Monday, June 16, 2014

Our Brick Lane

John and I came to think of Brick Lane as "our street" in London.
We often walked north along Brick Lane after we came up out of the Algate East Underground entrance.
 That's the minaret of the London Jamme Masjid Mosque in the distance. Our apartment was across the road from the mosque, so when we saw the minaret we knew we were almost home.
 The Neo-Gothic Christ Church School, erected in 1874, according to the web it  now has mostly Muslim students. A century ago most of the students were Jewish. 
 Brick Lane is called Banglatown. A large Bangladeshi community has settled here. The street is lined with curry houses.
 We often dropped into Ambala on our way home to pick up some pakoras.
 Will today be an onion, spinach, cauliflower or aubergine pakora?
 This famous Mosque, seen from our apt. window,  is in a building built in 1743. It was originally a Huguenot chapel, later a Jewish   synagogue. That's a Jack the Ripper tour group under the umbrellas.
The side streets of Brick Lane are lively too. 
Ah, here are Shelley and me rushing somewhere.
 The Lunchonette was once a bowling alley and bar and is now a very flash eatery and drinking hole.
 On weekends the sidewalks become seating for visitors munching on the food from the stalls that show up with a wide variety of cuisines. We even saw a Québécois "poutine" stall.
 The Brick Lane Bookshop was our local bookstore. Always worth a peek.
 That's the Truman Brewery smokestack in the distance. The old brewery buildings are used for a number of changing venues now. John enjoyed a vinyl record market one Saturday. 
Lots of fun signage around.
 The Sunday market draws big crowds of shoppers and sightseerers.
 This band had a 60's Flower Power vibe that suited the market day perfectly
 As did the Pearlies.
 Tempting sweet shop.
But not as tempting as the sublime truffles of Dark Sugars.
 Last week John noticed a used copy of Peter Ackroyd's Dan Leno and the Limehouse Golem in the basement of this shop and now he needs to read it so he popped in -- £3.50.
Later he took our portrait in an antique mirror.
Great eccentric London style.
 More reminders of the past Jewish presence. We got our rye bread from this shop.
 But most people visited for their Salt Beef (Corned Beef) sandwiches.
 Brick Lane ends at Bethnal Green Road with the Casa Blue Cafe
 and 123 Bethnal Green across the street.
 Not all the cool fashionistas are under 30.
At the same intersection Bethnal Green splits into Redchurch Street,
Where we can continue north into hip Shoredich.


  1. Thanks for the photo tour. Fascinating area indeed.

  2. We felt utterly at home there, Lisa.