Skip to content

Colin O’Brien’s Pellicci Portraits (Part Two)

December 6, 2012
by the gentle author

Contributing Photographer Colin O’Brien is becoming a weekly fixture at E. Pellicci, 332 Bethnal Green Rd – taking portraits of the lucky diners at London’s most celebrated family-run cafe. Yet what could be more appealing – as the temperature drops – than to escape into this cosy marquetry-lined sanctuary and feast upon meatballs, spaghetti and syrup pudding in the midst of some of the liveliest company the East End has to offer?

Stuart Faulkner with his sons Luke & Ben – “I used to work in the butcher’s next door. I came to Pelliccis when I was thirteen and now I’m forty-two.”

Shirley Pollock – “I’ve been coming her forever … since the eighties.”

Arren Baptiste – “I first came here years and years ago, when I was in  my teens … at least five years. If I feel a bit down, I just come to Pelliccis…”

Henrietta Keeper “I first came here in 1947 when my daughter Lesley was three. I remember Elide Pellicci, she was an old lady all in black.”

Albert Sadler – “I’ve been coming about fifty years, since I was Market Inspector in Bethnal Green.”

Lesley Keeper -“My mum brought me to Pelliccis when I was small and I always come once a week.”

Simon Menachy – “I’ve been coming here twenty years, I used to know old Mr Pellicci.”

Norah Nona “I come every day. I’ve been coming here since I was twenty, about twenty years. I’m promoting this hat by Sharpeye.”

Rev Adam Atkinson of St Peter’s Bethnal Green – “If people left my church feeling as good as they do when they left Pelliccis, I’d know I’m doing my job! It’s full of the holy spirit.”

Carolyn Prior -“I’m from St Neots, this is my first time at Pelliccis.”

Norman Faw “I’ve been coming for fifty-seven years at 7am every morning. My father brought me here when I was five years old and we had roast beef. He said, ‘Can you do that again?’ and I said, ‘Yes,’ and we did. There’s only one place to come in the Green and this is it.”

Kate Hale “I’m from West London but I’ve been here a few times in the last five years.”

Robert Longstaff – “I’ve been coming here donkeys’ years, maybe twenty years? I come by all the time. After Hurricane Catriona, I went to New Orleans to show my Elvis tattoo in aid of the disaster fund.”

Julie Andersen – “I’ve been coming to Pelliccis on and off for a few years …”

Tony Salvatore – “I was born in Naples but I’ve been working at Pellicis in Bethnal Green since 11th July 1970.”

Photographs copyright © Colin O’Brien

You may like to see

Colin O’Brien’s Pellicci Portraits ( Part One)

and read these other Pellicci stories

Maria Pellicci, Cook

Pellicci’s Celebrity Album

Pellicci’s Collection

Maria Pellicci, The Meatball Queen of Bethnal Green

Colin O’Brien at E.Pellicci

and see these other Colin O’Brien stories

Colin O’Brien, Photographer

Colin O’Brien’s Clerkenwell Car Crashes

Colin O’Brien’s Kids on the Street

Gina’s Restaurant Portraits

Travellers’ Children in London Fields

Colin O’Brien’s Brick Lane Market

Colin O’Brien Goes Back To School

At Colin O’Brien’s Flat

3 Responses leave one →
  1. December 6, 2012

    a warm glow on a frosty morning!

  2. Libby Hall permalink
    December 6, 2012

    Colin O’Brien’s portraits are always consistently lovely!

  3. Vicky permalink
    December 6, 2012

    I agree with Libby, Colin’s portraits are the tops. It seems to be a modern thing for photographers today to take pictures of people so close up with their digital cameras that you see up their nostrils or down their mouths, hairs, pimples and fillings in full display, personality and where they are is lost. Colin gets it right.

Leave a Reply

Note: Comments may be edited. Your email address will never be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS