For the month of May, we have a line-up for you like no other. This month is all about getting ready for that summer feeling with festivals, parties, beaches and fun outdoor activities. Grab a pen and paper and make a note of these awesome events that, believe us, you’re not going to want to miss!
Image: Merge Festival
Bankside, London SE1
12 May – 4 June
For the seventh year in a row, MERGE festival will be taking over Bankside for its annual arts, music and performance festival featuring a collection of creative events and installations. The artists who take part like to draw upon the rich heritage and contemporary culture of Bankside to create interesting and interactive installations, like the collective artists who have created Drive Dead Slow: Dodgems of Your Mind for this year’s festival. The installation takes the simple concept of bumper cars and creates the world’s first artist-designed dodgem arena, that will take its drivers on a psychological journey. If you are planning on attending this enchanting weekend event, you can expect to see Alice Adventures in the style of an Opera, an intimate display of confessions by Candy Chang, a series of short plays experienced in the small confines of a caravan, given the name Caravan Shorts by Robin Linde Productions, and many more innovative installations. To see what other programmes will be on, visit the MERGE festival website. Note that some of the installations may require booking in advance.
Image: London Craft Week Facebook
London Craft Week
78 Duke Street, W1K 6JQ
3 –7 May
London Craft Week is an annual event that showcases exceptional craftsmanship through a series of hidden workshops which showcase unknown makers alongside celebrated masters, famous studios, galleries, shops and luxury brands. The week aims to celebrate the exceptional skill and curation of crafted goods, from across the worlds of design, fashion, art, engineering and more. What adds to London Craft Week’s uniqueness is that it is set across some of the capital’s most iconic buildings, influential institutions and places more off-the-beaten track, many of which are not normally open to the public. The events this week include a series of talks and workshops with the likes of Mulberry, Cox London and Rolls-Royce. There’s also Bruichladdich Whiskey tasting, watchmaking, letter-cutting and so many more interesting crafts that you can try. Head to the website to see the full schedule.
Chelsea Flower Show
London Gate, Royal Hospital Road, Chelsea, SW3 4SR
23 – 27 May
Now that spring has really sprung and the nicer weather is getting us outdoors, what better way to spend your day out than walking through beautiful gardens? This month the Royal Horticultural Society is putting on its famous annual Chelsea Flower Show. This is the world’s most prestigious flower show, inspiring millions through showcasing the best in garden design. You can explore the Artisan Gardens, full of enchanting designs featuring a scent garden, texture garden and listening garden. You can see a Bermuda Triangle styled garden and many more, all taking inspiration from a variety of different cultures. There will be a number of awards for the best designs, and an array of delicious food venues available at the show. For a gorgeous day enjoying the beautiful landscapes around you, get yourself a ticket now.
Image: Stratford Theatre East
Stratford Theatre East, Gerry Raffles Square, London E15 1BN
2 May – 3 June
If you get a chance this month, we would strongly recommend that you go to see what is sure to be an amazing production of the bestselling novel, Room, written by Emma Donoghue. This heart-breaking story portrays the constrained life of a kidnapped teenage girl, held in a room in the garden of her captor with her 5-year-old son, who has no idea of the outside world. The compelling book received critical acclaim and was also adapted for the big screen, winning several Academy Awards, Golden Globes and BAFTAs; we can only imagine how amazing the new performance by Kathryn Joseph and Cora Bissett will be. Make sure you get yourself and your friends tickets to see this incredible story brought to life on stage.
Get ready for Wimbledon with the whole family at Lee Valley’s Great British Tennis Weekend. This free session will accommodate you and the family, whether you’re just starting out or an experienced player. What better way to get outside, get active and do something for absolutely free? There’s no need to book in advance, so keep the date in mind and get ready to turn up on the day and join in the fun!
Image: Brixton Beach
Pope’s Road, Brixton, SW9 6JH
25May – 28 August
The Beach is back and launching at the end of May, so get out your short shorts and your beach bags and go get your party tickets now! Be prepared to enter into a vibrant paradise inspired by Cuban culture, where palms sway lazily in the breeze and the sounds of Cuban jazz fill the air as you enjoy the afternoon with your friends whilst sipping on freshly-made cocktails. The urban beach will be open right in the heart of Brixton Market with regular events happening including Fridays at the Beach, beach parties, summer sessions, rooftop festivals and summer jams. What could be better? Make sure that you’re there for the opening party on the 27th May – you can get tickets from £10 on the website now.
Will you be heading to any of these events in May? Let us know in the comments below what you’ll be getting up to in London this month!