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Fifty years go, the rector of Christ Church Spitalfields in East London found a homeless man had died on the church steps the night before. In November that year he opened up the crypt as a shelter for homeless, alcoholic men.
Half a century on, the Spitalfields Crypt Trust (SCT) is marking five decades of helping those battling homelessness and addiction.
The charity is planning a host of special events including choir performances (6 Nov, 6–7pm) followed by a sponsored ‘sleep-in’ at the crypt; and a service of thanksgiving at the church (7 Nov, 10.30am).
An exhibition of portraits – featuring people SCT have helped recover from addiction, and personalities and celebrities with a connection to addiction – will also be part of the celebrations.