Half-term activities to keep the young ones Hooked

Thursday, 24th May 2018 — By Sebastian Taylor

Peter Pan_Photo Johan Persson

Dennis Herdman and Caroline Deyga as Hook and Smee. Photo: Johan Persson

Superheroes and Villains at ZSL London Zoo

Captain Z will be swooping in to save children from being bored this half-term, and help ZSL London Zoo lead the fight against some of the biggest threats facing wildlife! The Superheroes and Villains takeover at ZSL London Zoo in Regent’s Park (postcode NW1 4RY) will give families the chance to come face-to-face with some of the world’s environmental super-villains, and discover the work that ZSL’s very own superheroes are doing to help fight back. Celebrate the world’s most incredible animals and their amazing superpowers by embarking on a self-guided Superpowers Trail around the zoo. Visitors can also join a team of vets as they tackle plastic pollution, work with animal keepers to help customs thwart the illegal wildlife trade, and become a ZSL scientist helping to monitor the effects of climate change.
Superheroes and Villains is running May 26 to June 3. Call 0344 225 1826 or go online www.zsl.org/superheroes for prices and to book tickets.

Farm favourites

Four-legged fun at Kentish Town City Farm

What better way to spend the half-term than with the piggies, ponies and goats down at Kentish Town City Farm. Between May 29 and June 3 there will be a whole host of family fun, including wool felting sessions, pony rides (suitable for children aged 4 plus), and the chance to become garden explorers.
Activites cost between £5 and £2.l Call 020 7916 5421 or go online at www.ktcityfarm.org.uk for times and further details. Kentish Town City Farm, 1 Cressfield Close, off Grafton Road, NW5 4BN.

Gauls-Crazy this half-term at the Jewish Museum

If there is one exhibition that youngsters wouldn’t mind being dragged to this half-term it’s Astérix in Britain: The Life and Work of René Goscinny. It’s an immersive and playful exhibition that explores the unique imagination of the co-creator, with Albert Uderzo, of the Astérix comics.
• Jewish Museum London, Raymond Burton House, 129-131 Albert Street, NW1 7NB. Call 020 7284 7384 or go online at www.jewishmuseum.org.uk. Museum is open daily between 10am and 5pm, except Fridays when it’s open 10am-2pm. Last entrance 30 minutes before closing. Adults £8.50/£5.50, children aged 5 to 16 £4/£3.50, Under-5s free.

• During half-term the Jewish Museum will also be hosting FREE drop-in sessions.
Get Creative: Enjoy arts and crafts inspired by the Asterix in Britain exhibition. Open to 5 to 11-year-olds on Tuesday May 29 and Thursday May 31 between 11am-12.30pm and 2pm and 3.30pm. www.jewishmuseum.org.uk 

Enjoy a relaxed morning for children with autism at the Jewish Museum

• Curious Explorers Morning: Wednesday May 30 between 9am and 11am. A relaxed morning during the school holiday for children with autism or other social communication conditions, their siblings, parents and carers. This event is most appropriate for children aged 5 to 15. Advanced booking is essential, call 020 7284 7384 or go online at www.jewishmuseum.org.uk for details.

Earth Explorers at JW3: Turn the school holidays into an adventure packed with science, magic, beasts and circus skills.
JW3 are inviting young explorers (aged 5 to 7 and 8 to 11) to take part in a series of fun and exciting sessions, including how to make fake snow and slime, and even how to perform magic tricks. There will also be the chance to get up close to reptiles and amphibians, or to take part in a circus skills workshop where youngsters can learn how to balance on a tight rope, juggle with balls and flower sticks, learn how to spin plates, or hoola-hoop.
• To find out more about all the half-term activities taking place at JW3 (341-351 Finchley Road, NW3 6ET) go online at www.jw3.org.uk/may-half-term-scheme or call the box office on 020 7433 8988. Sessions running May 29 to June 1 between 10am and 4pm, and cost £35 per day.

Houses of Parliament

Ever wondered where Guy Fawkes hid before he tried to blow up Parliament? Want to see the very spot where Charles I was tried and found guilty of treason? Would you like to know why the Queen is banned from the House of Commons? Well now you can find out the answers to all these questions as one of the most iconic buildings in the world, the Houses of Parliament, is open for family tours, which include a 90-minute guided tour of the Commons Chamber, Lords Chamber and medieval Westminster Hall. Tours are aimed at children aged the 7 to 12. All children go free (adults £18.50/£16 concessions). Half term tours running May 30 to June 1.
• To book, call 020 7219 4114, go online at www.parliament.uk/visiting/ or in person at the Ticket Office front of Portcullis House on Victoria Embankment (postcode SW1A 2LW).


Family Concert: Voyager, Sunday July 8

Join the London Symphony Orchestra and travel through the depths of space on a musical and visual journey inspired by the Voyager spacecraft and the Golden Records they carry, holding music and messages for extra-terrestrial life to discover. This concert, which is suitable for 7 to 12-year-olds, includes excerpts from John Williams (the flying theme from E.T.), Strauss, Beethoven and Bach.
• Sunday July 8 2.30pm to 3.30pm. Barbican Centre (Barbican Hall), Silk Street, EC2Y 8DS. 020 7638 8891. Tickets £15/£10, children £5 (plus booking fees), go online at lso.co.uk/voyager for booking and further details.


The Museum of London

Serious entertainment at the Museum of London

Head back to the Stone Age with a special free family activity day celebrating the DVD release of Aardman Animation’s film, Early Man. Along with free screenings of the film, families will also be able to try their hand at model making, discover neolethic animals and even have the chance to touch objects from hundreds of years ago!
Then in half-term week, the museum is celebrating all things night-time, with a series of special events, as part of the the venue’s major new exhibition, London Nights. Children will be able to make their own victorian lamp, UV art and enjoy storytimes, muscial performances and much more. Full details of all events on the website.
• Museum of London, 150 London Wall, EC2Y 5HN, 020 7001 9844, open daily 10am-6pm, www.museumoflondon.org.uk/museum-london/whats-on/may-half-term


Peter Pan
Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre

Sam Angell and Cora Kirk as Peter and Wendy. Photo: Johan Persson

In this Olivier Award-nominated production by Timothy Sheader and Liam Steel, JM Barrie’s much-loved story is transported to the horrors of the First World War, where imagination is the only escape for wounded soldiers. Using puppetry and a wealth of theatrical magic “to enchant both young and old alike”, this moving interpre­tation, staged in the open air, pays homage to the generation of Lost Boys – including George Llewelyn Davies, killed in action in 1915, who was one of the children who inspired Barrie to create the character of Peter Pan. Suitable for primary school age and over. Under-4s not admitted.
• Peter Pan runs until June 15 at Open Air Theatre, Regent’s Park, NW1 4NU,entry via the box office in Queen Mary’s Garden in the park. Box office: 0844 826 4242, openairtheatre.com

Related Articles