As the extravagant Lord Mayor's Show is taking place, the entire City comes alive with fun events for kids and families. Here's our guide to all the best activities taking place during the Show.
The Lord Mayor’s Show is a spectacular extravaganza of a parade, but even the biggest shows on earth need a supporting line-up.
Taking place across two sites, the workshops and shows listed below are just some of the amazing additional attractions being held on 10 November.
In Paternoster Square and around St Paul’s there will be a funfair, an archive film show and a splendid variety of art installations and street theatre suitable for all the family.
There will be displays on car technology, silly musicians, dancing wheelie bins, needy baby vegetables, undersea adventures and an entirely factless tour of London.
A range of artisan food stalls will also be on hand to feed exhausted explorers.
The London Metropolitan Archives has created a 30-minute film outlining the history of the Square Mile, including footage of Lord Mayor’s Shows right back to the 1920s. The film will be shown on a loop throughout the day from the mobile KinoVan, and staff will be on hand to answer questions about the film, the history and the archive.
FREE CITY TOURS
Immediately following the end of the show (around 3pm), City Guides will be running some free tours around the Square Mile, uncovering some of the area’s unique and diverse history. There will be four step-free routes with places allocated at random on a turn up and go basis. Walks last around an hour and will end close to either Bloomberg Arcade or Paternoster Square. All walks are free but donations to the Lord Mayor’s Appeal will be welcome.
Meet at No.1 Poultry, EC2R 8JR from 3pm
A wonderful full French mélange of music and comedy, improvised on the spot as you pass by. Large crowds are entertained, solitary passers-by serenaded, and everyone dazzled by a varied repertoire of jazz, folk, capers and extreme Frenchness.
SID AND NANCY
The Bureau of Silly Ideas creates gentle madness in public places and will bring their usual lighthearted touch to the square. We’re not going to tell you much about it but if you need to put anything in the bin, please ask it nicely first.
BILL SHUTTER’S UNBELIEVABLE TOURS
Voted by Time Out as one of the Top Ten things to do in London, the Unbelievable Tours of London will give an alternative view – one that is entirely made-up – of the City.
THE VEGETABLE NANNIES
The Vegetable Nannies are two everyday gardeners who’ve taken their young vegetables out of the ground for a day trip. If you see an old pram brimming with some beautiful bouncing baby vegetables, come over and say hello. No doubt the Nannies could use a hand in feeding and taking care of the little family that includes Jessica, the sweet-potato beauty queen, and Babs the downhill racing watermelon.
A GREENER, MORE EFFICIENT FUTURE
While children enjoy undersea adventures adults can also visit a sleek and futuristic display of the very latest in autonomous and electric vehicles. Tesla will be showing off the gullwing Model X and the Model S; Five AI will demonstrate an entirely driverless vehicle; while Shell will be displaying ultra-efficient new vehicles devised for their eco-marathon.
Meanwhile, over in the Bloomberg Arcade, close to Mansion House, you will find an exciting and varied programme with live performances, music and dance, incredible restaurants, art and sound installations, and Museum of London Archaeology’s Time Truck, as well as technology and apprenticeship workshops.
Bringing archaeological material and research to life, MOLA’s Time Truck will run workshops and reveal some of the work around the unearthing of the Mithraeum, which you can also visit underneath the Bloomberg building.
FLYCYCLE & SUBMERCYCLE
Pif-Paf’s famous travelling machines take two at a time in remarkable hats and fly them up, up and away or deep under the sea. It is the ultimate in luxury imagination-powered travel, and strange adventures are guaranteed.
ALL AT SEA
Acrojou bring a poignant, wordless tale set in a boat which rows gently through the tides of the world around us. In limbo between life and death, a lone boatman traverses a vast ocean of memories and past hopes, accompanied by his own personal storm. All at Sea combines melancholic humour, striking design, and the visual poetry for which Acrojou is recognised, in a moving and atmospheric row-about installation.
HOUSE OF SOUND
Iain Chambers brings three of Dan Fox’s infamous Mythophones to perform parts of his House of Sound sonic trail. Each Mythophone will play out the lost sounds of these places, including the locals at the Three Cups Inn, the trial of Moll Cut Purse, street vendors, and the original London stocks.
EMPLOYMENT AND EXPERIENCE SHOWCASE
Anyone looking to break into the job market or develop their work skills will find much to think about in a broad display of apprenticeship, training and work experience opportunities. Workfinder places local people seeking work experience in touch with local companies looking to provide relevant opportunities. Meanwhile, The Stationers’ Company is bringing a variety of training and apprenticeship opportunities from its membership, including Pearson, British Printing Industries, Parkside Flex and Paragon Print.