The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF) is an aerial display team flying historic aircraft. They appear at shows throughout the country, state occasions and at events commemorating the Second World War. The aircraft normally flown are an Avro Lancaster, a Supermarine Spitfire and a Hawker Hurricane. The flight is administratively part of No. 1 Group RAF, flying out of RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire. It is possible to see the aircraft at a visitor centre at Coningsby, though it is recommended you check which ones can be seen before making a special trip.
"They're changing guard at Buckingham Palace - Christopher Robin went down with Alice". (A A Milne).
This is the ceremony when the old guard hands over responsibility for protecting Buckingham and St James's Palaces to the new guard. It normally takes place at 1130 hours, pretty much daily from April to July and on alternate days from August to March. BUT - check first and bear in mind that arrangements are subject to alteration, often without notice. It is free to attend and it is one of the most popular events in London - so get there early. The best place to see it is in front of Buckingham Palace, by the Victoria Memorial.
The Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts was first held in 1970, the day after Jimi Hendrix died, when the headlining act was T Rex (who replaced the Kinks). It was the brainchild of farmer Michael Eavis and is now a regular event, the largest of its kind in the world. Though best known for its music (as well as its mud and awful toilets), the festival, as its name implies, covers all performing arts - such as dance, cabaret and comedy. For 5 days during June, Worthy Farm is transformed into a major conurbation of 175,000 people - it is a masterpiece of logistics and organisation. Headline acts over the years have included the likes of the Rolling Stones, David Bowie, The Who, Adele and Dolly Parton.
Attendance is ONLY possible by allocated ticket obtained via the festival website.
The Lord Mayor's Show has been an annual event in London's calendar for 800 years. It is a festival of pageantry and colour, free to see, which begins with a flotilla of boats and barges on the Thames, a river pageant. Next comes the parade, a procession of something like 7,000 participants in the region of 3 miles long, crammed into a 1.7 mile route from Mansion House, the Lord Mayor’s official residence in the City, near Bank, to the Royal Courts of Justice on the Strand in Westminster. In the evening, the grand finale is a spectacular firework display over the Thames.
The Lord Mayor’s Show always takes place on the second Saturday of November. Most roads in the City are closed all day and the Embankment is closed until the evening.
Hundreds of open garden events take place in Britain every year, mainly during the summer and mostly, though not exclusively, in rural villages. The gardens belong to private homes and are often quite modest. The open garden event normally involves 10 gardens or so, sometimes more, sometimes less, and can either be a local event in its own right, or part of a larger village show of some kind. If you enjoy looking at gardens, a local open gardens can be an enjoyable way of spending an hour or three. Entry fees are usually just a few pounds. Check the UK National Directory for events near you.
Remembrance Sunday falls annually on the second Sunday of November, closest to 11th, to mark the Armistice, the day the guns fell silent, at 11am on 11th November 1918. The red poppy, which seemed to thrive on the Western Front, has become a symbol - worn by people throughout the UK as a mark of respect. Services take place in towns and villages all over the land, to honour all who have suffered or died in war. The National Service of Remembrance is held at the Cenotaph in Whitehall. In addition to a march past by veterans and troops from each of the armed forces, tributes are paid by the Monarch or a representative, other members of the Royal Family, members of the Government, political and faith leaders, senior representatives of the armed and civilian services and high commissioners of Commonwealth countries.
The National Service is coordinated by a Government Department, but a good starting point for more information is the Royal British Legion.
Snape maltings is a complex of shops, holiday accommodation, café and pub centred around the world famous concert hall. The buildings are mainly converted Victorian industrial buildings, originally used for the malting of barley. The venue was created by composer Benjamin Britten and his partner, singer Peter Pears, reclaiming the old buildings. A programme of music runs all year.
This is the world's most famous, and oldest, grass tennis competition. It was first held in 1877 - women were invited to join in 1884. All of the world's top-seeded players compete and, for a fortnight at the end of June and beginning of July, many people are glued to their TVs following the action. The big problem with Wimbledon fortnight, unfortunately, is often the rain...
Tickets can be obtained by ballot long in advance, or by taking a risk and queuing on the day - or by an official supplier. Check the official website for details - do not buy tickets from unofficial sources.
If you're using sat nav, you are advised to use the following post codes for navigation - SW19 5AG and SW19 5AF. However, the easiest way to travel to Wimbledon is by public transport.