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Emily Webber’s East End Shop Fronts

February 12, 2014
by the gentle author

Hanbury St, E1

Ten years ago, Emily Webber began photographing London Shop Fronts and now she has collected more than fifteen hundred fine examples across the capital, from which these East End favourites are selected. “I was initially fascinated with the fonts, but after a step back I started to look at the whole picture,” Emily explained to me, “I choose shops that look like they have a story to tell. I look for clues — worn signage or a sign that is half written-over, a tile design, any mark of individuality. These premises are the overlooked backdrop to our city and already a fair few have gone or changed their appearance.”

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Copper Mill Lane, E17

Kenworthy Rd, E5

High Rd, Leyton, E10

Sandringham RD, E8

Casenove Rd, N16

Mile End Rd, E3

High Rd, Leyton, E10

Lower Clapton Rd, E5

Kingsland Rd, N16

Mile End Rd, E1

Whitechapel High St, E1

Wentworth St, E1

Bethnal Green Rd, E2

Grove Rd, E2

East India Dock Rd, E14

Bethnal Green Rd, E2

Chatsworth Rd, E5

Clarence Rd, E5

Roman Rd, E2

Graham Rd, E8

Bethnal Green Rd, E8

Lea Bridge Rd, E10

Well St, E9

Church St, N16

Lower Clapton Rd, E8

Roman Rd, E2

Whitechapel Rd, E1

Chatsworth Rd, E5

Rectory Rd, N16

Photographs copyright © Emily Webber

Emily is planning a book of her shop frontsand you can subscribe to updates here

You may also like to read about

Alan Dein’s East End Shop Fronts, 1988

More of Alan Dein’s East End Shop Fronts

Eleanor Crow’s East End Fish Shops

John Claridge’s Nation Of Shopkeepers

In Search Of Other Worlds

12 Responses leave one →
  1. Libby Hall permalink
    February 12, 2014

    Walker Evans in colour! I bet he would have loved these photographs. As do I.

  2. Jose Cadaveira permalink
    February 12, 2014

    Great series, Sellfridges is my favorite!

  3. February 12, 2014

    These pictures epitomise the richness of London life…brilliant and thank you for sharing!

  4. Patti Lee permalink
    February 12, 2014

    those shopfronts are ugly and I have no problem with seeing them disappear from the East End

  5. February 12, 2014

    sellfridges has been my screensaver for ages. I LOVE your collection of shop fronts. I love the stories they tell, also how sometimes it is impossible to say which are older than others. I hope you keep doing this for a long time, until time can be told (or not). It is a wonderful project. Andrea

  6. February 12, 2014

    There they are, the good old times. Preserved for the ensuing ages. — Would like to sit in “(G)ina’s Restaurant” for a while…

    Love & Peace
    ACHIM

  7. Mark Buckley permalink
    February 12, 2014

    These are wonderful photos and they will get better with age. The stories behind them will become history and they are a large part of what makes this city so wonderful to live in.

  8. annie permalink
    February 12, 2014

    Sellfridges is still there and open as is Umit and Son and Eagle Car Service (which is technically on Stoke Newington High St).

    I think Doros in Lower Clapton is a second hand furniture shop now.

    Great photos!

  9. February 12, 2014

    The Victoria Fish Bar in Roman Road used to do spectacular cod and chips. I can taste it now.

  10. Cherub permalink
    February 12, 2014

    Love them all, when I got to the last one I burst out laughing. Thanks for cheering the day up!

  11. Ros permalink
    February 12, 2014

    Emily has a good eye and is wise to be documenting these shopfronts. They’re great now and will get better and better with age.

  12. Ellen in NEW England permalink
    February 12, 2014

    My favorites: Boom City, Roman Tandoori, Happy Chops, Paradise Cottage, Selfridge’s Fridges! I like the names a lot. Makes me want to open a shop, just so I can give it an exciting name.

    I agree with Patti that they are ugly, but they have character and interest and humor. They say a lot about the shop-owners and their idea of style, about how to go about getting the customers in the door, which is the main point, after all.

    Thanks for these great photos.

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