The Best One-Day London Festivals This Summer
All Points East
A new kid on the block in 2018, this ten-day festival will take over Victoria Park once more at the end of May. Occupying the former home of Field Day festival, the park will be host to pop-up bars, street food from east London local Sourced Market and various entertainment from acts appearing on the main stage – think The Vaccines, James Blake, Hot Chip and Christine And The Queens. Even better, ‘In The Neighbourhood’ will be a free-entry weekday programme of activities including cinema, music, arts, street food and bars, taking place between the two weekends of All Points East.
Line-up highlights: The Chemical Brothers, The Strokes, Bon Iver, Mumford & Sons
Victoria Park, London, E3 5TB; 24th May-2nd June
For its 13th outing, Field Day is relocating to a series of warehouses in north London. Moving from a, ahem, field, this year the two-day festival will take place in groundbreaking new venue The Drumsheds, complete with state-of-the art production and the loudest festival sound system in the capital. Open until 3am, the festival’s new home features ten acres of outdoor space and four gigantic interlinking warehouses. Away from the likes of Death Grips and Earl Sweatshirt, visitors will be able to sample food from some of London’s finest traders in the Street Food Arcade, check out ten independent breweries in the Beavertown & Friends Beer Market or take a photography masterclass with the Guardian. We’re excited to see Field Day’s new look.
Line-up highlights: Skepta, Diplo, Jorja Smith
The Drumsheds, Enfield, N1; 7th-8th June
What do you get when you mix Bananarama, Samantha Mumba, Artful Dodger, Liberty X and Jamelia, plus drag super-group Sink The Pink? Mighty Hoopla – the most flamboyant all of London’s festivals. Celebrating the capital’s alternative club culture, come rain or shine, it’s set to be a loud, proud and colour-filled day, where fancy dress is pretty much mandatory. This year, we’re most excited about Fleetmac Wood.
Line-up highlights: Chaka Khan, All Saints, Samantha Mumba
Brockwell Park, SE24 9BJ; 9th June
Hampton Court Palace Festival
Henry VIII’s former abode makes a splendid backdrop for the palace’s annual series of concerts. Ahead of the performance, guests are welcome to arrive early to explore the state apartments and roam the grounds with a drink and a picnic. VIP upgrades include a three-course dinner and champagne reception in the palace, before everyone takes to the courtyard for the likes of Jools Holland, Busted, The Jacksons and Caro Emerald.
Line-up highlights: Nile Rogers & Chic, Kylie Minogue, Tears For Fears
Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey KT8 9AU; various dates between 6th-22nd June
This three-day urban music event has been kicking around since 2005. With a strong focus on hip-hop, rap and grime, the festival continues to sell out year after year. This summer looks set to be no different, particularly as the line-up includes the likes of A$AP Rocky, Cardi B, Future, Travis Scott, Rae Sremmurd and Migos. Those wanting a premium experience should buy tickets for Bohemia, a VIP area which includes oh-so important luxury loos, table service, a complimentary meal and unlimited drinks. There will also be a huge screen, live streaming all the action from the main stage.
Line-up highlights: Cardi B, Travis Scott, A$AP Rocky
Finsbury Park, London, N4 2DA; 5th-7th July
Somerset House Summer Series
Across eleven nights of open-air gigs, Somerset House Summer Series brings a vibrant festival atmosphere to the very heart of London. With a programme of pioneering musicians across a range of genres, Summer Series gives music fans a live experience unlike any other, with the rare chance to see critically acclaimed artists (such as Doves, Nao and The Internet) plus some of the best up and coming performers in an intimate setting. Courtyard bars will offer a selection of drinks all evening, and this year there will also be a pop-up food stall in the Edmond J. Safra Fountain Court.
Line-up highlights: The Good, The Bad & The Queen, Cut Copy, Gossip
Somerset House, Strand, Covent Garden, WC2R 1LA; 11th-21st July
BST Hyde Park
This series of one-day concerts in Hyde Park continues in style for 2019. This year sees three of the best divas take to the stage: Barbara Streisand, Celine Dion and Florence & The Machine. Held in such a vast park, in our experience it’s worth shelling out a bit extra to upgrade your ticket to VIP – that way you’ll have access to the Premium Viewing standing area in front of the stage, plus the summer garden, complete with premium bars and street food vendors. We’re most excited about seeing The National, Blood Orange, Lykke Li and Nadine Shah offer support for Florence on 13th July.
Line-up highlights: Celine Dion, Barbara Streisand, Florence & The Machine
Hyde Park, W2 2UH; 12th-14th July
A London fixture since 2005, Lovebox certainly knows how to throw a party. This year, it’s amping up the hip-hop and RnB – we don’t care if it rains, we’re already looking forward to seeing Solange, Giggs, Four Tet, Chance The Rapper and Brockhampton. Experiences on site are set to include hip-hop karaoke, a disco golf challenge and The Chapel of Love(box), where you can ‘get married’ in an inflatable church.
Line-up highlights: Solange, Chance The Rapper, Cypress Hill
Gunnersbury Park, W3 8LQ; 12th-13th July
Citadel Festival takes off where Lovebox leaves, occupying the same site just 14 hours after Solange closes proceedings. A guitar-led line-up replaces Lovebox’s dance-heavy artists, this year with headline sets from Bastille, Friendly Fires and Catfish & The Bottlemen. Away from the bands (there are so many we want to see, we’re already panicking about stage clashes) live experiences include Sunday Papers Live, mass yoga workshops, a science camp and a pub quiz.
Line-up highlights: Fontaines D.C., Dream Wife, Squid
Gunnersbury Park, W3 8LQ; 14th July
Following in the footsteps of The Cure’s Robert Smith, MIA and Elbow’s Guy Garvey, producer, songwriter, musician, composer, guitarist and sonic trendsetter Nile Rodgers will curate the 26th Meltdown festival, taking over Southbank Centre with his extraordinary creative vision this August. More than a collaborator, Rodgers has been instrumental in the careers of some of the biggest artists in the history of popular music, including David Bowie, Madonna, Duran Duran, Daft Punk and Diana Ross. The line-up is yet to be announced, but we’re extremely excited for what’s to come.
Line-up highlights: TBC, but Nile himself is bound to be phenomenal.
Southbank Centre, South Bank, SE1 8XX; 3rd-11th August
South West Four
SW4 will once again be touching down on Clapham Common for the August bank holiday weekend. London’s biggest dance music festival (the weekend celebrates all things EDM, house, techno, drum and bass, and grime), the event is famed for its diverse line-up. 2019 is no different, with artists including Chase & Status, Tinie Tempah, Plan B, Andy C, Example and Wiley all taking to the stage over the two days.
Line-up highlights: Craig David Presents TS5, Wiley, Tinie Tempah
Clapham Common; 24th-25th August
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