Spitalfields Market is a great London institution – in a huge old Victorian building with a metal and glass roof, surrounded by cool shops and restaurants – the center of the building is filled with traditional market stalls and 100′s of eclectic independent traders selling their finest wares.
Just outside Spitalfields is The Lollipop Shoppe , offering international furniture classics, lighting and home decor. Major Brands such as Vitra, Knoll, Artek, Cassina, and Fritz Hansen are featured with an eclectic collection of accessories.
With such a tight schedule I hardly know where to start. Leave comments on your favorite places at Spitalfields.
Spitalfields takes its name from the hospital and priory, St. Mary’s Spittel that was founded in 1197. Lying in the heart of the East End, it is an area known for its spirit and strong sense of community. It was in a field next to the priory where the now famous market first started in the thirteenth century.
From its small beginnings in the 17th Century, Spitalfields Market blossomed. Traders working from a collection of sheds and stalls did their best to meet the needs of London’s rapidly growing population and their appetite for fresh fruit and vegetables. Their success made Spitalfields Market a major center for the sale of fresh produce, trading six days a week.
In 1920 the City of London acquired direct control of the market, extending the original buildings eight years later. For the next 60 years, Spitalfields’ nationwide reputation grew, as did the traffic congestion in the narrow streets around it. With no room for the expansion it so badly needed, the market was forced to move and in May 1991 it opened its doors at its new location in Leyton, east London.
At the end of 2005, the Spitalfields completed an 18-year regeneration program. This resulted in the creation of two new public spaces, Bishops Square and Crispin Place, a public art program, an events program, the restoration of several historic streets in E1 and a selection of carefully selected independent retailers and restaurants.