Do you remember the Thames Festival of past years? Well that was an annual week in mid-September of river-focused frivolities. It all ended with a massive firework extravaganza on the final night with a riverside parade of amazing artistic creations all alight in the growing dusk of a September evening. Building on the success of the Thames Festival, this year we are about to enjoy Totally Thames, a month of festivities and events with a Thames theme.
Totally Thames runs for the whole month of September and we are promised it will be better and bigger than ever before. The programme is certainly ambitious with stuff happening every day and often in several places up, down and on the Thames at the same time. It comes from the same stable as the Festival – the Thames Festival Trust – and is billed as a collaboration between the river-side boroughs, the tourist agency London First, the Arts Council and the Mayor’s office.
Highlights include the Royal Greenwich Tall Ships Festival, (5-9 September); The Great River Race (27 September 12:30-19:00); Handel’s Fireworks Music and Illuminations (24 September 19:30 Hampton Court Palace) and The Big Thames Tidy (31 August – Gabriel’s Wharf SE1 10:30 and 1 September – Isle of Dogs 11:00). Many of the delights are happening in and around SE16 such as the open weekend at Surrey Docks Watersports Centre (6-7 September), Tower Beach Open Day (14 September 11:00) and archaeological walks (Bermondsey 7 September 17:30 and 9 September 08:45). Many of the events are free and loads are just turn up but check the website for details of those you are interested in and see if they need you to book or pay anything.
Totally Thames can be found at www.totallythames.org