Welcome back to our monthly roundup of the best free things to do with children in the capital (and beyond). I’m Emmy and for the last five years I’ve been hunting down the best events and hangouts for Londoners with young kids and writing about them on my blog, bablands.com. I’ve learnt a lot about kids’ activities since I started blogging, but one of my most surprising discoveries is that the best stuff is often free. With that in mind, I’ll be partnering with MoneyMagpie each month to bring you the best free days out for families in London and beyond.
I love this time of year. The days are getting longer and brighter, there are shoots on the trees and a real sense of hope and newness is starting to pervade. And just as the tulips and the daffodils begin to blossom, we’ve got family fun shooting up all over the place, from museum-based under-5s sessions and exhibitions little ones will love just as much as the grownups in the capital to arty family workshops and gallery spaces designed just for toddlers in the rest of the country. The best bit? None of it will cost you a penny. What a ray of sunshine!
The always-brilliant NOW Gallery introduces another immersive show in the shape of Joy Yamusangie’s Feeling Good from the 24th. Mixing illustration, collage, painting and sculpture, the installation will take the form of a stylish jazz club, complete with accompanying score. For further information click here.
Check out artist Hew Locke’s large-scale, immersive Duveen Galleries installation from the 23rd. Go on a Saturday and combine with a storytelling session in the gallery’s Story Space, featuring a library of books by authors of colour. For more info click here.
Camden Market will host a variety of free World Book Day activities on the 5th and 6th. Choose from paper-doll making, a Hansel & Gretel Treasure Trail, face painting and a selection of Fantasy Foods to sample. To read more click here.
RIBA will host its Family Fun Day: Architecture Book Day on the 5th. Make a page from a giant pop-up architectural book, build structures using large soft blocks, create an evolving environment out of LEGO and join Aida-H-Dee for Drag Queen Story Hour UK. For more information click here.
British Museum’s regular Little Feet session will be popping up inside the museum’s new Stonehenge exhibition on the 3rd, giving under-5s and their carers the chance to discover it for free whilst taking part in themed sensory and art activities. Read more about it here.
Kids in the Rest of the UK
Aberystwyth’s Amgueddfa Ceredigion Museum is running a Family Pop-up Theatre Workshop on the 5th. Build your own pop-up cardboard Coliseum theatre and make cut-out characters from photographs of plays sourced from the museum’s collection.
Stephanie Jefferies’ new Tiny Tetley Studio Commission is now open at the Tetley in Leeds. Open five days a week, the new free play space utilises playfulness, creativity, and contemporary art to break down social barriers.
The South West
Bristol Light Festival runs from the 1st-6th and will feature six world-premiere works alongside some of the best of the UK’s talent, all making their Bristol debut at carefully selected locations across the city centre.
Family Art Lab: Tako Taal & Rae-Yen Song is on at Dundee Contemporary Arts on the 19th. Expect lots of materials, creative ideas, and projects to finish on the day or to take home.
To read last month’s column click here.