888, shortly after the murder of Catherine Eddowes, that a policeman found a bloodied piece of Eddowes’s apron beneath a cryptic message on a wall. The message was “The Juews are the men...

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Spitalfields Restaurants

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    by barryg23 Updated Mar 20, 2007

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    Something of an institution amongst Curry houses in the East End, Tayyab is one of the most authentic Pakistani restaurants in London and has been pulling in the crowds since 1974. Getting a table here can be difficult any night of the week, but especially at weekends. The food is superb, authentic Pakistani cuisine, mostly from the Punjab region. Alcohol is not served (though you can bring your own beer if you like, there is no extra charge) and it closes for a month during Ramadan, both authentic touches which distinguish it from some of the other Asian restaurants in the area, especially ones in nearby Brick Lane. The food here is better, too!

    Some of the starters are like meals in themselves. I'd recommend the Seeks Kebabs, sizzling lamb kebabs, which are absolutely delicious. And at 70p per kebab, it’s hard not to order 3 or 4 in one go. Ruth went for a Pakora which was also delicious. We were very tempted by the Masala Fish and the Tandoori Chicken - perhaps next time.

    There are a good selection of meat and vegetarian main courses available in small and large portions. The small portions are small but if you've had a starter you'll be glad of this. We both went for the Karahi dishes. Standard dishes like naan bread and rice are also available and go perfectly with the Karahi. The no alcohol policy makes sense to me as you'll get the chance to try the delicious Lassi, which complements the food perfectly.

    Tayyab is on Fieldgate street, parallel to the Whitechapel road and just behind the East London mosque. There is a map on their website. Be prepared to queue as this place is extremely popular.

    Prices are excellent. Our meal - Pappadums, a starter each, main course each, 2 garlic naans, rice and Lassi came to 20 pounds. The only complaint I would have is that our main courses arrived before we finished starters. Otherwise excellent.

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Spitalfields Nightlife

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    The Ten Bells

    by barryg23 Updated Nov 8, 2006

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    The Ten Bells association with the Jack-The-Ripper murders makes it one of the best known pubs in Spitalfields. Between 1976 and 1988 the pub was called the Jack the Ripper, in a blatant attempt to cash in on its connection to one of Spitalfields most infamous residents (assuming he - or she - lived here of course). In 1988, 100 years after the murder, the name reverted to The Ten Bells.

    Despite changing its name, the pub has kept some mementos of the murders. A sign in the bar lists the names of six of the Ripper's victims while on the walls are newspaper cuttings about the case as well as some of he many theories about the identity of the murderer. There are more direct associations with the story. It's known that at least 2 of the victims, Mary Kelly and Annie Chapman, drank here.

    The pub is right in the heart of Spitalfields and is one of the few remaining pubs from that time. It's interior has changed little from the 1880's and it's a nice place to relax with a pint though there's not much room inside and it can get very busy. Many of the Ripper tours stop here at the end of their walk.

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Spitalfields Off The Beaten Path

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    Old Style Shopfronts

    by barryg23 Written Nov 9, 2006

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    Donovan Bros is no longer trading but their lovely shopfront lives on. This facade is on Bell Lane near the Spitalfields market and is just one of a number of similar buildings in the district.

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Spitalfields Favorites

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    Rooftop view of Spitalfields

    by barryg23 Updated Nov 8, 2006

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    Favorite thing: We live right in the heart of Spitalfields and along with all the other flats in our building we share a rooftop terrace with nice views over the district. To the west we can see all the high-rises in the city. I can even see the building where I work from the roof, which is rather a depressing sight. In the other direction the spire of Christ Church Spitalfields is the most prominent landmark. On Sundays we get a bird's eye view of the Petticoat Lane market. The rooftop is a lovely place to relax with a book and a cool beer on a nice summer day.

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