“Remember, remember the fifth of November with gunpowder, treason and plot.” Yes we certainly remember story of Guy Fawkes caught red-handed with six barrels of gunpowder in the cellars below the Houses of Parliament in 1605. He was of course attempting to assassinate King James I and his punishment for this treasonable act was to be hung, drawn and quartered. If that gruesome and tortuous death wasn’t sufficient, Guy Fawkes has had centuries of being ceremoniously burnt alive as modern folk make effigies of him every year up and down the British Isles.
For centuries, November 5th has been a great British celebration even though the event has changed considerably over the years. Fireworks and bonfires are lit all over the country much to the delight of adults and children. While barely a city, town, village or hamlet can escape some kind of Bonfire Night festivity, nowhere are the celebrations more spectacular than in London.
Bonfire night tends to be celebrated at the weekend near to November 5 and this year it is safe to say that most of the best bonfires in London, and the country as a whole, will be lit on Saturday November 2.
Asides attending the likes of Beckenham, Morden or Kingston Fireworks Display, if you want to experience Bonfire Night in London with a difference, sail down the River Thames on a specially laid on Bonfire Night Cruise. The three-hour cruise leaves Westminster Pier at 18.30 hours and sails to Battersea to watch the famous annual Battersea Park Firework Display.
It is safe to say that Bethnal Green is a national boxing treasure chest filled with great British boxers. Over the years this East London district has carried a widespread reputation for conjuring up great and skilled fighters.
York Hall is considered to be the home of British boxing and was voted the 6th best boxing venue in the world. If you are a boxing fan and happen to be in the Tower Hamlets vicinity in early October, a superb night of boxing is promised at York Hall. On the evening of October 4, 2013, the ‘Night of Champions’ will take place at this British boxing hotspot.
This highly anticipated event will feature seven champions and four title fights including two world title fights. Former European welterweight champion, Michel “Phantom” Trabant, will be challenging for the vacant GBC World Middleweight (GWM) title. Co-headlining will be Jennifer Retzke verses Angel Mckenzie in the GBC female world welterweight title clash.
Malta’s “Super” Steve Martin will defend his WBU light welterweight title, which he won last year. The Irish light middleweight champion will also be defending his title won in July last year and which he successfully defended last October.
Luton’s former British, Commonwealth and world WBU lightweight champion, Graham “The Duke” Earl, will fight in the light welterweight division. South Londoner, Mark Prince will fight in a cruiserweight contest, whilst former English champion, Ryan Barrett will face Jan Balog in a welterweight contest.
International Ballroom Dancing Championships at the Royal Albert Hall – A competition and a venue that are impeccably matched!
If you are a fan of ballroom dancing then make sure that the Royal Albert Hall is on your itinerary on October 3, 2013. In what promises to be a glitzy evening, approximately 360 of the world’s best amateur and professional dancers will don their smartest suits and racy sequined dresses as they strut and swirl about in the quest to become the world’s number one ballroom dancer.
Only the most talented of dancers will be participating in the International Ballroom Dancing Championships, as all competitors will have already qualified through their heats in order to have reached this stage of the event.
There are various titles up for grabs, including the International Professional Ballroom, the International Professional Latin, the International Amateur Ballroom and the International Amateur Latin.
This colourful extravaganza that is the International Ballroom Dancing Championships will be an occasion of sheer glamour and style under the roof of one of London’s most iconic and well-loved entertainment venues.
The London Acoustic Guitar Show is the country’s premier event in the world of acoustic guitars and is brought to the capital in association with Acoustic Magazine. Fine musicians from all over the world will perform live at this highly anticipated music event. Guitar playing enthusiasts will have the opportunity to play hundreds of guitars until that find that special sound that hits their designated spot.
If the “twang’s your thang” you must get down to the Olympia Conference Hall this September and let rip into the latest and indeed longest-established products of the acoustic guitar manufacturing greats.
You can see English pop and rock musician Matt Cardle in concert, who will headline on the Saturday night. It’s worth the entrance fee alone just to see this platinum album artist! The singer/songwriter will be performing in association with Taylor Guitars.
There are many more artists playing over the weekend, all fulfilling their guitar sponsor obligations. Wolverhampton-based singer/songwriter, Scott Mathews will perform live on stage in association with Guild Guitars.
Multi-awarding winning Italian guitar composer, Antonio Forcione will play alongside Yamaha Guitars UK. There are so many quality acts playing live at this year’s London Acoustic Show that it must be a serious contender for one of the best music events in London of 2013.
Until late September, the British Museum is showing artefacts from one of the most famous and prolific of human catastrophes caused by a natural disaster. The event occurred in AD 79 when the Earth opened up and Mount Vesuvius spewed its red hot innards over unsuspecting Italians going about their daily business.
The cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum lay buried for 1700 years until archaeologists exposed the secrets of their last moments before catastrophe struck.
The Italian authorities have kindly lent the British Museum 250 artefacts, many of which have never been seen before outside of Italy.
There are also life-size casts of some of the hapless victims – their last actions as human beings frozen in time only to be gazed upon by an awestruck audience nearly 2,000 years later. The human casts include a family comprising of two adults and two children, a particularly sobering reminder of how these people met their end. Also on display is an extremely famous cast of a pet dog in the exact same position as the one he died in as Vesuvius struck.
If you are looking for absorbing and thought-provoking things to do in London then it’s really worth visiting the British Museum to muse over the fascinating paraphernalia from this dark period in Italian history.
Imagine the grotesque firework display lighting up the whole Bay of Naples and the sheer power of the pyroclastic flow as red-hot ash, travelling at 200 miles per hour, forced its way into every nook and cranny, smothering and entombing all life in its path.
Only 500 tickets per day are released for this exhibition, so it could be a good idea to arrive early to avoid disappointment. The British Museum is situated on Great Russell Street and the nearest tube stations are Tottenham Court Road, Holborn or Russell Square.
For more information on the Pompeii and Herculaneum exhibition and other impending events at the British Museum, visit the official website at britishmuseum.org.