Stepney is the special responsibility of the Bishop of Stepney, the Rt Revd Dr Joanne Grenfell.
The Bishop of Stepney is supported by the Archdeacon of Hackney.
The Stepney Episcopal Area covers the London boroughs of Hackney, Islington and Tower Hamlets. Like much of London the area spans great social and economic contrasts. The three boroughs contain some of the most deprived wards in the country alongside neighbouring districts of expensive housing – as in the south of Islington and Hackney and the rapidly growing businesses in the Docklands in Tower Hamlets.
The East End of London has been well known for centuries as a place where refugees and immigrants to this country have settled, and all three boroughs are home to large minority ethnic communities. Developing relationships with other faiths is crucial in Tower Hamlets in particular, where there is a large Bangladeshi community.
There are 29 Church of England voluntary aided schools in the area; 26 primary and three secondary. One of the secondary schools, Sir John Cass, has recently come top of the league for the most improved school in England. There are also three universities in the area.
There are eight hospitals, one of which specialises in the treatment of AIDS patients, an Eye hospital and a hospice. There are also two prisons in the area, both in Islington.
Image: East London skyline at night by Dave Hunt, used under Creative Commons licence 2.0.