🇲🇼 Next time you are in Trafalgar Square, look up to see the giant figure of African preacher John Chilembwe on the fourth plinth. Back turned, holding a bible, he towers over the life-sized figure of European missionary John Chorley. Chilembwe, who was killed after leading an unsuccessful uprising against colonial rule in 1914 is wearing a hat, something that was forbidden in front of white people at the time. Celebrated as one of the fathers of modern Malawi, the statue, by Samson Kambalu, is entitled Antelope. There is a QR code at the base you can scan to find out more about the history. It is an arresting piece and will start a number of important conversations with kids about colonialism, BLM and the statue-toppling controversy.
Mexico arrives at Kew!
🇲🇽 Get ready to escape to Mexico as the winter nights draw in. With bold vibrant installations all across the Temperate House for the month of October this explosion of colour will brighten any autumnal day. Great Mexico Family Fiesta planned for half-term with Carnival Parades. Opens 1 Oct Kew Gardens
Nature outside Tate Modern
🦋 🎶 You have until 1 Oct to go and see Es Devlin's beautiful, immersive Come Home Again, in its temporary home outside Tate Modern. A cross section of the dome of St Paul's is filled with drawings and sounds of 243 wildlife species that are on London's watch list as declining in numbers and needing active conservation. By day, come with little ones and stand inside the dome, listen to the soundscape, scan the QR codes and learn more about the precious moths, birds, bugs and fungi that surround you. At dusk (and also at 10am on 1 Oct), the space is host to choral performances. Uplifting and free! Open 10am-10pm.
🏛 In celebration of its 45-year history at London Wall, the Museum of London is kicking of a six-month programme of activities for the whole family. Workshops range from arty archeology, large LEGO builds to Roman picnics. There is stacks on over the school holidays – activities are free but some require advance booking. For further details and dates and times see link below.
Make it for Kids
🧵✂️🧑🏼🎨 Celebrating all things craft, Make it Harewood festival is on 2-3 July with a weekend-long programme of activities for the whole family. For the workshop line-up, plus details of exhibitors and the masses of crafty stuff going on, see link below. We are hoping to catch a glimpse of Aardman (the creators of Shaun the Sheep) enjoying the festivities!
Small is Beautiful !
✏️ Marvel at the incredible detail of 143 teeny tiny mini artworks created by 34 artists. How on earth do they do it! Great creative workshops for children run every Sunday at 10.30am. Small is Beautiful 79-85 Old Brompton Road, SW7 Tickets: £16 adults, £11.50 children
Royalty, Rebels & Eccentrics
👑 Settle down and enjoy this award-winning stop-motion animated film set to stunning live scores featuring elf princesses and goblin princes! June 26 at 2-3pm. Gunnersbury Park Museum £10 per child, ages 6+
Decorate Tate Britain!
🇬🇧 To celebrate the Queen's Platinum Jubilee, Tate Britain is covered in 600m of bunting. During half-term week, everyone is invited to join free family-friendly workshops to learn how to make bunting either to take home for your own celebrations, or add to the gallery's decorations. The drop-in workshops are everyday 28 May - 5 June (11am to 4pm) 🇬🇧
London Gallery Weekend 22'
🖼 There's all sorts of FREE arty fun going on at London Gallery Weekend (13 to 15 May), as load of contemporary galleries across London open their doors. Do take a look at the great round up in The Art Newspaper of the best stuff for kids – link below 🎨
Classical Coffee Mornings
🎹 Watch inspirational performances by hugely talented students from the Royal College of Music in the glorious Elgar Room. Coffee and pastry included in ticket price. Next concert is on 17 April with Ukrainian-British cellist, Nina Kiva and pianist Kumi Matsuo. Selected Sunday's at 11am Tickets £13 Entry via Door 12
Out-of hours Dinotours
🦕 Be the first to step foot inside the NHM with an up close and personal Dinotour! Journey through time and learn how dinosaurs were first discovered, how they adapted to life on Earth and why they're so important to our science today. 9–9.45am, selected dates in March. Ages 11+ Tickets: Adults £30, kids £20
Teen Swap Shop
👕 Clear out the clothes jammed at the back of your wardrobe and dust them off for a brilliant clothes swap hosted by Gunnersbury’s Youth Forum. Receive a 1 token for each item donated (max of 5 tokens) then spend your tokens on new clothing. If you use all your tokens you can still buy any item of clothing for £1. There will also be a free up cycling tote bag workshop from 3–4pm. 18 February, 2022 Ages 14–19. Free but limited space so booking is essential. 2–3pm. Gunnersbury Park
⛪️ Tickets are now available for the National Gallery’s glorious Virtual Veronese, which cleverly brings a sixteenth-century altarpiece back to the Italian chapel for which it was created, for the first time in over 200 years. See Veronese’s painting The Consecration of Saint Nicholas as it would have been seen in its original church setting in 1562 by using virtual reality headsets. Ages 13+ 7 March – 3 April Free with pre-booked tickets
Spell Songs at Cadogan Hall
🍃 One of the most magical books EVER 'The Lost Words' by Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris has, together with its follow up 'The Lost Spells' been adapted into a very special musical piece. Seven extraordinary musicians will be joined on stage by Rob and Jackie at The Cadoganhall tonight and tomorrow. A few tickets are still available. It will be joyous. Tickets from £20 "Dazzle me, little sun-of-the-grass..."
Big Garden Birdwatch
♥️ Who doesn't love a robin red breast! Be one in a million this weekend by simply counting the birds in your garden, balcony or local park for just one hour between 28 and 30 January. Head to the website below for full details on how to take part.
🌺 Kew's glorious annual orchid festival returns once again to brighten up the month of February. Transport your family to the tropics as you weave your way through the Princess of Wales Conservatory looking out for the monkey and sea turtle installations. Opens 5 Feb–6 March Tickets included in garden entry. £15 adults, £5 4–15yrs, U5s free
Battersea Light Festival
💥 Brightening up our winter nights once again the Battersea Light Festival returns, running until the 27 Feb. Free for all to enjoy. Battersea Power Station.
Roll up roll up !
🎪 Dandelion favourite Gifford Circus have just released tickets for their NEW show Carpa! Meaning 'tent' in Spanish Carpa will be a fiery mix of Mexican carnival, skill and silliness. Get booking now ♥️
She's behind you !
👸🏻 Everyone loves a Panto - even HRH The Queen! A special display, at Windsor Castle, brings together for the first time costumes worn by Her Majesty and Princess Margaret as teenagers during wartime pantomimes, displayed in the Waterloo Chamber where the pantomimes were originally performed 80 years ago. Hip Hip Hooray! Open 25 November.
🍭 This awesome mini edible city is back once again - this year setting up home in Motcomb Street. Run by the Museum of Architecture this is baking on a whole new scale. Expect towering sweet-laden skyscrapers and epic candy constructions. Book up one of their festive house-making workshops. Following this years theme, Nature in the City, there's a chance to build a greenhouse 🌳 We had so much fun doing them a few years ago. Opens 4 December to 9 January. 6–7 Motcomb Street in Belgravia. Tickets: £14 adults, £8.50- U12s, U3s free. Family workshop £40 (a adult, 1 child) to make one gingerbread house.
🎄The Charles Dickens Museum is dressed for the festive season once again. We have visited this little gem several times in December - it really is charming. Breaking News! Father Christmas will be dropping into the house on 18 December to visit his old friend Charles Dickens. Sounds like he'll have a small gift for any little visitors. Tickets £10 adults, £8 child.
The Healing Arts
🎨 The very first of its kind 'Arts in Health' exhibition opens at the Saatchi Gallery tomorrow. Browse through a selection of 20 bespoke artistic works created to help and inspire patients throughout their stay in hospital. We are looking forward to seeing a new commission created by musician and artist Brian Eno. Many of the drawn artworks capture life in the hospital during the pandemic. Admission: Free entry, no pre-booking required Galleries 1 & 2, Ground Floor.
Ho Ho Ho !
🎅🏼 A very jolly visitor has taken up residence at the National Gallery with the smilest team of elves we have ever encountered! Earn your honorary elf badge, make a magical snowflake before settling down in a winter wonderland to hear jolly Elven stories. After you've met Father Christmas in his log cabin (and grabbed your gift from the Elven sorting office) there will still be heaps of time to stroll through the gallery's incredible art collection. See how many angels you can spot. 👼🏼 Open from 27 November. Click on the link below to book. Tickets: U12s £22, adults £12
Heroes for your Tree
💙 HURRAH for brilliant Daylesford who will be donating 100% of sales from these daring limited edition felt decorations to the NHS. Snap them up before they run out. £5 each
🎄Expect a riotous rainbow of Christmas colour as you travel through 400 years of festive celebrations at the annual Christmas exhibition at the Museum of the Home. Find out who first put a Christmas tree indoors and how Boxing Day got its name. Great Christmas decorations in the museum shop too.