With half term on the horizon, it can be daunting to scour the internet for last-minute suggestions about what to do and where to go, not to mention making sure that all important family-friendly box is ticked. To save your time and energy that can be better spent with family for the events happening across East London, we compiled the best to cut out the stress and maximise the fun for this school holiday.
- Hackney Record Fair
Where: Abney Public Hall
When: Sunday, 11am-5pm
Cost: £2 entry
Hackney Record Fair is the best place for a blooming music enthusiast, providing a unique opportunity for independent labels and record vendors to sell directly to the fans who love them. Visitors can spend the day digging through hundreds of crates of vinyl from over 50 stalls, spanning music both modern and old-school. There will also be DJ sets throughout the day, a bakery for a bite to eat, and a record cleaning service to polish up all your new purchases and restore them to their former glory.
- Freedom Quilt Family Storytime and Craft Session
Where: Homerton Library
When: Tuesday, 2:30pm – 4:00pm
Celebrate Black History Month at Homerton Library on Tuesday afternoon where you can create your own quilt pattern while hearing the story of Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt, a fictional story by Deborah Hopkinson who was inspired by slave quilts which were believed to have communicated information to African slaves about how to escape to freedom. Book your place here.
- Horniman Market
Where: Horniman Museum
When: Sunday, 10am-3pm
Venture down to the Horniman Market this Sunday from 10am-3pm to find the best of locally produced, ethical and environmentally conscious food, clothing jewellery, design and craft. Stallholders and traders change on a weekly basis, so you’ll never catch the same market twice. Last Sunday, the Horniman Market was joined by watercolour artist Frank Kiely who was selling his artworks by the museum’s flower beds, as well as a new arrival, The Dutch Chocolatier and AnnieOldChina’s upcycled china jewellery and mosaics. Keep an eye on their Instagram page for this weekend’s line-up.
- Kids Holiday Camp
Where: Beckenham Place Mansion
When: Saturday to Sunday
Cost: £35 per day
Theatre company Take a Seat Productions are coming to Beckenham Place Mansion this weekend, bringing fun games, dancing crafts, treasure hunts and assault courses to kids between ages 4 and 8 for their Kids Holiday Camp. Working flexibly around your commitments, kids can join for one day or the entire weekend to make new friends and enjoy a range of Autumn themed activities to keep them entertained. Book your place here.
- Family Art Fun Day: Monster Mix Ups! Croydon Switch Ups!
Where: Turf Projects
When: Saturday, 11am-1pm
Cost: Free (donations welcome)
By coming together as artists, this free workshop encourages children and their families to explore and nurture new ideas together through making artworks out of recycled materials around them. Join in this Saturday at Turf Projects to create giant, spooky monsters and play drawing games to inspire a creative spark. Find out more here.
- Start it Right Holiday Playscheme
Where: Old Town Youth Club
When: Monday 25 – Friday 29 October
Cost: £5.99 per day
Community interest group Start It Right are bringing a holiday playscheme to young people between ages 8 and 12 throughout the half-term, loaded with Halloween-themed challenges and activities. Their professionally trained youth workers have everything from traditional Halloween pumpkin decorating, to slime making, lavender plant potting and a Halloween party in store. Find out more here.
- Horrible Histories: Terrible Thames River Cruise
Where: Tower Bridge Quay
Take a dive into the history of the River Thames with Horrible Histories who are bringing an engaging, fun alternative to London tourism for kids. The award-winning production company will be telling the stories of King Henry VII, Anne Boleyn, to Captain Kidd and Jack the Ripper, breathing new life into history lessons and bringing them right to children’s doorsteps. Tickets can be bought here.
- Stitches in Time Community Day and Studio Sale
Where: Limehouse Town Hall
When: Saturday, 1pm-6pm
Community arts and education charity Stitches in Time are opening their studio and building for a day celebrating creativity and community. There will be creative children’s activities for all ages, including treasure-hunting and doll-making, as well as a jumble sale packed with craft items from fabrics, trimmings, embroideries and art materials to help you bring any Halloween costume idea to life. A local, women-run food cooperative will be serving Bangladeshi food, and there will also be a family-friendly screening of a Halloween film at 4pm. Find out more here.