TALL Ships Festival

Royal Greenwich & Woolwich

Thursday 27th - Monday 31st August 2015


The Tall Ships return to the quirky borough of Greenwich this week. See a total of 15 traditional ships in all their glory and also board them either just to view or for a ride along the Thames.  There will also be a fantastic free fireworks display every evening and a host of family-friendly entertainment.

One of the main highlights will be a free day of festivities on Saturday 29 August at the Royal Arsenal and in Woolwich Town Centre and General Gordon Square.

People have the chance to pre book to board the vessels for free as they’re moored along the riverfront and there’ll be live music, traditional funfair rides, a vintage car show, family entertainment and a host of food stalls and licensed bars and nautical movies on the Big Screen.

Councillor Miranda Williams, Royal Borough of Greenwich Cabinet Member for Culture and Creative Industries said:

“It’ll be wonderful to see the Tall Ships once again come back ‘home’ to the Royal Borough and I urge as many people as possible to get out and experience the festivities on offer – make sure you don’t miss out, there’s something for all the family.”

Most of theTall Ships will be moored in Woolwich with two of the largest and best known vessels – the Dar Mlodziezy and Santa Maria Manuela being moored at Tall Ships Island, in the river at Maritime Greenwich.

Last year over a million visitors visited Greenwich for this event so expect it to be busy and if you are keen to go on the ships best to book tickets.  You can also book cruises on the Tall Ships with Sail Royal Greenwich

All of the Tall Ships are due to set off in a spectacular parade of sail at 2:00pm on Monday 31 August from off Cutty Sark Gardens in Greenwich, sailing majestically down the river and out to sea – a sight not to be missed.

All details of the tall ships event can be found here. And you can also Track all the Tall Ships arriving by just searching their name.

A fabulous free event for the whole family to enjoy!


The ZEE London Mela

Gunnersbury Park W3

Sunday 6th September 2015

1pm – 9pm


Europe’s biggest Mela is back in London for the 13th year. With a new sponsor – Zee TV - expect a bigger, grander affair which will also include a spectacular fireworks display as a finale! Held at Gunnersbury Park is one of the largest green spaces in West London.

"Mela" is a Sanskrit word used to describe a large gathering of people celebrating a festival in this case a celebration of South Asian culture. There will be 9 different zones. Expect lots of music ranging from Bollywood, urban to classical, dance, food, activities, fashion and outdoor arts and a huge funfair.

There will be two stages at the event the Main Stage will feature the likes of Bollywood sensation Benny Dayal, Imran Khan, Arjun, Mumzy Stranger and Raghav and the BBC Asian  Network stage will have a fantastic line-up of the freshest UK and international music talent - Zack Knight, Sama Blake, Jernade Miah and Coldfever.

One of the world’s leading creators of outdoor spectacle, Transe Express, will be presenting their award winning show Mobille Homme, collaborating with East London’s Dhol Academy

The ZEE London Mela Artistic Director Ajay Chhabra says: "As the largest event of its kind in Europe, in one of the world’s most diverse cities, the ZEE London Mela celebrates diversity, culture and creativity like no other festival. We are proud of our relationship with our artists, our sponsors and how each year we raise the expectations of our audience.”

This year this event will be an affordable ticketed event as funds are raised for the victims of the devastating Nepal earthquakes. Get your tickets here or on the door, but remember it will be ‘Cash Only.’

The nearest underground station to Gunnersbury Park is Acton Town.  Termed the Asian Glastonbury, this event is supported by the Mayor of London and there will be approximately 100,000 peeps.

A great day out for the whole family to enjoy!

The Jacksons



Hyde Park

Saturday 12th September 2015

Doors open 3pm. Entertainment 5pm – 10.30pm


Now in its 20th Year,  BBC Proms in the Park is Britain’s largest outdoor classical music event. It is the grand finale of two months of world-class music-making at the BBC Proms in Royal Albert Hall. Hosted by Sir Terry Wogan, who says: “I’m looking forward to it. I just love the atmosphere, the 40,000 people cheering. It’s just a fantastic, wonderful evening!”

The grand stage will be headlined by The Jacksons one of the world’s best-loved bands with a career spanning for more than 40 years. Originally led by Michael Jackson, the band’s founding members Jackie, Tito, Jermaine and Marlon Jackson now perform around the world in tribute to their brother. The stars of disco and soul sang some of the biggest hits to come out of the 1970s and 1980s, including Blame It On The Boogie, ABC, I’ll Be There and Can You Feel It. There live set will get everyone dancing!

The other acts:

  • Tenor Russell Watson

  • Trumpeter Alison Balsom

  • Soprano Danielle de Niese will bring The Sound of Music to the crowds, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the release of the iconic film, starring Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer.

  • BBC Concert Orchestra conducted by Richard Balcombe

  • Royal Choral Society

  • Britain’s Got Talent finalists Jack Pack

  • American band The Mavericks

  • Violinist David Garrett

  • Cast of the hit musical Memphis, led by Beverley Knight and Matt Cardle

BBC Radio 2 presenters Tony Blackburn & Ken Bruce will be getting the party started from 5.30pm.

The Last night of the Proms links up live with Parks across the UK as the four nations enjoy the magic  together with special joined-up moments, singing together, with all locations having their moment in the spotlight.

In Northern Ireland, the Ulster Orchestra returns for a night of music-making at the Titanic Slipways, Belfast.

In Scotland, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra take the magic of the Last Night to Glasgow Green, for a glorious night of music on the banks of the Clyde.

In Wales, Proms in the Park will be held at Singleton Park, Swansea, with an evening of celebrations with the BBC National Orchestra and Chorus of Wales.

"The BBC Proms is all about bringing great music to the widest possible audience - and with a fantastic range of artists lined up, both at the Royal Albert Hall and in the Parks, we hope that the whole of the UK will get in the party spirit on the Last Night of the Proms!"

Proms in the Park in Hyde Park will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 2.

Bring your picnic and get comfy on the grounds at Hyde Park.

Expect five hours of non-stop entertainment. The last summer event of the year.

Make sure to wait till the end for the grand fireworks display!

See you there!

Tickets cost £39 - Buy them here



Trafalgar Square

Saturday 19th September 2015

10am - 8pm 


Japan Matsuri (festival) is an annual free event celebrating Japanese culture. This festival brings people together to enjoy Japanese food, music, dance, and activities for all the family.

2015 celebrates 150 years of friendship between London and Japan and the story of the Satsuma Students from Kagoshima who 150 years ago secretly left Satsuma for the UK to embark on a period of study in London. They were intrepid pioneers and paved the way for friendly relations to exist between the two countries.

A fantastic family fun day with traditional Japanese games and opportunities to learn the secrets of Origami and Japanese Calligraphy as well as your chance to be a manga (Japanese cartoon) artist and display your masterpiece in front of the National Gallery. You can even dress in a kimono. There will be plenty of Japanese festival food from the numerous stalls to try out.


There will be two stages and plenty to see all day with an exciting programme of martial arts, the thrilling sounds of taiko drumming, festival dance and this year’s special Japan Matsuri Song IBUKI (Breath) & Music video production with Naomi Suzuki. She is the most well-known Japanese singer in the UK and has been the host of Japan Matsuri since the first event 7 years ago.


Special appearances from a number of acts from Japan including:



  • Izaku Taiko Odori (Izaku Drum Dancers) - from Kagoshima perform a traditional victorious dance dating from 1406 with the dancers closely resembling warriors of the time. Each drum dancer wears a banner of bamboo and paper, 2.5 m tall, strapped to his back, is adorned with the black tail feathers of the Satsuma rooster and beats a drum fixed to his chest. Each outfit weighs nearly 20 kilos.

  • Satsuma Kenshi Hayato -  is a samurai character from Kagoshima. He is strong and compassionate, a lover of Kagoshima’s beautiful landscape, traditions and food. His sword has no lethal blade and he defeats his enemies through mutual understanding and a meeting of minds. He is joined on his first trip out of Asia by Yassembo, the mischievous fox spirit, who is always looking to misbehave and ways to trick our Satsuma hero.

  • Joji Hirota & London Taiko Drummers - a highly regarded and well established group.They have performed at worldwide concerts and international festival including WOMAD. They were the opening act for the Live Earth concert at Wembley.


Experience Japan in the heart of London!

Some Japanese to try out at Japan Matsuri:

Konichiwa - Hello

Yoiichinichiwo - Have a nice day!

Sayonara - Bye

Tanoshimimasu - Enjoy!

Winning entry 2014 - A conference of Chocolate
Finalist in the kitchen
World's best chocolate - Godiva!




Expires 30th September 2015

Live Final in London on 13th October 2015


Godiva, the luxury Belgian chocolatier is hosting the Godiva Chocolate Challenge, a fabulous contest any aspiring chef should enter! Now in its second year, this ‘Bake Off’ style contest allows entrants from the public to compete to produce a chocolate based dish.

The Godiva Challenge is in association with Breast Cancer Now and coincides with the launch of Godiva’s latest collection, Mousse Meringue, where 10% of all sales in the UK will be donated to the this charity.Tying in with the theme, all competition recipes will have to include chocolate, meringue … and a touch of pink.

Entrants are invited to apply online by 30 September and four finalists will present their mouth-watering recipes at a prestige kitchen-design showroom in the evening on October 13 to coincide with National Chocolate Week.

The finalists will cook for a top judging panel of:

  • William Sitwell  - writer and MasterChef food critic
  • Mark Hix - leading British restaurateur
  • Jean Apostolou - Godiva’s head chocolatier
  • Gizzi Erskine - best selling author, food writer & pop-up chef

The winning dessert will also be served in Mark Hix’s Soho restaurant, a great honour for the finalist!

All four finalists will enjoy a 5-star weekend trip to Brussels, while the overall winner will also visit Godiva’s Atelier of Chocolate Innovation.

Entrants must invent a recipe for a chocolate dessert and submit this electronically to Godiva along with a completed entry form, with details of their first name, surname and email address, a large photo of the finished dish in landscape format and full recipe details (including title of recipe, preparation time, cooking time, number of servings, ingredients and their quantities and complete recipe method.



For the first 200 entries Godiva will also donate £5 for each to Breast Cancer Now as part of their support for the charity.

So get inspired, send in your entry and help support Breast Cancer Now all at the same time!






The Ulitmate Voyage Tour


Sunday 1st November 2015; Shows 2.30pm; 7.30pm


Five decades of Star Trek will be celebrated at the Royal Albert Hall in a stunning new show featuring the most iconic footage from the legendary films and TV series and unforgettable music is played live on stage by a concert orchestra.  

The world premiere of Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage takes place at the iconic London venue before beginning a tour of American concert halls next year. The Royal Albert Hall’s breath-taking auditorium hosts over 390 shows a year by the world’s greatest artists. The magical atmosphere combined with inspired artists creates legendary events.  Opened in 1871 as part of Prince Albert’s vision for a centre for the Arts and Sciences, the Hall is a registered charity which operates without public funding, remaining true to his founding ambitions within a modern context. 

This lavish Star Trek production will include a live symphony orchestra accompanying footage beamed in high-definition to a 40ft screen, including Star Trek: The Original Series, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, Star Trek: Insurrection, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Star Trek: Voyager and many more. 

Lucy Noble, Director of Events at the Royal Albert Hall, said: “We are boldly going where no other venue has been before: staging a massive Star Trek extravaganza that draws on 50 years of legendary TV and film to create an unmissable evening for fans.” 

Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage is presented in conjunction with CineConcerts, a leading producer of live music experiences performed with visual media. Their concert presentations redefine the evolution of live experience. From full-length movie screenings with live orchestra to music-interactive sporting event experiences CineConcerts is at the forefront of live entertainment. 

Star Trek has been for decades a great experience for all and this unique concert experience will feature music and visuals spanning five decades promising a memorable event.




The Telegraph

Ski & Snowboard Show


Thursday 5th - Sunday 8th November 2015

11-10pm Thurs/Fri; 10-5pm Sat/Sun


The London show returns bringing an authentic alpine setting to the city, set within the lush surroundings of Battersea Park. Visitors will be transported to the mountains in a one-of-a-kind authentic immersive experience. Indulge in alpine fine dining and street food, enjoy gluwein with friends in one of the dedicated après bars, watch breath taking pro rider competitions and displays on the slopes of Mount Battersea (our 50 ft. real snow kicker) plan your next trip with impartial industry experts in the Travel Genius Bar, pick up your latest gear and be entertained by a stellar line up of live music and comedy.

For the very first time in London, an authentic ski village complete with snow-coated trees, warming alpine food and buzzing après bars will be brought to life. Legendary chef Angela Hartnett has created a stunning menu of authentic alpine street food to tantalise your taste buds. Forget the usual festival fayre instead you'll dine on alpine favourites from freshly made crepes, to Bratwurst or traditional Austrian Tiroler Grostl washed down with refreshing world beers and warming winter wine.

London's newest pop-up alpine restaurant - The Lodge - will open exclusively at The Telegraph Ski & Snowboard show. Legendary Michelin starred chef Angela Hartnett has created a stunning alpine menu, served exclusively within The Lodge. The Altitude Comedy Tent will have blistering sets from top comedic talent including Live at the Apollo's Marcus Brigstocke and Andrew Maxwell.

From 6pm on Thursday and Friday as the sun goes down the volume goes up. Join us for London's best après party with well-known acts performing live and our raft of après bars serving beer, wine and spirits. On Saturday and Sunday Oom Pah Pah, family favourites and acoustic acts will soundtrack the show. The dynamic, full catwalk fashion show will showcase the latest winter sports apparel with performances featuring professional breakdancers and breathtaking choreography.

Theres something for everyone at this fab show...who needs the mountains in London!




The 800th Lord Mayor's show


 Saturday 14th November 2015

9:30am River Pageant; 11am-2.30pm Street Parade;

5:15pm Fireworks over the Thames


The Lord Mayors Show is celebrating its 800th anniversary. The ancient carnival is loved the world over and regarded as a classic piece of British pageantry. It is the physical manifestation of a Royal Charter presented to the City in 1215 by King John.That charter permitted the City to elect its own Mayor - a right unheard of in early medieval times.

This year, Alderman Jeffrey Mountevans has been elected as the 688th Lord Mayor of the City of London to serve as the global ambassador for UK-based financial and business services. The Lord Mayors Show will be his first public engagement. He will travel in the iconic Golden State Coach from Mansion House to the Royal Courts of Justice in order to be seen by Her Majestys justices and swear loyalty to the Crown.

Over the centuries this journey has become London's favourite street party, with thousands of people lining the streets to watch. It moved from river barges (hence the term floats) to horseback and then into the magnificent State Coach, and around it grew a splendid joyful festival known as the Lord Mayor's Show. That ancient procession is still alive today.

This years pageant is 7,000 strong, including 173 horses, 140 vehicles, Taiko drummers, vintage steamrollers, tractors, fire engines, armoured vehicles, the Batmobile, Noahs Ark and a tank. To celebrate the Lord Mayors Show's 800th birthday, the world famous St Mary-le-Bow church bells will ring out a special 800-change at noon, with more than a nod to the fairy tale Dick Whittington.

The artwork for this years show has been specially created by legendary British pop artist Sir Peter Blake, who is most famous for his iconic album cover for the Beatles Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band. The artwork also features on the front cover of a new book, Lord Mayors Show: 800 Years 1215-2015, edited by Hannah Bowen and Dominic Reid OBE.

Dominic Reid, Pageantmaster of The Lord Mayors Show, said: The Lord Mayors Show is the only event of its kind in the world that has taken place annually over eight centuries. The Show occupies a unique place in the culture of London and the nation.

With 155 participating organizations hailing from all over the UK and from China to Mexico, this years Show demonstrates exactly why London is widely regarded as the most cosmopolitan city in the world. The route is over three and a half miles long and fills the whole space between Bank and Aldwych, cheered by hundreds of thousands in the crowd and watched live on BBC1 by millions more. The new Lord Mayor completes his first full day in office with a magnificent fireworks display.

A few quirky facts about the Lord Mayor’s Show (provided by Paul D Jagger, a Court Liveryman of The Worshipful Company of Information Technologists and a Freeman of the City of London) :

  • It is the world’s largest unrehearsed street pageant with over 6000 participants

  • More soldiers participate in the Lord Mayor’s Show than in the Queen’s Birthday Parade

  • The Lord Mayor’s state coach is pulled by 6 horses, only the Queen is entitled to more horses to pull her coach

  • The end-to-end length of the parade is over 3 miles but covers a route of only 1.7 miles in distance

  • The Show used to be held on the river with the City’s Livery Companies setting up elaborate ‘floats’ that demonstrated their trade, or perhaps a religious theme. When the procession moved on to land these floats remained

  • The word ‘show’ meaning a form of public entertainment derives from the legal requirement for the newly elected Lord Mayor to ‘show’ himself

  • This year will be the 800th such show, but the Lord Mayor will be the 688th - in past times Lord Mayor’s would serve multiple terms of office. Nowadays the Lord Mayor serves a single one year term

  • The total salary and bonus package of The Lord Mayor has remained unchanged since 1189AD from whence the first record of the office exists - the easy to remember sum of £0

  • The Lord Mayor’s mother Livery Company (the first one he or she joined) always takes precedence in the parade, irrespective of its position in the Livery Companies strictly observed order of precedence (laid down in 1515)

  • When the Lord Mayor reaches the Royal Courts of Justice to swear allegiance to the Crown the judges wear black caps on their wigs - perhaps a sign of what awaits the Lord Mayor if they fail in their duty?

  • The person responsible for planning and marshalling the Lord Mayor’s Show is the Pageantmaster. Currently this is Dominic Reid,  in his 24th year, who took over the role from his father who did the same job for 20 years

    A fun day out for all the family full of colour, music, culture & heritage! 

For furhter details vist their WEbsite


TASTE OF LONDON - The Festive Edition

Tobacco Dock, London E1

19th – 22nd November 2015

Taste of London will be transforming Tobacco Dock this winter for the festive edition of the much loved culinary event. The stunningly beautiful dockland warehouse at Tobacco Dock will be turned into a festive food heaven. This event marks the start of the Christmas season with mouth-watering food, heart-warming, innovative drinks and a boutique Christmas market with something for everyone. The winter edition offers a more boutique feel and will be brimming with exciting, original and hands on features with something for every die-hard food fanatic to enjoy.

The AEG Taste Theatre will host world-class chefs as they divulge their festive tricks and tips. Those attending so far are Tom Kerridge, Monica Galetti and Marcus Wareing. At AEG Let’s Taste Live Cooking Experience get up close and personal with world-class chefs as they show the finest ways to serve up festive food.

The theme this year is the best of London The event will showcase the best restaurants, chefs, artisan producers, baristas, mixologists and food our great city has to offer. Marcus Wareing said “London is the greatest city on earth. For me it is simple, we have an incredible choice of diverse food, something to suit every palate and budget. What better place to celebrate food than at the foodie event of the winter.”

Tastebuds will tingle as the event showcases some of the latest, greatest and most innovative restaurants in London, who will all be serving taster size portions of their incredible dishes. Several of the capital’s finest establishments have already signed up including: Hix, Café Spice, Pont St, Tom’s Kitchen, Club Gascon, Action Against Hunger and Tredwell’s.

Taste of London isn’t just about food; delicious drinks will play a vital part in bringing the show to life. Laurent-Perrier will be bringing its world famous pink Champagne Bar to the rustic setting of Tobacco Dock. Those who don’t fancy a glass of bubbly can indulge in all things cider at Weston’s Cider Bar. For the beer lovers, there will be a Craft Beer Hub featuring a selection of fantastic beers and ales from some of the UK’s best breweries.

The festive edition of the world’s greatest restaurant festival will also feature 100’s of exhibitors offering an array of delicious, interesting and beautiful gifts perfect for that special someone this Christmas. Music will fill the halls of Tobacco Dock, ensuring your ears get as much love this winter as your tastebuds

Eat, drink, shop, laugh, experience and learn at Taste of London, the festive edition!



Christmas Toy Parade

Regent St, London

28th November 2015

Parade Start Time: 10.30am

Hamleys, the finest toy shop in the world, are bringing the magic of Christmas to London’s Regent Street.  A traffic-free, all-day extravaganza for the biggest toy parade and character meet and greet London has ever seen!

Celebrating Hamleys 255th birthday and with a cast of hundreds, marching bands, festive floating blimps, street theatre, dancers and toy vehicles accompanied with music from Heart - Hamleys is literally bursting out onto Regent Street!

Hamleys advise early arrival to avoid disappointment, for safety the street will be closed for access when viewing reaches capacity.

There will be dozens of family favourite toy characters joining the parade including Barbie and her pink limo, Bing & Flop, Fireman Sam, Hello Kitty, Peppa Pig, Power Rangers, Sonic the Hedgehog, Snoopy and Charlie Brown, Thunderbirds, The Transformer Truck Optimus Prime, Twirly Woos and of course a very special appearance from Father Christmas and the Hamleys Elves along with the beloved Hamley and Hattie bear.

Following the parade you will get the chance to meet your favourite characters at dedicated zones along Regent Street. The Hamleys Main Stage located outside the famous toy shop will host entertainment from just after midday and welcome a very special guest for a finale at 16.30pm.

Enjoy the Parade!