A raffle offered 1000 hackney residents free tickets to the dress rehearsal of the opening ceremony. I got tickets and went along for the only olympic experience I’ll have had… The screens were filled with a sign saying #savethesurprise and amazingly 60000 people did.
Hackney’s Carnival is back after being cancelled last year because of the riots. On saturday dancers and other paraders came out in full force for a fun show. Shame that the festival that was supposed to follow in Clissold park was cancelled because all the rain we’ve had over the past months has made it waterlogged…
Before I went away, I was doing some pictures at the Kingsland Estate, which is due to be pulled down at the end of this summer (more pictures of that to come). I met Nazir Tanbouli who has been doing great murals around the estate to brighten it up in its last days.
Because I was away I haven’t had the chance to do any pictures, but here is something I did earlier this year for Le Monde newspaper. It was a police stop-and-search operation in Shoreditch on a Saturday night. With drug-dogs, plain-clothed policemen and a special tent for searches, it was called Operation Fallon.
On Saturday members of the Ethiopian Orthodox community St Mary of Zion celebrated the victory of their planning permission to renovate an old cinema-turned-nightclub into their church. They held prayers and songs in the neighbouring St James Church.
In July there is going to be a talent-off between the Apollo in Harlem and the Hackney Empire, with winners from the Apollo’s talent night coming over for the competition. Last friday they had the first round at the Empire and I went backstage to meet some of the contestants.