Leytonstone Festival: starts next Wednesday July 1st

From pop-up cinemas to jumble trails, live music to supper clubs, feast on nearly three weeks of events in and around E11

Last year's samba opening parade. Photo: PR
Last year’s samba opening parade. Photo: PR
Unbelievable that E11’s biggest festival is back already, isn’t it? And, although it all kicks off midweek, the actual launch bash is on Saturday 4th July, at St John’s Church. So there really is no excuse not to pop by – and immerse yourself in E11’s eclectic scene.

And, night owls, it all starts at an early-doors 11am. Dazzling the senses will be all manner of singers, dancers, delicious food, exhibitions, kids’ activities and puppet shows. Oh, and special stalls with retro chic and artisan designer goods from the talented peeps behind the Stones Throw Market.

St John’s Church – which is kindly allowing locals to climb its tower by sunset – will also host an open day on the 4th so visitors can enjoy the moody enclaves of a top east London Victorian interior.

And of course there’s a madly colourful parade and show with the London School of Samba to get every hungover soul into a high-kickin’ party mood.


As eagle-eyed readers will know, we’ve already covered lots of this year’s biggest highlights already, such as the Hitchcock’s Home three-day immersive film festival, and the Arts Trail, but below we pick a few more best bits from nearly three weeks of both daytime and nightly events.

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Heavy Pencil at All You Read is Love. Photo: PR
Heavy Pencil at All You Read is Love. Photo: PR

Sun 5th July
This intriguing artist uses his Duck4Cover mix-tapes “to make a statement that he is as talented, if not more talented than most artists and producers in the grime/hip-Hop genre”. Wowsers . 7pm – 9pm. Free. O’Neills, Leytonstone High Rd E11

Tuesday 7th July
Fancy some private tuition from local experts Ros Hall (Burgess and Hall) and Robbyn Linden (Eat The Rind)? Taste your way through six styles of handmade artisan British cheese, paired with a different craft beer from a London-based micro-brewery. 7pm – 9.30pm. £20 booking essential, email eattherind@yahoo.co.uk All You Read Is Love, Leytonstone High Rd E11

DECKCHAIR CINEMA (nightly until Thurs 9th)
A hundred deckchairs will be set up for in the garden for an outdoor cinema experience with waitress service. Lovely! Sunset start. £7. Red Lion, Leytonstone High Rd E11

An outdoor cinema for the festie: Red Lion garden
An outdoor cinema for the festie: Red Lion garden

Wed 8th July
Last year’s Masterchef semi-finalist Michael Sanders will be cooking up a storm with a specially themed supper club. Expect seasonal cuisine served with well-chosen beer and wines to accompany each course. 7pm. £30-£45 still a few tickets left so booking essential here. Wanstead Tap, Winchelsea Rd E7

Sat 11th July
A fully improvised murder mystery play in which “nobody knows who the killer is – not even the cast”.  Ouch. Watch closely as the performance unfolds and the audience meets our victim’s so-called friends – and even grill this disperate gang. Whodunnit? 8pm – 9pm. Free. Wanstead Tap, Winchelsea Rd

Sunday 12th July
Never been to one? It’s kinda like a car boot sale but right there on your street: communities co-ordinate to set up stalls outside their houses flogging bric-a-brac, toys, vintage clothes, cakes or whatever. Register for a stall on the Jumble Trail website, where you’ll also find the Leytonstone Jumble Trail map. 10am – 4pm. Free for buyers, £5 stall registration. Venues and front gardens all across Leytonstone

The Jumble Trail takes place across E11. Photo: PR
The Jumble Trail takes place across E11. Photo: PR

Friday 17th July
Anyone for a spot of live drawing? At this free event, punters can grab a beer and watch artists scribble directly onto record sleeves. 6pm – 10pm. Free All You Read Is Love, Leytonstone High Road E11.

Friday 17th July
Some live music to end on? Why, there are ace gigs across town tonight, from The Birkbeck (folk evening) to Red Lion (balladeer Susan Francesca) and North Star (space funk outfit Red Star Lokomotiv). Luna Lounge hosts Crème de Chèvre, who whipped up the crowd at last year’s festival. Their schtick? Playing other people’s songs in a “different way”. Support act Tank and the Bangas do a bit of spoken word, zingy theatrics and New Orleans-inspired soul-rousing. 8pm – 11pm. Free. Luna Lounge, Church Lane E11

The festival runs from 1st – 19th July. For the complete line-up of events, head to the festival website here 

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