London’s free architecture festival for kids and families is on the horizon, bringing 30+ fun filled activities for our urban adventurers in a matter of weeks. Last year saw over 7000 families take part in architecturally-inspired activities- come and make 2017 bigger and better!
Located in the City of London Square Mile, the spaces to some of the most exciting buildings are opening, from icons the Gherkin and St Paul’s Cathedral to the cityscapes of Broadgate and the Museum of London.
There’s so much happening during this brilliant festival, from Lego competitions, architecture trails to a bus tour on an original Heritage fleet Routemaster- check out our easy to use programme now to plan your weekend and take a look at some of our highlights below.
30 St Mary Axe, ‘The Gherkin’ Hub
Sculpture in the City, Sat. 22 July, 11am-4pm
Join our artists and construct a sculptural installation in the Gherkin plaza – using archi-lenses and the temporary artworks of the Sculpture in the City project as inspiration.
The Arriva London Heritage fleet Routemaster Bus Tour, Sat. 22 July, pre-book here
Join Arriva London for an architectural bus tour around the city to hear about some of London’s most iconic buildings on an original Routemaster bus.
On your marks, get set, LEGO, Sun. 23 July, 10am-5pm
Join this quick-paced race to build the biggest and best Lego structure!
Make sure to check out the rest of the activities taking place at The Gherkin hub run by our Activate Challenge participants, with professionals from AKT II, HTA, Studio Sanshea, Lipton Plant Architects, Atelier One and the Archivate Collective.
Postcards from London, Sat. 22 July, 10am-4pm
Explore the city through your lens! Capture your favourite place of London and turn your photo into a postcard.
Funtastic City, Sat. 22 July, 10am-4pm
Run wild through the streets of your imagination and create a Funtastic Open City! PRP will provide you with tools to bring your city to life.
Scope the City, Sun. 23 July, pre-book here
Lights, Camera, Action! Sign up for this fantastic Film Workshop with the British Film Institute and make your own film of the city.
Build with Fabrics, Sun. 23 July, 10am-1pm
Join Waterman Structures Ltd to discover the basis of strength behind the structures of the city and nature around you by generating tension and compression forces in your own mini fabric structures.
Museum of London Hub
Copyright Museum of London
City in the Sky, Sat. 22 July, 11am-4pm
Are you a little inventor? Help us build a futuristic city in the sky full of fantastic creations. Draw your inventions and make a model to be added to our amazing, flying cityscape in the West Smithfield Rotunda Garden. The Museum of London in partnership with Little Inventors and the City of London Corporation.
Awesome Architecture (autism-friendly activity), Sat. 22 & Sun. 23 July, 11am-4pm
Enjoy a quieter space with a flexible activity suitable for children on the autistic spectrum and their families to enjoy. Don’t miss our Sensory Space in the Pleasure Gardens to use during your visit to the galleries.
Minecraft Competition, Sat. 22 & Sun. 23, Pre-book with sessions at 12pm, 1.30pm & 3pm – pick up a free ticket from the Museum of London Foyer
Go back to 1666 and help rebuild the city after the Great Fire of London. Get some advice from famous architects of the time, and add your creation to our map.
St Paul’s Cathedral
(activities will only be taking place on Sun. 23 July)
Eco-Explorer, Sun. 23 July, 10am-5pm
Spot the wildlife that lives in the churchyard, and make your very own habitat for city birds, bees and bugs in the Churchyard of St Paul’s Cathedral.
Fantasy Drawing, Sun. 23 July, 10am-5pm
A never-ending, communal drawing activity for the whole family! Come and draw your fantasy play space and reimagine the iconic gardens of St Paul’s Cathedral.
Tour with Sir Christopher Wren, Sun. 23 July, Pre-book on the day with sessions at 13.30-14.00, 14.30 – 15.00 and 15.30 – 16.00
A chance for families to meet the man who designed St Paul’s after the Great Fire of London destroyed the previous Cathedral in 1666. Learn about the architecture and its gardens of this magnificent Cathedral!
Supported by the Churchyards Enhancement Programme, a partnership between the City of London and the Diocese of London.
How much is the festival?
Free for Everyone.
When is it on?
10am-5pm on Saturday 22 and Sunday 23 July. Note that St Paul’s Cathedral is only running activities on Sun. 23 July.
Do I need to book the activities?
We aim for majority of activities to be open to all, if it states ‘pre-book’ in the programme then please visit the website to secure your ticket. Every other activity is ‘first-come, first served’ on the day.
‘Drop-in’ activities: You can ‘drop-in’ on the activity at anytime within the times stated.
‘Session’ activities: You must arrive at the beginning time stated.
Why is Open City hosting the festival?
The best way to understand good design is to engage first hand with the buildings and places of the city. Open City is London’s leading architecture education charity and we want to help inspire people about their city (its architecture, engineering and design). Archikids Festival aims to do just that in a fun and direct way.
Terms of Entry:
Archikids is a free event inviting everyone to take part. Open City has taken all reasonable care to verify the information provided and ensure the safety and appropriateness of the festival venues, activities and volunteers. Open City, building owners, and activity facilitators, do not accept responsibility for the welfare of the children participating in the festival.
‘3 Steps’ to a Fantastic Weekend:
1. Visit the website and decide on which day, hub and activity.
2. Tell your friends and family! A fun free day out, let’s get everyone involved.
3. Turn up on the day!
Open City would like to thank the many venues, organisations, people and practices that have contributed to our Archikids Festival programme.
With special thanks to: LittleBird, Arriva London, Luke O’Donovan, Joanna Bearman, Lizzy Ehrman.
See you on 22 & 23 July!
Archikids Family Partner
Take the stress out of the summer holidays with our partners LittleBird.co.uk – a one-stop shop full of fun ideas and great savings for you to enjoy with the family! With a mission to make family life easier, more affordable and more fun, LittleBird are always on the lookout for the best things to do, see and buy.
Check out LittleBird’s Family Days Out category for some inspiration – enjoy great days out including Kidzania and Art of the Brick DC Super Heroes!
Open-City is the capital’s leading architecture organisation. Over the last 25 years it has grown from showcasing the capital’s architecture annually to research, training, advice and campaigns that impact on the whole city.
Tim Brooks | Paul Carter | Keith Clarke | Voon-Fui Lai | Thomas Gygax | Tim Harris | Robin Hodges Richard Hughes | Alan Leibowitz | Andrew McManus | David Neilson | Mike Nightingale | Julian Peddle | Ian Ritchie | Aidan Rose | Pat Rose | Tom Smith | Andrew Strange | Julie Taylor
Open-City Corporate Members and Education Fund Supporters:
AHMM | British Land | David Chipperfield Architects | Derwent London | Elliott Wood | Michael Freeman | ING Media | Make | Near Pixel | Peabody | Rocket Investments | Skanska | Stanton Williams |Pemberton Greenish