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56 fabulous things to do in London this July

By Stephanie Hartman
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Get set for a month of tennis, music festivals, summer garden parties, restaurant openings and sculpture in the city. We can’t guarantee sun but we can guarantee fun with the list that follows!

THINGS TO DO

 

July 1: Gurls Talk x Coach Festival Gurls Talk, the online platform empowering young women, is hosting its first ever event in London in partnership with New York fashion house Coach and supported by Dazed.

July 1: Screaming Voices with Huutajat A fun four-hour workshop with the Huutajat Screaming Men’s Choir from Finland. You’ll scream and shout along to a range of texts, focussing on Huutajat’s distinctive approach to voice and performance.

July 1: Eid Milan at Dishoom Join swish Bombay café Dishoom as they celebrate Eid Milan – the holiday that marks the end of the Islamic month of Ramadan.

Until July 9: British Summertime Festival For the fifth year running, Hyde Park plays host to some of the planet’s biggest musical stars, with an upmarket festival vibe that takes in small stages, theatre and comedy, food and drink and a posh VIP area.

July 3 - 16: Wimbledon Getting into the Wimbledon Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis Club requires quite a bit of prep. Seats on Centre and Number One courts are distributed by ballot the preceding year, although enthusiasts who queue on the day may gain entry to the outer courts.

July 3-16: Strawberries and Screen Tennis fans who haven't got the willpower to queue for Murray Mound should pack a picnic and head to King’s Cross for these free outdoor screenings of Wimbledon 2017.

July 2-23: Summer Streets on Regent Street Enjoy the rare spectacle of a traffic-free street in zone one every Sunday in July, as Regent Street’s classy curve is pedestrianised from Oxford Circus all the way to Piccadilly Circus for a street party.

July 4-9: Hampton Court Palace Flower Show This high summer event takes place over 34 acres in the spectacular grounds of Hampton Court Palace and features world-class gardens, as well as marquees showcasing work by some of the country’s leading designers and nurseries.

July 7, 10, 11, 13, 14, 17: The Good Soldier Schwejk Audience participation is key throughout this contemporary take on Hašek’s satirical Czech novel directed by Christine Edzard. A small cast will take on multiple roles. 

July 9: Bastille Celebrations Celebrate France’s national day on this side of the channel at an annual party in and around Borough Market, which brings together all things Français.

July 14-15: The Spirit of Tiki A cocktail festival celebrating all that's good about vibrant tiki culture, with a focus on the South Pacific Islands’ favourite spirit – rum.

July 14-16: Hyper Japan Festival Bringing a touch of Tokyo to East London, Hyper Japan arrives at Tobacco Dock for three days of anime, cosplay, J-Pop and wasabi pizza.

July 15-16: Lambeth Country Show The Lambeth Country Show has brought countryside pursuits to Brockwell Park for the last 42 years and the 2017 instalment will once again feature home-grown vegetable and flower competitions, sheep shearing, owl displays and more.

July 15-16: Walthamstow Summer Garden Party Programmed by the Barbican and Create London in partnership with Waltham Forest Council, the Walthamstow Garden Party is a free two-day festival in E17 that combines a cracking music line-up with plenty of family fun.

July 15- Aug 28: Big Screen on the Beach Recline in a deckchair and enjoy a cinema experience on the sand with a new series of outdoor summer screenings at the Roundhouse’s urban beach.

July 21-23: The Rosé Festival This year London welcomes its first ever festival celebrating glorious rosé wine, and it looks chic AF.

July 22-Oct 1: Buckingham Palace Summer Openings Poke around the palace while the royal family are on their hols.

July 28-30: RideLondon The world’s largest festival of cycling returns to the capital. More than 100,000 people are expected to take on eight miles of empty London roads for this weekend feast of cycling aimed at riders of any age and ability.

July 29: Holi Festival of Colours The actual Hindu celebration of Holi took place in March, so this is very much an excuse for an inclusive good time, banging tunes and throwing powder paint on your mates, rather than any sort of authentic celebration.

MUSIC AND NIGHTLIFE 

© James Bryant

 

July 6-16: Somerset House Summer Series The full line-up for Somerset House's summer concerts in 2017, offering top live music in a beautiful setting, includes Damian Marley and The Cinematic Orchestra.  

July 14-15: Lovebox Consistently one of the finest festivals in London, catering for cool kids and party monsters, Lovebox packs as much fun into two days as many festivals manage in three.

July 16: Citadel Festival A top-of-the-class music line up, plus various arts-driven distractions and entertainment throughout the day, plus top food and booze offerings.

July 22-23: Afropunk If the Afropunk festival was a person, it’d probably be Solange Knowles: youthful, gorgeous, fearless and just a little bit weird.

THEATRE 

© Matt Crockett

 

July 6- Aug 26: Touch The producers of Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s play-turned-telly hit ‘Fleabag’ are back with another story of a single woman’s wild sexual escapades.

July 7- Aug 5: A Tale Of Two Cities Dickens’ novel about London's poor is adapted by Matthew Dunster.

July 8-Oct 7: Girl from the North Country Conor McPherson directs the world premiere of his Dylan-soundtracked drama set during the Great Depression.

July 13- Oct 7: Cat On a Hot Tin Roof Sienna Miller, Jack O’Connell and Colm Meaney star in the Tennessee Williams classic.

July 14-Oct 15: Much Ado About Nothing After his explosive gangland reimagining of ‘Cymbeline’, last year’s ‘Imogen’, Matthew Dunster is reimagining well-loved comedy ‘Much Ado About Nothing’.

July 18-Sept 28: Mosquitoes After her sprawling, intense ‘Chimerica’, Lucy Kirkwood’s back at the NT with a new play about sisterhood and tragedy, directed by NT boss Rufus Norris.

July 21- Sept 9: Road ‘Harry Potter’ director John Tiffany revives Jim Cartwright's dark working class classic.

Until Aug 12: The Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee Takes Oral Evidence on Whitehall’s Relationship with Kids Company Yes, that really is the title. This new musical (yes, it really is a musical) is a verbatim piece compiled from the titular transcripts into the 2015 parliamentary enquiry into what went wrong with the ill-fated charity Kids Company.

Until Sept 2: The Mentor F. Murray Abraham stars in this comedy about great writers with even greater egos.

Until Sept 30: Queen Anne Helen Edmundson’s history play for the RSC is a peek behind the immaculate furniture of Queen Anne's reign.

FOOD AND DRINK 

Moretti Gran Tour

 

New openings:

Ugly Dumplings The first permanent spot for the Anglo-Chinese dumpling makers. 

Chik'n A fast food joint from the guys behind Chick 'n' Sours. 

Ichi Buns  Alan Yau's (Wagamama and Hakkasan) latest endeavour, serving Asian-style burgers, ramen and cheeseburger spring rolls.

Golden Dragon A massive flagship Chinese restaurant serving dim sum opening on Edgware Road. It's part of the new Bang Bang Oriental Food Hall. 

Magpie A central London spot from the people that brought you Pidgin. Expect modern British dining with dim dum style service. 

Ikoyi Get your African food fix in St James Market from July.

Core Clare Smyth (Gordon Ramsay's protégé and Britain’s first female chef with 3 Michelin stars) opens her own restaurant in Notting Hill this summer.

Bob Bob Exchange A city spin-off of the ‘press for Champagne’ button restaurant in Soho.    

Foodie events:

July 1-2: Gluten Free Street Food Festival Coeliacs can stuff themselves and Paleo followers can pig out at this street food festival packed with tempting gluten-free treats.

July 3-7: Moretti Gran Tour This festival celebrating authentic Italian cuisine and culture is back for the summer and this year it’s offering Londoners a 4D immersive sensory experience of Italy.

July 4: Fourth of July Celebrations at Balthazar Balthazar is going all-out this Independence Day, offering a free all-American-inspired menu to the first 100 patriotic diners of the day, but you have to be dressed in stars and stripes.

July 8: Street Child Summer Street Food Festival Fill up on jackfruit vegan tacos from Club Mexicana while giving to charity at the Street Child Summer Street Food Festival.

July 13-15: Le Crown and Cactus A summer pop-up from Chambord in the heart of Soho, enter a traditional-looking pub, but find a Bubble Bar where you can make bespoke cocktails with candy floss and glitter, a Chambord Champagne Cellar and a magical pub garden.

July 15: London Vegan Beer Fest Did you know beer ISN'T always vegan? We’re afraid it's true, but the good news is you can sink a pint free of animal cruelty at the London Vegan Beer Festival.

July 19: Bubbledogs x Chick ’n’ Sours Sandia Chang and Carl Clarke swap aprons for a kitchen takeover. Carl’s menu will be in residence for one night only, with the Chengdu Chilli Dog, topped with kimcheese and white kimchi, and the Thai Dog with fermented som tum, Thai ranch sauce, and crispy crack noodles. Yum.

FILM

July 5: Spider-Man: Homecoming The all-new nerdy weedier Spider-Man, played by 21-year-old Londoner Tom Holland, was a highlight of ‘Captain America: Civil War’ last year. So we’re expecting good things from his standalone debut. This reboot around, Spidey is a teenager exploring his powers under the mentorship of sarky Tony Stark.

July 11: War for the Planet of the Apes ‘Apes’ do not want war!’ growled simian leader Caesar (Andy Serkis) in the last movie. Well, he’s got one in the third film in the rebooted ‘Apes’ franchise. ‘Planet’ finds the apes taking on a human army led by Woody Harrelson’s general. It’s amazing – unexpectedly emotional with awe-inspiring special effects.

July 14: The Beguiled A remake of a Clint Eastwood Civil War movie is the last film you’d expect from Sofia Coppola. But her version of the story of a wounded soldier nursed back to health at a boarding school for girls is told from the female point of view. Her A-team cast includes Kirsten Dunst, Elle Fanning and Nicole Kidman, with Colin Farrell playing the soldier. 

ART

Alvar Aalto, armchair, Finland, 1930. Photograph. © Victoria and Albert Museum.

July 5- Oct 8: Frieze Sculpture The capital’s biggest showcase of major outdoor works by leading artists and galleries, opens this summer in The Regent’s Park.

July 12- Oct 22: Soul of A Nation This exhibition looks set to flip the idea of ‘black art’ on its head, tracing an underlooked 20-year period of creative innovation among African-American artists, against the seismic backdrop of the Civil Rights movement.

July 15-Nov 2: Plywood An exhibition about industrially produced sheet wood might not exactly sound enthralling. But never underestimate the V&A’s ability to take the most humdrum of subjects and bring it to life.

July 20-Aug 13: Trajal Harrell: Hoochie Koochie Trajal Harrell will be showing a series of his genre-bending, age-spanning dance routines, in which everything from vogueing to traditional Japanese butoh is thrown into the mix.

ENJOY!

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