The observant amongst you may notice the Truman name adorned on the exterior walls of many London pubs, particularly in the East End. Truman’s was one of the biggest breweries in the world in the mid 19th century, but fell on hard times and ceased trading in 1989. The sprawling site that straddles Brick Lane and Hanbury street today offers plenty of places to explore – and some areas might not be so obvious so do have a good look around.
The cavernous event spaces host various markets, sample sales and pop-up events, often selling interesting one-off artisan items – this is usually my first port if call when looking for cool gifts. Rough Trade East is arguably one of the best record stores for indie and alternative music in the UK, if not the world. They also have regular instore shows and artist signings to promote album releases – these are often free of charge with a purchase so check their website for details. I also like the variety of high-quality shops in the complex – Son of a Stag is great if you’re looking for raw denim or YMC for functional modern fashion to name just two. The complex offers plenty of options for eating, drinking and dancing, and the All Star Lanes offers a deluxe if rather pricey ten pin bowling experience.