Back in the summer, we told you about the outdoor cinema pop-up at Barking Riverside, the newest (and final) station on our very own Overground line that stops at Leyton Midland and Leytonstone High Road.
And this season the new East London neighbourhood is going even bigger to draw your attention to its impressively photogenic 2 km stretch of Thames riverfront (tip: it makes a pleasant winter walk, too).
On Saturday 3rd December the strip will host its biggest ever event, Emerge East, welcoming all of us Londoners to experience the creativity, community and nature this area has to offer.
With a jam-packed schedule of activities, you’ll be able to taste local home-cooked food, bask in a sauna and support independent businesses. Here are 5 things you can’t afford to miss.
Emerge East: 5 Highlights
1. Riverside Sauna
We’re huge fans of the new wave of Finnish-style outdoor mobile saunas. For one day only you’ll be able to book the Riverside Sauna and experience the feel-good benefits of deep heat, cold contrast and delicious steam alongside a range of sauna rituals from around the world. Two pop-up saunas, ice cold plunge pools and bucket showers will be stationed on the banks of the Thames, giving visitors the opportunity to immerse themselves in a breath-taking outdoor sauna experience. Discover something new about sauna culture with experts from the British Sauna Society on hand to give you advice and info. £12 for 90-minutes, book here.
2. Streetfood stalls
Throughout the day, a variety of streetfood traders will be serving up their signature dishes, with an array of cuisines suitable for all tastebuds. This will be accompanied by a cocktail bar with range of special Winter Warmers – and soundtracked by the line-up of vinyl-spinning Emerge East DJ collective.
3. Floating Musical Bingo
For those searching for a soupcon of light entertainment, from 6.30pm you’ll be invited onto a moored Uber Boat by Thames Clippers vessel for a session of Indeedy Musical Bingo, giving you the chance to guess the song for points and prizes.
4. Residents’ Home Cook
Close to the riverfront, a home cook area will feature a selection of food-loving residents who will present their home prepared dishes to guests, offering a taste of Barking from 12pm to 3pm. The home cook event will be hosted by Bola Obileye, known for her appearance on Gordon Ramsey’s ‘Future Food Stars’, and more recently Channel 4’s ‘Steph’s Packed Lunch’.
5. Creative Workshops & Market
Visitors can join free creative workshops to decorate their own Festive Fir tree to take home, make wreaths and kites, upcycle clothes and craft unique tree decorations with recycled materials, plus plenty more for all. And an Emerging Makers Market will present a selection of clothing, gifts and lifestyle products from up-and-coming makers.
With the opening of the brand-new Overground station and Uber Boat by Thames Clippers pier in the past few months, Barking Riverside is easier to reach than ever before – for example, it’s just 17 minutes from Leytonstone High Road direct. Frequent local buses also serve the area.
Emerge East is free to visit (except the Riverside Sauna, which costs £12 for a 90-minute session), and takes place on Saturday 3rd December, 11am to 8.30pm, Barking Riverside Station Square, River Road, Barking IG11 0YS. The Emerging Makers Market as well as the food offer is affordably priced to allow as many people as possibly to experience this new corner of London. For more information head here.