London Family Weekend Guide

Oct 11, 2017 by


Learning, Making and Doing Events:


Institute of Imagination, Coding Weekend: Saturday 10am-4pm.  Head over to Lambeth for a variety of workshops for parents and children ways to use coding programs for art, storytelling, making video games, creating web sites, apps, robotics and more.  Perfect for ages 3-13, tickets adults and children £12 for full-day (10am-4pm with hour break 12:30-1:30), £7 for half-day (10am-12:30pm or 1:30-4pm).


Making Friends at Monkey Music1

Are you and your baby looking to meet local mums, in a clean, pleasant space and take part in an enjoyable activity? Are you near Maida Vale, Marylebone, Notting Hill, High Street Kensington or Hampstead? Could I suggest you try out one of London’s premier baby and mum activity – Monkey Music.  For a limited time, Monkey Music Maida Vale, Marylebone, Notting Hill and Hampstead have special offer for new London Baby and Kids readers.  If you and 2 other families join Monkey Music and mention London Baby and Kids, the normal £17 joining fee will be reduced to £1 for all three. Ring 0208 438 0189 or email


If you do not yet have plans for October half-term and are free to get away for a few nights, take a look at Cornwall for Londoners – Fantastic Train Journey to St. Ives.


Madneville Hotel, London Blogging Workshop: Thursday 12 October, 10:30-1pm.  Come to an intimate, hands-on, blogging workshop where you will learn how to grow 1,000 loyal followers into 10,000 and create a solid business.  Tickets £40 to cover room, coffee, tea, pastries and a few other bits and bobs.



Parasol Unit, Sunday Family Workshop This is the House that I Built: Sunday 2-4pm.  Learn the technique of wood dipping and dying to colour different wooden shapes and objects.  Find inventive ways to assemble and create a tiny world of imaginary buildings.  Ticket £2 per child and £3 per adult, for ages 5+.


Royal Institution Family Masterclass: Explore the science of psychology in this interesting masterclass at the RI. For ages 7-12, 10:30-12:30 or 1:30-3:30. Tickets £12.75- £20.


Sir John Soane’s Museum, Decoupage Caskets: Saturday 11am-3pm.  Explore the Empire ornament style popular with Regency and Georgian England in the Art Room where little ones can make a card casket covered in decorative cutout designs and decoration.

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Le Institut Francais, Thinker Club: Saturday 2:30pm.  Take the kids to South Kensington and make their very own Kaleidoscope, bilingual and easy French. Tickets £7, booking required, ages 9-12.


National Portrait Gallery, Drop-in Family Session, The Big Draw: Saturday 1-2:30pm and 3pm-4:30.  Head to the NPG for an afternoon of drawing with a team of artists. For ages 3+, free, drop-in.

Performances this Weekend:


BFI London Film Festival, Films in Family: Take a look at the lineup for the family side of this epic film festival. Various dates, times and venues.


Southbank Centre, Orchestra in the Age of Enlightenment, Tots Guide to the Orchestra: Sunday 10:30 and noon.  Bring little ones aged 2-5 for this hand-clapping, sing-along and dancing introduction to the instruments of the orchestra.  Tickets £9 adults, £1 tots.


The Unicorn Theatre, Beowulf: Wow! This powerful and fabulous modern take on this epic story was incredibly thought provoking.  Just to expand the program notes at bit, its an 80 minute monologue and some 8 year olds might find it a little abstract and perhaps even a bit tedious as there are no other characters and the usual audience participation bits are not included.  Older kids and their parents will have lively discussions about why the story was told in this particular way and why that might be … tickets from £10

Family Events This Weekend:


Tate Mondern, Turbine Hall, Superlfex One Two Three Swing: Head over to the Turbine Hall for this fantastically interactive installation – enormous swings! Free, all ages, drop-in.

Big Fish Little Fish, Fire and Lightbox in Vauxhall: you can take the kiddos to a Vauxhall rave … and not get a visit from social services.  DJ Scott Duncan and Aphrodite will be DJing.  Safe for kids with loads of activities and baby chill out area.  Great fun, Saturday 2pm-4:30, all ages, tickets £10.


Lady, Pop Brixton:  Sunday noon-11pm.  Take the kids for a wander around Pop Brixton, sample good food and listen to the rising divas of the London music scene.  Free, all ages.


Africa on the Square, Trafalgar Square: Saturday noon-6pm. Head to Trafalgar Square for children’s activities, food, music, dance, talent show and African market.  Free, all ages.


Diwali Festival, Trafalgar Square: Sunday 1-7pm. Come and celebrate the Diwali with dance, music, yoga, comedy, crafts, community stalls, food market.  Free, all ages.

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Royal Academy, Family Studio Adventureland: Come explore, climb and play in this drawing and constructing collaborative family studio.  Free, Sunday 11am-3pm, all ages, part of the Jasper Johns exhibit.

Just for Babies:

Westbourne Grove Church, NCT Kensington and Chelsea Nearly New Sale: Saturday 14th October 10-noon for NCT members, 10:15-noon for the general public.  £2 donation on the door, first 100 people receive a complimentary goodie bag, cash sales only.

Le Institut Francais, Babies Corner: Bring the littlest ones to South Kensington for storytelling for babies to 3 year olds in easy French.  Saturday 14th October, 11am, £3 adults, £7 kids.

Royal Albert Hall, Storytelling and Music Sessions: bring children ages 0-4 to Royal Albert Hall on Wednesdays for a magical experience with storytellers Paul Rubinstein, Becky Dixton and Samantha Sutherland where singing, storytelling and musical instruments are woven into one story session.  £4, 11:30am

British Museum, Little Feet : Saturday 14th October, 11am-4pm.  This session takes place in the Samsung Centre.  Little ones will spot different animals and use tablets to make 3D animal models to take home.  Free, for children under 5.

 National Gallery, Welcome Wednesdays: Wednesdays 10:30-11:15.  Bring children 16 months to 5 years to the National Gallery for Art Adventures with Hannah Cushion.  Ages 16 months – 5 years, tickets £5 per child.

Chelsea Swim Spa – head over to the most baby-friendly pool in London … The Chelsea Swim Spa.  Find out more about this luxuriously warm, innovative pool for mothers and small children.  Read my review here.

Pimlico Toy Library:  Bring the kids to the Toy Library for play sessions and toy lending.  Fantastic resource for anyone in the area.

Electric Cinema, Electric Scream: Mondays 11am.  This week’s feature: Wind River.  Bring babies under 12 months to this amazingly plush cinema, relax with some coffee and catch a flick.

Big Scream, Ritzy Brixton: Fridays, 11am.  This week The Party and The Snowman are showing.

Family Cinema 

Regent Street Cinema, Kino Club Films : You can now bring your children to London’s beautifully restored, sumptuous cinema for screenings of better than average children’s films on Saturdays. This week’s screening: Captain Underpants, 11:30am, just £1.75.

Barbican Framed Film Club: Saturday 11am.  This week’s programme: Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie.  Tickets just £3.50

Gate Picturehouse, Kids Club: This week’s programme: Despicable Me,10:30 am. Tickets just  £1 with £4 membership, popcorn and juice £2. (best £3 you will ever spend on a rainy Saturday)

Ritzy Picturehouse, Kids Club: Sunday 10:30.  This Week’s screening: Aladdin.

Electric Cinema, Kid’s Club: This week’s feature, The Lion King.  Saturday 9:30am. Check out the Electric Cinema with its plush, red velvet beds, sofas and armchairs. Looks like a great way for Dad to occupy the kids on a Saturday morning.

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