What's On in London August 2014
Buckingham Palace Summer Opening
Dates: 26th July to 28th September 2014
Every summer inquisitive visitors get the chance to look round the Buckingham Palace and admire the interiors of the principal royal residence. Visitors for the Summer Opening tour are permitted access to the nineteen State Rooms which are still used by the Royal Family to receive and entertain guests on state and ceremonial occasions. Decorated in lavish fashion, they include paintings by Rembrandt, Rubens and Canaletto, Sevres porcelain and some of the finest English and French furniture in the world. There are also some exquisite royal gifts, including Faberge Eggs, on display. This is a fascinating opportunity to admire the taste - often wonderful, sometimes comically bad - of Britain's monarchy.
Mysteries of the Unseen World (science museum)
Date: 05th August
If you've always been curious about what your eyes can't see you'll love this new film. Too fast, too slow, too small, the technology used to make this film captures it all and Forest Whitaker narrates it for you.
Primrose: Russian Colour Photography
Dates: 1st August to 19th October 2014
Colour experiments and developments in Russian photography over a century.
Photographers' Gallery, 16-18 Ramillies Street, London, W1F 7LW
Over 140 works - landscapes, portraits, Soviet propaganda, avant-garde and reportage photography - from the 20th-century, many never before seen in the UK, give a retrospective of colour experiments and developments in Russian photography over the course of a century.
Forgotten Fighters: the First World War at Sea
Dates: 2nd August 2014 to 1st August 2015
The National Maritime Museum commemorates the war with a new gallery.
National Maritime Museum, Park Row, London, SE10 9NF
Part of the National Maritime Museum's commemoration of World War One, Forgotten Fighters: the First World War at Sea explores the naval and maritime dimensions of the conflict in a new gallery display opening in August 2014. Through a wide range of objects including weaponry, photographs, medals and ship models, the epic scale of the war at sea is remembered. Forgotten Fighters puts the spotlight on the personal stories, from the heroism of merchant mariners to the realities of naval battle.
Dates: 1st to 31st August 2014
Children aged 5 to 16 can see an awesome selection of dazzling West End hits for free.
The West End, Soho, London
It's now over a decade since the excellent idea of Kids Week was first conjured up. A truly inspired summer treat for families, Theatreland is available for free to excitable tots and teens for the whole month of August. Children aged 5 to 16 years can see an awesome selection of dazzling West End hits gratis - as long as an adult pays the full price - and another two children can go half price. The 2014 shows include Aliens Love Underpants, The Elephantum, The Tiger Who Came To Tea, What The Ladybird Heard, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The Lion King, Hetty Feather, Horrible Histories, I Believe in Unicorns, Mamma Mia!, Matilda the Musical, Les Miserables, War Horse and many more with over 35 shows to choose from.
Dates: Saturday 2nd August 2014
Live music, food stalls, and entertainment on Trafalgar Square to mark the end of Ramadan.
Trafalgar Square, Central, Westminster, London, WC2N 5DS
Tube: Charing Cross Station, Leicester Square Station, Embankment Underground Station, Piccadilly Circus Station
Eid al-Fitr is the global Muslim celebration which marks the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan. Eid is the Arabic word meaning festivity, while al-Fitr means conclusion of the fast. Where Christians have Christmas, Muslims have Eid - which gives you an idea of how big the celebrations are. It's certainly a major event in London - and since 2006 there has been a mass gathering in Trafalgar Square organised by the Mayor of London and Muslim groups in the capital. The event features live music as well as food stalls, exhibitions and displays about Islam. There will also be other local events happening across London in what should prove to be a vibrant and uplifting occasion for everyone involved.
A Dance of Death
Dates: 5th to 30th August 2014
This play commemorating the centenary of the First World War uses the classic Danse Macabre structure.
Finborough Theatre, 118 Finborough Road, London, SW10 9ED
Tube: West Brompton Station
Inspired by the medieval mystery plays, Sommer 14 - A Dance of Death, is an epic telling from a German and European perspective of the world's descent into war. Employing the character of Death as a guide, the play uses the classic Danse Macabre structure of a series of vignettes to illuminate the people and events that led up to the outbreak of the First World War. It's a free adaptation by Gwynne Edwards of the original book by controversial German playwright Rolf Hochhuth.
FA Community Shield: Arsenal v Manchester City
Dates: Sunday 10th August 2014
The winners of the FA Cup take on the Premier League champions in the annual season opener.
Wembley Stadium, Wembley, London, HA9 0WS
Tube: Wembley Park Station
The winners of the FA Cup, Arsenal, take on the Premier League champions, Manchester City, in the annual season curtain-raiser atWembley Stadium. Although many call the Community Shield a friendly - money raised goes to charities and good causes - the competition can be fierce and a clash between two of the Premier League heavyweights is something that fans of both teams will want to witness live at Wembley - expect tickets to sell out fast.
The Deck: Pop-Up Cinema
Dates: 11th to 16th Aug 2014
The National Theatre's roof top venue becomes a cinema for one week only.
The Deck at the National Theatre, South Bank, London, SE1 9PX
Tube: Temple Station, Waterloo Station
Enjoy an al fresco film atop London's National Theatre at The Deck - a stunning roof top venue usually reserved for private events and product launches. For one week only The Deck is opened to the public to screen two of the National Theatre's most celebrated shows, One Man, Two Guvnors (evenings) and London Assurance (matinees). Ticket includes a deckchair in the 50-seat pop-up cinema, a hot dog, a box of sweet and salted popcorn, plus a welcome drink.
The Great British Beer Festival
Dates: 12th to 16th Aug 2014
A massive celebration of brewing with around 700 real ales, ciders, perries and beers from around the world.
Olympia, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, London, W14 8UX
Tube: Kensington (Olympia) Station
Over 66,000 people flock to this massive celebration of our national drink, which features over 700 real ales, ciders, perries and beers from around the world. Although the Great British Beer Festival sounds like a fun event, don't be surprised to see a lot of very serious faces and concentration; some real ale experts are genuinely obsessive - and for them this isn't merely an occasion to get sozzled.
Canary Wharf Jazz Festival
Dates: 15th, 16th and 17th August 2014
London's largest free jazz festival features MOBO Award-winning musicians.
Canada Square Park, Canada Square, Tower Hamlets, London, E14 5AX
Tube: Canary Wharf Station
London's largest free jazz festival takes place in Canada Square Park, Canary Wharf, with live jazz from well known acts. This year's line-up includes Riot Jazz Brass Band, Zara McFarlane, and the Hidden Orchestra with special guest Phil Cardwell on Saturday while Nostalgia 77, Polar Bear, and the Yiddish Twist Orchestra all play on Sunday. The evening and festival is wrapped up by the Andy Sheppard Quartet completing the collection of high calibre artists and rising stars taking part in the free weekend-long festival.
FEAST at Battersea Park
Dates: 15th, 16th and 17th August 2014
Top chefs and baking experts descend on Battersea Park for one weekend in August.
Battersea Park, Albert Bridge Road, Battersea Park, Battersea, London, SW11 4NJ
Tube: Sloane Square Station
Meet Michelin star chefs, see live demonstrations and sample food from London's top restaurants at FEAST the Foodies Festival taking place at Battersea Park. New features for 2014 include a Feasting Tent, the social hub at the heart of the festival where banqueting tables encourage sociable eating with chefs, friends and family, the Vintage Tea Tent, a Real Ale and Cider Farm, and Chilli Food Market. Cooking is made to look easy thanks to demos from top chefs and if the mere thought of all that makes you hungry then you can head to the restaurant tents where you can sample signature dishes from well known restaurants.
Greenwich Music Time
Dates: 20th, 21st, 22nd and 23rd Aug 2014
Goldfrapp, Russell Watson, and local boy Jools Holland perform at this brand new festival.
Old Royal Naval College, King William Walk, London, SE10 9LW
Tube: New Cross Station (East London line closed. Bus service operates)
Set within the grounds of the Old Royal Naval College over the August Bank Holiday weekend, Greenwich Music Time presents four nights of live music featuring electropop outfit Goldfrapp, who triumphed at their recent Glastonbury gig, performing songs from their back catalogue and from 2013's acclaimed Tales Of Us. Multi-million-selling English tenor Russell Watson will headline on Friday 22nd August backed by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and featuring some very special guests. Drawing the festival to a close on Saturday 23rd August is local boy Jools Holland, who brings his Rhythm and Blues Orchestra to Greenwich for a set that will feature special guest singers Marc Almond and Melanie C.
Dates: 21st to 25th Aug 2014
A devilishly delightful line-up of horror lie in wait this August Bank Holiday weekend.
Empire Leicester Square, 5-6 Leicester Square, Westminster, Soho, London, WC2H 7NA
Tube: Leicester Square Station, Piccadilly Circus Station, Covent Garden Station
The Empire Cinema Leicester Square will once again host the Film4 FrightFest this August Bank Holiday weekend. The home of horror, the festival has been running at this location since 2005 and has rapidly grown in popularity. With four days of screenings, audiences can expect to be scared witless with a devilishly delightful line-up of premieres, previews and special screenings of fantasy and horror films. Zombie films, cinematic apocalyptic visions of the future and revenge thrillers fill the festival with the finest films of this genre. New in 2013 was FrightFest Extra, ensuring extra screenings of the most popular films.
Watch This Space Festival: Week 9
Dates: 22nd, 23rd, 24th and 25th Aug 2014
The National Theatre's Watch This Space Festival has a Bank Holiday bonanza in store.
St John's Church, Waterloo, Waterloo Road, London, SE1 8UF
Tube: Waterloo Station, Southwark Station
In its penultimate week, Week Nine, the National Theatre's Watch This Space free festival of outdoor entertainment presents a Bank Holiday bonanza for the long weekend, from Friday 22nd until Monday 25th August. There's a huge mix of happenings including Nana's Jumble - a de-cluttering storytelling performance for children of all ages - jokey juggling from masters of street theatre The Chipolatas in 'Gentlemen of the Road', and 'Something to Hold', a 20 minute show by Pif Paf taking audiences on an aerial astrological adventure. Added to these are numerous dance shows, and a big boat to take a nap in - what better way to while away a Bank Holiday?
Challenge Cup Final
Dates: Saturday 23rd August 2014
One of the most prestigious matches in world rugby league.
Wembley Stadium, Wembley, London, HA9 0WS
Tube: Wembley Park Station
Believe it or not (and most southerners will not) but rugby league is the second most popular team sport in Britain and this, the Challenge Cup Final at Wembley, is one of the most prestigious matches in world rugby league played out in front of 80,000 fans. While the game's roots are in firmly in the north of England, this knock-out cup competition, first played in 1897, is now open to a few teams from France and Russia, as well as teams from the Army, Navy and RAF, and some amateur and university sides. Wigan, who defeated Hull 16-0 at Wembley last year, are the current holders of the cup but the new champions will be revealed on the August Bank Holiday weekend.
BBC Good Food Festival
Dates: 23rd, 24th and 25th August 2014
The BBC Good Food Festival comes to Hampton Court Palace for the first time in 2014.
Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey, London, KT8 9AU
Tube: Richmond Station
Taking place over the August Bank Holiday weekend, the BBC Good Food Festival comes to Hampton Court Palace for the first time giving visitors a great selection of food to sample and expert tips from well known cooks and chefs including John Torode, Lisa Faulkner, and Gennaro Contaldo, the Italian legend who taught Jamie Oliver all about Italian cooking - he's currently involved in the Jamie's Italian chain of restaurants.
Notting Hill Carnival
Dates: Sunday 24th and Monday 25th August 2014
Europe's biggest street party enlivens the streets of west London.
Notting Hill, London, W11 3AG
Tube: Holland Park Station
Held since 1966, the Notting Hill Carnival was originally a local affair for west London's homesick Caribbean community, this has evolved into Europe's biggest street party. Carnival sets London on fire in a blaze of Caribbean spirit as extravagantly costumed dancers, calypso and soca musicians, giant sound-systems and steel bands are joined by over a million revellers of all ages. Sunday is officially children's day, but there are loads of kids on both days enjoying the bright colours of the floats and the dancers' feathered costumes.
Old Spitalfields Market Paw Pageant
Dates: Monday 25th August 2014
Cool canines strutt their stuff on the dog catwalk at Old Spitalfields Market.
Old Spitalfields Market, 1 Crispin Place, Spitalfields, London, E1 6DW
Tube: Liverpool Street Station
For the past three years, cool canines, perfect pooches, hip hounds and masterly mutts have come together on the August Bank Holiday Monday to strutt their stuff on the dog catwalk at Old Spitalfields Market. The Paw Pageant sees London's best-dressed, 'fugliest' and smartest dogs competing to win prizes across eight categories - from 'Dressed up to the (Ca)nines' to Jimmy Chews, awarded to the naughtiest dog.
Portobello Film Festival
Dates: 28th August to 14th September 2014
Screenings, talks and workshops celebrate new filmmakers and directors making waves.
Westbourne Studios: Under the Westway, 242 Acklam Road, Notting Hill, London, W10 5JJ
Tube: Westbourne Park Station, Ladbroke Grove Station
Created in 1996 as a reaction to the state of the British Film industry, the Portobello Film Festival celebrates its 18th edition in 2014. Set up with the aim of providing a platform for exciting new film-makers the festival gives daring and ground-breaking directors a chance to get their films seen. While the line-up for this year's festival hasn't been confirmed, 2013 featured the world premiere of Phil Strongman's Macolm McLaren Situationist biography, Anarchist, an exhibition at theLouise T Blouin Institute, and 17 days of screenings at Westbourne Studios, and the Portobello Pop Up Cinemaunder the Westway so you can expect something along those lines. The festival hasn't always had an easy ride and has even found itself without a cinema screen at times but screening in parks, theatres, clubs and bars have all added to the diverse nature of the event.