starting from stratford westfield shopping centre, then across the olympic grounds and over to the complex of waterways comprising the lea river basin, the hertford union canal, hackney cut, and the grand union canal.
i ended up at the palm tree pub the only customer, with a bottle of corona beer. (it was monday afternoon) it’s an institution of east london, this pub. still has a jazz band playing every sunday.
there were two big LGVs parked up outside and trendy young things carrying walkie-talkies and all the trappings, encumbrances, and paraphernalia of the film world. all except for the stars of course. they would be found the next day shooting a video for rita ora’s new single.
london’s canal and waterway network is a staggering monument to the engineering ingenuity of the early industrial revolution, and echoes of the 18th and 19th centuries persist in the iron and brickwork of bridges often under a patina of 21st century graffiti.
at the junction of hackney cut and the grand hertford canal, defiantly facing the prettified landscape of the 2012 olympic park the yellow graffitied words ‘dark times’ stand untouched, they may even have been repainted and restored recently.