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Revisit Your Childhood With Bedtime Stories At 40 Winks

Revisit Your Childhood With Bedtime Stories At 40 Winks

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Looking for a night out in London that doesn’t involve overpriced drinks, the same old music and the same old crowd? Then keep your eyes peeled for the tiny hotel on Mile End Road promising to whisk you away to a far-off dimension, for a few precious nights every month…40Winks_BedtimeStoryNights_13Feb-3398

David Carter’s Bedtime Story Nights, a cosy cocktail of warmth, laughter and flirtatiousness, draw you in from the monotony of adult life and allow you to melt into a tapestry of chintzy furniture, imaginative storytelling and friendly, like-minded company.

Make your way to 40 Winks with your best pair of pajamas, a friend on your arm and the answer to hotel owner David’s riddle (no answer, no entry) and allow yourself to be transported back in time. Prepare to feel relaxed – this is a place where you can leave your handbag on the side in a room full of strangers with no apprehension, where blackberrys are banned… and where you can gorge on sausage rolls and gin cocktails to your heart’s content!

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The idea of 40 Wink’s thoroughly unique storytelling night is simple. As we grow older, we lose the chance to share intimate experiences with others as the world of work and adulthood thrusts us into routine that probably doesn’t reflect who we really are. Bedtime Story Nights are a chance to sit back, relax and make new friends as a professional storyteller weaves a tale so all-consuming that you’ll forget you’re not a ten year-old listening to your mother before bed.

I visited the day before Valentine’s Day, so of course the theme of the night centered around romance. A palpable buzz filled the hotel’s basement kitchen as a room full of strangers shared cocktails in teacups and introduced themselves. Divided into ‘Good Lovers’ and ‘Bad Lover’s, we were divided in half and sent to two separate rooms to hear our first story.

Guests settled cross-legged on the floor and arranged themselves on sofas, smiling coyly before soft lighting and an introduction from Mr. Carter himself signalled the start of the first tale. The immensely talented Sally Pomme Clayton and Cat Weatherill weaved together stories of passion, love, betrayal and lust, captivating their audience in a way I haven’t seen for years.

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Prizes were awarded to flirtatious guests and those who had made the most effort with their jim jams… a bottle of Hendricks gin, and a Benefit makeover party for ten friends… as if you needed any encouragement to throw yourself whole-heartedly into a night as original, organic and refreshing as this.

March 20th and 21st brings ‘Devil Girls’, a night dedicated to supernatural mayhem and naughtiness with music from The Tootsie Rollers and The Tigers Bride. Come April 17th, ‘Indian Tales’ will explore tales of exoticism and enchantment from the Indian subcontinent.

For more information about upcoming events or to make a booking (places tend to disappear months in advance) email reservations@40winks.org. The days of Wetherspoons on a Wednesday night are well and truly over…

Amy @ FashionBite xx

Photos: Blake Clarke

Amy Everett is FashionBite's food and travel editor, she also writes for national newspapers and magazines including the Guardian Travel, Stylist, Shortlist, Red, Cosmopolitan and more.

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