Surrounded by the quintessentially British Old Spitalfields Market, the UEFA Champions League Trophy was the star of the show on the latest leg of its London tour.
Moving from the chic milieu of the King's Road in west London, the trophy went east to be showcased in one of the capital's most vibrant, and historic, Victorian markets. With the Royal Wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton just a day away, there was, appropriately, a distinctly British feel to proceedings.
Operating since 1638, the market serves as a haven for bric-a-brac hunters. With everything from old fashioned gramophones to Beatles records, and teapots to Union Jack flags on sale, and a brass band playing, there was no mistaking the theme of the day.
Taking to the market the day after FC Barcelona joined Manchester United FC in edging closer to next month's Wembley showpiece, the trophy rode into Spitalfields in an iconic London taxi. Flanked by traditional British pubs, a fish and chip shop and bustling Brick Lane, it provided a fitting setting in the build-up to the 28 May final.
Present alongside Europe's premier club prize was its women's counterpart, both of which will be in situ until Saturday. Security staff confirmed that the trophies had caused quite a stir among passing trade, with customers also learning more about the UEFA Champions Festival, a week-long celebration of grassroots football which starts in Hyde Park on Saturday 21 May in the run-up the main event the following weekend.
Supporters wishing to attend the 2010/11 UEFA Women's Champions League final in London can purchase tickets now priced at £3 for under-16s and £5 (€5.90) for adults. They can be bought via a portal on Fulham FC's official website or by calling +44 (0)843 208 1234 (option 1) 24 hours a day, seven days a week (no booking fees apply online).
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