Totally Thames Reveals Further 2024 Programming

Events include live art and performances, mudlarking and foreshore walks and talks, and river events including the Great River Race.

By: Jul. 10, 2024
Totally Thames Reveals Further 2024 Programming
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Totally Thames festival is returning in September 2024 with events across the capital celebrating the life and soul of the river.  Events include live art and performances, mudlarking and foreshore walks and talks, and river events including the Great River Race.

All aboard the sailing barge Edith May for an hour of enlivening storytelling and original folk music, exploring the history of the Thames barges, in Hulked on 7th September.  Sing for Water and Kids’ Choir return on 15th September for another joyous concert at The Scoop.  Kids' Choir is a heart-warming choral performance of over 400 children from primary schools across London who will perform a wonderful collection of songs conducted by the renowned Richard Frostick. Sing for Water will follow with 50 choirs from around the country singing under the direction of Helen Chadwich and Roxane Smith with guest artists Naveen Arles, Leah Morris and the festival’s regular superstar Una May Olomolaiye! A joyful choir of over 500 voices uniting to raise money for WaterAid.

A new initiative designed to encourage people from London, Kent and Essex to act against litter along the tidal River Thames has been launched; The PLA’s Clean Thames Challenge, running throughout September, invites individuals and groups to participate in a variety of ways, all with the shared goal of improving the health and aesthetic look of the Thames. Members of the public can sign up to receive a free litter-picking kit. Upon completion of the challenge (and submission of the Clean Thames Challenge Litter Survey) participants will be entered into a prize draw to  win a kayaking trip for two with London Kayak Company, or a Stand-Up Paddleboarding trip for two with Active360. 

Mudlark and artist, Nicola White will take people on a journey of discovery along the River Thames, telling the tales of forgotten people and places through her mudlarking finds on 4th September. From Tudor Inns to Georgian taverns and soldiers to sailors, find out what secrets have emerged from the mud of the Thames. Working alongside the London Metropolitan Archives with their wealth of photos, maps and other resources, the past comes to life!

On 28th September Mimi Munro will present River's Songs, an unforgettable choir workshop on the Theatreship followed by a performance on board a Thames Clipper. Delving into the muddy world of the river is a series of mudlarking and foreshore events; from 31st August – 1st September will be a Mudlarking Exhibition in the Roman Amphitheatre in the City of London Corporation’s Guildhall Art Gallery. Visitors can step back in time and enjoy the rare opportunity to see and hold personal items lost by Romans who lived in London over 1,600 years ago.  On display will be Roman artefacts recovered from the Thames by mudlarks, telling the story of Roman life in Londinium.  Move through time to the Middle Ages with a Mudlarking Exhibition in St Paul’s Cathedral on 14th – 15th September.  See the personal belongings of medieval Londoners, including items lost by people fleeing across the river from the Great Fire of London.  

On 21st – 22nd September, take Guided Foreshore Tours with the Thames Explorer Trust, walking in the footsteps of mudlarks and discovering history with experts.  A Mudlarking Weekend at the Museum of London Docklands on 28th – 29th September will reveal thousands of historic artefacts recovered from the muddy riverbed – and meet the mudlarks who found them.  This interactive exhibition provides a unique opportunity to hear from mudlarks and hold history in your hands.  Further mudlarking talks and events will take place throughout September, including a Flint Knapping Masterclass with mudlark Alan Murphy. 

One In One Out by Lucy Hayhoe is a playful and intimate installation that invites audiences to experience a mini queer night out in just five minutes!  This tiny queer bar in Canary Wharf’s Crossrail Place Roof Garden asks what is the role of the gay bar in London’s future?  The landscape of queer London is always changing, from the queer history of London’s docks to the recent closures of queer nightlife spaces.  For two days on 5th and 7th September, One In One Out explores nostalgia for lost LGBTQIA+ scenes, the consumption of queer space, and what it means to be queer and alone.  

Want to get on (or near) the water?  Totally Thames 2024 will see plenty of riverside events during the festival – and even some on the water!  The much-loved St Katharine Docks Classic Boat Festival returns this year on 7th – 8th September, with over 40 beautiful vintage boats, including historic tugs, a Royal Navy vessel and Dunkirk Little Ships amongst others.  On 19th September, learn about the construction of the Thames Tideway Tunnel on a Tideway Boat Tour, and see the new public spaces along the river.  The Great River Race is back this year on 21st September, bringing together 300 boats in a fundraising race from Millwall to Ham Lands, which can be viewed for free at any point along the course. 

Thames Day, which coincides with World Rivers Day on 22nd September, will be held on the riverside in the City of London in front of the Church of St Magnus the Martyr, London Bridge, and attended by Lord Mayor of the City of London, Professor Michael Mainelli.  The day will feature an exciting programme of free activities for the whole family to enjoy.  Take a cruise on the Sailing Barge Will, a classic Thames Barge from 1925 – and the largest spritsail Thames Sailing Barge ever built at just under 100 feet long, and 100 feet tall.  Join a Foreshore Clean Up to help clean up the Queenhithe Dock and Wharf, facilitated by Thames 21, who work hand-in-hand with local communities to improve and maintain our waterways. Don’t miss Cod Choir’s deep-sea fishermen choir perform terrible sea shanties and cheesy fish jokes, bringing delight – and pure nautical nonsense – to all who find them.  

Kids will love Woodland Tribe, a fun play-build workshop which gives children the chance to build and play on a huge boat they have built themselves.  The London All Star Steel Band is an authentic, multi-award-winning Steelband founded by Mr Frank Rollock, playing music for everyone to enjoy at Thames Day.  The RNLI, Ahoy Centre, and the Port of London Authority are among the organisations taking part.  Thames Day is produced in partnership with Destination City, a City of London Corporation programme, as part of Totally Thames. 


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