Activities Festival Free Outdoors

London Festival of Architecture 2019 family friendly events, exhibitions and activities

London Festival of Architecture takes place throughout June and The Young Londoner has picked the best family friendly events, exhibitions and architectural activities for you and your little ones.
Photo credit: Pricegore Yinka Ilori

The London Festival of Architecture takes place across London this June 2019 and the Young Londoner has you covered with the best family friendly events, exhibitions and architectural activities for you and your little ones.

Happy Birthday Sir Horace Exhibition at Tower Bridge

Celebrate the birthday of Tower Bridge architect, Sir Horace Jones’ with this exhibition and 200th birthday party. Visit the temporary children’s exhibition in the Engine Rooms with dedicated family trail to find out more about Sir Horace and the buildings he designed there will be games, a birthday activity table, a treasure hunt and Victorian photo opportunity.

When: 20 May – 1 September 2019

Where: Tower Bridge

Tickets: adults £8.80, children 5 and over £3.80 and under 5’s are free. Book here.

Architecture of London exhibition

Architecture of London brings together artworks from the 17th century to the present day to illustrate how London’s ever-changing cityscape has inspired visiting and resident artists over four centuries. The exhibition will feature 80 works by over 60 artists, drawing from the

Guildhall Art Gallery’s extensive collection and important loans to examine the rich diversity of London’s buildings and its varied portrayal by artists. Architecture of London celebrates London’s wide-ranging architecture – from tower blocks to suburban homes, the iconic, to the non- descript, offering a unique insight into London’s ever- evolving topography through the eyes of artists who have been, and still are, captivated by the city.

When: 31st May – 1 December 2019

Where: Guildhall Art Gallery

Tickets: from £3.50 book here

V&A Museum of Childhood Cardboard Cities

Parks, a town square or libraries…what makes a city a great community? Join the V&A Museum of Childhood for a weekend of designing and building an ever-changing cardboard cityscape on the museum’s central hall with artist Rosemary Cronin.

When: 1 & 2 June 11.00-13.00 & 14.00-16.00

Where: V&A Museum of Childhood

Tickets: free

Art Sunday at Dulwich Picture Gallery

Drop-in to Dulwich Picture Gallery’s weekly family workshops to explore the new Pavilion: ‘The Colour Palace’. There will be a creative activity for you to enjoy, and memento for you to take away at the end of the session.

When: 2 June

Where: Dulwich Picture Gallery

Tickets: free

Architecture and the Responsive Body in Children’s Education; A Family Friendly Panel Discussion, workshops and games.

A unique opportunity to look into the overlaps at play between architecture, physicalised learning and children’s education. Whilst the panel discussion takes place, accompanying children can take part in an accessible and fun choreography and architecture workshop. Led by one of our expert artist facilitators, children will have the opportunity to explore choreography and architecture through movement games and improvisation. This event is ideal for families, architects, teachers, educationalists and anyone interested in the impact of movement and space on childhood learning.

When: 6 June

Where: Siobhan Davies Studio

Tickets: Free but if you would like to book your child onto the workshop, please get in touch with or call us on 0207 091 0650 as spaces are limited.

Sketch Bots at the National Gallery

Join the National Gallery to redefine the line and push the boundaries of drawing at the Gallery. Organised in collaboration with The Bartlett School of Architecture, this family friendly event invites you to work with artists and architects from STORE Projects and experiment with coding to create a collaborative drawing design.

When: 6 & 9 June from 11am

Where: The National Gallery

Tickets: Free admission

The Victorian A & E Hospital Workshop

Have you ever wondered how hospitals worked in the past? This interactive workshop explores what it was like to have been a medical practitioner and patient in St Thomas’ Hospital during the 19th century and the spaces associated with them. Visitors will explore the role of an apothecary, creating their own herbal remedies to treat a range of illnesses, and also experience the ‘bloody’ world of surgery before the arrival of antiseptics and anaesthetics, when a mock amputation is performed on a volunteer in the original operating theatre from 1822. This session provides an exciting way for young children to engage with history and encourages creative thinking and imagination.

When: 11 June

Where: The Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garden

Tickets: Although this event is free, museum admission prices apply Family £15.00 (2 adults + 2 children, +£1.00 per additional child;; adult £6.50; Conc. £5.00; Children £3.50. Tickets here.

The Colour Palace

‘The Colour Palace’ – a lively and celebratory fusion of European and African cultural traditions by Pricegore and Yinka Ilori – is the second edition of the Dulwich Pavilion, and the winner of a design competition co-hosted by the LFA and the Dulwich Picture Gallery for an exciting outdoor events structure. The Colour Palace is a celebration of colour, pattern and light, and draws upon both European and African cultural traditions in creating a design that reflects multicultural London and creates a powerful contrast alongside Sir John Soane’s iconic gallery building.

When: 12 June til 22 September 2019

Where: Dulwich Pavillion

Tickets: Free but if you wanted to visit Dulwich Picture Gallery tickets start at £7

Giant Dolls’ House Project – Stand As One

Architect Catja de Haas, founder of the Giant Dolls’House Project, has teamed up with Oxfam on this exciting collaborative arts project as part of Refugee Week and the London Festival of Architecture.

Catja travelled to Jordan with Oxfam where she spent four days working with Syrian refugees. They were each given a shoe box to work with – a blank space in which to recreate a special place, a memory, or tell their story to the exhibition visitors. Back in the UK, children, architects, designers, artists, asylum seekers and visitors to the museum are being set the same challenge in response to those from Za’atari.

During special workshops, visitors will be encouraged to think with their hands by creating their own shoe box which will then be connected with others to create ‘The Giant Dolls’House – Stand As One’ installation which is part of Oxfam’s Stand as One with Refugees campaign.

When: 14 – 23 June 10am til 5.45pm

Where: V&A Museum of Childhood

Tickets: free

In Search of Arab London – The Damascus House

Join the The Arab British Centre and Barakat Trust for an afternoon of family activities at Leighton House. This one-time event will include a screening of ‘The Damascene Home’, a ten-minute film commissioned by The Barakat Trust about the traditional residential architecture of Damascus. The film will be followed by a tour of Leighton House’s Arab Hall and a design workshop which will allow young people to explore notions of home and design their own house based on the principles and elements they have learned from the film and the house.

When: 15 June 2019

Where: Leighton House Museum

Tickets: entry is £6 buy tickets here

Under 5s Workshop: Shapes and Skylines

Parents with children Under 5 years can come along to one of our special LFA workshops. Inspired by the theme of boundaries these relaxed, informal events introduce young children to London’s architecture via the shapes and lines that make up the Skyline. The hour will include a mark making crafts, storytelling around the model, singing and lego fun.

When: 17 June 2019 10:30am til 4pm

Where: New London Architecture, Store Street, WC1E 7BT

Tickets: Free but you can book here.

Designing a museum of the future

Families can discover a variety of architecture from the past on this museum trail and create the perfect future museum. Shake off the boundaries of the past and decide for yourself – what would a museum of the future look like? Will you use what’s gone before or create something entirely unique?

When: 21 June

Where: Museum of London

Tickets: free.

Above ground, below ground: Guildhall family day

Explore hidden stories underneath the streets of London, such as London’s Roman Amphitheatre buried deep underneath the Guildhall Art Gallery, help create an art installation on the architecture and engineering of London and enjoy ongoing activities throughout the day as well as storytelling and a family trail.

When: 22 June 11am til 4pm

Where: Guildhall Art Gallery

Tickets: free

Family Fun Day: Breaking the Boundaries at RIBA

What boundaries do you encounter in your daily life? Are there any you wish didn’t exist? How could you overcome and challenge these? Join us as we think beyond the boundaries and start making connections instead. Throughout the day you will consider the spaces in which you live, eat, travel, learn and play as we help you design, draw and build in a series of drop-in and timed workshops and activities for families.

When: 22 June 11am til 4pm

Where: RIBA, 66 Portland Place, Westminister, W1B 1AD

Tickets: free but you can book tickets here.

Sun-Catchers at Sir John Soane’s Museum

Sir John Soane Museum

For architects, windows are a transparent boundary to the outside world, letting in light whilst letting us gaze out. Sir John Soane is famous for his manipulation of light in buildings, not just to illuminate but sometimes to transport us to other places with the use of colourful glass and other tricks of light. To mark the London Festival of Architecture and their latest exhibition, Lumière Mystérieuse, families are invited to design their own window sun-catchers to capture the light and create colourful images in their own homes. This is a drop-in workshop, designed for adults and children to enjoy together. You can drop in at any time and stay for as long as you like.

When: 22 June 11am – 3pm

Where: Sir John Soane’s Museum

Tickets: free, more info here.

Architecture Weekender Workshop

What does a building sound like? If you had to describe a building using sound, what would you use? The voices of the people who lived here before? Footsteps, hammer noises? Imagine and explore architecture as a family at Pitzhanger Manor in Ealing by contributing to a collaborative sculpture, adding to the structure over the two days, and use sound to tell the story of a building.

When: 22 & 23 June 2019 10.30am-12.30pm and 1.30-3.30pm

Where: Pitzhanger Manor

Tickets: Admission: Free for children. The Full adult price plus Gift Aid is £7.70

RA Lego Architecture Challenge

Royal Academy of Arts_RA Lego Architecture Challenge_credit Agnese Sanvito

As part of this year’s Big Architecture Family Day at the RA, we will invite practices to explore the boundaries between historic and contemporary architecture in our urban realm.Watch three of the UK’s leading architectural practices battle it out to create the most innovative and imaginative project that explores the boundaries between old and new.

When: 23rd June

Where: Royal Academy

Tickets: Free

Tower Bridge 125 anniversary weekend

To mark Tower Bridge’s 125th birthday, weekend visitors can purchase a special £1.25 entrance ticket and step back in time to ‘meet the Victorians’ who once wandered

the bridge’s Walkways. Visitors will receive a one-off souvenir memento and to mark this momentous occasion, some lucky visitors will also receive a surprise goody bag.

When: 29 & 30 June

Where: Tower Bridge

Tickets: £1.25 which has to be purchased on the day.

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