This looks amazing! A whole eight days of fun and entertainment along Roman Road from Grove Road to Parnell Road. All events are free entry (one or two ask for charity donations) and shops and businesses up and down the Roman are offering special offers, discounts and rare treats during the festival.
The Festival is brought to you by the Roman Road Team who have just launched their new website. Check it out here.
See below for the full programme and to download a print version.
OPENING SUNDAY – 29TH JUNE
Opens with a relaxed afternoon of trails, chat and chilled music centred around the Albert Pub, who will also feed you roast potatoes, old East End style. Come and explore.
EVENING MEETS – 30TH JUNE TO 5TH JULY
Brings you an actioned-packed schedule of evening events all hosted by Roman Road businesses and shops who are staying open late to entertain you. Everything from spa sessions to pop up cinema, talks to craft workshops. So peel yourself off the sofa and come and see what Roman Road looks like when it’s alive in the evenings. Support your local high Street and enjoy yourself – what could be better.
CLOSING SUNDAY – 6TH JULY
A full on street party to wrap things up in style, being held in the market between Parnell Road and Hewison Street. All day music stage, street food and designer maker stalls, the Wimbledon men’s final on a BIG screen, giant bubble-blowing for the kids, bubbles and strawberries for the grown ups and SO much more. Come and enjoy whether you’re fasting or feasting.
Here’s our jam packed programme – literally. Read it all here, or on the Roman Road Festival Facebook page, or download the Roman Road Festival 2014 printed programme, which will also be available at shops and businesses all along Roman Road.
By Bow. For Bow. About Bow. And remember, thanks to the huge generosity of hundreds of people, everything is FREE!
SUNDAY 29TH JUNE
9am-4pm. Albert Pub
We know how frustrating it is that Bow doesn’t have a cycle repair shop so we’ve brought in East London’s coolest cycle team to set up a cycle repair surgery on the Opening Sunday of the Festival. Why is Paradise Cycles so cool? It’s a social enterprise that wants to support a stronger cycling community in East London, by providing affordable servicing, useful repair tutorials and an accessible bicycle building service.
They like to use traditional steel frames from the 50′s through to the early 90′s and give them a new lease of life with added extras such as a Brooks Saddle or a Sturmey Archer hub gear. What’s not too love? So, Paradise Cycles outside the Albert on June 29th only. Get on your bikes.
10am. Bow Church DLR
Discover how Bow was the beating heart of Sylvia Pankhurst’s East London Suffragettes. Book your free place on Eventbrite. Or book your free place by going into SNAP gift store on Roman Road to put your name on a paper list. And don’t worry, we’ll also be keeping a few places free on the day.
11am. Mile End Tube
SPARK OF REBELLION TRAIL
In the 1880s a spontaneous strike at the Bryant and May match factory in Bow ignited a wave of industrial struggles among low-paid workers in the area in gas works, tailoring sweatshops and at the docks. In the first decades of the 20th century the baton was picked up firstly by suffragettes and then by Poplar’s radical councillors as people campaigned for social justice and better lives. The walk is led by David Rosenberg, author of Battle for the East End.
Please note, the walk is not free but is offered at a reduced rate of £4 on production of a Festival programme. The walk starts at 11am sharp on Sunday 29th June. Details of meeting point confirmed on booking (email firstname.lastname@example.org) (2.5hrs)
11am. Albert Pub
A brisk hike with Tower Hamlet Health Trainers around Fish Island and the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
12noon. Albert Pub
Children and adults alike will enjoy a tour around the ponds and wildlife of Mile End park
1pm, Albert Pub
GIANT FLOWER TRAIL
Find out the secrets behind the giant daisies, iris and buttercup in this 30 minute light walk.
1.30pm. Albert Pub
EAST LONDON GROUP ART TRAIL
A tour of places depicted by the East London Group artists, Bow’s celebrated pre-war school of painters; finishing at the East London Group exhibition currently showing at Bow Art’s Nunnery. Book your free place on Eventbrite. Or book your free place by going into SNAP gift store on Roman Road to put your name on a paper list. And don’t worry, we’ll also be keeping a few places free on the day.
3pm. Idea Store Bow
LIVE HISTORY TRAIL
Local drama group Bow Players will be leading a history trail with dramatised scenes from the Romans to the Suffragettes. It will start outside the Bow Idea Store on Gladstone Place and work it’s way down to Gary Arbers.
Flee Boadicea with the ancient Romans; meet Queen Matilda making a splash; take a peep into Pepys’ diary; strike a light with the Match Girls; follow the singing Suffragettes to print leaflets at Mr Arber’s stationery shop; dodge bombs in the Blitz; then back again to end with Olympic promise at the Albert pub at 4pm to enjoy some traditional bar roast potatoes.
3.30pm. Albert Pub
BOW ARCHITECTURE TRAIL
An eye-opening walking of architectural and historical places of interest around Roman Road. Book your free place at Eventbrite. Or go into SNAP gift store on Roman Road to put your name on a paper list. And don’t worry, we’ll also be keeping a few places free on the day.
2pm-5pm. St Barnabas
STORIES FROM PALESTINE
Earlier this month a group of 19 people from Bethnal Green and Bow returned from a 10 day pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Many had made the journey before but for some it was their first experience of the land. They began the journey in the North of the country, spending time in the Galilee, Nazareth and Cana. and continued their journey through the West Bank to Bethlehem, Nablus, Jenin, The Jordan Valley and The Golan Heights. As well as visiting and praying in the Holy Christian sites they visited refugee camps and Schools in the west Bank and spent time with ICAHD, the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions.
This afternoon is an opportunity to hear their stories and see and exhibition of their journey. They will also be joined by students from Raine’s foundation School who made the journey earlier in the year and spent time at Yad Vashem, and by the Tower Hamlets Jenin Friendship Group.
7pm-9pm St Barnabas
TWO SCHMUCKS, THREE OPINIONS (Dinner, Drones and the Middle East)
Three years ago two friends, Steve and Jonathan, got into a Facebook fight, and as grown men decided to take it inside. Others take their fights outside, but well. You know. Their fight was about Israel and Palestine. As theatre makers, they decided to take the only course of action available. It was in fact a three-course action-lunch, or to be precise three lunches. During these lunches they spoke about Israel and Palestine but also found out about each other, about how maybe they had gotten to the positions they had. Steve transcribed the whole nine yards, well actually more like nine hours. Then they spent three years not having lunch, gradually editing it in to a theatre piece.
This is a welcome return to the East End of Two Schmucks. The piece is in three parts. In the first they set out the argument. In the Second they engage in the argument. In the Third the audience gets involved. You are asked to bring a dish to share and whatever it is that you would like to drink.
3pm-5pm. Cafe Creme
OLD BOW TALES
Join our circle of Bow grandparents and elders and listen to them recounting their memories of Roman Road and Bow over a cup of tea and cake. The story telling workshop will be lead by theatre director and Bethnal Green resident Zoë Waterman. The public are invited to come and listen to these oral histories over some tea and cake at Café Crème.
3pm-6pm. Bow Launderette
The folks at Letter Lounge will be helping you pen those letters you never get time for. Who would you like to get in touch with
11am-6pm. Albert Pub
ROAST TATTIES & TUNES
The Albert will be serving traditional roast potatoes for hungry trail walkers and putting on live music from 2pm.
5.30pm-8pm. 504 Gallery
‘HUMANS OF ROMAN ROAD’ PRIVATE VIEW
Georgia Patsouraki will be revealing her recent photographic work inspired by residents of Roman Road.
MONDAY 30TH JUNE
CREATE & MAKE: ROMAN PIZZA
Learn how to make your own pizza and then eat it!
6pm to 9pm. Roman Road Estate Agents
AT HOME WITH THE ESTATE AGENTS
Correctly identify the 25 photographs of The Roman that you can find at the estate agents on Roman Road. If you get them all right you’ll win a digital camera. Results will be announced at The UnPub Quiz on Friday. The estate agents will also be showing short films about or made in Bow.
5.30pm-7.30pm. Fiesta café
WORDS & CHIPS
Enjoy an evening of chips, song and spoken word from students of Anna Fiorentini drama school and the Borough Secondary Choir. Arrive nice and early to grab a seat and a plate of chips then enjoy songs sung by children at the secondary school choir followed by monologues from the students at Bethnal Green’s Anna Fiorentini’s drama school.
7pm-9pm. Zealand Road Café
Renowned local playwright Simon Stephens reads his monologue Sea Wall at Zealand Road Coffee Shop, the place at which he wrote this script. This is small venue. Please book your free place at Eventbrite.
TUESDAY 1ST JULY
7pm-9pm. Café Crème
A RIOTOUS EVENING
Did you know Bow was the HQ for Sylvia Pankhurst’s East London Suffragettes? Mile End councillor Rachael Saunders gives a talk about the demonstrations, scuffles and riots that happened on and around Roman Road in the name of women’s suffrage. This is followed by David Rosenberg’s talk about the anti-fascism Cable Street riots. Mind the rioters.
CREATE & MAKE: ORIGAMI
Origami artist Michael Trew from Hackney Wick’s Papershake can teach you some fabulous paper folds in this hands on workshop.
6pm-8pm. Gina’s Closet
Got the cutest pooch in Bow? Come to Gina’s Closet to get your doggy’s photograph taken by Sarah Ainslie (of Spitalfield’s Dogs fame) using props and accessories at Gina’s Closet. Prefer cartoons? Let our roving caricaturist Sara Pitta pen an artful cartoon of you and your pooch. This will be busy, so come early, bring a chair and a flask of tea, and join the queue.
CARICATURIST ON THE LOOSE
Can you spot the caricaturist who’ll be penning portraits of performers and audiences during the Festival?
7.30-9pm. Roman Cars
With Bow’s very own clairvoyant Keith from Roman Cars. Can he see your future or past?
WEDNESDAY 2ND JULY
6pm-8pm. Sew Amazing
CREATE & MAKE: STITCH & KNIT
Crafty vixens on hand to teach amateurs and pros.
8pm-9pm. Gladstone Place (St Barnabas if raining)
CREATE & MAKE: JUGGLING
Get in touch with the circus performer in you and learn how to juggle with diabolos.
6.30pm-9pm. Costa Coffee
MOVIES & MOCHAS: SCIENCE FICTION NIGHT
SCI-FI-LONDON presents a night of short sci-fi films short films at our pop-up cinema. Each film will be introduced by SCI-FI-LONDON founder Louis Savy. Book your free seat at Eventbrite.
8pm til late Art Café
A night of music and… jam. Yes, this jamming session comes with local jam on the side. While you’re tucking into home made Bow Belly jam, listen to local Bow resident and songstress Niki Stevens singing her bewitching blues. “Niki is a singer songwriter with a powerful voice and a strong sense of melody. Her songs are incredibly lifting and beautiful and her voice has been shaped by many moons busking on the streets of France and the UK.”
THURSDAY 3RD JULY
ROMAN SPA NIGHT
Primping and preening East End with discounted treatments being offered on this late night Roman Spa evening.
6pm-8pm. Best of India
THE POST BIRTHDAY WORLD
Reading by local actress Jeryl Burgess from novel by Lionel Shriver (We Need to Talk About Kevin) whose key scenes are set in Roman Road’s Best of India restaurant.
8pm-10pm. Venue tbc
IN CONVERSATION WITH KING & RENTOUL
MP Oona King reads from her diaries and takes questions chaired by John Rentoul.
6pm-9pm. Tattoo Parlour
CREATE & MAKE: TATOOS
Get a free tattoo designed for you plus see window tattooist and Bow resident Tamzin Atkinson in action.
6pm-9pm. Anchor & Hope
SIP & SHOP
Drinks, nibbles and discounts off women’s wear and maternity wear. Discounts will apply across the store, as well as 10% of purchases going to Ella’s Home, an East End project opening doors for trafficked women.
MOVIES & MOCHAS: THERMAE ROMAE
Eastern Kicks present Japanese hit movie Thermae Romae set in Roman baths – we couldn’t not! It will be introduced by Asian film expert and local resident Andrew Heskins, editor of Eastern Kicks. Book your free ticket at Eventbrite.
5.30 to 7.30pm. Jakss
CREATE & MAKE: CUPCAKE DECORATIONS WITH JO WHEATLEY
Jo Wheatley, GreatBritish Bake Off winner 2013 will be running a fun-filled festival cupcake decorating class at Jakss children’s wear boutique. Needless to say, get here early!
FRIDAY 4TH JULY
An evening of pie, mash and history from author Jane Cox reading from her new book Old East Enders, A History of Tower Hamlets; and talking about her recollections of her grandfather’s shop on Roman Road.
8pm-10pm. Le Moulin
THE UN-PUB QUIZ
Test your knowledge of Roman Road Bow from the history of the area to pop culture. BYO beer or wine. And bring a team or join one on the night, £1 per head for a prize fund. Winning team takes all.
CREATE & MAKE: BARISTA COFFEE
Learn how to make cappuccinos and flat whites like a barrista.
MOVIES & MOCHA
It’s July 4th! SCIFI London presents Independence Day at our pop-up cinema. Book your free seat at Eventbrite.
SATURDAY 5TH JULY
1pm-5pm. Mono Cafe
RARE TUNES FROM MAX TAYLOR
Music and beats on the terrace of Roman Road’s sunniest cafe. Former Morpeth student Max Taylor has toured and played as a session bass player with Mika, Groove Armada, Roots Manuva and Tom Robinson. An emerging artist in his own right, Max will be playing at 1pm during this afternoon session at Mono Cafe, probably the sunniest cafe on Roman Road.
6pm-9pm. Anchor & Hope
Restless Beings champion voiceless communities. A night of music, story telling, henna, ethical clothing, arts & crafts, networking & more.
6pm-8pm. Venue tbc
CREATE & MAKE: DJ MIXES
Learn how to spin the decks and mix your own tunes.
8pm-9pm. Roman Kebabs
Musician Daryl Wax will be launching the brand new video to his Bow E3 track.
6pm. Unique Café
A night of Turkish food, drink and entertainment. Bring your belly.
11-6pm. 504 Gallery
Learn about art techniques from painting to printing, followed by live music and drinks.
AN EVENING WITH SUSANNAH AUSTIN
Accoustic session from singer songwriter Susannah Austin who has been liked to Stevie Nicks and Joni Mitchell. Grab a beer and listen to ‘soaring, ethereal female vocals that bring tons of warmth’ (Pure Groove)
SUNDAY 6TH JULY
SPECTACULARS & PROCESSIONS
11am. Roman Road from Hewison Road to Parnell Road
DRUM WORKS The Barbican’s Drum Works will be opening the day with a drumming spectacular. Local children belonging to the drumming band will parade down the Roman at 11am, the official start of the day.
1pm. Usher Road
LIVE WIMBLEDON FINALS We’ll be showing the Men’s Wimbledon Final on a huge outdoor screen, so bring a rug and some cushions and create your own picnic to enjoy seeing Murray winning Wimbledon again.
LIVE MUSIC & DANCE
11.45am-12.45pm. Music Stage
Enjoy the voice of angels with songs from the Chisenhale Primary School Choir followed by The Tower Hamlet Youth and Community Choir.
13.50pm-14.10. Music Stage
VICTORIA PARK SINGERS
Victoria Park’s community choir has become the singing sensation of East London and will be bringing an outstanding A Capella session to Roman Road Festival.
Twinkling guitars, whistling, accordian, banjo, cajon, these guys have a folksy storytelling charm. Their first EP was released earlier this year, and features four fantastic pieces of acoustic musings and comforting melodies, including our featured track.
16.00-16.30. Music Stage
Learn how to Lindy Hop with the Swing Patrol who will be leading a workshop that will have you dancing like it was 1939.
You may have seen this psychodelic dance troop at the Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club.
16.40-17.00pm. Music Stage
MA POLEINE’S GREAT DECLINE
Eclectic five piece band taking inspiration from the 40′s Jazz of Billie, blues grit of wolf and genre sidestepping of waits.
Structureless, Loungedelic flows through improvisation creating a mix of electric music with lounge, surf, psychedelic and blue rock sounds.
A three piece with hints of Editors, The XX, Sigur Ros and The National, Shona draw you in with addictive melodies, fragile vocals & dense soundscapes.
Artisan hand-crafted organic free-range two piece heavy pop band BRO – singer/guitarist @jgharding and drummer @GarthLee
FOOD & DRINK
About to open their own restaurant, the cooks behind Dhaba Lane offer delicious Indian food without the heavy, greasy feeling normally associated with it. Perfect for a midsummer’s day and evening.
If you’ve been to Roman Road Market recently, you’ll know this food stand is always popular. Pleasures are simple here – barbecued chicken with West Indian sides.
Local deli and café Bow Belly will be selling their homemade savoury muffins, tarts, samosas and pies for snacks you can’t resist.
What is Sunday without coffee? Ello Darling will be serving delicious Climpson & Sons espresso from their ice-blue Piaggio van.
STRAWBERRIES & ICE CREAM VAN
Get your bowl of strawberries from our specially commissioned Wimbledon ice cream van.
No need to go to Wimbledon. It’s all happening on The Roman. We’ll be serving Prosecco and Spritz to go with your strawberries.
FAMILY MAGIC & GAMES
There will be story telling tents from the Idea Store and from Discover in Stratford; guerrilla crafting for kids; Mr Bubbles giant bubble making machine; traditional skipping, an ice cream van and much more to keep the children entertained.
DESIGNER MAKER STALLS
Over twenty stalls selling goods made by Bow residents.
Vintage fashion accessories and jewellery from local residents, Hostess Hotties.
BRICK LANE BOOK SHOP
Books about the East End from Brick Lane’s delectable book den.
Vintage and antique furniture and home ware from Bow Wharf’s Johns London store.