What's new spring-summer 2022

As the days begin to get brighter in the capital, London City Island is hotting up. Here’s what’s happening locally – and within the capital – this spring-summer


Those with a sweet tooth should run, not walk, down to local artisanal chocolatier Cartografie on Shrove Tuesday (1 March). Based on London City Island, customers can order delicious fresh crêpes from the studio from 3pm to 8pm, made using the very finest ingredients (and, of course, there will be plenty of exquisitely blended chocolate on offer, too).

Another local delight worth investigating is all-day dining destination and store, Homestead. Created by Tristram Hillier and Scott Ward, food is simple but impressive, with a generous selection of wines, craft beers and tempting deli options. Make use of their City Island Social offer, which offers half-price signature cocktails on Tuesdays to Fridays, between 5-7pm. Their brunch – served from 9am on weekends – is a truly mouth-watering affair.

Serious foodies should definitely head down to Pub in the Park, too. Michelin-starred chef Tom Kerridge and his culinary crew are embarking on a 9-stop tour, full of incredible food, cooking demos and live music (think Craig David, Sister Sledge and Kaiser Chiefs). London’s leg of the trip happens 27-29 May in Wimbledon, followed by 24-26 June in Dulwich. Prepare to roll home…

How to get there: Wimbledon is best reached via Waterloo – take the Jubilee line and hop on a train or tube from there (Wimbledon is just 15 minutes away). Likewise, Dulwich is easily accessible via the Jubilee line from Canning Town – travel to Canada Water and jump on the overground to Forest Hill (the bus from the station takes five minutes).

Cartografie founder Kae Shibata will be serving up delicious pancakes on Shrove Tuesday


Parents, breathe an enormous sigh of relief – children’s play specialist Gymboree has Easter fun nailed. Its Docklands branch is running high-octane Easter Fun Art & Music workshops for under-fives. Expect sleeping bunnies, egg hunts, lively music and more. Email for more information.

Any budding David Attenboroughs will appreciate a walk to Bow Creek Ecology Park on a spring day – it’s a small nature reserve nestled next to Canning Town station. With views over tidal mudflats, expect visits from redshanks, kestrels and kingfishers. Follow it with a jaunt to nearby Victoria Park’s boating pond for more outdoorsy activities, finished off with a well-deserved hot chocolate at the Pavilion Café.

How to get there: Bow Creek Ecology Park is handily located next to Canning Town station itself. Cycle to Victoria Park in half an hour via Limehouse and Mile End, or take the bus from Aspen Way to St Barnabas Church and enjoy the walk (a cab is about 20 minutes, if you prefer).

‘Children’s play specialist Gymboree Docklands has Easter fun nailed with high-octane Art & Music workshops and egg hunts for under-fives.’


Fans of Margaret Atwood’s dystopian novel The Handmaid’s Tale should book tickets to see Danish composer Poul Ruders’ operatic version at the London Coliseum on St Martin’s Lane, running 4 -14 April. Influenced by minimalism, medieval chanting and gospel music, expect a powerful and contemporary rendition.

Another long-cherished favourite, Tennessee Williams’The Glass Menagerie is also making its return to the stage, with Hollywood actress Amy Adams treading the boards as troubled southern belle, Amanda Wingfield. Directed by Jeremy Herrin, you can catch it at the Duke of York’s Theatre from 23 May – 27 August.

For a less predictable theatre experience, Punchdrunk’s eagerly-anticipated immersive show, The Burnt City, is coming to One Cartridge Place, Woolwich, with previews beginning on 22 March and the main run on until 28 August. Set in Downtown Troy in a colossal playground spanning an eye-watering 100,000 square feet, it’s the theatre company’s first tour since 2013’s acclaimed The Drowned Man and promises a sci-fi spectacle with serious twists.

And those in the mood for a lively family musical should hotfoot it to the new 101 Dalmatians show. Set in the beautiful Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre and running 12 July – 28 August, it’s third time lucky for the show (the pandemic meant several false starts). Follow Cruella’s de Vil’s dastardly attempts at landing herself a new fur coat, with music by Tony award-winner Douglas Hodge.

How to get there: St Martin’s Lane is easy to reach for shows – hop on the Jubilee line to Green Park from Canning Town and take the Piccadilly line to Leicester Square. Woolwich Arsenal is just a 12-minute journey on the DLR (Cartridge Place is a 10-minute walk from the station). For Regent’s Park, take the Jubilee line to Baker Street, and enjoy a scenic walk from there.

Punchdrunk’s eagerly-anticipated immersive show, The Burnt City, is coming to south-east London. Photo by Julian Abrams


Steve Coogan’s most divisive character, Alan Partridge, comes to the 02 from 31 May – 3 June with a special guest line-up including Jack Whitehall, Michael Ball and the Stereophonics. The Alan Partridge in Stratagem live stage show sees Partridge take up a unique “life coach” role, involving plenty of audience participation (you have been warned…).

Canadian comedian and star of Netflix’s The Duchess, Katherine Ryan, is heading to The London Palladium this spring as part of her Missus tour. Catch the Queen of comedy in London from 31 March -7 May, where she discusses the unique tale of marrying her former childhood sweetheart and how life has changed since she became a “Missus”.

Mixing comedy with impressive high notes is Rob Brydon, another big name on the comedy circuit, who makes an appearance in London on 2 May. The Swansea-born actor and comedian is appearing at New Wimbledon Theatre for A Night of Songs and Laughter with his impressive eight-piece band, playing music by big hitters such as Tom Jones, Elvis and more…

How to get there: For the O2, why not travel in style? The Emirates Air Line Cable Car takes you from the nearby Royal Docks straight to Greenwich Peninsula, just five minutes from the 02. London Palladium is just as simple – take the Jubilee line to Bond Street (there’s a 10 minute-walk the other end). For the New Wimbledon Theatre, hop on the Jubilee line to Waterloo and enjoy a short train or tube journey to Wimbledon.

Welsh comedian Rob Brydon is currently on tour


Broaden your horizons with an educational trip to see the Our Time on Earth exhibition, running from 5 May to 29 August at the Barbican. An exhibition spanning art, science, design, music and philosophy, it’s designed to challenge conversations and perspectives around the climate crisis, taking audiences on a radical journey of self-reflection. Soak up insights from artists, activists, scientists and researchers, but be prepared for some uncomfortable truths.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll know immersive art is having something of a moment right now. Riding on the back of the Van Gogh exhibition’s success is Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera’s Mexican Geniuses exhibition, using the latest video-mapping technology to bring their greatest works to life. Watch as over 300 projections are created around you, as you travel the Mexican streets that inspired their finest work. Opens 22 April (location to be announced).

Self-confessed deltiologist (that’s postcard-collector to you or I) and London City Island-based photographer Sokari has a new exhibition coming to his London Lighthouse Gallery this month. One Moment in Time investigates our relationship with travel, memories and ownership via postcards and pictures. And if you leave feeling inspired? Get those paintbrushes at the ready – there’s a 2022 Spring exhibition at the gallery you can enter (apply by 28 March).

Anyone with links down under should also pencil in a visit to the Tate Modern’s A Year In Art: Australia 1992. Opening 8 June, the free exhibition contains over 25 works by Australian artists which explore Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander land rights in Australia and the impact of colonisation and representation in Australian society.

How to get there: The Barbican is just a 16-minute journey on the DLR to Bank, and a 15-minute stroll from there. For Tate Modern, take the Jubilee line from Canning Town to London Bridge – it’s then just a 12-minute walk.

Noise Aquarium by Victoria Vesna. Photo by Adam Bogdan

‘Postcard collector and London City Island-based photographer Sokari Higgwe has a new exhibition coming to his London Lighthouse Gallery this month.’


If good music in the great outdoors is your thing, Kew The Music runs from 5-10 July at the spectacular Kew Gardens and features major headline acts such as Van Morrison, James Blunt, Bananarama and Gipsy Kings. Take along a picnic and your favourite tipple, or treat the family to a gourmet hamper by renowned St John’s Wood delicatessen, Panzer’s.

This June and July, British Summertime at Hyde Park brings some of the world’s biggest acts to the stage, from Elton John and Adele to Pearl Jam, Duran Duran and The Eagles (and plenty of tickets are still available). Kicking off on 24 June, partygoers can enjoy world-class entertainment in the British sunshine (we hope, anyway).

Heritage Live is another awesome opportunity to catch some of entertainment’s most impressive names, like Nile Rodgers and Chic, Noel Gallagher, Jake Bugg, Rag‘n’Bone Man, Culture Club and Maxïmo Park. Staged at some of England’s most visually impressive locations, this year’s runs 10-19 June at Kenwood House on Hampstead Heath, before moving to West Sussex, Berkshire and Essex.

How to get there: For a trip to Kew, take the Jubilee line to Westminster, then jump on the District line. Hyde Park is just a quick ride on the Jubilee line to Bond Street, followed by one stop on the Central line to Marble Arch. Kenwood House is best reached via Waterloo on the Jubilee line – take the Northern line to Archway from there (Kenwood House is a short bus or cab ride from the station).

Revellers at Kew the Music, which this year takes place from 5-10 July