Guide to what’s on in London in September 2014
It may be September, but that doesn’t mean the summer is over. While technically autumn, Septembers over the past few years have had lovely warm weather. Tourism dies down a bit from peak season and the school holidays are over meaning it isn’t so crowded, providing a much more pleasant way to enjoy some of the festivals and exhibitions on in town.
For a guide to open air cinemas in London, click here.
- 1 – 30 September : Totally Thames
Replacing the former 10 day long Thames Festival, Totally Thames is a new month-long celebration of our city’s main waterway. Among the many activities taking place are the Fire Garden by Caboose, Royal Greenwich Tall Ships Festival, St Katherines Docks Classic Boat Rally, Barge Driving Races (14 Sept), The Great River Race (27 Sept) and many more. For more information, visit the Totally Thames website.
- 3 – 26 September : More London Free Film Festival
There will be free screenings of films in The Scoop, near Potter’s Field Park. Films include Philomena, Life Of Pi, The Goonies, Mandela: The Long Walk To Freedom and The Truman Show. Nearest tube: London Bridge. For more information and listings, visit the More London website.
- 4 – 5 September : Experience Cinema @ Madame Tussauds
Watch classic films alongside the ‘stars’ of the movies themselves at after-hours screenings at Madame Tussauds. Films include Romeo & Juliet, Breakfast At Tiffany’s, Top Gun and Pretty Woman. Tickets £22.50 (highly recommend to book in advance). For more information and booking, visit the Experience Cinema website.
- 4 – 14 September : Peckham & Nunhead Free Film Festival
Ten day festival featuring free screenings in the Peckham and Nunhead area at various locations, including The Montpelier, Bussey Building, Old Nun’s Head and the Peckham Liberal Club. Nearest stations: Peckham Rye, Queen’s Road Peckham and Nunhead. For more information and listings, visit the PNFFF website.
- 7 September : Angel Canal Festival
One day festival in the City Road Lock, Basin and Regents Canal towpath. Featuring a children’s fun fair, Punch & Judy, story-teller, boat trips, art projects and galleries, live music and street theatre. Free admission. 11am-5pm. For more information, visit the Angel Canal Festival website.
- Now until 7 September : Animals In The Wall exhibition
A unique collection of late American artist William S Burrough’s works, including some never before seen, alongside other contributing artists. 11am-7pm daily. Free. Londonewcastle Project Space, 28 Redchurch Street, Shoreditch, E2 7DP. Nearest station: Shoreditch High Street. For more information, visit the Guerrilla Zoo website.
- 12 – 14 September : Kings Place Festival
Music and arts festival in Kings Cross, including classical, contemporary, comedy, folk, spoken word, jazz and family. Tickets range from free to £6.50. Kings Place, 90 York Way, N1 9AG. Nearest tube: Kings Cross St Pancras. For more information, visit the Kings Place website.
- 13 – 21 September : London Design Festival
Festival celebrating innovation and creativity at various events in the capital, including exhibitions, talks and the chance to buy. Among the 300 events on in town including the Double Space installation at the V&A Museum, A Place Called Home project in Trafalgar Square, a pop-up London Transport-themed restaurant at Design Junction and film screenings. (To read Metro Girl’s blog on last year’s Endless Stair creation for the festival, click here). To find out more, visit the Design Festival website.
- 13 – 21 September : Colourscape Music Festival
The travelling festival combining contemporary music and art pitches up at Clapham Common for a week. Featuring colour and music workshops and weekend concerts. Clapham Common, SW4. Nearest tube: Clapham Common or Clapham South. For more information, visit the Colourscape website.
- Now until 14 September : Portobello Film Festival
Two and half week festival returns to Notting Hill with screenings and events at the KPH, Pop Up Cinema in Acklam Road and Westbourne Studios. Free. Nearest stations: Ladbroke Grove or Westbourne Park. For more information, visit the Portobello Film Festival website.
- Now until 14 September : Digital Revolution
An immersive exhibition of art, design, film, music and video games exploring the future of the arts through digital. 11am-8pm. Tickets: £12.50. Barbican Centre, Silk Street, EC2Y 8DS. Nearest tube: Barbican or Moorgate. For more information, visit the Barbican website.
- 14 September : Tour Of Britain
The Tour Of Britain cycle race comes to London – the final stage of the eight day professional cycling race. It will start at Whitehall around 11am-1pm, going along the Embankment, onto Upper and Lower Thames Streets, to Tower Hill land back again. Free for spectators. Many roads and bridges will be closed to traffic. Nearest stations: Westminster, Embankment, Temple, Tower Hill, Blackfriars or Cannon Street. For more information, visit the Tour Of Britain website.
- 14 – 16 September : Hampstead & Highgate Literary Festival
Seventy events including literary walks, a kidsfest, workshops, speed pitching and book bites. Speakers include Charles Spencer, Lynne Reid Banks, Jane Costello, Hugh Pym, Linda Grant, Saul David, Penny Vincenzi, Monique Roffey, Tom Wilkinson, Jenny Colgan, Alex Brummer, Robert Sackville-West, Ann Treneman, Nick Harkaway, Claudia Roden and Tanya Byron. At various locations in Hampstead and Highgate. For more information, visit the Ham & High Literary Festival website.
- Now until 15 September : Books About Town
Benches shaped like books featuring illustrations of famous literary characters and novels have been dotted around London on four different trails in Bloomsbury, The City, Greenwich and on the South Bank. For more information, read Metro Girl’s blog post on the Books About Town.
- 17 September : BP Big Screens presents Rigoletto
Royal Opera House productions will be broadcast live on big screens in Trafalgar Square, Walthamstow Town Square , Woolwich’s General Gordon Square and Canary Wharf. Free. For more information, visit the Royal Opera House website.
- 18 – 21 September : Vodafone London Fashion Weekend
London Fashion Weekend follows London Fashion Week, giving access to everyone who loves fashion (who has tickets!). Featuring fashion shows, makeovers and opportunities to shop at discount prices. Strongly recommended to buy tickets in advance, which are available for different prices and packages. Somerset House, Strand, WC2R 1LA. Nearest tube: Temple or Holborn. For more information, visit the London Fashion Weekend website.
- 18 – 21 and 25 – 28 September : Oktoberfest
German beer festival comes to London at Kennington Park. Free admission daily apart from £10 on Saturdays. As well as the chance to sample a wide range of beer and German cuisine, there will also be live music, including a Rednex gig on 18 September and the chance to rent Lederhosen and Dirndl. Kennington Park, St. Agnes Place, Kennington, SE11 4BA. Nearest tube station: Oval. For more information, visit the Oktoberfest London website.
- 20 September : Bermondsey Street Festival
Celebration of music, dance, arts, cuisine and creativity from the local area. Featuring fashion shows, dog shows, live music, stalls, food and a fete. Free. 11am-7pm. Bermondsey Square, Southwark, SE1 3UN. Nearest tube: London Bridge. For more information, visit the Bermondsey Street Festival website.
- 20 September : West Dulwich Community Autumn Fair
Annual autumn fair organised by All Saints Church in West Dulwich, including music, craft stalls, local groups, circus workshop, BBQ, tea and cakes and children’s activities. 2-5pm. Free. Lovelace Road, West Dulwich, SE21. Nearest train station: West Dulwich or Tulse Hill. For more information tel: 07432 118859 or email:firstname.lastname@example.org.
- 20 – 21 September : Open House London
This annual event is hugely popular and sees buildings that are not normally open to the public, throw open their doors for just two days. Some buildings are strictly pre-booking or ballot only and you need to apply in advance to gain entry. Be prepared to queue for the more popular buildings, such as City Hall and The Gherkin. Free. (To read about Metro Girl’s guide to Open House London and for past reviews, click here). Check out the Open House London website for more information.
- 21 September : Carnaval Del Pueblo
Celebration of Latin American culture, including live music, food, drink and dancing. Free. 11am-7pm. Burgess Park, Camberwell, SE5 0RJ. Nearest tube: Kennington. For more information, visit the Carnaval Del Pueblo website.
- 24 – 28 September : LAPADA Art & Antiques Fair
Five day fair in Mayfair with the opportunity to buy fine art and antiques, including furniture, jewellery, carpets, tapestries, antiquities, clocks, ceramics and silver. Local Mayfair nightspot Mr Fogg’s will also be hosting a pop-up bar serving cocktails and champagne in a Victorian-themed speakeasy. Tickets: £15. Berkeley Square, Mayfair, W1. Nearest tube: Green Park or Bond Street. For more information, visit the LAPADA London website.
- 24 September – 5 October : Raindance Film Festival
UK’s largest independent film festival returns to the capital. Featuring over 100 films and 150 short films screened in the Piccadilly Circus area. For more information and tickets, visit the Raindance website.
- 26 September : Bridge Lates @ Museum Of London Docklands
Check out the Bridge exhibition after hours at this late-night opening, including a bar by Rum & Sugar. As well as the exhibition, there is also a special audio installation from sound artist Scanner. Free. 6-10pm. Museum of London Docklands, No.1 Warehouse, West India Quay, E14 4AL. Nearest tube: West India Quay (DLR). For more information, visit the Museum Of London Docklands website.
- 26 – 28 September : Real Street Food Festival
Food festival returns to the Southbank, outside the Royal Festival Hall. Featuring street food from around the world. Free. Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, SE1 8XX. Nearest tube: Waterloo. For more information, visit the Real Street Food Festival website.
- 26 September – 4 January 2015 : The Art Of The Brick
Nathan Sawaya’s ART OF THE BRICK exhibition is created with millions of LEGO building blocks and is unique in its scope which ranges from new conceptual pieces to replicas of iconic classical artwork. Tickets: Adults – £14.50-£16.50, Children under 12 – £8-£9.50. Open daily, hours vary. Old Truman Brewery, 91 Brick Lane, Shoreditch, E1 6QL. Nearest station: Aldgate or Shoreditch High Street. For more information, visit The Art Of The Brick website.
- 27 September : Japan Matsuri
A celebration of Japanese culture returns to Trafalgar Square. ‘Matsuri’ means festival or holiday so expect plenty of entertainment, food and drink and other chances to buy Japanese products. Free. 11am-9pm. Trafalgar Square, WC2N. Nearest tube: Charing Cross, Embankment, Leicester Square or Piccadilly Circus. For more information, visit the Japan Matsuri website.
- 27 September : NFL on Regent Street
The iconic London shopping thoroughfare is shut off for traffic to celebrate America’s National Football League (NFL) coming to London on the day ahead of the Miami Dolphins-Oakland Raiders game at Wembley Stadium. Including appearances from and interviews with NFL teammates, cheerleaders, mini American football field, NFL Lab, NFL memorabilia and merchandise and food and drink. Free. 12-6pm. Regent Street, W1B 5TD. Nearest tube: Oxford Circus or Piccadilly Circus. For more information, visit the Regent Street website.
- 27 – 28 September : VegFest
Festival for vegans and vegetarians, featuring food market, shopping, meet the experts, entertainment, cookery demos and kids’ cookery. Tickets: £10 adults, Free for under 16s. Kensington Olympia, Hammersmith Road, W14 8UX. Nearest tube: Olympia. For more information, visit the VegFest website.
- Now until 28 September : London Wonderground
The London Wonderground Festival returns to the Southbank for a third year – an entertainment extravaganza in Jubilee Gardens, near the foot of the London Eye and by the Southbank Centre. It includes cabaret, children’s show, comedy, burlesque, funfair and alfresco drinking. (For Metro Girl’s blog post on last year’s Wonderground, click here). Open all day until 11pm every night. Free to get in, but entry fee for shows. Jubilee Gardens, Belvedere Road, SE1 8XX Nearest tube or train: Waterloo, Embankment or Westminster. For more information, visit the Wonderground website.
- 28 September : Pearly Kings & Queens’ Harvest Festival
Pearly Kings and Queens are an iconic part of London culture, who aren’t seen around the capital as much as they used to. Unsurprisingly, they are likely to be the main attraction at the festival at Guildhall, which also includes traditional entertainment, a parade and a Harvest Festival service. Starts at Guildhall Yard at 1pm, before the service at St-Mary-Le-Bow Church at 3pm. Nearest tube (to Guildhall): St Paul’s or Bank. Find out more information on the Pearly Society website.
- Now until December : Bond In Motion
An exhibition of James Bond vehicles. Tickets – Adults: £14.50, Children: £9.50. Booking in advance highly recommend. (Visit National Rail’s Days Out Guide website for details on 2 for 1 tickets here). London Film Museum, 45 Wellington Street, Covent Garden, WC2E 7BN. Nearest tube: Covent Garden or Temple. For more information, visit the London Film Museum website.