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Leader of Finsbury Park Mosque threatened by extremists

Threatening calls from Islamic extremists have led the leader of a major London mosque to turn his mobile phone off at night out of fear.

Iain Sinclair criticises Hackney’s CCTV surveillance culture

Author Iain Sinclair has launched a scathing attack on Hackney's "Orwellian" CCTV culture, saying the borough's taxpayers are being forced to "write a blank cheque" for their own surveillance. Mr Sinclair said research he carried out for his latest book showed local money was being wasted on cameras and control room staff.

Site of first staging of Romeo and Juliet found in Hackney

The theatre where William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet was first performed has been unearthed in Hackney. Archaeologists from the Museum of London discovered the remains of a polygon-shaped playhouse in believed to have been built in 1576.

Musician Pete Doherty in surprise visit to Hackney play

An audience at the Rosemary Branch theatre was starstruck when Babyshambles frontman Pete Doherty sauntered in casually swigging a pint of Guinness. The former Libertines rocker took a seat to watch the opening scenes of Serendipity, a surreal hit from the Edinburgh Fringe that ran at the Rosemary Branch last week.

Caplan chosen to stand for Tories at general election

Hackney North and Stoke Newington Conservatives have appointed communications executive Darren Caplan to fight Labour MP Diane Abbott at the next election. Mr Caplan, 36, has campaigned with local activists in the constituency since last March and said he was "tremendously grateful" to win the nomination.

Pair charged with murder of Matalan’s Jamie Simpson

Two men appeared in court today charged with the murder of Jamie Simpson, the 33-year-old Matalan store clerk who was stabbed to death in a robbery last year.

Haggerston Pool to re-open after council decision

News that Haggerston Pool is to be reopened after nearly a decade of neglect has sparked joy among community figures. Leaders of several groups said they were "absolutely delighted" and "amazed" by Hackney Council's promise, and vowed to come together for "the mother of all street parties" to celebrate.

Hackney cyclists ride through the rain for the East Festival

Hackney cyclists braved the rain for a varied programme of Venezuelan music, East End plays and jazz across the borough yesterday. Some 30 cyclists dashed between three venues to catch the performances as part of Cycle East in this week's East festival.

Hackney helps launch Fairtrade world record attempt

Hackney went bonkers for Fairtrade bananas over the weekend as part of the world's biggest banana-eating event. Residents joined forces with hundreds of other Fairtrade supporters across the country to help break the record for the most bananas eaten during a 24-hour period. Council speaker Ian Rathbone led the borough's efforts in the challenge at the town hall on Mare Street.

Artist at East Festival introduces an ice cream currency

The City may be fretting about sterling's slide against the dollar, but that's no worry for Mexican artist Minerva Cuevas. Ms Cuevas has introduced a new currency to the streets of Shoreditch - the S.COOP - which is being circulated among traders in Petticoat Lane market as an interactive art project funded by East Festival.

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4000 Hackney children to miss out on free school meals

An estimated 4,000 school children in Hackney will miss out on free school meals under plans to change eligibility, according to The Children’s Society.