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Barkingside: an East London suburb full of historical gems

Set in Ilford in East London, Barkingside is best known as the home of Barnardo's, the children's charity. The Victorian Girl's Village was built here in the 19th century and closed down in 1991, but some remnants of the village still remain.

Other historical gems including the Barnardo's chapel, the 19th-century Holy Trinity Church and the Edwardian underground station, which sits on the Central line.

Escape to the country at Fairlop Waters

Why head out of London when there's acres of countryside on your doorstep? Fairlop Waters is based around a 38-acre lake where you can sail, canoe or windsurf across the water.

Along with walking routes and cycle paths, Fairlop Waters also boasts a golf course and a bouldering wall. Head to the Fiskardo Restaurant after your activities for Greek cuisine.

Enjoy the buzz in Stratford

Half an hour's train ride from Barkingside, Stratford is home to Westfield Stratford City, one half of the famous shopping centre. You'll also find Britain's tallest sculpture here: the 80-metre-high ArcelorMittal Orbit also doubles up as a huge slide.

Nearby, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park played host to the 2012 Olympics, and you can visit the London Aquatics Centre and the Lee Valley VeloPark while you're here, too.

Planning a trip to Barkingside? Travelodge London Ilford Gants Hill Hotel sits closer to central Ilford on the A12, while Travelodge London Chigwell Hotel is seven minutes away.