DO Splash Down
Wild swimming continues to grow in popularity – the new outdoor lake at London’s Beckenham Place Park has even had to temporarily shut due to its popularity. Find out about its benefits here and our favourite places to dive in in the UK here and in France here. Why not spend a lazy afternoon picnicking by a river, paddling and taking the occasional dip? Find a new place to swim near you using the interactive map here
EVENT and DO Reading Festival
Have you taken on the Summer Reading Challenge yet? It’s a summer holiday essential for our family – sign up at your local library, read six books of your choice and collect your rewards. It’s a great way to motivate your kids (and you!) to borrow books, and means you’re prepared for rainy and lazy days. This year, we’ve dived into the non-fiction section and borrowed books to prompt and inspire kids – guides to cartooning, film-making and art have powered some summer creativity! While we’re on the subject of libraries, here’s our list of the UK’s most beautiful public and university halls of books – why not take time out to visit one this summer?
EVENT Going Loco
Summer hangs at the South Bank Centre are an essential for every London family (and every family visiting London). The thrilling and cooling fountains are switched on (don’t forget your towel!), and there are art shows, dance classes and food markets to enjoy. This year the wild and wonderful family party gurus Disco Loco have taken over Sundays. This weekend join the free party with live music, dance and cabaret, with live performances from Fantabulosa’s Ginny Lemon and Dream Nails. There’s also a thought-provoking and fun series of events in the Summer series, celebrating LGBTQI+ performers – including a free Saturday night screening of The Rocky Horror Show – find the full line-up here
MAKE and RECIPE Ice Ice Baby
Ice play is nice play. Stimulate senses and get creative with these vibrant frozen paints – make a batch of them and get them out on really hot days to help everyone chill out. Or perhaps create this ice and coloured salt sculpture. Use a freezer to create these sculptures, then let them melt on your head. Alternatively, use the warmer weather as an excuse to do our favourite experiment/recipe – quick freezing ice cream – or try use the same trick to make self-freezing slushies!
RECIPE Very Berry
Blackberries have come early this year – we’ve spotted them in the hedgerows for a month or so at least! This summer, get creative with them – try making this amazingly coloured Blackberry Coconut Smoothie, spicy Blackberry Chutney, Chilli Blackberry Syrup (try it on yoghurt) or Blackberry and Pistachio Cake. Alternatively, turn your kitchen over to your kids and get them to create one of these delicious concoctions