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Summer in London: what do YOU like about it?

(47 Posts)
expatkat Tue 07-Jun-05 16:15:41

After a soul-searching few months in NYC, I've decided to return to London & send my kids to school in London & give things with dh another try. I'm trying to psyche myself up for my return by remembering the great things about summer in London: amazing tomatoes at the farmers markets with which I make gaspacho all summer long; the relative mildness of the weather. . .

What do you other London mumsnetters like about London in the summer?

Marina Tue 07-Jun-05 16:20:54

You do know we have been predicted a VILE, brain-frying heatwave this August don't you my dear expatkat...
OK. Brockwell Park Lido in S London.
Hampstead Bathing Ponds.
Marine Ices in Chalk Farm.
Being able to get to the coast in an hour by train.
Skulking in Oxleas Woods on hot days.
Walking along the Thames in the evening.
The City after 7pm, especially Finsbury Circus.
The special smell of the South Bank...seriously. Best appreciated from a good seat in the Olivier teamed with a glass of sauvignon blanc on the balconies overlooking the river at the interval.
Looking forward to seeing you back!

hoxtonchick Tue 07-Jun-05 16:25:05

hanging out at paddling pools in parks all day.
long long evenings (ok, not specific to london!)
kew gardens
highgate woods

maybe we could meet up when you get back expatkat, we didn't manage to get the kids together before you went away did we? xxx

Earlybird Tue 07-Jun-05 16:26:40

Evening picnics in the park.
The fact that it's light until almost 10 (not a London trait exclusively, but you don't get that in New York).
The Proms
Wimbledon - watching it on telly, but knowing it's happening just down the road.
Going to a lido in the park with dd for a swim
Pimms (again, not exclusive to London but wonderful part of summer)
strawberries and cream (better here than in the US)
Easy travel to Europe for summer holidays
How quiet the streets of London are in late July/early August

Hmmm....more later. And welcome back, by the way.

Marina Tue 07-Jun-05 16:27:29

Doh! Wimbledon. You should take them expatkat!

batters Tue 07-Jun-05 16:28:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

compo Tue 07-Jun-05 16:31:14

and there is always something to do on a rainy day - museums, London Acquarium etc

Bugsy2 Tue 07-Jun-05 16:33:42

Evening walks in Richmond Park,
barbeques in the back garden,
farmers market on Sunday mornings
putting the rug out in the park & being able to loll while watching the children play
drinks after work - outside!!!!
summer fair at the school
school sports days
lovely empty tubes in August

Earlybird Tue 07-Jun-05 16:52:47

Having most of the windows open most of the time
Hearing the birds sing....even in London!
Fresh asparagus
Sitting in the garden for coffee, lunch, supper, bbq's
little girls in their summer frocks and canvas shoes
Even if it's not a pretty day, you're usually guaranteed either a beautiful morning, or glorious evening
late summer evening light
going to a pub garden for lunch or a drink
the spirit of community when virtually all patrons of all pubs stand on the street with a drink in hand, chatting and laughing
sidewalk cafes
Chelsea Flower Show, Ascot and Henley - for the festive spirit they create even for those of us who don't attend

merryberry Tue 07-Jun-05 17:07:02

the festivals in clapham, regents park, the hackney free, even the fringes of notting hill if in the mood enough.

river trips

the great galleries for air con when needed!

Thomcat Tue 07-Jun-05 17:15:52

I love when it's sunny in London people 's mood lifts, it makes the fact that everyone is miserable the rest of the year worth it, so we can really appreicate being in a good mood.

the weather bulletins and cheesy summer songs on the radio

people smiling at each other and it generally being a bit flirty

the fashions

fit, tanned builders with the chests bared!

people playing great music in their cars with window down

the fashions, pretty girls in flip flops, and vest tops and i love laughing at guys eyes popping out of theri heads as they turn to stare at them

the smell of cut grass

people drinking outside the pub


cooking on bbq every night

seeing friends more

going out for the day more

days in the garden playing with water, bbqing huge prawns for the hell of it, sipping ice cold wine

watering the garden when you get in from work

having all the windows open

your kid being able to be nudey in the back garden and get soem fresh air to their bums which are usually wrapped in a nappy.

The sound of tennis balls being thwacked

Hmmmmmmmm summer

I love winter too btw.

ninah Tue 07-Jun-05 17:27:11

Going to the early morning markets in a T-shirt and buying fruit and veg
Sitting outside a cafe/bar and watching the world go by
The strange things that happen like 20 skateboarders appearing in formation down Great Portland Street
The sound of people drinking and laughing outside
Open Air theatre in Regent's party
Parties in private gardens
Walking along the canal or by the river
I LOVE London! but I no longer live there

noddyholder Tue 07-Jun-05 17:30:05

I don't live in London anymore but used to love it in summer there was a kind of noise in the air that just felt great

Marina Wed 08-Jun-05 09:26:26

"noise in the air", you've got it just right noddyholder!
I was going to come back and mention those fountains at Somerset House too batters, how much more fun can you have for free in London with small children?
And Borough Market/Spitalfields Market...eating superb hot chicken sandwiches from the farm stall in Borough Market in the sunny Southwark Cathedral precincts is another.

soapbox Wed 08-Jun-05 09:38:03

I love

-getting up early on a SUnday and going to Columbia Road flower market followed by brekkie in one of the nice cafes there

- having a lovely birthday lunch with friends in the garden and making the table look summery

- strawberry picking (in fact any kind of fruit or veg picking) at Hewitts farm.

- BBQ's

- pottering in the garden

-having the patio doors open permanently with air flowing through the house and billowing curtains.

- wearing long floaty skirts

- reading in the garden

- cold, crisp chablis or champagne

- watching the children have fun in the paddling pool

- days out at the seaside or chessington or lego land

- making full use of my Leeds Castle pass

- school holidays

- escaping for the weekend to a typical English coast hotel

- allowing myself to read trashy beach books!

I could go on and on and on - I just love it - I really do feel like London hibernates over the winter then come the first signs of summer our souls are set free for a few months before its time to pack them away for another year

(Although I do also love the autumn months too)!

HappyDaddy Wed 08-Jun-05 09:54:45

All the scantily clad ladies...

DickWhittingtonsCat Wed 08-Jun-05 10:06:29

I love Regents Park, Kensington Gdns and Hyde Park, which are so beautiful and actually so large that they are never crowded and you can feel like you own it. You can take a picnic and walk for hours. I love the way that green weeds and flowers grow in cracks even in the most derelict places you pass, making it a real lush urban jungle. And I love ignoring some of the greatest museums, concerts, theatres, restaurants, libraries and assorted entertainments in the world, because they will be there waiting for you when winter comes around.

Gobbledigook Wed 08-Jun-05 10:08:17

Oh it had to be the morning journey to work where you crammed on the boiling hot tube only to find it was stopping at Victoria so you had to get off and walk to Vauxhall arriving a big sweaty mess.


moondog Wed 08-Jun-05 10:11:57

Swimming at the outdoor pool,the Oasis. Just off Oxford street iirc.So great to be sunbathing outside so near to all that manic activity.
Hey,you can do a lot of this stuff in the 'burbs' too you know!
Diaphanous clothing and chilled wine aren't an exclusively London thing you know!

Marina Wed 08-Jun-05 10:12:23

I strongly disapprove of any cats ignoring libraries however sunny it may be outside. Your library needs you, you sunkissed philistine!
soapbox, do you ever go to that terrific park with paddling pool and little train in Swanley?
I think I will be lurking in Chislehurst Caves a lot during the predicted heatwave

soapbox Wed 08-Jun-05 10:18:10

Yes! Swanley park is great, were there with the children a couple of weeks ago.

Bugsy2 Wed 08-Jun-05 10:20:29

lol, Thomcat at the brawny builders!!!!

soapbox Wed 08-Jun-05 10:20:47

GDG - thanks to Ken, I think buses are the way to go in London these days!

I catch the bus from London Bridge to Moorfields every day and I always get a seat and with the windows open its not too hot and stuffy.

I love when you cross London Bridge and look up and down teh Thames and the sun sparkles across the water!

KBear Wed 08-Jun-05 10:27:02

maybe it's because I'm a Londoner
that I love London town

I love it, soapbox - IKWYM about the bus over London Bridge. Always makes me wish I could get off and be a tourist for the day instead of going into my freezing air-conditioned office!

I can't think of anything that hasn't been mentioned.

beachyhead Wed 08-Jun-05 10:29:35

soapbox - I catch the bus from London Bridge to Moorgate every Mon, Tues and Wed as well - how wierd is that..........are you coming to picnic lunch on Wed 22nd - Finsbury Circus......

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