Tired of London, Tired of Life - One thing a day to do in London

A website about things to do in London

31 July 2010

Explore the sounds of the rainforest at Kew

Over at Kew Gardens, they're filling the Palm House with the sounds of the rainforest with Chris Watson’s Whispering in the Leaves sound installation, recreating the rainforests of South and Central America.


Through 80 speakers, the installation plays two sound pieces, Dawn and Dusk, transmitted on the hour throughout the day - with Dawn playing in the morning and Dusk in the afternoon, each lasting about 15-20 minutes.

There is also a programme of special performances, workshops, guided tours and talks. To find out more, visit http://www.kew.org/visit-kew-gardens/summer-2010/whispering-in-the-leaves/index.htm

^Picture by neiljs^

30 July 2010

Drink at the Commercial Tavern

The Commercial Tavern, on Commercial Street, E1, treads a fine line. It's 'cool', but it's also a nice place to be. The hordes of trendies who flock in after work wearing thick-rimmed artist glasses are barely noticable if you find a nice spot by the window to stare out into a light breeze.


There's lots of trendy pub tat and chandeliers adorning the walls and the ceiling, but they also serve ales in dimpled pint pots, just like in the countryside, and the recent addition of beers from the Meantime Brewery in Greenwich is very welcome.

The downstairs is a little dark, as the shutters always seem to be closed, but if you can find a place on the outside tables or upstairs this pub is a nice place to be. And when your author visited yesterday evening he was pleased to find that there is even a new cut-through down Wheler Street to Shoreditch High Street station.

For more, see http://www.timeout.com/london/bars/reviews/12905.html

^Picture by the fantastic Ewan Munro^

29 July 2010

Relax on the Tattershall Castle

The Tattershall Castle is a boat moored on the North Bank of the Thames between Embankment Tube Station and the Houses of Parliament. It is named after the original Tattershall Castle, built in the 15th century, or probably earlier, in Tattershall, Lincolnshire.


The ship, the Tattershall Castle, was built in 1934 and worked as a passenger ferry across the Humber estuary for around 40 years, carrying around a million passengers, as well as cars, sheep, pigs, cattle and horses during its operation.

However, that life was limited and since 1981 the Tattershall Castle has been operating as a bar & restaurant in London, in its current position on the Thames. Refurbished in 2004 and again in 2009, and has excellent views of central London. Just a shame about the bar prices.

For more, see http://www.thetattershallcastle.co.uk/

28 July 2010

Explore Russia Dock Woodland

Russia Dock Woodland, in Rotherhithe, is an area of woodland which was planted in the new space created when one of the former Surrey Commercial Docks, the Russia Dock, was filled in in the late 1970s.


Like most of the London Docks, Russia Dock got its name because it was originally used for the importing of timber from Russia, as well as Norway and Sweden. The wood was known as Deal and sorted by the legendary Deal Porters.

Nowadays, the woodland, which was covers 34.5 acres, and was planted in 1980, and is home to a fantastic array of wildlife, including toads, newts, birds, bees, caterpillars, hedgehogs, frogs, newts, grasshoppers, stag beetles, foxes and even possibly kingfishers and herons.

Your author's picture above, taken in December, doesn't really do it justice, so for more information, visit http://russiadock.blogspot.com/

27 July 2010

Learn about Parliament's part in the Olympics

As anyone who has switched on their radio or telly this morning will know, it's two years until the London Olympics, and the Houses of Parliament are marking it in their own special way. So, if you ever needed an excuse to wander in the atmospheric surroundings of Westminster Hall, the Parliament and the Games exhibition currently taking place in the hall is as good as any. The exhibition examines Parliament's part in the Olympics, with a range of models, artefacts and speeches telling the story.


Featuring kit loaned from Parliamentarians who have competed in the Games, including Lord Coe’s running shoes, Lord Glentoran’s bobsleigh runner and Sir Menzies Campbell’s running vest, the exhibition is never going to be a box office smash, but it does allow casual visitors to pop into the Houses of Parliament, and also features memorabilia from London’s previous Olympic Games in 1908 and 1948, including a 1948 Olympic Torch.

The exhibition is free, is open to all, and is on until 28 August, from Monday to Saturday, 10am - 5pm. You just need to enter Parliament via the Cromwell Green Visitor Entrance and go to Westminster Hall, telling the many helpful security guards you will meet that you want to go to the Parliament and the Games exhibition in Westminster Hall. The real bonus, of course, is seeing the hall itself.

For more, see http://www.parliament.uk/visiting/exhibitions-and-events/exhibitions/olympics-exhibition/

26 July 2010

Pop by the Queens Arms

Time for another pub, and the Queens Arms, in Kensington, is the the closest pub to the Royal Albert Hall, and was built around 1910. It's a popular spot for students from the surrounding universities and also anyone popping in for a swift half before they go to see something at the Hall itself.


It's tucked away in Queens Gate Mews, so can be difficult to find, and its a nice enough spot, though when your author popped in recently for lunch the food he ordered didn't contain many of the things listed on the menu, and £11.80 for a burger and a pint seemed rather steep for what was offered.

That said, its a busy little pub in an interesting place, and is still worth a visit. Film fans may be interested to know that the film Layer Cake was filmed in the Mews, and that Guy Ritchie once owned the white house opposite. For more, see http://www.thequeensarmskensington.co.uk/

25 July 2010

Seek out the Foodmaster bus

The Foodmaster bus is a travelling bus-based snack bar in an old Routemaster bus, with seats for up to 32 guests on the upper deck and a professional kitchen downstairs.


The owners are touring various events and places around town, this weekend stopping outside the Mile End Park art pavilion and they'll be visiting different Events in and around London with a mission of providing fresh, high-quality German food at fair prices.

For more information, see http://www.food-master.co.uk/

24 July 2010

Play ping-pong in the park

As readers will no doubt be aware by now, ping-pong tables have been installed in places across London over the last few days, and will remain there for around a month in order for us all to enjoy playing some ping-pong.


It's a joint venture by the English Table Tennis Association and Sing London, funded by the National Lottery, and mirrors the pianos which appeared last summer, and led to some fantastic impromptu late night sing-alongs. This time, it's impromptu games of ping-pong they're seeking, and it sounds like a good idea.

It's really a publicity stunt, aiming to tie together the Mayor's wiff-waff speech and a desire to have more people play the game, but its a very good one. Let's just hope there will be no thefts of bats and balls. Your author will leave the final word to Colette Hiller, Creative Director of Sing London, who says "Ping! is for everyone – those who love table tennis and those who didn’t know they did". But that's not actually everyone is it Colette? What about people who hate ping-pong?

For more, and a map of locations, see http://pinglondon.com/

23 July 2010

Drink at the Cove

Situated above the West Cornwall Pasty Company, in Covent Garden, the Cove is a small but welcoming touristland pub, which was once the only Cornish theme pub in London.


From its usually-crowded terrace overlooking the front of St Paul's Covent Garden, and the inevitable street performers and tourists which fill the street below, it is a good spot for an ale and an overpriced pasty brought up to you still warm by dumb-waiter from the shop below.

True to its West Country roots, drinks are ale-based, but unfortunately they are usually as expensive as you might expect in this area of town, but you do get that 'little place that I know' feeling as you slip up the barely-marked stairway from the market below, and see a thousand vacant faces staring up at you from below wondering how they could get up there. That, and it's about a thousand times better than the Punch and Judy next door.

For more, see http://www.fancyapint.com/pubs/pub1533.php or for more on the West Cornwall Pasty Company attempt to navigate their frankly bizarre website at http://www.westcornwallpasty.co.uk/

22 July 2010

Explore the 2010 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion

Your author has written a lot about East London recently, so let's head to West London and the Serpentine Gallery Pavilion. This year's Pavilion, the tenth annual architectural experiment, is designed by Jean Nouvel and is open to the public for free until 17th October.

The Pavilion is operating as a public space, a café, and outdoor table tennis space, including French outdoor ping pong tables, and as a venue for Park Nights, the Serpentine Gallery’s programme of public talks and events, which attracts up to 250,000 visitors each summer.

So far, your author has only seen it from the outside, as he dashed from Westminster to Notting Hill for an evening last week, but it looked very impressive. For more, watch the video above, or see http://www.serpentinegallery.org/2010/03/serpentine_gallery_pavilion_20_14.html

21 July 2010

Search for paperbacks at the Broadway Bookshop

As you might imagine, your author is a bit of a London guidebook geek, and one of his favourite places to browse is at the Broadway Bookshop, on Broadway Market. It's a fantastic little independent bookshop which, though small, has books tucked in to every nook and cranny, so there's plenty on offer.


Whilst the Saturday farmers market is the mainstay of the immediate locality nowadays, the shop is open daily (except Mondays) and has always had a few browsers when your author has popped in. The also hold regular events with local and national authors, allowing them to showcase their wares, and even exhibit a handful of artworks.

Alongside this, its a great place to stock up on local news, with an excellent noticeboard and some leaflets. It's really just a nice little community bookshop which is a comfortable place to while away half an hour or so.

Broadway Bookshop is open Tuesday to Saturday, 10am until 6pm and Sundays from 11am until 5pm. For more, see http://www.broadwaybookshophackney.com/

20 July 2010

Eat and drink at La Piazzetta, Covent Garden

It can be a real trial trying to find somewhere to have a nice cup of tea after work in central London, and when your author and a friend were wandering through Covent Garden in yesterday's evening sunshine, they eventually settled at La Piazzetta, in Neal's Yard.


It is a bright little place, with an a good attempt at a Mediterranean ambience, and a range of meals, snacks and cakes on offer. It was very pleasant, but when a table became free outside and a move to drink al fresco was attempted, this was immediately vetoed by the waiter, as these tables were "not for a cup of tea" even though the cafe which was pretty empty. This put a bit of a downer on the relaxed vibe.

So, the search for a decent spot for after-work tea drinking continues, but don't rule out La Piazzetta just because of this bad experience. It certainly benefits from its position, away from the traffic, and the result is a nice space for a drink and a chat.

For more, and a takeaway review, see http://coventgardencafes.com/2010/04/13/la-piazzetta/

19 July 2010

Relax with a cuppa beside Stokey's West Reservoir

The cafe at the Stoke Newington West Reservoir Water Sports Centre is a lovely spot, affording visitors an opportunity to relax with a reasonably-priced cup of tea or coffee on a deck beside the reservoir, and watch the boats sailing by.


It describes itself as a picturesque, hidden corner of Stoke Newington, and your author agrees with this. You have to take a small road down the side of the Castle Climbing Centre, off Green Lanes, and go into the gated compound of the sailing centre. Thankfully, it's signposted, otherwise your author probably would never have found it.

This time of year, you will probably face hordes of school-holiday sailing kids, but if you hit it at the right time, they'll be out on the water and you can relax with a book, a tea or coffee, and a bite to eat.

The centre is open Monday to Sunday, 9am until 5pm, and the nearest tube is Manor House. You can find more information at http://www.hackney.gov.uk/west-reservoir.htm

18 July 2010

See the Queen Alexandra Memorial

Often referred to as London's only Art Nouveau statue/monument, the Queen Alexandra Memorial commemorates Alexandra of Denmark, the wife of Edward VII.


It is a late Art Nouveau-Gothic memorial fountain, and was designed by Alfred Gilbert. You can find it in the Marlborough Road wall of Marlborough House, on Pall Mall, just east of St James's Palace.

For more, see http://www.victorianweb.org/sculpture/gilbert/38c.html

^Picture by Camron & Richard^

17 July 2010

Go to Shoreditch Festival

It's the height of London's free festival season, and this weekend it's the turn of Shoreditch Festival, in Shoreditch Park, N1. The park, which when your author lived in the area had more of a reputation for dog excrement than as a cultural venue, is nowadays much nicer, and is at its best on weekends such as this, with drinking and dancing in the shadow of Gainsborough Studios.


This afternoon, you can see free music from Brassroots, anarchic gypsy-punks The Destroyers, the Yiddish Twist Orchestra, Congolese band Zong Zing All Stars and Amazonian Cumbia band Los Chinches. The headliners are Latin Grammy nominated Afro-Colombian hip-hop sensations Choc Quib Town. There's also a Literature and Spoken Word Tent, a family tent and a big screen showing short films from Barbican Film.

It turns out your author hasn't been to the festival for three years, which is a pretty poor show seeing as its free. The one problem is that it clashes with other, much more expensive, festivals but you can certainly be sure of getting your money's worth here.

For more on the festival, which continues on Sunday, see http://www.shoreditchfestival.org.uk/

^Image courtesy of the Shoreditch Trust^

16 July 2010

Drink at the Cock and Bottle

Your author had a relaxed, after work pint at the Cock and Bottle, in Notting Hill last night, and agreed that the pub, and its fantastic interior, are well worthy of its four pints out of five rating on fancyapint.com.


As the evening sun bathed the windows and outside drinkers in a warm light, a steady stream of locals popped in for a swift pint on their way home, and relaxed in the the beautiful bar area. People gossiped about the golf which showing on the telly, and life in general, and it was lovely. Much better than the Portobello Gold or the Sun In Splendour. Your author will be back.

For more on the Cock and Bottle, see http://www.fancyapint.com/pubs/pub2220.php

^Picture by Kake Pugh^

15 July 2010

Pop into St Anne's, Soho's parish church

Quietly situated in its own private garden in Soho, the original Church of St Anne, Soho, was built between 1677 until 1686, as the parish church for Soho. Apart from the tower, however, the church we see today is much newer, having actually been built in the 1990s.


Destroyed during the Blitz, on the night of 24 September 1940, only the tower remained, and was used as a chapel for a period during the 1950s and restored in 1979 by the Soho Society. Whilst the congregation continued to worship at other sites, including at the adjoining St Anne's House, it wasn't until 1990-91 that the re-building of the whole church was arranged, and the tower is Grade II listed.

The church is between Dean Street, Wardour Street, Old Compton Street and Shaftesbury Avenue, and the website notes that the local area is home to many homeless people, some meeja types, prostitutes, the F.A., the gays, and 5,000 residents, so it is certainly an interesting parish.

For more on St Anne's, Soho, see http://www.stannes-soho.org.uk/

^Picture by Matt From London^

14 July 2010

Admire Al Fayed's waxwork

Last month, we looked at Mohammed Al Fayed's Dodi and Diana statue, so now it's time to take in one of Harrod's other marvels, the waxwork likeness of the former owner himself.


The Mirror has it that the former owner would only agree to sell up when the new owners, Qatar Holdings, vowed to let the waxwork of him remain in the store, and the shrines to Dodi and Diana remain, but the £1.5 billion they were prepared to stump up may have also been a factor. Nevertheless, the waxwork remains - for the moment - with the small Egyptian man surveying his former pride and joy with a grin.

Al-Fayed himself is apparently expected to stay on as honorary chairman, which could help to maintain such features, but if you want to be sure to catch them, make sure you pop in soon. After that, you may have to go to Craven Cottage.

For more on the store and its history, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harrods

13 July 2010

Drink at the Sir Richard Steele

The Sir Richard Steele, on Haverstock Hill in Primrose Hill, is a nice little pub, with an interior stacked with memorabilia and locally relevant and irrelevant curios and knickknacks. It is a shrine to what your author likes to refer to as 'pub tat'.


The place is supposedly 'famous' as it has in the past attracted members of the Primrose Hill set, including Sadie Frost and Kate Moss, and also been a drinking spot for the likes of Noel and Liam Gallagher and Chris Moyles. They're not there every night, however, so readers shouldn't let this put them off.

The pub is named after Sir Richard Steele, an Irish writer and politician, who co-founded The Tatler and The Spectator, and brands itself as a genuine London boozer, which flys the flag for good times and revelry. It is a pretty decent spot, and you can find out more information at http://www.sirrichardsteele.com/

12 July 2010

Browse the Southbank Centre Book Market

Your author loves to browse for books and one particularly atmospheric spot to do so is at the Southbank Centre Book Market, beneath Waterloo Bridge on the South Banks's Queen's Walk.


The centre claims that this is one of the only outdoor second-hand and antique book markets in southern England, and thanks to the covering of the bridge, it is open every day, whatever the weather.

The books are a little more expensive than at your local church hall or jumble sale, but it's a lovely spot to search for something special, and since Oxfam Books arrived on the scene these prices have become the norm. The one thing that has always puzzled your author, however, is that the market always seems to be packing up just as he arrives. It can't just be a coincidence...

The market runs every day until approximately 7pm. For more, visit the page on the Southbank Centre website here.

11 July 2010

Eat at the Park Life Cafe

Your author had a pleasant lunch at the cafe beside Whittington Park and the Whittington Park Community Centre in Islington last weekend. From the sign, it appeared that the cafe is called 'Park Life', but this may just be decorative.


The staff were friendly and helpful, and the portions were reasonably priced and ample, so there are no complaints here. Your author understands the community café is a social enterprise, established fairly recently by the Whittington Park Community Association, and it appears to be going very well.

The cafe is situated on Rupert Road in Islington, and is one of the associations many projects, which include an over 60’s day centre, a charity shop, a holiday play scheme and a hall, available to hire. For more, see http://www.wpca-london.org/

10 July 2010

Play games at the Hide and Seek Weekender

Your author popped into the Hide&Seek Weekender at the National Theatre last night. Hide&Seek are an organisation who make up little games to play, and it's quite fun. The official line is that they 'expand the boundaries of play, reaching out into public space, new technologies, culture and media', but its basically just little games.


There are various games to play throughout the weekend, some of which you need to book and some of which you can just show up and do. Your author took part in a couple yesterday, one of which really badly organised and the others were very good, but it's hard to criticise too much having never organised a games festival.

For more on the weekender, and the games on offer, see http://www.hideandseek.net/play-with-us/weekender-2010/

9 July 2010

Explore East London by canoe

Your author spent a very pleasant afternoon last Sunday canoeing the canals of East London. The canoes themselves are available from East London Boats in Mile End and, unlike with their punts, you can carry them over the locks in the canal to cover more distance.


The owner tells your author some canoeists have even done a full round trip, continuing via the Lee Navigation to Limehouse Cut and Limehouse Basin, but last week's trip covered slightly less ground, taking participants from Mile End to the edge of the Olympic site via the Regents Canal, the Hertford Union Canal and the River Lee Navigation.

Despite initial fears from some of the group, it was largely disaster-free, with only one dead rat sighting, a wet leg for one of the participants, and a great pub lunch at Top O' The Morning in Hackney Wick.

Canoeists should come equipped with strong arms if they are intending to carrying the canoe over locks, as well as their best waving arms, as everyone seems a lot more friendly when you're travelling by canal. And watch out for the heavy weed on the Lee Navigation beside the Olympic Stadium. It can slow you right down, so approach with speed.

East London Boats operates on weekends only from the Eastern bank of the Regents Canal near Queen Mary University and the Palm Tree in Mile End Park. For more, see http://www.eastlondonboats.com/.

8 July 2010

Visit Mayfield Lavender Farm

Your author spotted something over on the always-excellent Londonist the other day, which sounds so good it is definitely worth repeating. Mayfield Lavender Farm is a 25 acre organic lavender farm, open to the public, and situated around than 15 miles from Central London.


The area in which it is situated, inside the M25, was once one the most productive prolific lavender growing area in the world, and Mayfield is a family business, aiming to revive lavender growing in the area, and producing fine lavender oils for retail. To encourage visitors to take photographs, they also run an annual photography competition, with a chance to win £200 for the best photo of the field.

The farm is open to the public daily until the end of the lavender season, from 10am until 7pm, and entry is free. For more, see http://www.mayfieldlavender.com/

^Picture by Lilly^

7 July 2010

Realise Your Potential at the School of Life

Your author loves to give the fantastic School of Life, in Bloomsbury, as many plugs as possible and he popped along to the launch of their new Realise Your Potential class, in association with American Express, a little while ago, so it's time to tell you about it.


The course, led by film-maker, theatre director and writer, Mark Brickman, aims to allow participants to identify their personal values and re-evaluate their way of living to ensure they're living live to the full and truly achieving all they can.

Life can be a constant battle against a sense of failure, so it can be good to take stock every now and again. The American Express tie-in is all about 'investing in yourself' and 'soaking up new experiences' with the help of credit, and if that's your thing, go for it. Your author won't argue because they're supporting great work, but he prefers to save up.

The course costs £30 and doesn't actually take place until 25th July, but you'll probably need to book soon. If you miss that there's another on 14th September 2010. For more on this particular course, click here or for more on the school in general, see http://www.theschooloflife.com/

6 July 2010

Drink at the Reliance

The Reliance, on Old Street, was once a pub to which your author went regularly, but visitations have markedly dropped off in recent months. It is still a good spot, however, and is a great example of how a pub can have a modern air but still be attractive and interesting.


The unit has not always been a pub, and we know that in 1910 number 336 was home to a shop fitters and carpenter called Maund's, later becoming a wholsale cycle factors. It was a Furniture Works by the late 1940s and then a mantle manufacturers called Bronitt & Carmell. By the late 1960s it had become a ladies coat manufacturer, and all this industry is indicative of how the area has changed.

For your author, in an age where the pub is supposedly on the decline, it is welcome that a building which has had so many previous lives has found a role as such an attractive and characterful pub, particularly as it sits within the South Shoreditch Conservation Area. Whoever designed it hit on a great plan of apparently buying up (...or making convincing fakes of...) parts and photographs of an old barge called "The Reliance" and naming their new pub after it. The results, including an old name plate from the barge, bring history and character into a pub which is much newer than it lets on.

It has a nice downstairs and also a spacious upstairs which fancyapint notes is 'a perfect vantage point for counting the number of blokes walking down Old Street who've opted for wearing unnecessary hats'. In this area, you have to come prepared for that sort of thing.

For more, see http://www.fancyapint.com/pubs/pub591.php

5 July 2010

Wander in Abney Park Cemetery

Originally an area of parkland laid out by Lady Mary Abney during the 18th Century, and the former home of Dr Isaac Watts, the ‘father of hymnology’, and a novel Quaker school for girls, it wasn't until the mid 19th century that Abney Park became a cemetery.


It was decided to make the space into a garden cemetery to alleviate overcrowding in central London graveyards, and the space is notable because the grounds were unconsecrated and non-denominational, leading to a number of burials of nonconformists.

It is a huge space, covering 32 acres of space, surrounded on all sides by fairly built-up areas, and there is a real feeling of wilderness in some parts, where small paths pick their way between tumble-down tombs.

Abney Park is open to the public daily. For more, see http://www.abney-park.org.uk/

4 July 2010

Catch Stewart Lee at the Pangea Project

If you're at a loose end this afternoon, local resident Stewart Lee, the '41st Best Stand Up Ever', is playing a gig at the Pangea Project in Stamford Hill.


The tiny venue and a community space, opposite Stoke Newington Station, is holding an event called Joke Newington, this afternoon from noon until late, with Edinburgh previews from Mr Lee, as well as Robin Ince, Andrew O'Neill and many others.

Whilst pre-order tickets have already sold out, there are a limited number available on the door. For more, see here, here or here

^Picture by salimfadhley^

3 July 2010

See Wellington's Wellingtons

In a display case in the basement of his former home, Apsley House, at Hyde Park Corner, is a pair of the Duke of Wellington's famous boots.


Wikipedia tells us that the Leather Hessian boots were popularised by Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, and subsequently became fashionable amongst 19th century British aristocracy.

To see the boots, you have to pay for entry to Apsley House, which is open Wednesday - Sunday, 11am - 5pm and costs £6. For more see, http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/daysout/properties/apsley-house/

2 July 2010

Drink at the Red Lion, St James

Claiming to have the oldest continuous licence in London, the Red Lion, hidden down Crown Passage, off Pall Mall, in St James' is a lovely little pub, which is just hidden enough to avoid the tourist crowds.


That's not so say, of course, that you wont find anything you don't like in the pub, and when your author visited yesterday evening, his friends were a little bored by the constant droning from fellow patrons about how important they were.

That said, it's a nice spot and everyone likes a hidden gem, especially in this area of town, so its definitely worthy of a visit. For more, see http://www.pubs.com/main_site/pub_details.php?pub_id=188#

1 July 2010

Go camping at Wimbledon

Every day during Wimbledon, a number of tickets are set aside for people willing to turn up on the day. In order to get there early enough, you usually have to camp over the night before, and now we're into the last four days, your author isn't sure how fruitful it will be, but it's worth remembering for next year.


We are told that the queue for on-day ticket is designed to provide a special Championships experience, ensure fairness and to create an area suitable for our queueing visitors. Camping is positively encouraged, but if you do choose to, you'll be woken around 6am by stewards, asked to dismantle any camping equipment and create space for those joining the queue on the day.

Now we're into the last few days, all the Centre Court tickets have gone, but approximately 500 tickets for No.1 and No.2 Courts are reserved for sale at the turnstiles each day, and 6,000 Ground Admission tickets are available each day, vary dependent on the number of people already in the grounds, the number of courts in play and the weather.

Whilst you may, therefore, end up just sitting around on the grass, or watching the Senior Gentlemen's Invitation Doubles on Court 18, it's all part of the experience and it is Wimbledon. Your author doesn't mind, really, as he doesn't even actually like tennis. If it's just a box-ticking exercise, you might even like to try popping down after work, as there are often returns available in the evening to let you have a wander round.

For more on queueing, see Londonist or the Wimbledon Website.

^Picture by AlphaTangoBravo / Adam Baker^