Grand Designs filmed in East Village for anniversary special

PUBLISHED: 12:08 02 February 2015 | UPDATED: 12:21 02 February 2015

Kevin McCloud (centre) with Vesta House residents Gianne Fanti and Frank Da Silva

Kevin McCloud (centre) with Vesta House residents Gianne Fanti and Frank Da Silva


The tallest building in Stratford’s East Village is set to appear in a Grand Designs special.

Kevin McCloud and Frank Da Silva chat from a Vesta House balconyKevin McCloud and Frank Da Silva chat from a Vesta House balcony

Presenter Kevin McCloud and the rest of the team behind the Channel 4 programme spent four hours at Vesta House on Tuesday last week to shoot an episode of a spinoff anniversary series about urban design and living.

Filming took place in the main entrance, the atrium and inside a flat on the eighth floor belonging to Frank Da Silva and his girlfriend Gianne Fanti.

The couple, who were picked to be featured due to their involvement in the local community, had the rather surreal experience of watching McCloud drink coffee in their kitchen.

Together they chatted about the experience of living in the former Olympic Village and their reasons for choosing to living there.

Filming inside Vesta HouseFilming inside Vesta House

“Kevin was fascinated by the architecture, the main atrium of Vesta House and the open spaces,” Frank, who is co-founder of the community project, said. “He seemed impressed with the three angle perspective of the windows as he entered our flat and the amount of natural light available.”

McCloud, who is friends with Deborah Saunt, the main architect behind the Vesta House design, also commented on the couple’s balcony and the views across the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and the rest of the capital.

Frank, 49, admits that appearing on the programme was a dream come true for both him and his girlfriend.

“Kevin was very cool, relaxed, interesting and knowledgable to talk to — a real gentleman,” he said. “It was so nice to have him having coffee with us in our kitchen.”

The shoot followed on from a visit from the show’s producers in November, who surveyed the site ahead of filming.

Fatima Ali, from property company Get Living London, which manage properties in the East Village, said: “Kevin was amazing - he interacted with everyone.

“He seemed to really love the building, the layout of the homes and the way that they overlook Victory Park.”

The Grand Designs episode featuring the East Village is expected to air in the summer.

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