Ideas for childrenâs parties in London
You can go mad in both senses of the phrase trying to organise a simple children’s party these days, so here’s a selection of our favourite venues and activities to provide entertainment for the kids
Children’s Party BusOn-board events, such as games, magic or a disco, are tailored to the age group (from fours to nines). The bus parks outside for two hours and price includes catering. Capacity 24 children. Hire charge from £350.Children's Party Bus (07836 605032/www.childrenspartybus.co.uk).
Clown TownA three-level, multi-activity frame featuring slides, ball ponds and rope climbs, which is heaven for kids. Cost £8.95 per child.Clown Town, Unit 3, Coppetts Centre, North Circular Rd, N12 0QS (020 8361 6600). New Southgate rail.
Finchley Lido Leisure CentreThere is a pleasing grassy terrace; indoors, swimmers can plough up and down the main pool or enjoy the leisure pool’s wave machine and picture windows. The leisure pool can be hired between 4.30pm and 6.30pm at weekends. Capacity 30. Hire charge £129 per hour. Finchley Lido Leisure Centre, Great North Leisure Park, Chaplin Square, N12 0GL (020 8343 9830/www.gll.org). East Finchley tube.
See our guide to London's best pools and lidos
Mystical FairiesWhether you use the magical basement kingdom or have the fairies come to your home, Mystical provides parties for the sprite-obsessed. It’s not all pink dresses and wings; there are also pirate and wizard parties. Young girls in their fairy phase love the whimsy; for older ones there are high-school musical and disco options. Hire charge from £375 for two hours. Mystical Fairies, 12 Flask Walk, NW3 1HE (020 7431 1888/www.mysticalfairies.co.uk). Hampstead tube.
Delta ForceChildren have to be over 11 to don their fatigues and participate in the fun. They get 150 paintballs to fire between 9.15am and 4pm, plus a pizza lunch – all for £17.50 per head. The sites at Billericay and Upminster in Essex are both within walking distance of train and tube stations. £17.50 per person (minimum 40). Delta Force, Aveley Rd, Upminster, RM14 2TW (0844 477 5050/www.paintballgames.co.uk). Upminster tube/rail.
Cups 'n' horsies: Kentish Town City Farm
Kentish Town City FarmThere’s livestock, a pond full of frogs and a brand new space they rent out for children’s parties. There’s also a kitchen to prepare food. It costs £50 (plus £50 returnable deposit).Kentish Town City Farm, 1 Cressfield Close, off Grafton Rd, NW5 4BN (020 7916 5421/www.ktcityfarm.org.uk). Kentish Town tube.
VAs well as the displays of toys, there’s a colourful party space downstairs. Extras include menus from their café, crafts activities and a story trail around the museum. Capacity 25. Hire charge £100.V&A Museum of Childhood, Cambridge Heath Rd, E2 9PA (020 8983 5200/www.vam.ac.uk/moc). Bethnal Green tube/rail.
GambadoColourful climbing frames and slides are present and correct, but Gambado goes the extra mile with dodgems and a carousel. Max capacity 30. Hire charge £18.50-£26 per child. Gambado, 7 Station Court, Townsmead Rd, SW6 2PY (020 7384 1635/www.gambado.com). Fulham Broadway tube, then 391 bus.
Happy Green EarthHGH’s eco-friendly bags start at 20p, and gifts at 35p.(0845 388 0931/www.happygreen earth.com)
Frog in the FieldThe excellent website makes party bag purchasing a total doddle. (0845 170 2010/www.froginthefield.co.uk)
Little CherryFill bags with eco-friendly toys such as skipping ropes (£4.49). (01753 857 003/www.littlecherry.co.uk)
Ethical Party BagsRecycled, fairly traded bags available empty or pre-filled. (07948 343 653/www.ethicalpartybags.com)
Kids’ parties at home
Cookie Crumbles cooking workshopwww.cookiecrumbles.net
League One Sports Academywww.leagueone.co.uk
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