Guide to what’s on in London in September 2019
Find out what festivals, exhibitions, fairs and more are taking place in the capital this September.
Summer is starting to wind down and autumn is creeping ever closer. September seems to be a hybrid month between the two, where we could have warm summer nights, but there’s always the risk of windy, wet weather. September is a more manageable city to spend time in as the main tourist throngs have died down and the children are back in school.
- 31 August – 1 September : Zee London Mela
Family festival inspired by the rich culture and flavours of South Asia, featuring live Bollywood, traditional and urban music, performers, food, drink, fashion, sports, kids area, funfair, fireworks finale and more. Open Sat 31 1pm-8pm and Sun 1 1pm-9pm. Tickets: £2. Under 16s Free. Southall Park, Uxbridge Road, Southall, UB1 3BT. Nearest station: Southall. For more information, visit the London Mela website.
- 1 September : Angel Canal Festival
One day festival in the City Road Lock, Basin and Regents Canal towpath. Featuring over 80 stalls, children’s fun fair, Punch & Judy, story-teller, boat trips and canoeing, art projects and galleries, live music and street theatre. 11am-5pm. Free. Nearest station: Angel. For more information, visit the Angel Canal Festival website.
- 1 – 30 September : Totally Thames
Totally Thames is a month-long celebration of our city’s main waterway. Among the many activities taking place are the St Katharine Docks Classic Boat Festival (6-8 Sept), The Great River Race (14 Sept), Regatta London (29 Sep), walks, mudlarking, art installations, live music, theatre, dinners, river relay, film screenings and many more activities. Many events are free. For more information, visit the Totally Thames website.
- 1 – 30 September :Carnaby Eats
The restaurants, cafes and bars of Carnaby are taking part in a month-long foodie festival. Featuring special menus, masterclasses, cookbook launches and more. At the streets in and around the Carnaby district of Soho. Nearest station: Oxford Circus or Piccadilly Circus. For more information, visit the Carnaby London website. For more information, read Metro Girl’s blog post.
- Now until 1 September : Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams @ V&A
Exhibition of Christian Dior designs, from 1947 to the present day. Featuring over 200 garments and hundreds of accessories, photographs, videos, sketches and more. Exhibition hours opening vary (timed entry). Tickets: £20-£24. Victoria & Albert Museum, Cromwell Road, South Kensington, SW7 2RL. Nearest station: South Kensington. For more information, visit the V&A website. Read Metro Girl’s review of the exhibition.
- Now until 1 September : Meatopia
Weekend of meat, drink, music and fire. Featuring chefs from Smokestak, B’s Cracklin Atlanta, Gunpowder, Cabrito, Blacklock, Sausage Commitment, Brigade, Hangfire, Belzan, Hawksmoor and many more. Music from Olugbenga (Metronomy), Das Brass, Huey Morgan, Izo Fitzroy, King Brasstards and more. Open Fri 5pm-11pm, Sat 12pm-10pm, Sun 12pm-7pm. Tickets: £23-94 (depending on admission day and package). Tobacco Dock, 50 Porters Walk, Wapping, E1W 2SF. Nearest station: Wapping or Shadwell. For information and booking, visit the Meatopia website.
- Now until 2 September : Summer By The River – Outdoor Theatre
Watch a live outdoor performance of The Sea Queen or Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night by the Thames. Performances from Wed-Sat at 6pm, Sun at 4pm. Free entry. The Scoop, Queen’s Walk, London Bridge, SE1 2DB. Nearest station: London Bridge. For more information, visit the London Bridge City website.
- 3 – 28 September : RIFT present Midsummer Night’s Dream @ Ally Pally
An immersive theatrical performance of the Shakespeare classic in the newly-opened basements of Alexandra Palace. Age 12 and over only. 7.30pm-10pm. Tickets: £28.50. Alexandra Palace, Alexandra Palace, Alexandra Palace Way, N22 7AY. Nearest stations: Alexandra Palace or Wood Green. For more information, visit the Alexandra Palace website.
- 4 – 7 September : Santo pop-up @ The Little Yellow Door
Notting Hill’s foodie favourite Santo will be hosting a pop-up with the flatmates, featuring Mexican food, drink and music. From 6pm. The Little Yellow Door, 6-8 All Saints Road, Notting Hill, W11 1HH. Nearest station: Westbourne Park or Ladbroke Grove. For more information, visit The Little Yellow Door website or the event’s Facebook page. For more information about TLYD, read Metro Girl’s blog post.
- 5 – 15 September : Peckham & Nunhead Free Film Festival
Ten day festival featuring free screenings in the Peckham and Nunhead area at various locations, including Nunhead Cemetery, Peckham Palms, The Ivy House, The Old Waiting Room and more. Films include The Lady Vanishes, Harold & Maude, Widows, Albatross, The River and The Wall and more. Free. Nearest stations: Peckham Rye, Queen’s Road Peckham and Nunhead. For more information and listings, visit the PNFFF website.
- 5 September – 19 January 2020 : The Immersive Wolf Of Wall Street
Enjoy a taste of ’90s high-flying Wall Street hedonism with an immersive theatre production, adapted from the hit film. Expect a restaurant, bars, supercars and more. Over 18s only. Dress code: 90s American Office attire. Times vary. Tickets: £58-£100. 5-15 Sun Street, City of London, EC2M 2PT. Nearest station: Moorgate or Liverpool Street. For more information, visit the Immersive Wolf website.
- 6 – 8 September : Classic Boat Festival 2019
As part of the Totally Thames celebration (see above), St Katharine Docks are hosting a weekend festival, featuring a display of 40 vintage sail and power vessels, alongside live music, street food, workshops, talks and children’s activities. 12pm-6pm. Free. St Katharine Docks, 50 St. Katharine’s Way, Tower Bridge, E1W 1LA. Nearest station: Tower Hill, Fenchurch Street or Tower Gateway (DLR). For more information, visit the St Katharine Docks website.
- 6 – 14 September : Charlton & Woolwich Free Film Festival
Eight day film festival offers free screenings in Charlton and Woolwich. In various locations including Severndroog Castle and more TBA. Nearest stations: Charlton or Woolwich. For more information and listings, visit the CWFFF website.
- 7 September : Thank You For Having Us
Générik Vapeur and Gorilla Circus present an adrenaline-fuelled acrobatic performance as part of the Totally Thames Festival. 8pm onwards. Free. King Street and Cheapside junction, City of London, EC2V 6DT. Nearest station: St Paul’s. For more information, visit the City of London.gov.uk website.
- 8 September : Holi Festival of Colours
Thousands of people wearing white come together for a festival of music, dance and performance art. Inspired by the Indian Holi festival, participants will end up covered in multi-coloured powder. Tickets from £14.99. Location TBA. For more information and tickets, visit the Holi Festival website.
- 12 – 15 September : HRP Food Festival @ Tower of London
Food festival in the moat of one of London’s most iconic buildings. Expect street food, pop-up bars, masterclasses, artisan producers, music, shopping & gifts and kids’ entertainment. Featuring celebrity chefs and experts including Jose Pizarro, Emily Roux, Dr Rupy Aujla, Billy & Jack, Chris Bavin, Joe Hurd and more. Tickets: Adults £24.70, Children £11.70. Tower Of London, Tower Hill, City of London, EC3 4AB. Nearest station: Tower Hill, Fenchurch Street or Tower Gateway. For tickets, visit the HRP Food Festivals website.
- 13 – 15 September : The Handmade Fair
Three day fair from Kirstie Allsop, featuring celebrity names, hands-on making, shopping, food, drink and more. 9.30am-6pm. Tickets: From £17.12 (advance). The Green, Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey, KT8 9AU. Nearest station: Hampton Court. For tickets, visit The Handmade Fair website.
- 13 – 17 September : London Fashion Week
London Fashion Week is opening its doors to the public this year so you can check out some (but not all) catwalk shows, immersive installations, the discoveryLAB, and more. Various venues. Tickets from £135. For more information, visit the London Fashion Week website.
- 13 – 18 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. Opening hours vary. Tickets: £20. Berkeley Square, Mayfair, W1. Nearest stations: Green Park or Bond Street. For more information, visit the LAPADA London website.
- 14 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. 11am-7pm. Free. Bermondsey Square, Southwark, SE1 3UN. Nearest station: London Bridge. For more information, visit the Bermondsey Street Festival website.
- 14 September : Casa BACARDÍ® Street Party at Nine Lives
Cocktail bar Nine Lives are hosting a street party during the Bermondsey Street Festival (see above). Featuring a bespoke Nine Lives x Bacardi Menu, DJ sets and performances by special guests. 2pm-10pm. Nine Lives, 8 Holyrood Street, London Bridge, SE1 2EL. Nearest station: London Bridge. For more information, visit the Nine Lives Facebook event. Read Metro Girl’s review of Nine Lives.
- 14 September : Aperitivo Party @ Gigi’s Hoxton
Celebrate the end of summer with a daytime party. Featuring welcome spritz, bottomless aperitivo-style snacks (2pm -6pm), live entertainment including acoustic performances and DJs. 2pm-8pm. Tickets: £20. Gigi’s Hoxton, 11 Hoxton Square, N1 6NU. Nearest stations: Hoxton or Old Street. For tickets, visit DesignMyNight. Read Metro Girl’s review of Gigi’s.
- 14 September : EVE – Riot Grrrls of Wrestling Present Wrestling with an Agenda
Women’s wrestling show with action-packed stunts, with comedy, cabaret and more. Doors 7.30pm, show from 8pm. Tickets: £25. Resistance Gallery, 265 Poyser Street, Bethnal Green, E2 9RF. Nearest station: Bethnal Green or Cambridge Heath. For tickets, visit EVEWrestling.com.
- 14 – 22 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 include a installations, street galleries, pop-up stores and many more. To find out more, visit the London Design Festival website.
- 15 September : Summer Streets @ Regent Street
Regent Street will be closed off to vehicle traffic for a day of special events and offers. Expect talks, workshops, style consultations, monogramming services, history exhibition, food and drink offers and much more. Regent Street, Mayfair & Soho, W1B. Nearest stations: Oxford Circus or Piccadilly Circus. For more information, visit the Regent Street website.
- Now until 15 September : Applebee’s Fish pop-up
Borough Market establishment Applebee’s are setting up a summer pop-up on the South Bank, featuring fresh seafood, craft beer, cocktails, live entertainment and lawn games. Queen’s Walk (under Hungerford Bridge), Lambeth, SE1 8XX. Nearest station: Waterloo. For more information, visit the Applebee’s Fish website. For more information, read Metro Girl’s blog post.
- Now until 15 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 the Muse Gallery. Free. Nearest stations: Ladbroke Grove or Westbourne Park. For more information, visit the Portobello Film Festival website.
- 18 – 29 September : Raindance Film Festival
UK’s largest independent film festival returns to the capital. Featuring over 100 movies and 150 short films screened in the Piccadilly Circus area. Festival pass from £39. For more information and tickets, visit the Raindance website.
- 19 September – 27 October : Harvestfest @ Skylight London
Rooftop bar Skylight London has an autumnal makeover, with city views, cocktails, street food, blankets, heaters, Hay Bale Skittles, horseshoes and apple-draughts, DJ nights and more. Open Thu-Fri 5pm-11pm, Sat-Sun 12pm-11pm. Free entry. Skylight, Tobacco Quay (Pennington Street entrance), Wapping, E1CW 2SF. Nearest station: Shadwell or Wapping. For more information, visit the Skylight London website.
- 20 – 22 September : The Telegraph – Travel Live
Media brand hosts its annual travel show, featuring interactive, sensory experiences and curated information to help inspire your next trips. Tickets: TBC. Battersea Evolution, stown Road, Battersea, SW8 4NW. Nearest station: Battersea Park or Queenstown Road Battersea. For more information, visit the Travel Live website.
- 21 September : First Plates pop-up
Birds Eye are opening an interactive, colourful children-only restaurant, which will aim to serve so-called fussy eaters with healthy food in a creative way. Dr Elizabeth Kilbey, star of Channel 4’s The Secret Life of 4, 5 and 6 Year Olds, who will be providing hints and tips on how to navigate picky eaters, while there will also be a play zone. For children aged 4-7. 2.30pm-4.30pm. Register for your free tickets online. Icetank, 5-7 Grape Street, Holborn, WC2H 8DW. Nearest station: Holborn. To book a ticket, visit Eventbrite.
- 21 – 22 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. For more information, visit the Open House London website. Read Metro Girl’s guide to this year’s Open House London.
- Now until 22 September : Dulwich Pavilion 2019 – The Colour Palace
Check out the summer pavilion in the grounds of Dulwich Picture Gallery. This year’s structure has been designed by Pricegore architects and Yinka Ilori. Throughout the summer, there will be a series of events at the pavilion, as well as monthly late-night openings. Free. Dulwich Picture Gallery, Gallery Road, Dulwich Village, SE21 7AD. Nearest station: West Dulwich or North Dulwich. For more information, visit the Dulwich Picture Gallery website. Read Metro Girl’s blog post on this year’s pavilion.
- 22 September : Butlers Wharf BBQ Feastival
The restaurants of Butlers Wharf – La Pont de la Tour, Butlers Wharf Chop House, Cantina de Ponte and Blueprint Café – team up for a BBQ festival. Enjoy live music, river views and plenty of barbecued food. 12pm-4pm. Tickets: £30pp (inc bottomless BBQ from all 4 restaurants and 1 cocktail. La Pont de la Tour, 36D Shad Thames, SE1 2YE. Nearest stations: London Bridge or Tower Hill. For more information, visit the Pont de La Tour website.
- 24 September : An evening with Metaxa and explorer Laura Bingham
Greek amber spirit Metexa are hosting an intimate talk with British explorer Laura Bingham at one of the World’s Best Bars. Ticket holders can listen to stories of Laura’s amazing adventures while enjoying Metaxa’s special cocktail menu before a Q&A and live music. From 7pm. Tickets: £10 (includes welcome drink and canape). Oriole Bar, East Poultry Avenue, Smithfield, EC1A 9LH. Nearest station: Farringdon. For tickets, visit Eventbrite.
- 25 September : Rum Off Quarter-Final @ Bobby Fitzpatrick
Help find the world’s best rum in the 2nd quarter-final of the Rum Off 2019. Sixteen leading rum brands will compete for the title, with cocktail making, with you getting to vote for your favourite. The quarter-final will see Appleton Estate vs Bayou vs Copalli Rum vs The Real McCoy competing for a place in the semis. 7pm-10pm. Tickets: Advance £9 (inc entry and 4 cocktails), £12 on the door. Bobby Fitzpatrick, 273 West End Lane, Hampstead, NW6 1QS. Nearest station: West Hampstead. For tickets, visit Eventbrite.
- 25 and 28 September : National Fitness Day @ by CHLOE
Vegan restaurant by CHLOE are offering free post-workout smoothies to celebrate National Fitness Day. Any customers who visit one of by CHLOE’s 4 London locations wearing their gym kit can enjoy a free smoothie. Customers will also have the opportunity to sign up for a free Barre class with Frame on Saturday 28 September at 9am. The class is complimentary, but participants must sign up through Eventbrite. Smoothie offer at by CHLOE locations in Covent Garden, Oxford Circus, One Tower Bridge and The O2. For more information, visit by CHLOE website.
- 25 September – 15 November : Nicole Wassall – Precious Metal exhibition
British artist Nicole Wassall presents an exhibition of her art, using a variety of metals and objects, such as brass frames, suspended gold wires, granite, coins, wood, sound, and a silver marionette puppet. Open Tues-Fri: 12pm- 6pm, Sat: 12pm-4pm. Fiumano Clase gallery, Unit 12, 21 Wren Street, King’s Cross, WC1X 0HF. Nearest station: King’s Cross St Pancras. For more information, visit the Fiumano Clase website.
- 27 – 28 September : Emerge Festival 2019
A series of late-night events across the capital. Expect film screenings, pop-up gin bars, artists and DJs performing, among other events, at some of London’s most iconic buildings. Venues taking part including Rich Mix, Design Museum, Dulwich Picture Gallery, The Monument, Household Calvary Museum, Barbican, Banqueting House Tower Bridgee. For more information, visit the Emerge Festival website.
- 28 September : Ghost World & Crumb Immersive Screening
A special immersive screening of Ghost World and Terry Zwigoff’s earlier work Crumb, along with an introduction, Q&A, live performances from some soundtrack artists, immersive installations and more. Over 18s only. 5pm-11pm. Tickets from £33. The Troxy, 490 Commercial Road, Limehouse, E1 0HX. Nearest station: Limehouse. For tickets, visit the Troxy website.
- 29 September : Pearly Kings and Queens’ Festival
Annual Harvest festival by the Pearly Kings and Queens of the East End, featuring marching bands, Morris dancers, Maypole dancers, donkeys and Newfoundland dogs. From 12pm. Free. Guildhall Yard, City of London, EC2V 5AE. Nearest station: St Paul’s, Bank or Moorgate. For more information, visit the Pearly Society website.
- 29 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. 10am-8pm. Free. Trafalgar Square, Westminster, WC2N. Nearest stations: Charing Cross, Embankment, Leicester Square or Piccadilly Circus. For more information, visit the Japan Matsuri website. Read Metro Girl’s blog post of this year’s festival.
- 29 September : London Bridge Sheep Drive
Watch or take part in the annual Sheep Drive, a 800 year old tradition where sheep are paraded over London Bridge. The Wool Fair will also be taking place at Monument. Free to spectate. London Bridge, SE1 9DD. Nearest stations: London Bridge or Monument. For more information, visit the Sheep Drive website.
- Now until 29 September : Underbelly Festival
Summer-long arts festival on the South Bank, featuring comedy, circus, cabaret and family shows at affordable prices in the inflatable upside down cow venue, international street food, open-air bar. Festival grounds open daily until 11pm. Ticket prices for show vary, but a majority are between £10-£20, free entry to festival grounds. Jubilee Gardens (off Belvedere Road), South Bank, SE1 8XX. Nearest station: Waterloo. For more information and tickets, visit the Underbelly Festival website.
- Now until 29 September : Roof Fest London
John Lewis & Partners Gardening Society hosts one of the largest rooftop destinations in the capital of the top of John Lewis’ Oxford Street flagship. Expect cocktails, street food and BBQ, DJs, live entertainment, fitness, massage, meditation and more. Open Mon-Sat 12pm-10pm. Sun 12pm-9pm. Free entry. John Lewis, 300 Oxford Street, Marylebone, WC1 1DX. Nearest station: Oxford Circus or Bond Street. For more information, visit the John Lewis website.
- Now until 29 September : Fulham Beach @ Neverland
The popular Neverland has had a summer makeover, featuring day beds, private beach huts and cabanas, two bars, live DJs, croquet, beer pong, shuffleboard and ping pong. They also host special events include bottomless brunches, yoga classes, fancy dress parties and sports screenings. Open Wed-Fri 6pm-11pm, Sat 12pm-11pm, Sun 12pm-9pm. Entrance starts from £5 (free to SW6 residents all days except Sat). Neverland, 364 Wandsworth Bridge Road, Fulham, SW6 2TY. Nearest station: Wandsworth Town. For more information, visit the Neverland London website.
- Now until 6 October : Frieze Sculpture 2019
Open-air sculpture exhibition in the English Gardens. Featuring pieces are 23 international artists, including Tracey Emin, Vik Muniz, Zak Ove, Leiko Ikemura and more. Open during park hours. Free. Regent’s Park (English Gardens in south-east corner of the park), Marylebone, NW1 4LL. Nearest stations: Regent’s Park, Great Portland Street or Baker Street. For more information, visit the Frieze website. See Metro Girl’s photos of this year’s exhibition.
- Now until 6 October : Serpentine Pavilion
Visit the temporary structure in the grounds of the Serpentine Gallery in Kensington Gardens. This year’s Pavilion is designed by Japanese architect Junya Ishigami. Free to visit, but also contains a pop-up café inside. Kensington Gardens, W2 3XA. Nearest stations: Lancaster Gate, Knightsbridge or South Kensington. For more information, visit the Serpentine Gallery website. Check out Metro Girl’s gallery of this year’s pavilion.
- Now until 26 October : Chihuly Nights @ Kew
Late night openings of Kew Gardens to see Dale Chiluly’s art glassworks illuminated after sunset, accompanied by music. Open Thu, Fri and Sat 7.30pm-10.30pm. Tickets: Adults £18. Kew Gardens, Brentford Gate, Kew, Richmond, TW9 3AB. Nearest station: Kew Gardens. For more information and tickets, visit the Kew Gardens website.
- Now until 31 October : Under Ground London exhibition
Exhibition of subterranean London, featuring images, maps and plans of tunnels, lost rivers, sewers, deep shelters and underground railways. Open during office hours. Free entry. London Metropolitan Archives, 40 Northampton Road, Clerkenwell, EC1R 0HB. Nearest station: Farringdon or Angel. For more information, visit the City of London.gov.uk website.
- Now until 13 November : Jeff Wayne’s The War of the Worlds – The Immersive Experience
A new immersive experience from DotDotLondon. Inspired by the classic story, travel back in time to Victorian London and the Martian invasion of 1898. Experience immersive theatre, virtual reality, augmented reality, holograms and other cutting-edge technology. Times vary. Tickets: £39.50-£84.50. The Old Metal Exchange, 56 Leadenhall Street, City of London, EC3A 2BJ. Nearest station: Aldgate or Fenchurch Street. For more information and booking, visit DotDotLondon. Check out Metro Girl’s review of the DotDotLondon’s previous experience Somnai.
- Now until 1 December : Architecture of London
Exhibition of 400 years of London architecture. Mon-Sat 10am-5pm. Sun 12pm-4pm. Tickets: Adults £10, concs £7. Guildhall Art Gallery, Guildhall Yard, City of London, EC2V 5AE. Nearest station: St Paul’s, Bank or Moorgate. For more information, visit the City of London.gov website.
- Now until June 2020 : Sculpture In The City 2019/2020
Free public art exhibition, bringing contemporary pieces to the streets and spaces of the City of London. Free. At various sites around the Square Mile. Nearest stations: Fenchurch Street, Monument or Liverpool Street. For more information and a map of the artworks, visit the Sculpture in the City website. Check out Metro Girl’s gallery of the 2019/2020 exhibition.
For a guide to London’s outdoor and pop-up cinemas, click here.