Shoot

Petals and cream

| Updated on March 22, 2019

Don’t miss London’s Columbia Road market where flowers talk to you

I first visited London’s Columbia Road flower market in 2000 and was instantly struck by the atmospheric stalls bursting with every imaginable kind of bloom, the pretty shops with garden accessories lining the street, and the cosy cafés serving cream teas and cake. That was in autumn. Winter, I thought, would offer sparser pickings. But no. As part of the very hip East End, and as the only weekly street flower market in the UK, it was business as usual there.

Every Sunday, I found crowds of hipsters, whose appearance and mannerisms I enjoyed observing as much as listening to the stall owners’ patter, and discovering new local and international varieties such as amaryllis, eucalyptus fronds, and pussy willow. Of course, like all good days, this too ended with eating scones and drinking tea in the back room of a vintage store, the quintessentially British Cake Hole café.

Nishat Fatima is an author and photographer based in Hyderabad

Published on March 22, 2019

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