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EAST: A festival championing the best of East London

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

EAST, a six day festival of food, history, performance, art, film and fashion, celebrates one of the most vibrant and creative areas of London – from March 6 to March 11, 2008.

During the six days, a programme consisting of 400 events will tempt visitors to East London – an area that stretches from the Barbican to Dalston, Stratford to Whitechapel and from Hackney to Canary Wharf.

EAST opens on Thursday, March 6 at 6pm with a spectacular relay of bell ringing, starting at St Paul’s Cathedral, then stretching out to over 20 of East London’s churches from Hackney to Stratford.

There will also be a chance to see expert bell ringers from across East London giving demonstrations on The Charmborough Ring – a portable bell tower – at Theatre Square, Stratford on Saturday, March 8 from 12:30pm to 2:30pm.

With so many events taking place and to make the most of all the festival has to offer, visit EAST’s excellent website for a comprehensive list of what to see and do – whether it’s seeing a play, such as the Arcola Theatre’s The Living Unknown Soldier; trying your hand at circus skills at The Circus Space; or visiting a countryside idyll at Spitalfields.

The website will also tell you which events are free and which are not.