The best places to eat, drink and shop in Tower Hamlets



Women in Business Festive Fair

We are hosting our first-ever Women in Business Festive Fair at the Town Hall in Whitechapel. From cosy scarves to tasty treats, you can treat yourself and your loved ones, all while supporting local women entrepreneurs.

Join us on the 16 December for the opening of the fair with face-painting and the chance to win a free prize draw.

  • 16th-23rd December (excluding 19th)
  • Mon-Thurs: 10am-6pm
  • Fri-Sat: 10am-7pm
  • Sun: 10am-4pm

 16 December - information

  • 20 women entrepreneurs selling a mixture of unique products from plants to jewllery, bags to superfoods, art to clothing, and more.
  • The National Health Service (NHS) and Shanty’s Pharmacy will be providing blood pressure checks, covid and flu vaccinations services on site.
  • On the 19th of December we have two seminars with two women entrepreneurs. The speakers are Angie Madara, one of the Founding Partners and CEO of Athena FundX and Tricia Blake, Founder and Managing Director of Diva Choice.

Children Activities




Saturday 16th

Face painting and arts & crafts 

1pm – 4pm

Sunday 17th

Face painting and arts & crafts 

1pm – 3pm

Saturday 23rd

Face painting and arts & crafts 


Programme for 16 December

12 noon – Welcome/Introductions 

12:05 – Adity Dance Group

12:20 – Welcome, Cllr Abdul Wahid, Lead Member for Jobs, Skills and Growth

12:35 – Brass Volcanoes

Whitechapel Late Night Shopping

Over 50 businesses will be hosting a late-night shopping event for residents and visitors. Shoppers also have the chance of winning a free prize draw by spending £50 in one of the participating businesses. Please visit the Town Hall reception to see list of participating businesses.

  • Whitechapel High Street
  • 14th and 21st December
  • Open until 9pm


Small business owners in Tower Hamlets have shared their local recommendations for where to eat, drink, and shop ahead of the annual UK-wide grassroots event, Small Business Saturday.

The event falls on 2 December this year and aims to support small businesses by encouraging consumers to shop locally.

The Council has interviewed local independent business across the borough’s high streets and street markets as part of a promotional campaign that will run throughout December and can be seen on social media, website and digital bus stops.

The videos ask the owners questions such as, ‘where is the best place to grab a coffee in Tower Hamlets?’ and ‘what’s the best hidden gem in the borough?’.

Councillor Abdul Wahid, Lead Member for Jobs, Skills and Growth, said:

“We’re spoilt for choice when it comes to small independent businesses in Tower Hamlets. I often find that it’s the small businesses that go the extra mile and offer products and services that bit better than the national retailers do. 

“Also, if you spend a pound in a local business, that pound will go back into our local economy, supporting the borough and local jobs for our residents.

“I’m incredibly proud to be able to say that our small business owners support each other every day. I know that I’ll be buying local from my high street and market in the coming weeks, and when I can, I’ll be leaving a positive online review too.

“Please join me and support your local businesses this year. If we all do a little bit, we can make a real difference.”


The following small businesses took part in the Council’s Shop Local campaign:

  • Genia, BEEN London, sustainable, ethical handcrafted accessories
  • Zoe, Bespoke Freelance Coat Maker
  • Travis, New TRIND: Tradestars, 415 Wick Lane, London, E3 2JG
  • Antonio, Ethical Bean Company, 41 Dace Road, London E3 2NG
  • Relly, Afribeana, market and mini food festival showcasing African and Caribbean black owned businesses, Roman Road Market Square (Globe Town), Roman Road, E2 0RN
  • Rafeal, Mafalda, shoes and handbags, 30 Cheshire Street, London, E2 6EH
  • Lia, Abara Georgian restaurant, 108 Brick Lane, London, E1 6RL
  • Salah, That Burger Guy, Petticoat Lane Market: 
  • Faisal, Querky Café, 110 Watney St, E1 2QE, London
  • Sioban, owner of Awoke Plants, The View Tube Unit 3, The Greenway/ Marshgate Lane, E15 2PJ: 
  • Audrey, knitting and crafts, Roman Road Market and Market Square (Globe Town), Roman Road, E2 0RN

Find all the businesses the council spoke to as part of its Shop Local campaign, and their recommendations for where to eat, drink and shop in the borough, on this map.

If you'd like to show your support and shop local but you're unsure where to visit:

Please note: this page will be updated regularly with new recommendations as the Council continues to interview businesses during December.

Posted on Tuesday 28th November 2023