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Ray's 'FREE LONDON' list  (well mostly free - some charge a very small fee - see the details - but IMO are worth it!)   
Bankside Gallery
Bankside Gallery is the home of two historic art societies; the Royal Watercolour Society and the Royal Society of Painter Printmakers. Since the beginning of the twentieth century the two Societies have shared premises and the Gallery’s exhibition programme seeks to reflect the activities of the Members of both Societies through a mixture of Society exhibitions, one person shows, and themed mixed exhibitions of both watercolours and prints.
The Courtauld Gallery
Free Mondays 10.00 to 14.00 only, admission charge at other times. Visitors can enjoy a remarkable art collection, including famous Impressionist and Post-Impressionist masterpieces, and an acclaimed programme of temporary exhibitions.
Charing Cross or Temple
Kenwood House
Set in leafy grounds beside Hampstead Heath, this outstanding house was remodelled by Robert Adam between 1764 and 1779. He transformed the original brick building into a majestic villa for the great judge, Lord Mansfield. The richly decorated library is one of Adam’s great masterpieces, a feast for the eyes. Brewing magnate Edward Cecil Guinness, first Earl of Iveagh, bought Kenwood House and gardens in 1925. When he died in 1927, he bequeathed the house, estate and part of his collection of pictures to the nation. The Iveagh Bequest includes important paintings by many great artists, including Rembrandt, Vermeer, Turner, Reynolds and Gainsborough. Recently they have been joined by Constable’s oil sketch Hampstead Heath. The paintings beautifully complement Kenwood’s sumptuous interiors.
Archway or Golders Green then a 210 bus
The Mall Galleries
''Welcome to the Mall Galleries - national focal point for contemporary figurative art ...''
Charing Cross or Picadilly Circus
The Institute of Contemporary Arts

The Institute of Contemporary Arts was established in 1947 by a collective of artists, poets and writers to showcase and champion contemporary culture across a wide range of art forms. Since its establishment, it has been at the centre of many of the most significant artistic and cultural developments in the past 60 years. It has also introduced numerous artists, performers, writers and other cultural figures to a wider audience, both nationally and internationally. Membership on-line gets reduced entrance to special events. Entry to exhibitions, café and bar is free. Open Monday 12pm-11pm, Tues-Sat 12pm-1am, Sunday 12pm-10.30pm. Galleries open daily 12pm - 7pm (9pm on Thursdays) during exhibitions.

Charing Cross or Picadilly Circus
The National Gallery

Houses one of the greatest collections of Western European painting in the world. These pictures belong to the public and entrance to see them is free ... so what are you waiting for.

RAY's HOT TIP: Spend £1 on the guide to the 30 treasures of the gallery if your time is limited. If you do have plenty of time, the sound guide is worth every penny and will totally enhance the experience, but do also take a couple of coffee breaks and sit down from time to time when listening to the guide, you'll get much more from your visit that way!

Charing Cross or Leicester Square
The National Portait Gallery
Next door to the National Gallery and holding a massive collection of portraits of past and present famous (and sometimes infamous), people ...
Charing Cross or Leicester Square
Queen's House Greenwich
Since 2001 the House has been reorganised to showcase the Museum's fine-art collection, with an ongoing programme of displays and temporary exhibitions, including contemporary work. It has an active events and education programme and continues in its successful role as a place for corporate and private entertainment.
Saatchi Gallery
The Saatchi Gallery aims to provide an innovative forum for contemporary art, presenting work by largely unseen young artists or by established international artists whose work has been rarely or never exhibited in the UK. The audience for exhibitions of contemporary art has increased widely during the last ten years as general awareness and interest in contemporary art has developed both in Britain and abroad.
Sloane Square
Serpentine Gallery
Serpentine Gallery is one of London’s best-loved galleries for modern and contemporary art. Its Exhibition, Architecture, Education and Public Programmes attract approximately 750,000 visitors a year and admission is free.
South Kensington or Lancaster Gate
Tate Britain Gallery

Tate Britain is the world centre for the understanding and enjoyment of British art and works actively to promote interest in British art internationally. The displays call on the greatest collection of British art in the world to present an unrivalled picture of the development of art in Britain from the time of the Tudor monarchs in the sixteenth century, to the present day.

Pimlico, Vauxhall or Westminster then 15 minute walk
Tate Modern Gallery

Created in the year 2000 from a disused power station in the heart of London, Tate Modern displays the national collection of international modern art. (This is defined as art since 1900. International painting pre-1900 is found at the National Gallery, and sculpture at the Victoria & Albert Museum). Tate Modern includes modern British art where it contributes to the story of modern art, so major modern British artists may be found at both Tate Modern and Tate Britain.

Southwark or Blackfriars then 10 minute walk
Wallace Collection
The Wallace Collection is a national museum in an historic London town house. In 25 galleries are unsurpassed displays of French 18th century painting, furniture and porcelain with superb Old Master paintings and a world class armoury.
Bond Street
Whitechapel Gallery
Almost doubling in size the expanded Whitechapel will include a Collections Gallery offering a chance to see important art collections from around the world, a Commissions Gallery with a brand new art work created specially for the building every year and an Archive Collection Gallery and Archive Research Room telling the story of the history of the Gallery and the local area over the last 100 years ...
Aldgate East




The website for the Changing the Guard at Buckingham Palace. A one stop guide to when and where to see the Guardchange which is updated regularly and features other events and activities. London home and Office of the Queen, Buckingham Palace provides a wonderful backdrop to this event held daily in summer, every two days at other times (see schedule for details).

Green Park or St James' Park

Over 6000 people take part in the Lord Mayor's Show, including 2000 servicemen and women, 180 vehicles, 66 floats, 21 marching bands, 21 carriages including the glorious State Coach and of course the giant figures of the City's guardians Gog and Magog. The procession is 3 miles long but fits into a route of only 1.7 miles: if you want to find out how that works, you'll have to come and see next year!

There's also a fantastic free Fireworks Show on the River at 5pm; best vantage point is from Blackfriars Bridge or The Embankment.

St Pauls' or Monument or Tower Hill
Horseguards Parade in June sees this impressive ceremonial by the Royal Marines.  You need to apply early for tickets.
St James Park or Charing Cross or Westminster

The Queen takes the salute from over 1400 officers and men, together with two hundred horses; over four hundred musicians from ten bands and corps of drums who march and play as one. Some 113 words of command are given by the Officer in Command of the Parade. The parade route extends from Buckingham Palace along The Mall to Horse Guards Parade, Whitehall and back again.

RAY's HOT TIP: If you want to be there, check out my FAQ's pages for information on getting a ticket.

St James Park or Charing Cross or Westminster  

Each year the Queen drives in State to Westminster for the State Opening of Parliament. This is usually in November but it may take place at other times, or even more than once a year if there is a change of government. The ceremony takes place in the House of Lords and the Commons are summoned to hear 'The Queen's Speech from the Throne', formally opening the next session of her Parliament and setting out the policies of her Government. The Queen travels from Buckingham Palace to Westminster along the Royal Route using the Irish State Coach drawn by four horses. She has her usual Escort of the Household Cavalry and street liners, who present arms as the Royal Procession passes, guard the whole route. Military bands play light music so there is plenty to see and hear.

Charing Cross or Westminster or Green Park or St James' Park

The Ceremony of the Keys is the traditional locking up of the Tower of London and has taken place on each and every night, without fail, in peace and war for at least 700 years. A small group of visitors are permitted to observe the ceremony. The importance of securing this fortress for the night is still very relevant because although the Monarch no longer resides at this royal palace the Crown Jewels and many other valuables still do! At least two month's written notice is required .. see website for full details of where to write, etc.

Tower Hill



Bayswater Road Artists
Art for sale on open-air display every Sunday. The railings on the Bayswater side of Hyde Park provide an unusual, but attractive exhibition space ..
Marble Arch / Queensway
Borough High Street, London, SE1. This covered food market is one of the City's largest and oldest. On Saturdays it offers an amazing variety of fine organic food. Fridays from 12pm to 6pm. Saturdays from 9am to 4pm. Bridget Jones' diary was filmed here ..
London Bridge
At Brick Lane, Cheshire Street, & Slater Street, London, E1.  Sundays from 8:00am-2:00pm. A very fashionable and vibrant market where leather jackets, jeans and cheap jewellery are up for grabs. Fruit, veg and jellied eels also sold, plus household goods, discount books, collectibles and much more.

Aldgate East and Shoreditch, Liverpool Street

The West London and Westminster Cemetery Company, as it was known, was established in 1836, and then opened in 1840 to the design of Benjamin Baud. Regarded as one of the finest Victorian Metropolitan cemeteries in the country, it has a formal layout with a central avenue leading to a chapel based on St Peter's Basilica in Rome. Amongst its shady walks are over 35,000 monuments - many of historical importance. Buried at the cemetery are people from all walks of life, including thirteen holders of the Victorian Cross, Chelsea Pensioners and the community of West London. The cemetery provides a rare haven of peace, beauty and tranquillity.
West Brompton

City Hall - weekend openings

City Hall, the headquarters of the Greater London Authority, is open to the public on set weekends throughout the year, (check the website for exact dates). Visitors can see and walk around some areas not normally open to the public during the week. This includes the Chamber, a purpose-built space for meetings and debates; London's Living Room, an open space on the top floor with a walkway around the perimeter offering panoramic views; and the spiral ramp/stairs, which winds its way through the building, offering glimpses of the open-plan offices and the Mayor's Conference Room and views of the Thames and the Tower of London.

City Hall, The Queen’s Walk, SE1 2AA

London Bridge or Tower Hill

Comedy Clubs:

While London has lots of comedy clubs, most expect you to pay for entry. Amongst those that don't: The Theatre Royal, Stratford, East London. (Gerry Raffles Square, Stratford) has free comedy nights every Monday night, and music events at other times,l see their website. On Wednesdays you can take your pick between the Comedy Cafe (66 Rivington St) in The City, 22 Below in Gt Marlborough Street, W1, a good show for £3.50 a head, great cocktails!.

See individual websites
Double-Decker Bus Ride

Take an Oyster Card or a Travel Card for Zones 1 and 2 after 9.30am and see some of the city sights from the top of a London double-decker. Here are the best routes:

Bus No. 11: King's Road, Sloane Square, Victoria Station, Westminster Abbey, Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, Whitehall, Trafalgar Square, the Strand, Fleet Street, and St. Paul's Cathedral.

Bus No. 12: Bayswater, Marble Arch, Oxford Street, Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square, Horse Guards, Whitehall, Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, Westminster Bridge.

Bus No. 19: Sloane Square, Knightsbridge, Hyde Park Corner, Green Park, Piccadilly Circus, Shaftsbury Avenue, Oxford Street, Bloomsbury, Islington.

Bus No. 88: Oxford Circus, Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square, Whitehall, Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, Tate Britain.

Guy Fawkes Night or 'Bonfire Night'
On the night of November 5th, throughout Britain, we commemorate the capture of Guy Fawkes with bonfires and fireworks, and by burning an effigy of Guy. Lots of public displays, often free.

There are at least 850 'notable' people buried at Highgate. Amongst these are 18 Royal Academicians, 6 Lord Mayors of London, 48 Fellows of the Royal Society, the founders of London businesses including Maples, Foyles, Negretti-Zambra, John Lobb, P&O, and Quaritch, and familiar names such as Faraday, Karl Marx, George Eliot, Radclyffe Hall, Carl Rosa and Sir Ralph Richardson. Entrance to the east Cemetery - which has the grave of Karl Marx - is free. To tour the West Cemetery see the website.


Chancery House, 53-64 Chancery Lane, London, WC2A 1QS. Open Monday to Friday, 9am-5:30pm, Sat 9am-1pm Hidden away behind large safe doors, the London Silver Vaults house a seemingly endless number of specialist silverware dealers. There is a massive range of goods, from candelabras and cutlery to fine jewellery.

Chancery Lane
New Year Celebrations and Fireworks

Crowds estimated at around 700,000 (nearly ten per cent of Londoners) head to traditional central London areas and to the River Thames for the annual fireworks and lighting display at the British Airways London Eye, which is organised by the Mayor of London with Visit London. London's New Year's Eve fireworks are now firmly established as amongst the best in the world, providing a stunning backdrop to New Year's Eve celebrations and winning global media coverage which helps promote London as the most exciting city in the world.

Westminster or Charing Cross

Old Bailey

You can go inside and watch a trial being held at the Old Bailey (Central Criminal Courts). Universally known as the Old Bailey, this is probably the most famous criminal court in the world, and has been London's principal criminal court for centuries. It hears cases remitted to it from all over England and Wales as well as the Greater London area.Trials commence at 10am each day. Note: You are not allowed to take bags or cameras inside.

St Pauls

Hyde Park

Kensington Gardens

Green Park

The Regents Park

Greenwich Park

Richmond Park

Holland Park

Hampstead Heath


Strolling  .... or horse riding ..... or boating ..... or golfing ..... or playing tennis .... or playing ball games ..... or swimming ... or having a picnic  ..... taking a nature walk .....  bird watching .... painting ...... model boating ..... kite flying ... all these fun things to do are available in London's magnificent parks! No City in Europe comes close to London for variety and sheer scale of public green spaces  ... see the site pages for individual park details, plus special seasonal events ..

Here's a plan for a happy family half-day out:

First, go to Hamleys in Regent Street or Harrods or Lillywhites on Piccadilly Circus, buy a cheap bat and ball, a frisby, or a model plane. Then go get a picnic from Benjy's or Pret A Manger or an M & S Store Food Dept. and away you go! (Don't forget some nuts for the squirrels and unprocessed peanuts for the wild birds. They feed from the hand in Kensington Gardens near the Albert Hall, and from the bridge in St James' Park. (BUT only if you're patient enough). The kids will have a great time and you'll understand why Londoners love their parks so much!

See individual park websites

Parliament is open to all members of the UK public and overseas visitors. You can watch laws being made, attend debates and committees, tour the buildings, or climb the Clock Tower. UK residents can attend debates, watch judicial hearings and committees, take a tour of Parliament and climb Big Ben. Overseas visitors can attend debates, watch judicial hearings and committees, and tour Parliament during the Summer Opening. Check out the website for more ..

Antiques Market open Sat 4:00am-6:00pm, General Market at Portobello Road and Goldborne Road, London, W11. Open Mon-Wed 8:00am-6:00pm, Thur 9:00am-1:00pm and Sat 8:00am-5:00pm, Organic Market open Thur 11:00am-6:00pm, Clothes and Bric-a-brac Market open Fri 7:00am-4:00pm, Sat 8:00am-5:00pm and Sun 9:00am-4:00pm An amalgamation of several different markets specialising in antique jewellery, coins, fruit and vegetables, clothes, records, books etc..

Ladbroke Grove or Notting Hill Gate

The Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Walk

A 7-mile (11 km) long circular walking trail dedicated to the memory of Princess Diana. It goes between Kensington Gardens, Green Park, Hyde Park and St James' Park in a figure-of-eight pattern, passing five sites that are associated with her life: Kensington Palace, Spencer House,  Buckingham Palace, St James' Palace and Clarence House. It is marked with eighty-nine individual plaques and has been described as "one of the most magnificent urban parkland walks in the world" The walk was constructed at a cost of £1.3 million.

St James Park or Green Park or Queensway or Kensington High Street

The Royal Courts of Justice

You can go inside and watch a trial being held at the Royal Courts of Justice (popularly known as 'The High Court' - a Civil Court for family, ciivil and appeals hearings. Hearings commence at 10am each day. Note: You are not allowed to take bags or cameras inside.


Speaker's Corner

Found at the north-east tip of Hyde Park near Marble Arch, Speakers' Corner is where anybody and everybody can jump on an old crate/soapbox and voice their opinion on all sorts of subjects. Every Sunday, rain or shine, whether it’s politics, religion or fashion, there’s going to be someone talking about it here and you can interrupt them with your own opinions and get a good rousing 'debate' going!

Marble Arch
Westminster Cathedral
Westminster Cathedral is one of the greatest secrets of London; people heading down Victoria Street on the well-trodden route to more famous sites - like the ABBEY - are astonished to come across a piazza opening up the view to an extraordinary facade of towers, balconies and domes ...



Baden Powell House
The Home of the Scout Movement - with a small museum about its history, etc.
South Kensington
Bank of England Museum
The history of the UK's national bank but also the history of money itself .. more interesting than it sounds ..
The British Library
Holds over 13 million books, 920,000 journal and newspaper titles,  57 million patents, 3 million sound recordings, and so much more ...
St Pancras
The British Museum
The British Museum holds in trust for the nation and the world a collection of art and antiquities from ancient and living cultures. Housed in one of Britain's architectural landmarks, the collection is one of the finest in existence, spanning two million years of human history. Access to the collections is free.
Tottenham Court Road / Holborn
Burgh House (and Hampstead Museum)
Burgh House was built in 1704 during Queen Anne's reign. On 8th September 1979, the House, restored by the Council and refurbished by the Trust, opened to the public as the house and museum that is here today. The house and museum are open noon to 5:00pm Wednesday through Sunday, and by appointment on Saturdays.
Alexander Fleming Museum   (£2)
Visitors to the Museum can follow in the footsteps of Fleming as they explore the birthplace of penicillin, a journey taking them back to the days when there were no antibiotics to fight against often lethal bacteria. After seeing the laboratory in which the discovery took place and learning how it all happened, visitors retrace through displays and a video the remarkable story of Fleming,
Paddington then a 10 minute walk
Clowns International Clowns' Gallery and Museum

The clown museum provides a national showcase about international clowns and clowning. The collection contains photographs, prints, paintings, posters, costumes and props. There is an audio-visual corner, showing live clowning and a small library archive of clown-related literature. The earliest exhibits are around 200 years old. Displays of contemporary clown images constantly updated. The collection was housed at Holy Trinity Church, where the Joseph Grimaldi memorial service is held annually on the first Sunday in February. Open first Fri of each month, 1200-1700.

Hackney Central Rail Station
The Geffrye Museum

The Geffrye Museum is one of London’s best-loved museums. It shows the changing style of the English domestic interior in a series of period rooms from 1600 to the present day.

Liverpool Street
The Grant Museum of Zoology

Founded in 1828 as a teaching collection, the Grant Museum is like a typical laboratory with lots of specimen jars, glass cabinets, and skeletons, but this one is open to the public. It's not very large - an hour or so is sufficient for most visitors - it's moving to a new location in mid-March 2011. The only remaining university zoological museum in London, the Grant Museum houses around 67,000 specimens, covering the whole Animal Kingdom. It's packed full of skeletons, mounted animals and specimens preserved in fluid. Many of the species are now endangered or extinct including the Tasmanian Tiger or Thylacine, the Quagga, and the Dodo.

Warren Street or Euston
Hogarth's House

Hogarth's House is the former home of the 18th century English artist  William Hogarth in Chiswick. It belongs to the London Borough of Hounslow and is open to the public free of charge. Chiswick is now one of London's western suburbs, but in the 18th century it was a large village or small town quite separate from the metropolis, but within easy reach of it. The house dates to the late 17th century with a low extension built in the early 18th century. It was the artist's country retreat from 1749 until his death in 1764.

The Horniman Museum
The Horniman, through its collections and related exhibitions and events, seeks to encourage a wider appreciation of the World, its peoples and their cultures, and its environments.
London Bridge Station to Forest Hill
The Hunterian Museum
The museum houses one of the oldest collections of anatomical, pathological and zoological specimens in the UK and is based on the items assembled by John Hunter, surgeon and anatomist (1728-1793). The collection comprises more than 3,500 anatomical and pathological preparations, fossils, paintings and drawings and also includes specimens donated by Edward Jenner and Sir Joseph Banks. Exhibits include the skeleton of the 7ft 7in tall 'Irish giant' Charles Byrne, a collection of surgical instruments dating from the seventeenth century, carbolic sprays used by Lister, the pioneer of antiseptic surgery, the tooth of a megatherium (an extinct giant sloth) donated by Charles Darwin - and Winston Churchill's dentures. Open Tuesday to Saturday from 10am to 5pm, free admission.
Kinetica Museum

Set strikingly against the backdrop of the old Spitalfields Market in London's East End, Kinetica Museum opened in October 2006. Kinetica is the UK's first museum of kinetic art. It will actively encourage the convergence of art and technology, providing an exhibition space in central London where the most important examples of kinetic, technological and electronic art, both past and present, can be properly stored and displayed.

The Museum of Childhood

The V&A Museum of Childhood aims to encourage everyone to explore the themes of childhood past and present and develop an appreciation of creative design through their inspirational collections and programmes. The Museum is part of the V&A family of museums, and houses the national childhood collection. The galleries are designed to show the collections in a way which is accessible to adults and children of all ages.

Bethnal Green
The Museum of Garden History
The world's first museum dedicated to gardens and gardening history .. in an atmospheric church setting opposite the Houses of Parliament (Big Ben) and just the other side of Lambeth Bridge ..
Lambeth North or Westminster
The Museum of London

The Museum of London’s mission is to inspire a passion for London by communicating London’s history, archaeology and contemporary cultures to a wider world, reaching all of London’s communities through playing a role in the debate about London, facilitating and contributing to  London-wide cultural and educational networks.

St Pauls then a 5 minute walk
The National Army Museum

Visit the National Army Museum and find out how Britain’s past has helped to shape our present and our future. Discover the impact our Army has had on the story of Britain, Europe and the world, and see how the actions of a few can affect the futures of many.

Sloane Square then 15 minutes walk
The National Maritime Museum

The National Maritime Museum's collection contains over two million objects related to seafaring, navigation, astronomy and measuring time. The Museum is committed to improving access to its collections. Over 10,000 objects are now online, with a further 500 to be made available by spring 2006 as part of our ongoing digitization strategy ...

The Natural History Museum
One of the finest Natural History Museums in the World. Allow at least a couple of hours - just to scratch the surface ...!
South Kensington

The Royal Air Force has one of the greatest aviation museums in the world and also one of the biggest. It provides a fascinating insight into some of the key events in modern history. With no admission charge the museums offer a free fun day out to families and aircraft enthusiasts alike.

The Royal College of Surgeons: Hunterian Museum

Enter the world of medical robots where surgeons can operate without even touching their patients and visionary mini-robots will creep, crawl and swim around your body, diagnosing disease and performing vital surgery. Since the pioneering use of the 'Probot' for prostate surgery in 1991 through to the 'da Vinci Surgical System' in today's modern hospitals, surgeons have been using robots to improve the patient's experience of a range of operations. Futuristic technologies displayed in the exhibition include a swimming camera pill designed to help doctors make diagnoses and the Sensium 'Digital Plaster' developed to support nursing staff and allow patients greater independence by monitoring them from their own homes.

Holborn or Temple
Sir John Soane Museum
Sir John Soane was born in 1753, the son of a bricklayer, and died after a long and distinguished architectural career, in 1837. Soane designed this house to live in, but also as a setting for his antiquities and his works of art. After the death of his wife in 1815, he lived here alone, constantly adding to and rearranging his collections. Having been deeply disappointed by the conduct of his two sons, one of whom survived him, he determined to establish the house as a museum to which 'amateurs and students' should have access. It's a fabulous eccentric museum ...
The Science Museum

The Science Museum was founded in 1857 with objects shown at the Great Exhibition held in the Crystal Palace. Today the Museum is world renowned for its historic collections, awe-inspiring galleries and inspirational exhibitions.

South Kensington
Victoria & Albert Museum
An amazing museum. Officially the National Museum of Design and Applied Arts, it has something for just about everyone, from historic clothes to musical instruments to art and architecture. If you get a table early on a Sunday for Brunch you'll be treated to some live music too!
South Kensington


A small but intimate club which showcases solo performers through to full bands with an emphasis on songwriting, with artists from all over the world. In addition to the music room the club has a cafe/restaurant open from 8am until 5pm serving snacks to full meals.
Tottenham Court Road
'Aint nothin' but the Blues ....
Piccadilly Circus or Oxford Circus
English National Opera - from £10
The ENO have a few standing tickets on sale at the Box office an hour before performances. Also it is worthwhile checking out their website as you may be able to buy a full seat for only £20 - online - by booking through the Sky Arts support link.
Leicester Square or Charing Cross
Guards Chapel Lunchtime Concerts
The Guards Chapel Lunchtime Recitals are usually held at 13.10 Guards Chapel, Birdcage Walk SW1E 6HQ. Free admission. For more information please contact the Coldstream Guards Band on 0207 414 3299, or see website link.
Westminster or St James' Park
The Grey Horse established itself as one of London's premier jazz venues in the 50's. The jazz influence lasted twenty years or so until pop reared its head and slowly overtook in popularity. The venue now hosts all genres of music from jazz/funk to blues and rock to suit all ages in a separate air-conditioned room.
From Waterloo Station take a mainline train to Kingston-on-Thames station then it's a 3 minute walk    
The Globe Pub
Live bands every Friday and Saturday night, friendly atmosphere and some fine sessions with some really excellent rock and blue bands. They also offer Karaoke on Thursdays.
Brentford Rail Station or Southfields Tube
Classical music and theatre events by talented students of one of London's most prestigious performing arts schools. See their website for current events. All are free.
Barbican, City of London
Hyde Park Chapel Lunchtime Concert Series

Free weekly lunchtime concerts on Thursdays at 1pm at Hyde Park Chapel, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 64-68 Exhibition Road, South Kensington, SW7. (Please phone to confirm events prior to arrival as concerts are not every Thursday). Cost: Free. Phone: 020 7589 8561

South Kensington
National Theatre Free Foyer Concerts

If you like all sorts of music and you’re near London’s National Theatre on Southbank near Waterloo Bridge, you should try to catch one of the free concerts in the Theatre Lobby. From Monday-Saturday at 5.45pm, and at 1.45pm on Saturday afternoons. All types of music, classical, jazz, folk and other types of acts can be heard.

Notting Hill Arts Club
Most nights entry is £3 before 8pm. The award wining Rough Trade shops showcase ROTA SESSIONS on Saturday afternoons and they are still free, having a special atmosphere with a pedigree showcasing the latest talent! If you want a party with a global viewpoint, our Saturday nights go to Brazil, Spain, Asia and everywhere in-between whilst Sunday Afternoon Clubbing presents another series of very densely packed parties with a cultural edge.
Notting Hill
The River Bar

The River Bar is a modern cafe bar on the southern approach to Tower Bridge with a downstairs function room and bar which can accommodate 60 people and a spacious ground floor bar and eating area. With independent (free) wifi. service. Live Jazz on Thursdays. Open mike on Wednesdays.

Tower Bridge
The Road House
Live music venue in Covent Garden ... with food. Free before 10pm.
Covent Garden or Charing Cross or Leicester Square
Music events in a grand setting: the Duke's Hall of London's Royal Academy of Music. A wide variety of classical music events are performed by students of the Academy. Individual soloists, duos, quartets and chamber orchestras. Almost all are free. See their website for full listings and details.
Baker Street / Gt. Portland Street
Royal College of Music Concerts

Here's what the College says: 'We pride ourselves on the range and quality of our performances, and the achievements of our students. Whatever your musical tastes, we hope that you will find much to enjoy, and we look forward to welcoming you to the RCM'.

South Kensington
Royal Opera House - standing tickets at £7
Through the Box office an hour before performance - standing tickets at £7! See their website for what's on ..
Covent Garden or Charing Cross or Leicester Square
St Giles in the Fields Lunchtime Concerts

Regular series of lunchtime recitals are arranged by our organist and Director of Music, Jonathan Bunney for both the Spring and Autumn. The varied programme includes both secular and sacred music. These recitals take place on a Friday between 1.10 -1.50 pm and are free - there is a retiring collection for voluntary contributions.

Tottenham Court Road
St George's Bloomsbury Concerts

St George’s Bloomsbury’s Sunday Recital Series is a season of recitals taking place on Sundays at 16.00. Each concert lasts approximately 60 minutes and admission is free (retiring collection). Since 2006, our Sunday Recital Series has included concerts by leading professional and amateur musicians from across London and the South of England.

Tottenham Court Road or Holborn or Russell Square
St James Church Piccadilly Lunchtime Concerts
These 50 minute recitals are free with a suggested donation £3. All programmes may be subject to change. Tickets for these events are available by the means stated in each diary entry on the website.
Piccadilly Circus
St Martin in the Fields Lunchtime Concerts
Lunchtime Concerts: Doors open at 12.30pm for a 1.00pm start.  Lunchtimes normally take place on Monday, Tuesday and Friday.  All our lunchtime concerts are free of charge – a suggested donation of £3.50 goes towards the work of St Martin’s. See website for more info.
Charing Cross
St. Paul's Cathedral Concerts
See the St Paul's website for full concert details and how to apply for free tickets.
St Paul's
Trinity College of Music Concerts

Located within the beautiful Wren designed King Charles Court at the Old Royal Naval College Greenwich, Trinity College of Music richly deserves its international reputation as one of the premier institutions in the United Kingdom for the study of music.  See website for concert information


Recitals are held every Sunday in the Abbey at 5.45pm. All are welcome. They do not issue tickets for the recitals nor charge an entrance fee. See website for current programme.

Westminster or St James' Park



You'll find tkts Leicester Square in the clocktower building on the south side of the garden in Leicester Square. It's easy to find - it is the only free-standing building actually within the Square, rather than around the edge. The page linked to here gives daily details of the shows on offer ..

Leicester Square or Piccadilly Circus



Tickets:  Get free Tickets for BBC TV and Radio shows
White City and others - see the website

See the website for details of free tickets to a range of Granada TV shows ..
Check with website as locations vary
Welcome to To book tickets to see some of your favourite Television shows recorded live in and around London, you must first register or logon. See website for currently available shows or shows coming soon ...
Check with website as locations vary is the UK's no 1 site for enabling people to take part in their favourite tv shows, adding new shows on a daily basis and registering new TV hopefuls to the site every minute ..
Check with website as locations vary
Prince Charles Cinema - from £1.50
Join the cinema club at the Prince Charles Cinema and get movies from £1.50 matinees, to £3.50 evenings ..
Leicester Square
Masterclass was set up by the Theatre Royal Haymarket to give young people the chance to work with, learn from and be inspired by great artists. We offer a year-round programme of events with a focus on acting and performance but including directing, writing and producing. Since its launch in 1998, Masterclass has supported over 35,000 young people. Events are free of charge for ages 17-30 and mature students.
Charing Cross or Piccadilly Circus

The Roxy

The Roxy is a Bar/Cinema in Borough High Street, London SE1 showing free or small cover charge movies for the price of a drink! None of the screenings require tickets, simply come along and grab a chair / table.  All the screenings operate on a first-come first-served basis, so arrive early if you want a sofa!  If you want to come for dinner however, we can reserve you a table - please phone 020 7403 4423. Please note, the venue is over-18s only. See website for screening information.

Borough or London Bridge


Know any other other interesting free (or nearly free) things to see in London? Please tell me about them and if I think they merit inclusion you'll promptly see them here