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Soutbank Centre Launches Summer Long Neighbourhood Festival

Posted at 9:15 am, June 1, 2013 in Arts & Entertainment

Artist Bob and Roberta Smith for Southbank Centre press office.  Photo by Linda Nylind. 29/5/2013.
Whether you welcome your neighbours into your life with complimentary fruit baskets on their doorstep,  or prefer your own space and stapling banana peels to their bin – it’s important to embrace those closest to us – both emotionally and geographically. In honour of getting by with a little help from our friends, the Southbank Centre are throwing a three month celebration, called the ‘Festival of Neighbourhood’ starting today, to honour communities and harmonious living.

Dennis the Menace in the Queen's Walk Window Gardens. Photo credit Belinda Lawley

The site will be transformed into a giant urban garden, with the help of such artistic minds like Bob & Roberta Smith, who has taken to asking questions, putting them on flags and inviting members of the public to join him up on Royal Festival Hall to sing their answers. As well as this eclectic small-talk karaoke, there will be a celebration of 75 years of esteemed childhood staple The Beano, with the assembling of BeanoTown. Alongside this, expect large-scale murals, traditional fruit and veg stalls, and all manners of art dispersed from far and wide.

Here’s a quick look at some of the best events to get down to over the summer.

Photo credit Belinda Lawley

The Alternative Guide to the Universe

No pressure on the Hayward Gallery this June as they open up their exhibition of re-imagining pretty much, the whole universe. From self-taught artists, to architects, to professional dreamers, the display  meanders around thinking of how we came to be, and offering up unconventional explanations.


As most comedy fans will be aware, Udderbelly has been running for a while already, with the cream of cabaret and comic talent gracing the big purple cow on the Embankment. In conjunction with Southbank Centre, the Neighbourhood Arms sits in prime position in it’s pasture, whilst you take in some of the newest and most maverick performers on the circuit.

South Banquet

The South Banquet will revamp the entire concept of lending a cup of sugar to next door, with a gloriously merry food festival stretching the entire weekend of the end of August, welcoming us heartily into September. Expect things to get a whole lot medieval, with dancing, debauchery, and general joviality.

For more info, see southbankcentre.co.uk.

The Sweepers GREMS and Wheelbarrow Rollercoaster. Photo credit Belinda Lawley

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