Skip to content

Tony Bock’s East Enders

May 28, 2024
by the gentle author

Click for tickets for The Gentle Author’s Tour of Spitalfields on Saturday 1st June


Clock Winder at Christ Church, Spitalfields

Here are the East Enders of the nineteen seventies as pictured by photographer Tony Bock in the days when he worked for the East London Advertiser – the poncy dignitaries, the comb-over tories, the kids on the street, the market porters, the fascists, the anti-fascists, the shopkeepers, the sheet metal workers, the unions, the management, the lone dancers, the Saturday shoppers, the Saturday drinkers, the loving family, the West Ham supporters, the late bride, the wedding photographer, the clock winder, the Guinness tippler, the solitary clown, the kneeling politician and the pie & mash shop cat.

Welcome to the teeming masses. Welcome to the infinite variety of life. Welcome to the exuberant clear-eyed vision of Tony Bock. Welcome to the East End of fifty years ago.

Dignitaries await the arrival of the Queen Mother at Toynbee Hall. John Profumo kneels.

Children playing on the street in Poplar.

On the steps of St Paul’s Cathedral.

National Front supporters gather at Brick Lane.

Watching a National Front march in Hackney.

Shopkeepers come out to watch an anti-racism march in Hackney.

A family in Stratford pose in their back yard.

Wedding photographer in Hackney – the couple had been engaged many years.

West Ham fans at Upton Park, not a woman to be seen.

Sports club awards night in Hackney.

Dancers in Victoria Park.

Conservative party workers in the 1974 electoral campaign, Ilford.

Ted Heath campaigns in Ilford for the General Election of 1974.

Ford workers union meeting, Dagenham.

Ford managers, Dagenham.

Press operator at Ford plant, Dagenham.

At Speakers’ Corner, Hyde Park.

Mr East End Contest at E1 Festival.

The shop cat at Kelly’s Pie & Mash Shop, Bethnal Green Rd.

At the White Swan in Poplar.

Enjoying a Guinness in the Royal Oak, Bethnal Green.

Boy on demolition site, Tiller Rd, Isle of Dogs.

Brick Lane Sunday Market.

Clown in Stratford Broadway.

Saturday morning at Roman Rd Market.

Saturday night out in Dagenham.

Spitalfields Market porter in the workers’ club

Photographs copyright © Tony Bock

You may like to see these other photographs by Tony Bock

Tony Bock, Photographer

Tony Bock at Watney Market

Tony Bock on the Thames

Tony Bock on the Railway

6 Responses leave one →
  1. Andy permalink
    May 28, 2024

    These photos evoke a response in me that makes me feel proud to come from Whitechapel and Mile End . They remind me of all the characters I knew .
    Thank you Tony and Gentle Author.
    Bless your hearts .
    Andy xx

  2. P. Taylor permalink
    May 28, 2024

    Love these photos. Does anyone have images 0f Ridley Road Market.
    I used to go down there shopping for my mum on Saturday mornings
    and would always pick up pie and mash from Cookes to take home for
    lunch My mum worked at Taveners sweet factory at the end of the market.

  3. May 28, 2024

    Wonderful scenes from everyday life. Besides marches, protests and speeches, there is always — LIFE. Would love to raise a glass with the old lady and her GUINNESS!

    Love & Peace

  4. Bill Cahill permalink
    May 28, 2024

    John Profumo was really a nice looking man, wasn’t he? (Photo # 2)

  5. Cherub permalink
    May 29, 2024

    I met John Profumo when he came to my college years ago, he was a very nice man, very humble. On another note, I was so interested in these photos I let my cup of tea go cold.

  6. Richard permalink
    May 30, 2024

    Ian Mikardo is also in the one with John Profumo.

Leave a Reply

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

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS