A London Weekend - Thames Festival

September In The City 

Anyone visiting London knows it can be expensive. But if you’ve got somewhere wonderful to stay, you’d be amazed at the range of events that you can visit for free and London hosts some of the most spectacular festivals in Europe!

This weekend sees the culmination of the Lord Mayors Thames Festival. It’s an action packed event held over Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th September, ending with a giant firework display, above the Thames – a perfect end to a weekend in London!  All sorts of creative activities and events are held up and down the river, so you can pick and choose your own schedule. There are dozens of activities on offer, so here is just a flavour of the range of things you can see. If you are feeling spontaneous – go mad, book one of Londons luxurious soho hotels to stay in, and then hop on the Underground across the river, to take part in one of the most interesting, joyful events you’ll find anywhere in the UK.

Next To The Globe – Pot Firing
The Globe Theatre on the banks of the Thames, is a copy of Shakespeares original Globe Theatre and it’s worth a visit all of its own. On Saturday, you can join the fun on the river outside the building, and get involved with Pot Firing – the fires are made up with driftwood from the river, the pots are made with Thames clay – all very organic and rather messy!

Located in front of the Tate Modern Art Gallery (opposite St Pauls) is the All Eyes on Korea Festival which runs from 12 noon to 10.00pm. Films, art, wedding demonstrations, theatre, dance and cuisine are available to enjoy, and there will workshops for anyone who wants to get involved – fancy trying out your footwook in a Korean Ballet – it’s all here to try out! Massive projections by the renowned Korean artist, Lee Lee-nam will be on display, so it won't be hard to locate!

Choirs On HMS Belfast
If you want something a little more cerebral, how about an evening stroll down to HMS Belfast, which is the last English Battle Cruiser, moored near the Tate Modern building. It is hosting an innovative and remarkable performance of XX Scharnhorst, a piece of music inspired by a desperate sea battle, which took place in the Artic, in 1943. The Scharnhorst, was sunk by English ships, and HMS Belfast was part of the fleet that sank the ship.  This piece of music commemorates the battle, and German Choirs and percussion groups will be using the structure of the ship to recreate the rhythm and feel of the day. The event will take place at 8.00pm and 9.15pm and you can listen and view from the Riverside Walkway.

Photography Masterclass
In the Big Marquee on the front of the Tate Modern Lawn  is the Thames Lens Tent – with a rather special   opportunity for anyone who loves photography. You can join in the free master classes for photography session, which have been set up in association with several major camera suppliers, and photography magazines. Enter your image of the festival, and you might be the lucky winner of a brand new Nikon D 5100 – that’s a lot of camera! If you would like to enter, you can send your photographs to competition@thamesfestival.org. London is a photographers dream – the architecture, the people, life styles and sheer pace make it a perfect spot to get clicking. 

With the Olympics winding down, there will be a little bit more breathing space in the city. So whether you’re looking to rest your head in the lap of luxury in one of the huge range of 5 star hotels in London or you want something closer to a budget weekend breakaway, a trip to the Capital is like a shot of adrenalin – stimulating, fun and full of life!


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