Spring is a wonderful time in London. Days are longer, the sun is making a much-anticipated appearance and treasured houseplants suddenly look much happier. It’s not just nature that’s coming back to life, the city and its residents are too; woolly hats are tentatively being hidden away and activities other than cosying up by the pub fire are starting to look much more appealing.
Springtime is host to Pancake Day, International Women’s Day, Mother’s Day and St Patrick’s Day, to name a few, so there’s plenty of cause for celebration before you even delve into the events, exhibitions and activities. Here is our definitive guide on what to see and do over the next few months.
Falling on the 8th March, International Women’s Day is this year themed around “Balance for better” and campaigns have called for collective action to create a gender-balanced workforce. Coinciding with International Women’s Day this year is the Women of the World Festival held at the Southbank Centre, whose inspiring events range from comedy shows to interviews and talks to book launches.
The V&A never fails to impress when it comes to visually stunning exhibitions. Running until July, Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams explores the extensive influence of the fashion house, presenting a beautiful timeline which spans 1947 to the present. Highlights include original sketches, insight into the designer’s life and inspiration, as well plenty of iconic dresses.
The perfect choice for both literary and film fans, London Book And Screen Week is all about celebrating the art of storytelling. Taking place from the 11th-17th March, there will be events citywide for all ages and genres that embrace this theme. Immersive experiences, pop up cinemas, conversations with authors and creative workshops are just the tip of the iceberg.
Although it dates back to 1829, the infamous rowing race that sees Oxford and Cambridge compete on the Thames still attracts about 250,000 people per year. It’s always a fun day out; simply hope for sunshine, then station yourself with a picnic along the course which runs between Putney Bridge and Mortlake. This year, it takes place on the 7th April; the women’s race is at 2.15pm and the men’s at 3.15pm. If you’re more of an animal lover however, City Farm has made something of a tradition of its own: the goat race, where ‘Oxford’ and ‘Cambridge’ goats enjoy a leisurely trot around the farm for charity.
Regardless of what’s on, Somerset House is always a beautiful place to visit—it will be especially so between 16-19th May when Photo London is exhibited. This event offers the chance to discover the work of up-and-coming photographers, be inspired by that of the world’s best galleries and take your favourite pieces home.
It’s always a favourite, but there are plenty of unique things catching our eye at Chelsea Flower Show this year. Garden designers are tackling topical issues such as mental health and climate change by focusing on the positive impact of plants on both people and places. There’s everything from a ‘Facebook Garden’ inspired by connectivity on social media to one designed by Tom Dixon based around urban farming. Our etiquette guide will tell you all you need to know about attending.
We frequently host events in our stores too, so keep an eye on this page to stay up-to-date.