In the spotlight

SADRUL Islam, 36, has been running his Bangladeshi food store and caf� on Bethnal Green Road for two years. Before that he had a fashion shop on Roman Road. He is married and has two young daughters, aged eight and five. Where are you from? I was born i

SADRUL Islam, 36, has been running his Bangladeshi food store and caf� on Bethnal Green Road for two years. Before that he had a fashion shop on Roman Road. He is married and has two young daughters, aged eight and five.

Where are you from?

I was born in Bangladesh and came to the East End with my parents when I was 13 years old in 1984. I now live on the Shahjalal Estate in Fakruddin Street, Spitalfields.

What do you like about the East End?


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I like the mixed community - the different people, languages, foods and cultures.

I also like that it is an easy commute to the City.

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There is a big Bangladeshi community which makes it easy to communicate.

I take part in meetings at my estate and I like the co-ordination and activities it creates among different communities.

What don't you like?

It's a bit crowded, but maybe that's part of city life. The street cleaning has improved. But I would like to see more done to prevent crime.

Having said that I actually think it is safer now than in the 80s - there were more violent attacks and robberies then. I was more worried about walking about as an immigrant back then. Now I can honestly say that I don't feel that anymore.

I feel there is better understanding among the communities and a new generation has been brought up together.

What do you do to relax?

I go swimming or to the gym. It's hard work - but it makes me forget about the business.

Where do you go if you are out up East?

There is not one particular part of the East End that I like more than others. I like it all. But most of the time we go to Eastbourne where we have family.

What are you doing this weekend?

I'm going with my two children and wife to the Hackney Empire. My daughters want to see SpongeBob SquarePants, which is playing there. -And if I lose the tickets my daughter will 'kill' me.

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