84 Commercial Street
020 7247 7532
The Ten Bells is in the heart of Spitalfields, right next to Nicholas Hawksmoor’s 18th century Christ Church. The interior walls are covered in decorated tiled panels, but the highlights are two pictorial tiled murals at each corner of the pub. One is original, dating from the early 1900s, showing a wealthy family with a turbaned servant boy visiting a weavers shop (photo 2). This panel was created by ceramics specialists W.B. Simpson & Sons and the same company maintain it today. The new panel was commissioned by the then landlord John Twomey and was painted by artist Ian Harper in 2010. It copies the style of the original and shows local personalities outside the Ten Bells, with Christ Church to the side. The besuited blokes at the front are the well known artists Gilbert & George whose studio is on Fournier Street close to the pub (photo 3).
John Twomey was also responsible for a refurbishment in 2010 which revealed the old and faded Trumans Beers signs, one of which is just about visible in photo 1. The refurb also restored the look and feel of a Victorian pub, and added a cocktail bar upstairs. There’s no food but cask beers are from London micros plus some staples from Sharps of Cornwall, and keg beers are from Camden and Fourpure.
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