Children's theatre FAQs

Everything you need to know about taking your kids to some of London's top theatres



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London has enough wonderful children's theatre on offer that you'll find something to keep even the squirmiest of little ones entertained for an hour or two. It's best to remain prepared, though, so some of the city's theatres have provided information that should prove very useful to organised parents (and designated babysitters).

Polka Theatre

© Robert Workman

Are there baby change facilities?

Am I allowed to bring food into the show? What’s best?
Cold food is allowed into the Main Theatre but please avoid noisy packaging and anything hot! We do not allow any food into the Adventure Theatre.

Can I bring my baby as well? What happens if they start crying loudly? Would I have to take the older children out of the show too?

Babies are very welcome at Polka! Although we are strict on lower age ranges, we do have specific Watch With Baby shows in the Main Theatre which are performances where all family members, young and old, can sit together to enjoy a show. It is a very relaxed atmosphere and if your child does start crying you can take them out of the theatre and return when you see fit. Polka also has an intimate theatre space for under 5s which also operates a relaxed policy where parents can take children in and out of the performance when necessary. Older children are welcome to remain throughout the performance if the parent or carer is happy to do so.

Do the kids have to remain completely silent throughout? What level of noise is acceptable in a children’s show?
Most Polka shows, if not all, encourage audience participation and want the children to be as involved and as relaxed as possible. At Polka, children are allowed to be themselves and this means that the actors on stage and the staff know what to expect from an inquisitive audience made up of young people. As long as noise levels do not disrupt other audience members’ enjoyment, then the level is acceptable.

For shows with unreserved seating, do we have to get there early to make sure we can sit together?
Generally speaking you will not have to worry. In the Main Theatre, the ushers will sit you together and in the Adventure Theatre the capacity is contained to avoid these issues.

How strict are age-limits? How can I find out more about a show so I can work out if it’s suitable for my child?
We are strict on our lower age limits as content is geared towards that specific range which acts as a guide for parents and carers. Furthermore, our experience shows that children below the specified age are more likely to be disruptive and spoil other people’s enjoyment. For this reason, children younger than the lower age limit will not be admitted. We are very clear on age ranges for all our shows on the website and in our brochure but do call Box Office on 020 8543 4888 for more information.

Is there a group discount?

Yes, for every ten tickets brought get the 11th free.

Is there somewhere we can eat a packed lunch before the show?

Polka has a garden with picnic tables and a playground with a few benches for packed lunches. We also have a cafe and an area for children’s tea parties which must be booked in advance.

What do I do with the pushchairs?
There are areas throughout the theatre where pushchairs can be kept. A member of the Front of House team will be available to help out with any concerns.

Find out what's on at the Polka Theatre

This exceptional young person’s theatre has earned its place in generations of young hearts since it launched in 1979. The Wimbledon theatre stages in-house productions, workshops and storytelling sessions for families and schools – look out for literature events featuring children’s authors such as Jacqueline Wilson.

  1. 240 The Broadway, SW19 1SB
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