A CAFE which is "like stepping into a time warp" is celebrating its landmark 80th anniversary.

The Bungalow Cafe, in Spratt Hall Road, Wanstead, has barely changed in the last eight decades.

Its long and rich history began in 1938 when it opened as a sweet shop, but two years later it was converted into a cafe.

READ MORE: Memories of the Blitz in Wanstead and the Bungalow Cafe

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The shop would provide meals for a Royal Engineers Corp which was stationed in Wanstead - a tradition that still almost stands today.

It has become an 'unofficial spot' for police officers - but also welcomes people from all walks of life.

Manager Stavros Nicola, who took over the running of the cafe in 2001, said: "Everybody who comes here knows everybody.

"A wide range of people pass through the doors - muddy boots and high heels are welcome. A lot of police officers come here too. 

"It's a warm place - not your usual high street cafe."

A newspaper clipping from 1938 shows how former owner, Sidney Godley, applied for planning permission to open the cafe.

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At the time, the council was accused of "drawing red herrings across the trail". 

It was sold on to Mr Nicola in 2001.

Not much has changed since the war and the owners only removed the outdoor toilets in 2013.

He added: "It's become a landmark within Wanstead. 

"It's like a time warp now. 

"I am blessed to have such good staff, too."