LONDON LOCKDOWN: THINGS TO DO – SUMMER 2020

For many of us this Summer has turned out to be not quite what we expected. Many of us pictured friendcations, baecations, festival fun, rooftop bars, flights after flights and so much more, however when London’s Lockdown officially announced itself in March we all knew Summer 2020 could be … well cancelled?

I know we’ve all been picking up new skills such as becoming gourmet chefs, plucking our own eyebrows and doing our own waxes, but once you’ve exhausted that list and you’re tired of DIY – you may be wondering what’s next?

As we approach the end of June, London seems to slowly be opening up again and although our favourite festivals won’t be going ahead, who says you can’t make the best of this summer we do have?

Here’s some ideas to get you started:

DRIVE THROUGH CINEMALUNA DRIVE-IN CINEMA

A summer under the stars? Sounds like a dream right? It doesn’t have to be with the new drive-in cinemas upcoming arrival in two of London’s hot spots.

Luna Drive-In the lovechild of The Luna Cinema company, is taking place in London at Surrey Quays’s stunning Printworks London venue from July 8 to 21 and Hendon’s Allianz Park from July 4 to 19.

The experienced is equipped with all new impressive LED screens and a bespoke audio set-up. The line-up of movies features a mix of classic throwbacks such as Grease, The Goonies, Dirty Dancing and Back To The Future, as well as recent blockbuster hits like Rocketman. Did I mention they also deliver food and drink to your car?

With high street cinemas set to open in early July, some may be worried about safety in numbers but luckily the drive-through experience offers immediate separation from other audience goers, in the safety of your own car enabling you to get back to the big screen at last.

Book your tickets now over at: Https://www.lunadriveincinema.com/

STREAM YOUR FAVOURITE THEATRE SHOWS FROM YOUR SOFA

If you’re a frequent theatre-goer like myself, you’ll know the dream has always been to experience that life-changing performance you watched one more time without paying the steep price tag twice over. Well a moment in theatre we never thought would come has arrived, with theatre being forced to close its doors many productions have begun to stream runs of popular shows online. You can now enjoy your theatre fix from home.

National Theatre Live: ‘Small Island’

After a successful run last year, the renowned theatre adaptation of Andrea Levy’s classic novel about Jamaica’s Windrush generation ‘Small Island’ will stream for free on the National Theatre’s YouTube channel on Thursday June 18 at 7pm and then be available to watch for a week. This one is certainly not to be missed!

National Theatre Live: ‘The Madness of George III’

National Theatre at Home will be streaming its recording of Mark Gatiss in ‘The Madness of George III’, performed in Nottingham Playhouse in 2018. You have until 7pm on Thursday June 18 to watch it for free.

The Globe: ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’

This Shakespearean classic is the latest play to stream in the Globe’s free online season. Is it even a theatre post if we don’t have at least one romantic classic? Whether you’re loved up or not this summer this one is sure to have you in tears of joy.

‘Fleabag’

‘Fleabag’ has returned, but this time for a great cause, in light of recent event the stream will work to raise funds for three UK charities on the front line of the COVID-19 pandemic. The West End show is available to stream on Soho Theatre’s on-demand site and also Amazon Prime Video. It costs just £4 (or more if you can would like to donate), and the proceeds will be split between National Emergencies Trust (NET), NHS Charities Together and Acting for Others. 

That’s all for now folks, check in regularly for updates!

TOP THINGS TO DO IN LONDON, NOVEMBER 2019

This Section will be updated as and when I source new events/activities so don’t miss out and be sure to check in daily for updates.

DEATH OF A SALESMAN

The critically acclaimed Death of A Salesman has returned once more for the year, After a sell-out run at the Young Vic, it has now taken residency at London Piccadilly Theatre. Without giving too much away Wendell Pierce (Who some of you may know as Zain from American Tv series Suits) is joined by Sharon D Clarke to tell the tale of an unsuccessful business trip to find his two adult sons living at the family home. Business has been tough for him as of recent and its takes its toll on the 69-year-old, who drifts in and out of daydreams and hallucinations throughout the play.

Sound good? Catch it whilst it’s here for a second time round, with performances until 4 Jan 2020.

Location: Piccadilly Theatre, Soho

Price:  Tickets available from £15

https://www.thepiccadillytheatre.com/death-of-a-salesman

 

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SKATE @ SOMERSET HOUSE

 Wednesday November 13 2019 – Sunday January 12 2020

The 900-square-metre outdoor rink now in its twentieth year,  arrives at Somerset House. It’s grand eighteenth-century courtyard is something of a festive must.

Their popular Skate Lates – evening sessions with specially curated music playlists will return again this month whilst Messrs Fortnum & Mason are once again running the rinkside show. Treat your tastebuds to chocolate fondue and sip on champagne at the Skate Lodge. If that’s not enough for the hardcore skaters, theres an epic 24-hour skate on December 7th!

 

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JAPANESE WINTER LIGHT FESTIVAL @ MR FOGG’S TAVERN & GIN PARLOUR

A special new winter experience has arrived at Mr Fogg’s Gin Parlour and Tavern. The Winter Light Festival  runs until 24 November 2019. The neighbouring venues of the Gin Parlour and Tavern have transformed into a Japanese-inspired, illuminated oasis, serving House of Suntory cocktails and tasty fusion cuisine.

Visitors will have the once in a lifetime experience to embark on a sensory journey to the Far East, with tastes, sounds and sites of Japan. After walking through a red Torii, guests can take a seat and enjoy the Instagram worthy pink Japanese blossom surrounding the bar. Alternatively, you can follow the lantern trail upstairs to the Gin Parlour which is guaranteed to have you in awe.

Location: Covent Garden

https://www.mr-foggs.com/christmas/

SORRY YOU MISSED IT

BONFIRE NIGHT

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Remember remember the 5th of November. Marshmallows, Bonfires and all the things you admire.

As the autumn evenings get chillier, The first week of  November comes in with a quite literal bang. Over the weekend of the 1st, many parks across London are offering an evening of a show stopping array of fireworks, blankets, mulled wine and more. Wrap up warm, grab the hand of a close one and head to one of the  many bonfire displays.

Locations:  

  • 1/2 November: Alexander Palace Fireworks Festival
  • 2/3 November: Crystal Palace Fireworks @ Crystal Palace Park
  • 3 November: Fireworks Night @ Victoria Park

Price:  £ Prices vary according to location

BLACK HISTORY MONTH 2019 – EVENTS

Welcome to the month of October, we have finally entered into the wonderful month of Black History Month. London is a city made all the better by its multiculturalism and we are certainly spoilt for choice with ways to celebrate this year, take a look for yourself below (Check in for new additions to the list all month long).

What will you do to commemorate this month? (Let me know in the comments below)

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MUSUEM OF LONDON – Black Culture in London

 October 1-30, 2019 – London Wall 

Museum of London are hosting a a variety of great FREE talks  exploring the history of Black culture in London. All talks are free and booking is not required. Some talks include:

  • The eternal beat – 3 , 6 & 27 October, 2.30pm.
  • 30 Years: From Brixton to Tottenham – 10 October, 12.30pm.
  • Windrush – 1, 9, 12, 13, 16, 23, 27 & 30 October, 12.30pm; 2, 7 , 9, 14, 15, 21 & 22 October, 2.30pm.

Visit the site for more information and a full list of talks: https://www.museumoflondon.org.uk/museum-london

 

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BLACK GIRL FEST

Saturday 12 October, 2019 – Business Design Centre

The UK’s first festival celebrating Black women and girls is back for another year and this time theme is ‘Taking Up Space’

The theme comes from Black Girls Fest bid to  break down barriers, champion diversity and create new seats at the table in an array of industries from tech, literature to hair and beauty.

It will be a full day affair from 10am – 7pm with lots of fun workshops, masterclasses as  well as a marketplace, exhibitions, live performances, screenings and more.

Visit the site for more information and tickets:

https://www.blackgirlfest.com/

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THE BHM COMEDY SHOW

Friday 25 October, 2019 – Walthamstow Assembly Hall

As Black History Month draws to a close, Walthamstow Assembly Hall will be hosting a black history month special comedy show. What better way to end this month than with a night of belly laughter and entertainment.

COMEDIANS ON THE NIGHT INCLUDE:

Host – Wayne “Dibbi” Rollins
Slim – The people’s Champion
Rudi Lickwood – the Black Knight
Prince Abdi – African royalty
Roger Dee
Njambi McGrath
Babatunde – winner of best newcomer at black comedy awards

LIVE PERFORMANCES FROM:
Jermain Jackman (Back by popular demand)
Saxophonist – Ray Carless – one of the London jazz scene’s best-kept secrets

Visit the site for more information and tickets: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-biggest-black-history-month-comedy-show-in-london-2019-tickets-66113105077

 

 

 

 

 

TOP 5: HOXTON HOT SPOTS

QUEEN OF HOXTON

Queen of Hoxton is a top Shoreditch bar and club with East London’s finest live music and DJ’s. Offering both a lounge and chill spot option in the form of a games room with a pinball table and foosball table. Looking for something. A little livelier well the Queen offers the best of both wells as the ground floor showcases a basement bar with an intricate blend of window etchings, graffiti, ivy and a landscape of benches, with a large bar serving tantalising cocktails, thirst-quenching lagers and ales on tap and a selection of wines. The venue also boasts a top rooftop bar with a garden, kitchen and BBQ for those who love alfresco drinks with stunning views of London.

http://queenofhoxton.com/

LADY DINAH’S CAT EMPORIUM

Taking inspiration from Tokyo, Lady Dinah’s was London’s very first cat café, opening its doors back in 2014. Filled with cute cats, faux-vintage furnishings and plenty of chintzy crockery – this is certainly a Hoxton hotspot! With 13 cats sharing the space, this is a cat lovers paw paradise – offering light meals, sandwiches, salads and bagels, high teas, afternoon teas and a range of mouthwatering pots of tea like chantilly cream tea, or popcorn green tea.

https://www.ladydinahs.com/   

OLD SPITAFIELDS MARKET

Is vintage fashion your thing? Old Spitalfields market is a firm favorite with lots of stalls selling jewelry, retro home furnishings, designer and non-designer clothes and more. There is also an abundance of food options and bars surrounding the market. Even if you don’t feel like buying anything, Spitalfields is just a unique and eclectic part of London to walk around and explore. Let’s not forget your bound to get an IG worthy photo here too!

https://oldspitalfieldsmarket.com/

 

Hoxton Street Monster Supplies

This intriguing store is part of the Ministry of Stories – an initiative that sees professional writers mentor young people in the art of story writing. Hoxton Street Monster Supplies offers bespoke and everyday items for the living, dead and undead. It works to encourage wild creativity and hopes to transform lives through writing. The shop itself is a direct reflection of the beyond outlandish tone of the workshops and  ghoulish treats on offer from the ‘thickest human snot’ to Werewolf biscuits and cubed ‘earwax’. This might just be the strangest shop in London, will you be brave enough to visit?

https://www.monstersupplies.org/

THE ORANGE BUFFALO

Word on the streets of Hoxton is that, Orange Buffalo serves the BEST buffalo wings in London. Located in the Truman Brewery Car Park with its four levels of sauces to rival Nando’s Peri-scale starting with the sensible Original  to the scorching Viper, The Orange Buffalo is undoubtedly one to add to your list of eateries this summer!

https://theorangebuffalo.com/