July in London 2019

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RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival

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RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival
Greenwich Music Time
Regent Street Summer Streets
Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships
British Summer Time Hyde Park
Wireless Festival
Pride in London Parade
Kew the Music
Craig David is at Kew the Music
Summer Opening of the State Rooms at Buckingham Palace
Jesus Christ Superstar
Barber Shop Chronicles
The Night Of The Iguana
Olafur Eliasson: In Real Life
The World Illustration Awards
Kew Science Festival
Somerset House Summer Series
Hacienda Classical
Jean Paul Gaultier: Fashion Freak Show


Clive Owen returns to the West End for the first time in 18 years and Idris Elba's Tree is at the Young Vic in July 2019 when Lovebox and Wimbledon bring marvellous music and a grand slam to town.

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RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival

Coming into bloom in July, the popular flower show is held within the grounds of Henry VIII's palace.

Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey, London, KT8 9AU

Tube: Richmond Station


Dates: 1st to 7th Jul 2019


Held within the grounds of Henry VIII's palace - where he built one of the finest gardens in the world - the RHS Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival is a highlight of London's summer calendar. Coming into bloom in July, the flower show brings with it gardens designed by up and coming designers; the Butterfly Dome, where you can wander through thousands of free-flying butterflies; the Show Gardens, a favourite each year with a spectacular selection to give you garden-envy; and ideas to get growing fruit and veg at home with The Raymond Blanc Gardening School. For something extra special, the preview evening gives you access to the show before its official opening at an evening of live music and with a magnificent fireworks display set off as the sun sets behind the palace.


Greenwich Music Time

Cliff Richard and Paul Weller play as part of the seven-day summer music festival.

Old Royal Naval College, King William Walk, London, SE10 9LW

Tube: New Cross Station (East London line closed. Bus service operates)


Dates: 1st to 7th Jul 2019


Set within the grounds of the Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich Music Time is a seven-day series of al fresco concerts. For its sixth year the festival welcomes Sir Cliff Richard and Paul Weller to the magnificent surroundings of Sir Christopher Wren's twin-domed riverside masterpiece. More acts are expected to be announced for the annual seven-day music festival which is one of London's best loved summer music festivals. All concerts are held in a purpose build outdoor arena, overlooking the Thames and lit by the big city lights of Canary Wharf.


Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships 2019

Tennis takes over as the famous tournament serves up two weeks of ace tennis.

Wimbledon: The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, Church Road, London, SW19 5AE

Tube: Wimbledon Park Station


Dates: 1st to 14th July 2019


Wimbledon, the famous tennis tournament and the most watched event in the Grand Slam calendar, brings thousands of visitors to the All England Club with the live action played out on big screens at Murray Mound and all over London. Many tennis pros covet the Wimbledon crown above all others and the grass surface makes for fast, breathless duels. Tickets can be applied for through the public ballot on the website, if however you're not lucky enough to get hold of one it is easy to get in to the grounds if you queue up in the morning. However, there are only 500 tickets for the centre courts available, so you have to turn up seriously early - or queue overnight - to be certain of getting to see the biggest matches. But in the first week the outer courts still have some of the world's greatest players and you can grab tickets for them if you arrive by about 9am. TRAVEL: The most convenient tube station for getting to Wimbledon is 'Southfields' on the District line, the station before Wimbledon Park. Southfields is closer, has marshals, a lift and the shorter walk is fully signposted.


Jesus Christ Superstar

Regent's Park Theatre's take on Andrew Lloyd Webber's rock opera comes to the Barbican.

Barbican Theatre, Silk Street, London, EC2Y 8DS

Tube: Barbican Station , Moorgate Station


Dates: 4th July to 24th August 2019


Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber's seminal musical comes to the Barbican following two sell-out seasons at Regent's Park Open Air Theatre. "A gorgeous, thrilling, heavenly musical" ran The Guardian headline above its four-star review back in 2015 and it has proved just as popular ever since. Over 45 years after Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber's rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar was first staged, Timothy Sheader's new production introduces a new generation to legendary hits like I Don't Know How to Love Him, Gethsemane and Superstar. This time it's reimagined as a rock festival under the musical direction of Tom Deering with choreography by Drew McOnie and Tom Scutt's "rusty, rough and ready set, with its cruciform walkway".


Wireless Festival

Superb summer music festival for hip-hop, grime and rap music fans.

Finsbury Park, Endymion Road, London, N4 1EE

Tube: Manor House Station


Dates: 5th, 6th and 7th July 2019


Since its first outing back in 2005 Wireless has firmly established itself as one of London's major large scale hip-hop, grime and rap music events, attracting crowds of over 20,000 for each of the three days. In 2019 the music festival returns to Finsbury Park for a sixth year with rapper Cardi B and Migos sharing the Friday headline slot, Travis Scott as top of the bill on Saturday and hip-hop legends ASAP Rocky closing the festival as the Sunday headliner. Atlanta hip-hop artist Future, Londoners Stefflon Don and AJ Tracey are also on the huge lineup which includes the incredible Mississippi hip-hop duo Rae Sremmurd whose 2018 performance was a real crowd pleaser. One important change to note: new licensing rules, which come in from 2019, mean performers mustn't swear on stage. So "Stormzy would have to change at least 17 of the 21 songs performed during his set in 2018" - according to BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat.


River Stage Festival

Five weekends of theatre, drag, DJs, family fun, contemporary dance and more.

National Theatre, South Bank, South Bank, London, SE1 9PX

Tube: Temple Station , Waterloo Station


Dates: 5th July to 4th August 2019


The River Stage Festival is back at the National Theatre this summer for five weekends of free entertainment. There's an eclectic mix of theatre, drag, DJs, family fun, contemporary dance, outdoor cinema and live music including takeover weekends from East London's The Glory, HOME Manchester, Sadler's Wells and Nonclassical who turn classical music on its head. The festival launches on 5th July with The Glory, East London's cabaret club and drag pub staging their drag queen contest LIPSYNC1000 and drag king battle, Man Up. Walk up for weekends of free entertainment from the Shubbak Festival, National Park City Festival and Frantic Assembly with DJs, live music, workshops and performances. The whole thing ends with a joyful party weekend as the National Theatre takeover closes the River Stage festival for 2019. Occupying a prime spot on the pedestrianised Thames path, the stage is set alongside the National Theatre and neighbouring food and drink outlets include the Wine Box, Melt Ice Cream, The Cheese Iron, Campfire Pizza, The Otherstudy and Apothecary. Whether you're at the National to see a show or just wondering along the Thames, this free festival adds a bit of fun to your weekend outing.


The Night Of The Iguana

Clive Owen returns to the West End for the first time in 18 years.

Noel Coward Theatre, St Martin's Lane, London, WC2N 4AU

Tube: Leicester Square Station , Covent Garden Station, Charing Cross Station, Piccadilly Circus Station


Dates: 6th July to 28th September 2019


Clive Owen returns to the West End for the first time in 18 years to play the Rev. T. Lawrence Shannon in The Night of the Iguana, in a new production directed by James Macdonald, whose recent successes include The Father and Glengarry Glen Ross. The actor, who made his name in films like Closer, Close My Eyes and Croupier, stars as a defrocked priest turned tourist guide alongside Lia Williams (Wallis Simpson in The Crown) as Hannah Jelkes, Anna Gunn (Breaking Bad) as Maxine Faulk and Game of Thrones star Julian Glover who plays Nonno. This group of lost souls meet in a dilapidated hotel in a rainforest above the west coast of Mexico. The verbal battle that ensues is heightened by the arrival of a tropical rain-storm.


Pride in London Parade

Over a million spectators and more than 450 groups parade marches proudly through the city streets.

Trafalgar Square, Central, Westminster, London, WC2N 5DS

Tube: Charing Cross Station , Leicester Square Station, Embankment Underground Station, Piccadilly Circus Station


Dates: Saturday 6th July 2019


With growing numbers year on year - over a million spectators lined the streets last year - the Pride in London Parade is back for 2019 for another colourful occasion of dancing, marching and rollerskating through London. Celebrate the people and organisations who've contributed to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights over the years and join over 450 groups as the parade marches proudly from Baker Street, along Oxford Street, Regent Street and via Piccadilly Circus. Adding to the fun, there are performance spaces in Trafalgar Square, Leicester Square and Soho with concerts featuring chart acts, musicians, dancers, West End stars and other performers. New sections in the parade and new stages are expected in 2019, 50 years after the Stonewall Riots.


Hacienda Classical

The centre of the clubbing universe in its 90s heyday goes classical.

Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Gore, London, SW7 2AP

Tube: South Kensington Station


Dates: Saturday 6th July 2019


Pioneering DJs Graeme Park and Mike Pickering perform alongside the Manchester Camerata orchestra and special guests for a performance of Hacienda classics. Hacienda Classical won rave reviews after its first Royal Albert Hall visit, NME called it "Probably the best rave since 1997" and Mixmag termed the event, "a near two hour blend of house music's greatest players with an audience dancing and singing from the off". A hit on the festival circuit, it opened Glastonbury's Pyramid Stage in June 2017. Now coming into its fourth year here in London, 2019's show will keep the best bits of the previous shows while adding new tunes and guests.


Regent Street Summer Streets

From Oxford Circus to Piccadilly Circus, Regent Street goes traffic free on Sundays in July.

Regent Street, Regent Street, London, W1B 5SJ

Tube: Oxford Circus Station


Dates: 7th to 28th July 2019


For the first four Sundays in July Regent Street is banning traffic for the popular Summer Streets series. The month-long event combines themes of art, culture, style and wellness with food and drink. The event has a real festival like atmosphere as Regent Street goes traffic-free. Throughout the four weeks, shops and restaurants along the curved shopping street, from Oxford Circus to Piccadilly Circus, put on special events. Last year lululemon held workout classes on Regent Street, Tommy Hilfiger installed a Scalextric track and Anthropologie offered complimentary workshops. Plus there were food stalls from Danish bakery Ole & Steen, Gordon Ramsay's Heddon Street Kitchen and Gaucho.


Kew the Music

Craig David, Beverley Knight and Rick Astley play at the beautiful Royal Botanic Gardens.

Kew Gardens (Royal Botanic Gardens), Kew, Richmond, London, TW9 3AB

Tube: Kew Gardens Station


Dates: 9th to 14th Jul 2019


Craig David, Beverley Knight and Billy Ocean, Jools Holland & his Rhythm & Blues Orchestra and Rick Astley play at Kew the Music in 2019, a week of summer picnic concerts, from 9th to 14th July 2019, set within the stunning grounds of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. R&B superstar, Craig David, is headlining the show on Friday 12th July. British soul singer Beverley Knight and 'When The Going gets Tough' singer Billy Ocean both play full headline sets on the same night. Jools Holland & his Rhythm & Blues Orchestra are joined by Gilson Lavis and regular guest vocalists, Ruby Turner and Louise Marshall while '80s pop star Rick Astley brings the series to a close. Perfect for a picnic, opt for the VIP package and you'll get ready-made hampers to collect on the night.


Olafur Eliasson: In Real Life

The Icelandic artist who flooded the Turbine Hall with fake sunlight returns.

Tate Modern, Bankside Power Station, 25 Sumner Street, London, SE1 9TG

Tube: Blackfriars Underground Station


Dates: 11th July 2019 to 5th January 2020


This summer, Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson, whose 2003 weather project flooded the Turbine Hall with fake sunlight, returns to Tate Modern where he staged his popular installation. Marking the most comprehensive solo presentation of Eliasson's work, and his first major survey in the UK, Olafur Eliasson: In real life brings together over 30 of his works, spanning the last three decades. Each installation, or group of works, explores a theme that recurs in his work, whether it's space, motion or natural phenomena - as seen in Moss wall 1994, featuring lichen. Experiments with light and colour as well as engagement in social and environmental issues extend beyond the gallery walls onto the terrace outside Tate Modern and into the cafe where organic, vegetarian and ethically sourced food served at Studio Olafur Eliasson is on the special menu.


The World Illustration Awards

A showcase of the very best artworks across the diverse field of illustration.

Somerset House, Strand, London, WC2R 1LA

Tube: Temple Station


Dates: 11th to 28th July 2019


The World Illustration Awards exhibition returns to Somerset House this summer to showcase the very best artworks across the diverse field of illustration. This year, political themes are prominent among the 200 shortlisted projects with illustrations dealing with current concerns including the #MeToo movement, Brexit and Climate Change, showing how illustration reflects and comments on everyday life. A huge array of techniques are showcased, from 3D models, embroidery, animation, to large-scale interactive installations, as well as more traditional techniques of watercolours, pencils, woodcuts and digital illustration.


Somerset House Summer Series

Eleven nights of live music in the grand 18th-century courtyard.

Somerset House, Strand, Covent Garden, London, WC2R 1LA

Tube: Temple Station


Dates: 11th to 21st July 2019


Grammy-nominated five-piece The Internet, Brit Award-nominee Nao, and Mercury Prize-nominated Sons of Kemet kick off this year's Somerset House Summer Series, performing al fresco in the grand 18th-century courtyard. One of the best Summer Music Festivals in London, the event will also see Jacob Banks, Rosalia, Doves, Parcels, and Cut Copy perform along with garage punk band Gossip, who will close the festival with the ultimate party night. Running concurrently with the eleven nights of live music will be new exhibition Get Up, Stand Up Now, which celebrates 50 years of Black creativity in Britain. Anyone who purchases tickets to Summer Series will be given an exclusive discount to the exhibition.


British Summer Time Hyde Park

Bob Dylan, Florence and The Machine and Robbie Williams play live in Hyde Park.

Hyde Park, Rangers Lodge, Hyde Park, London, W2 2UH

Tube: Knightsbridge Station


Dates: 12th, 13th and 14th July 2019


Bob Dylan, Florence The Machine and Robbie Williams play live in Hyde Park as the ten day British Summer Time music festival returns for a seventh year in 2019 with another impressive line-up of big names in rock and pop. Playing Hyde Park on Friday 12th July, Bob Dylan and Neil Young take to the open air stage. Florence The Machine and The National appear on Saturday 13th July while Sunday 14th July sees Robbie Williams rock the park. Between two weekends of live music there's free entertainment with open-air movie nights and tennis screenings, street food stalls and daytime DJs. Free sports sessions and after school multi-sports for kids are also part of the mid-week entertainment. Look out for more acts to be announced.



After a successful first year in its new home Lovebox returns to Gunnersbury Park.

Gunnersbury Park, Popes Lane, London, W3 8LQ

Tube: Acton Town Station


Dates: Friday 12th and Saturday 13th July 2019


After a successful first year in its new home, Lovebox returns to Gunnersbury Park in July 2019 for its 17th year. The lineup hasn't been released as yet but with high calibre headliners and a laid back party atmosphere, Lovebox is reliably one of the best summer music festivals in London. 2018 saw legendary rap group Wu-Tang Clan, Pharrell Williams fronting N.E.R.D and the Mercury Prize-winning Skepta perform during the two day festival. But US rapper Childish Gambino "stole the show" (Independent) presenting songs like 'Sober' and 'Riot' with "electric raw energy".


Great British Food Festival

Fifty different traders showcase artisan food alongside live music and entertainment.

Chiswick House and Gardens, Burlington Lane, London, W4 2RP

Tube: Turnham Green Station


Dates: 12th, 13th and 14th July 2019


Taking place in the walled gardens, the Great British Food Festival comes to Chiswick House and Gardens for the second year running. Fifty different traders will be there offering artisan food direct from the producer and street food. In the marquee, experts chefs give demos, sharing tips on everything from baking to fine dining. There'll also be foodie talks, men vs food and cake competitions - enter a cake to get free entry to the festival - plus there's live music throughout the day and into the evenings. A fun day out for all the family with kids' cookery lessons, entertainment and face-painting.


OnBlackheath 2019

Jamiroquai, Grace Jones and James Morrison all perform this year.

Blackheath Common, Shooters Hill Road, London, SE3 0UA

Tube: New Cross Station (East London line closed. Bus service operates)


Dates: Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th July 2019


Music and food festival OnBlackheath returns this July for its sixth year with Jamiroquai headlining on Saturday and the eccentric Grace Jones topping the bill on Sunday. The Roots, James Morrison, UB40, Soul II Soul, Aswad, SG Lewis and Morcheeba are just some of the other acts that complete the line-up. Pioneers of the London acid jazz scene, Brand New Heavies will also perform along with two time Grammy Award-winner Jacob Collier and British duo Swing Out Sister. The Family Playground will keep the little ones entertained with a range of activities and Street Feast will present a vast array of food and drink.


Walthamstow Garden Party

Two days of music, theatre, dance, circus, arts and crafts.

Lloyd Park, Forest Road, London, E17 4JF

Tube: Walthamstow Central Station


Dates: Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th July 2019


Two days of music, theatre, dance, circus, arts and crafts, the Walthamstow Garden Party is a special free festival weekend in Lloyd Park next to the William Morris Gallery. There will be live music, showcasing international and local artists, a theatre and dance stage, pop-up performances, interactive family fun and a dedicated street food, craft beer and picnic area, all brought to you by Barbican, Create London and the London Borough of Waltham Forest.


Ed Sheeran Live at The Haymarket

The global star performs a one-off gig for charity.

Haymarket Theatre Royal, Haymarket, London, SW1Y 4HT

Tube: Piccadilly Circus Station , Leicester Square Station, Charing Cross Station


Dates: Sunday 14th July 2019


Ed Sheeran comes to London this July to play a one-off charity gig at Theatre Royal Haymarket. The inaugural event in the Live at the Haymarket series, which will bring some of the world's greatest musical talents to the West End stage, the intimate gig is being held in aid of leading West End education charity, the Theatre Royal Haymarket Masterclass Trust. Ed will perform to an audience of just 850 and ticket holders will be decided through a lottery process. Hopeful buyers must enter the lottery by midnight on Sunday 16th June and tickets ranging from 45 to 150 will be available to purchase should you win. See the official website for the full instructions and terms and conditions.


Floating Film Festival

Watching Oscar-winning films on a floating pontoon in central London's only marina.

St Katharine Docks, Tower Bridge Approach, St Katharine's Way, London, E1W 1LA

Tube: Tower Hill Station


Dates: 16th to 28th July 2019


Central London's only marina St Katharine Docksplays host to the Floating Film Festival this July, with recent cinematic favourites shown on the big screen on the floating pontoon. Oscar-winning films Bohemian Rhapsody and A Star is Born will both be shown twice while other movies on the line-up include Mary Poppins Returns, First Man, The Greatest Showman, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again and Aquaman. Film showings start at 7pm and there are two family screenings on Saturday and Sunday at 2pm. Step on board the floating platform, pull up a deck chair or snuggle down in a bean bag and watch some all-time favourites complete with snacks, craft beers and cocktails.


Barber Shop Chronicles

Inua Ellams' cutting edge play returns following two sold out runs at the National.

Roundhouse, Chalk Farm Road, London, NW1 8EH

Tube: Chalk Farm Station


Dates: 18th July to 24th August 2019


Two years after opening at the National Theatre Inua Ellams' much celebrated play, the Barber Shop Chronicles is staged at the Roundhouse, specifically adapted for the in-the-round performance space. Directed by Bijan Sheibani, the National Theatre's co-production with Fuel and West Yorkshire Playhouse explores the timely concerns, personal trials and tribulations of the customers and staff of barber shops. Leaping from London, Johannesburg, and Harare to Kampala, Lagos and Accra, Ellams' drama is inspired by the barber shops he visited as a teenager near his home in Peckham. In its five star review The Independent described it at a "joyous piece of theatre", set in six cities on one day.


Backyard Cinema: L.A. Nights

Watch popular films on the big screen in a California-inspired setting.

Roundhouse, Chalk Farm Road, London, NW1 8EH

Tube: Chalk Farm Station


Dates: 18th July to 25th August 2019


Bringing the beach vibes of LA to the Roundhouse this summer, Backyard Cinema recreates the sun-kissed beaches of the West Coast for a laid back setting where you can watch popular films on the big screen, alongside 400 other movie goers. Known for their immersive productions, the crew has created an indoor beach with giant bean bags on the sand, palm trees and a retro beach bar. The perfect setting for their sing-a-long beach parties. On the line-up are the latest blockbusters including Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse, The Lego Movie 2 and Captain Marvel, award-winning new releases including BlackkKlansman, A Star is Born and Stan and Ollie and classics like Back to the Future and Clueless.


The Moon

A new exhibition timed to coincide with the fiftieth anniversary of the first moon landing.

National Maritime Museum, Park Row, London, SE10 9NF

Tube: New Cross Station (East London line closed. Bus service operates)


Dates: 19th July 2019 to 5th January 2020


Not just for the lunatics and the conspiracy theorists, The Moon is a major exhibition at the Royal Museums Greenwich, timed to coincide with the fiftieth anniversary of the first moon landing on 20th July 1969. The earliest drawings of the Moon, made using a telescope by Thomas Harriott, are loaned from the collection of Lord Egremont, along with key pieces from the Royal Astronomical Society, Victoria and Albert Museum and Science Museum. You can see Apollo space programme artefacts from the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington D.C. as well as the Royal Museums Greenwich's own 100-inch map of the Moon by Hugh Percy Wilkins, shown to the public for the first time. Each historical and contemporary artwork invites us to explore our evolving relationship with the moon.


National Park City Festival

The Mayor of London launches a brand-new city-wide festival.


Various Venues Dates: 20th to 28th July 2019


Taking steps towards making London the world's first National Park City, The Mayor of London has launched the brand-new National Park City Festival in 2019. Celebrating the capital's green spaces, wildlife, green rooftops and waterways, the week-long festival aims to introduce Londoners to new environmental, cultural, sporting and community activities in order to improve health, wellbeing and social cohesion. Highlights include the National Park City Stage, which will see City Hall host a free cultural programme in partnership with the National Theatre; National Park City Rooftops, providing free access to some of London's best rooftop gardens and natural spaces in partnership with Open City; and National Park City Splash, the city's first multi-site outdoor swimming and paddle sports event.


Summer Opening of the State Rooms at Buckingham Palace

Admire the grand State Rooms used by heads of state at the Queen's London home.

Buckingham Palace , Buckingham Palace Road, London, SW1A 1AA

Tube: Victoria Station


Dates: 20th July to 29th September 2019


Every summer inquisitive visitors get the chance to look around Buckingham Palace and admire the grand State Rooms used by heads of state at the Summer Opening. See the nineteen State Rooms which are still used by the Royal Family to receive and entertain guests on state and ceremonial occasions. Decorated in lavish fashion, they include paintings by Rembrandt, Rubens and Canaletto, Sevres porcelain and some of the finest English and French furniture in the world. There are also some exquisite royal gifts, including Faberge Eggs, on display. This is a fascinating opportunity to admire the taste - often wonderful, sometimes comically bad - of Britain's monarchy. Audio Guides: Audio tours are included in the admission price and are available in the following languages: English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Japanese, Chinese and Russian.


National Geographic Traveller Food Festival

Raymond Blanc, Adam Handling and Andi Oliver are all on the line-up of this brand-new festival.

Business Design Centre, 52 Upper Street, London, N1 0QH

Tube: Angel Station


Dates: Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st July 2019


Providing two days of eating, drinking and learning, the inaugural National Geographic Traveller Food Festival comes to the Business Design Centre this July. Michelin-starred chef Raymond Blanc, rising star Adam Handling and expert food writer Andi Oliver are all on the line-up along with John Torode, Tim Anderson, Felicity Cloake and Shivi Ramoutar. With travel at the heart of the festival, visitors will have the chance to discover the food and drink of destinations such as Hungary, Montenegro, Dominica and Thailand. There will be panel discussions covering food trends and up-and-coming culinary destinations along with one-on-one interviews with the most entertaining chefs, authors and journalists in the world of food. There will also be food stalls, culinary masterclasses and live demonstrations from top chefs.


Kew Science Festival

This two-day festival explores the crucial value of plant and fungal.

Kew Gardens (Royal Botanic Gardens), Kew, Richmond, London, TW9 3AB

Tube: Kew Gardens Station


Dates: Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st July 2019


Taking over Kew Gardens for two days, the Kew Science Festival returns for its fourth year in 2019 to focus on the vital importance of conserving the world's plant biodiversity. The festival brings to life, for all ages, the crucial value of plant and fungal science. A series of activities, workshops and tours will inspire children and adults alike, with the chance to discover how cryopreservation conserves seeds, why fungi are so important to trees, plants and people, and why different bees seek out certain plants. There will also be the chance to go behind the scenes at Kew with tours of the Tropical Nursery, where you'll find a vast number of exotic and rare plant species, and the Herbarium, which is responsible for preserving around 7 million plant specimens.


Jean Paul Gaultier: Fashion Freak Show

Jean Paul Gaultier's career review is a combination of a revue and fashion show.

Southbank Centre: Queen Elizabeth Hall, Belvedere Road, London, SE1 8XX

Tube: Waterloo Station , Embankment Underground Station


Dates: 23rd July to 2nd August 2019


From the man who designed Madonna's pointy bra we'd expect nothing less than an outlandish, sassy and sexy show. And that's exactly what you get at Jean Paul Gaultier's Fashion Freak Show. A combination of a revue and fashion show, it brings a cast of actors, dancers and circus artists to the Southbank Centre. Each plays a larger than life character as we learn about the French designer's childhood, his early career and his most memorable fashion shows. The whole thing is set against the backdrop of a giant video wall. The screen shows vignettes of special guest stars - including Gaultier's long-term, celebrity supporters and friends. Catherine Deneuve, for example, voices the names that Gaultier gave the creations in his men's couture show of the early '90s. From disco to funk, the Fashion Freak Show is set to a playlist of hits that have inspired Gaultier and his creations. Expect kitsch and camp high fashion with a heavy sprinkling of Eurotrash chic.



Idris Elba and Kwame Kwei-Armah collaborate on a musical play exploring the years after Mandela.

The Young Vic, 66 The Cut, London, SE1 8LZ

Tube: Southwark Station , Waterloo Station, Lambeth North Station


Dates: 29th July to 24th August 2019


Taking you on a musical journey in search of the soul and the spirit of contemporary South Africa, Tree is a collaboration between Idris Elba, whose album Mi Mandela provides the soundtrack, and The Young Vic's artistic director, Kwame Kwei-Armah. This major world premiere, performed in the round, combines music, dance and film to explore the past, present and future of this country at a crossroads, seen through the eyes of a young man.


What to Look for in the Garden: A Ladybird Books Exhibition

This nostalgic exhibition relives the golden age of the Ladybird nature books.

Garden Museum, Lambeth Palace Road, London, SE1 7LB

Tube: Lambeth North Station


Dates: 31st July to 27th October 2019


Ladybird, the publishers who have been creating books for children since 1915, invite you to explore the outdoors with an exhibition of original artworks from their nature books. Shown at the Garden Museum from 31st July and throughout the summer, this nostalgic exhibition will remind adults of the books of their childhood. Artworks on loan from Penguin Random House date from the 'golden age' of Ladybird Books, between 1940 and 1980. The exhibition and interactive activities - including dressing up, a nature hunt trail, art activities and a memory board - will inspire a whole new generation of children to learn 'What to look for' in this family friendly exhibition.

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