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Five Great Things to do in London during 2018
“When a man is bored of London, he is bored of life”, so the saying goes. And in 2018 London is ensuring no one utters that sentence by opening only the best venues, and holding only the biggest events – including a Royal Wedding.
The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Galleries open in Westminster Abbey this summer. And while they’re new, it is also old – as technically the gallery has always existed, but for some 700 years was shut off to the public. Not anymore. Running 70ft above the Abbey floor, it will offer the public unprecedented views to the Palace of Westminster and into the church. Treasures and collections from 1,000 years of the Abbey’s history will be displayed.
Previously the public has only seen this view on television, and the new stairs and lift tower providing access are the most major building works to be added to the Abbey since its west towers were completed in 1745. The Liber Regalis– a 14th Century illuminated manuscript setting out the procedure for the Coronation Service, along with Royal funeral effigies, silverware, stonework and vestments will also be on show.
A little slice of Americana is returning to London this year as well. And it isn’t really little – with not one, not two, but three NFL games due to be held. Two at Wembley Stadium and one at the brand new Tottenham Hotspur stadium, which features a retractable grass pitch (where the football will be played, obviously) underneath which is an artificial surface on which the NFL games can be played. Since the sport first held games in the UK back in 2007, some 1.5m. people have watched a game live. The addition of the Tottenham Hotspur pitch – a world class sporting venue – which has a 10-year NFL partnership, means its popularity can only be expected to grow and grow. With six teams due to play over three weeks in October, why not book a ticket and see what all the fuss is about.
Now is the time to work out how to get to Battersea Power Station, the place you previously trundled past and wondered just what could be. Well. Wonder no more. A vast £9bn. regeneration programme is transforming the entire area – in fact it is one of the biggest building sites on the entire planet. The first tranche of tenants have moved in, and a plethora of restaurants and bars have opened up. In recent weeks four new food and drinks venues have opened in Circus West Village – the first phase of the regeneration. Including a riverside seafood restaurant, Wright Brothers, independent wine shop and bar Vagabond, along with the CoffeeWorks Project – focusing on the finest coffee and teas from around the world – joins an ever growing list of openings at this gigantic project. When completed it will be served by an extension of Northern Line, and will be just 15 minutes from central London.
Now time for some fun – Ballie Ballerson is a place not only where you can unleash your inner child, but where your sides may split from laughing. Okay let’s tell you about it, remember those small ball pits from when you were a child? Stuck in the corner of a bowling alley – NEVER enough balls. Well this place seeks to undo all of that by having one million (not a typo) balls in a gigantic waist-deep pit. Oh. And it’s UV. The rules are no drinks in the pit, and a strong recommendation to empty your pockets before you get in, unless it is something you really, really want to lose. Anyone concerned this all sounds terribly unhygienic: they have a ball cleaner called the Gobble Muffin, which sanitises and cleans 18,000 an hour. Shoreditch at its finest.
Oh and there’s the Royal Wedding on May 19th, but you’ll be reading so much about that elsewhere, you don't need more information here.
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