Intern Diary: Niharika explores Spitalfields

We recently had an internal event during which students from the Royal Academy of Music performed at various historic locations in Spitalfields. I worked on the programme book for that event, and got to find out loads about historic Spitalfields! Did you know that some buildings date back to the 1700s and are still standing? Many of the redecorated private properties around Spitalfields were originally craftsmen’s (such as carpenters, blacksmiths, and silk weavers) workshops and doctors’ surgeries. When you are walking around the area, make sure you sneak a peek at the front and see if you can spot any signs dating the building. I found that some still have exterior mechanisms for blinds from ‘back in the day’!

Old blinds mechanism outside a house in Spitalfields
Old blinds mechanism outside a house in Spitalfields

I also find these two metal emblem-sign-cool-badgey-things on a street and have no idea what they are – do you know? [NJ: Thanks to our Twitter followers and our blog readers, I now know these are fire insurance plaques].  I’d love to know how old they are, what they were used for, and if there are any more around Spitalfields?

What are these?

Fire insurance plaques

Spitalfields is a wonderful area for wandering. During my lunch breaks, I always try to go somewhere new. So far I’ve found loads of great places to eat around the area:

The Crisis Skylight Cafe does amazing baked potatoes and yummy fillings! The cafe is spacious and has really friendly staff.

The Luxe restaurant near the old Spitalfields market has an outdoor cafe part – they make fish finger burgers!

The Flying Burrito does burritos and nachos for a reasonable price, but be warned – if you eat a burrito here, you won’t be able to eat anything else for the rest of the day. To say the burritos here are ‘filling’ would be an understatement.

If you walk towards Brick Lane, you will find a huge selection of Bangladeshi restaurants serving delicious Indian food.

Other updates:

  • Two of our Winter Festival events are now SOLD OUT!
  • I have had the opportunity to interview Gabriel Crouch, director of Gallicantus, the talented illustrator Joanna Moore, and there is an upcoming interview with Bernadette Russell, co-founder of White Rabbit! All three artists (along with many more) are helping make this year’s Winter Festival programme truly unique! There will be a mix of early music, family events, a storytelling performance, an open mic night, and a unique take on Handel’s Messiah. I am really looking forward to the festival!
  • Spitalfields Music is working on a Special Education Needs project and have launched a new campaign with The Big Give. This Christmas, our challenge is to raise £72,000 to ensure our Learning and Participation programme can continue to do the remarkable outreach work it is well known for. If you would like to donate, read about our campaign here.

We have a lot more exciting stuff coming up on our blog – so stay tuned!


3 thoughts on “Intern Diary: Niharika explores Spitalfields

  1. Pingback: In conversation with Michael Collins | Spitalfields Music's Blog

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