The definitive guide to London dining & events

...Ideas for School Holiday Fun

Date: 22.07.11 Category:

“No more pencils, no more books, no more teacher's dirty looks. No more peace, no more quiet, the kids are at home and causing a riot.”

School's out for the summer – here are a few of my favourite activities and outings in London to keep the little ones entertained over the school holiday period.

From Dragonology to Belle's Beauty School, private members' club Maggie & Rose offer a full schedule of fun school holiday activities and excursions for children of all ages. Send budding chefs to hone their culinary skills at a Cookie Crumbles cooking workshop held in Kensington and Putney throughout the summer; or to Dri Dri Gelato whose summer workshops teach little ones how to prepare (and devour) delicious gelato and sorbets. And for something out of town, a shooting lesson at Bisley Shooting Ground makes for a great day trip for older children and teens.

There's still plenty of fun to be had in dreary weather – head to BFI Imax to see the biggest blockbusters on the biggest screen in town or to the interactive British Music Experience at the O2 where kids (and adults) not only learn to strum a Gibson and do the locomotion but take a recording of their performance home with them. An afternoon of bowling at All Star Lanes (£5.75 per game for children) or Bloomsbury Bowling (children catered for before 4pm) is a fun outing for families with a competitive streak. And to amuse the tiny tots, Disney and the athenaeum hotel have opened a Winnie the Pooh playroom for the summer filled with toys, musical instruments and games in a Hundred Acre Wood setting within the hotel.

To avoid the compromise of either force feeding your five year old fois gras or pick at a plate of fish fingers yourself, book a table at either Sam's Brasserie in Chiswick or Smollensky's in the West End – both of whom offer special kids menus that will keep everyone happy. The Orange also offer family-friendly wood-fired pizzas as well as serving half-sized portions at half-sized prices for children on some of their dishes.

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Maggie & Rose

  • Deals offered

Maggie & Rose

Private members' club

"Fabulous and friendly, Maggie and Rose is an exclusive family-orientated member's club. A membership here will ensure you..."

58 Pembroke Road, London W8 6NX

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Cookie Crumbles

Cookie Crumbles

A kid's party organiser

"Sometimes children's parties look more fun than adult's ones. I guess that's just the way the cookie crumbles."

64 St. Leonards Rd, London SW14 7NE

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Dri Dri

Dri Dri

Cafe

"Custard cream flavoured ice-cream? it sounds too good to be true. But it isn't."

189 Portobello Road, London W11 2ED

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Bisley Shooting Ground

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Bisley Shooting Ground

Corporate hospitality

"Combine wonderful service and a relaxed setting with a competitive and seriously fun activity by putting some lead in the air..."

Bisley Camp, Brookwood, Woking, Surrey GU24 ONY

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BFI IMAX

BFI IMAX

Cinema

"The BFI IMAX has the largest cinema screen in the UK. Yes, size matters."

1 Charlie Chaplin Walk, London SE1 8XR

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The O2

The O2

Event space

"The O2 is one of the most iconic spaces in London but the main arena is not the only space available for private hire."

Peninsula Square, London SE10 0DX

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All Star Lanes

All Star Lanes

Bowling alley

"No need to endure warm pints and fast food here: All Star Lanes combines cocktails, indulgent diner food and a fun bowling..."

6 Porchester Gardens, London W2 4DB

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Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes

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Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes

Bowling alley

"Bloomsbury Lanes is for exhibitionists who want to bowl, sing, drink and dance."

Basement of Tavistock Hotel, Bedford Way, London WC1H 9EU

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The Athenaeum

The Athenaeum

The Athenaeum

Hotel

"They can fly a kite, ride a bike or feed the birds in this child-friendly hotel."

116 Piccadilly, London W1J 7BJ

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Sam's Brasserie

  • Online booking

Sam's Brasserie

Restaurant with bar

"With special menus, things to colour in and more, the tots will be more than happy whilst you enjoy the best hangover-curing..."

11 Barley Mow Passage, London W4 4PH

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Smollensky's

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Smollensky's

Restaurant

"Smollensky's flagship has a distinct American Grill vibe and has remained popular for over 20 years thanks to its child-friendly..."

105 The Strand, London WC2R 0AA

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The Orange

The Orange

Pub

"A pub-come-restaurant, The Orange is a destination haunt for local residents, families, the young, and the old from neighbouring..."

37 Pimlico Road, London SW1W 8NE

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