What’s On: Summer Special
The best events on your doorstep and beyond in London and Surrey this summer
PRUDENTIAL RIDE LONDON
Join in the fantastic atmosphere and cheer on all the cyclists who will be passing through Putney, Kingston and Wimbledon.
SUMMER SEEKERS AT FULHAM PALACE
Take your mini-historians down to Fulham Palace throughout July and August and discover which theme the team will be exploring each week. Enjoy crafts, dressing up and adventures around the house and gardens. Booking required.
Throughout August; £5.50
Back for summer, South Bank’s Underbelly Festival will showcase its summer season with the likes of Basil Brush and Shark in the Park. There is also a popup bar with a view.
See website for individual events
MR GUM AND THE DANCING BEAR – THE MUSICAL
Based on the books, Mr Gum and the Dancing Bear – the Musical! is set to be an all-singing, all-dancing performance for all the family, with loveable characters Polly, the dancing bear, and her gang of misfit friends on a quest to escape the evil Mr Gum.
Suitable for 7yrs+.
25 July–31 August
ZIP NOW LONDON
Book your spot on the biggest and fastest citycentre zip wire in the world. Launching from 35 metres in the air, you’ll travel 225 metres at a speed of up to 50 km/h, plus enjoy great views and that adrenaline rush.
Until 15 September; £30
There is a brand new foodie spot in town and its under Waterloo Bridge. Taking residency in a premium spot on the South Bank, Applebee’s first pop-up brings a fresh fish menu, an oyster bar and refreshing Champagne bar, all in time for summer.
OPEN AIR THEATRE
Bring along a picnic and settle down amid the rose garden at Morden Hall Park for this wonderful alfresco production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
16 August; 7.30pm; £18.50 adult, £9 child
Morden Hall Park
THE GREAT BIG TREE CLIMB
For the first time, climb the tallest, oldest tree in Morden Hall’s beautiful park. Recommended for kids aged 6 and up. Booking essential.
21 August; see website for times; £25 per hour
Morden Hall Park
GLOW IN THE PARK FOR KINGSTON HOSPITAL CHARITY
Support your local hospital and dance, walk, jog or run your way through a fun night-time 5km event, suitable for ages six and up. On your way around the course, enjoy the fun in the foam zones, being UV paint blasted, the extraordinary light shows and energising beats.
31 August, 8.15pm; £10 registration fee, includes shirt, medal and headband.
Kempton Park Racecourse.
Regent Street welcomes the return of its summertime traffic-free event for the 7th year. There will be a range of activities, entertainment, plus food and drink offerings to make the most of the pedestrianised London landmark.
14 July – 15 September
SLEEPOVERS AT THE ZOO
For a new way to see London Zoo, book a night in one of its lodges where you will get the chance to sleepover with the animals. A stay at the Lion Lodges includes a sunset tour, torch lit night tour and an early morning tour.
See website for prices and availability
CHIHULY: REFLECTIONS ON NATURE
Celebrated glass artist, Dale Chihuly, will be exhibiting his awe-inspiring collection of glass artworks around the botanical gardens, bringing Kew to life with his colourful creations. Until 27 October; admission included in entry Kew Gardens
MAYFIELD LAVENDER FARM
A feast for the senses, Mayfield Lavender Farm is at its peak in July and August where the fields burst into a sea of purple. There is an al fresco cafe – book a lavender cream tea for a treat.
SUMMER BY THE RIVER
Head to the stretch of the Thames between London Bridge and Tower Bridge, where there will be plenty to explore this summer, including open-air theatre, cinema screenings, and riverside bars London Bridge City
A MAGICAL SUMMER ADVENTURE AT BOCKETTS FARM
Enjoy summer on the farm and its enchanted trails, where you’ll find a bubble disco, small animal encounters, the chance to pan for gold, plus creative activities for kids in the craft corner.
26 July- 1 September
THE GREAT RIVER RACE
An epic route 21.6 miles from London Docklands to Ham makes for a spectacular boat race along the Thames, attracting 330 crews from across the globe, and plenty of spectators along the river banks to cheer them on.
London Docklands to Ham
The annual duck race taking place in Morden Hall Park. Head down to the riverside and pick your favourite duck, racing it down the Wandle.
26 August; 11am-3pm; £2
Morden Hall Park
THUMBS UP, IT’S THURSDAY
This month, Kingston town centre will be celebrating the best of the summer season with fun and educational entertainment for kids every Thursday. Look out for a range of fun activities from face painting to craft sessions.
Thursdays throughout August
WIMBLEDON PARK FOOD AND DRINK FESTIVAL
Taking place in beautiful Wimbledon Park, this foodie fest has tasting stations, recipe inspiration and live entertainment.
WOKING FOOD AND DRINK FESTIVAL
With many awards to its name for its local produce and convivial atmosphere, there are plenty of delicious food and drink stands for foodies to relish.
30 August – 1 September
Woking town centre
FLEABAG ON THE WEST END
For lovers of arguably the most talked about series of the year, Wyndham’s Theatre will be bringing the much-loved TV programme, with Phoebe Waller-Bridge, to the stage. While the onstage reproduction sold out in lightning speed, there will still be the chance to catch Fleabag on stage with a handful of tickets released on the day.
20 August – 14 September
TREE AT YOUNG VIC
Idris Elba and Kwame Kwei-Armah’s story combining music, drama and dance and following one man’s journey from London into the heart of modern South Africa, with the audience at the centre of the action as he discovers his heritage with an intriguing plot.
29 July – 24 August; 2.30pm & 7.30pm; from £30
THE LUNA CINEMA
Venues across the capital and Surrey, spanning from Battersea Park all the way to Ally Pally in the north will be hosting pop-up big screens for the chance to see your favourite film in stunning surrounds. On the bill are films including Grease, Bohemian Rhapsody and Crazy Rich Asians.
See website for times and details
THE TEMPEST AT FULHAM PALACE GARDEN
Enjoy outdoor theatre in the magical grounds of Fulham Palace and catch Shakespeare’s classic lyrical drama on the main lawn.
4 August; 7pm-9.15pm; £14
OPEN AIR THEATRE AT HATCHLANDS PARK
Summer theatre season is upon us, and Hatchlands will be celebrating with summertime plays on the lawn of the impressive mansion. Catch everything from Wuthering Heights to Shakespearean classics.
Dates throughout August
FILM4 SUMMER SCREEN AT SOMERSET HOUSE
The ultimate cinematic experience in the surrounds of Somerset House. The iconic London venue will host 14 summer evenings with outdoor screens, cinema-quality surround sound and unmissable films including cult hits and Hollywood blockbusters.
BEASTS OF LONDON
See London’s history through the eyes of animals who have inhabited the capital at this new exhibition that demonstrates the roles animals have played in shaping the city, from Roman times to the present day. The animals narrate the story, with the likes of Brian Blessed and Angellica Bell voicing the characters.
5 July – 5 January
Museum of London
CHRISTIAN DIOR: DESIGNER OF DREAMS
There is still time to catch the Christian Dior exhibit that is leaving fashionistas across the capital with stars in their eyes. Spanning from 1947 to the present day, the exhibition traces the heritage of the iconic brand, with some stunning pieces on show.
Until 1 September
Victoria and Albert Museum
BP PORTRAIT AWARD 2019
Step into the National Portrait Gallery for a glimpse of the most prestigious portrait painting competition in the world. The award is aimed at encouraging portraiture and this free exhibition highlights some incredible entries.
13 June – 20 October
National Portrait Gallery
FRANK BOWLING AT THE TATE
Guyanese painter Frank Bowling has his collection of colourful, Francis Bacon-esque pieces displayed at the Tate Britain, making for a beautiful display of abstract works created with energy and colour.
Until 26 August; £13/free for members
MUSEUM OF LONDON, DOCKLANDS
The free secret rivers exhibitions explores the city’s waterways, telling the tales of our rivers, streams and brooks and how they have been used through the centuries, the mudlarks gallery, meanwhile, is perfect for the younger visitors.
24 July – 27 October
Museum of London
NILE RODGERS’ MELTDOWN
Legendary king of funk, Nile Rodgers, will be curating Meltdown – a South Bank festival full of collaborations, live music, and fantastic performances from the likes of Johnny Marr, Songhoy Blues and Jungle.
THE BBC PROMS
What better place to immerse yourself in musical sound than this splendid London venue where the instruments fill the hall for a show like no other.
19 July – 14 September
Royal Albert Hall
GUILDFORD SUMMER FESTIVAL
A fun-filled programme of events celebrating the town and local area with town centre cycle races, live music and dancing, a craft fair, farmers’ market, cricket festival, plus so much more.
8 -12 August; free
THE LONDON DESSERT FESTIVAL
For those with a sweet tooth, Spitalfields is the place to be this August, with its journey of sensory indulgence with sugary treats, desserts and tasty puddings galore.
BRICKOSAURS! AT MARWELL ZOO
This Lego spectacular features 50 dino sculptures (to Sept 1) alongside the zoo’s regulars. T&L has a fantastic competition to win a family ticket to the zoo plus on overnight stay.
Noel Coward’s comedy is getting a revamp onstage, with Andrew Scott taking the leading role. The story tells of the self-obsessed Garry Essendine and picks out themes of loneliness and desire.
Until 10 August; from £12
WONDERLAB AT THE SCIENCE MUSEUM
We love the Wonderlab with its interactive approach to learning – and the great pic opportunity in the mirrors! Check out live demos, pulley chairs, giant slides and create your own flying object and test it over the air vent. The museum also has new exhibitions on codebreaking and secret communications, and space exploration.
ALICE IN WONDERLAND
Enjoy this family friendly outdoor production of the Lewis Carroll classic as it is brought to life and performed by the Australian Shakespeare Company.
20-26 August; see website for times
SOUTH WEST FOUR
Returning to the Common for another bank holiday bonanza, SW4 is a city festival taking place over the weekend, with the likes of Andy C, Basement Jaxx and plenty of other big names acts.
24-25 August; £62.50