Featured Bexley – proud to be a borough of culture

Category: Events


Library buzzes for launch of first literary festival

The newly refurbished Central Library was packed out for the launch the borough’s first BookBuzz literary festival.

The Gruffalo, Elmer and Peter Rabbit were all on hand to meet and greet children and parents, who also enjoyed free facepainting and circus skills workshops.


Cllr Craske joins the Gruffalo, Peter Rabbit and Elmer and friends at the launch of the BookBuzz festival

BookBuzz runs until 24 February. The fun includes a packed programme of free events and activities for all the family.

During half term week, there will be a huge variety of fun activities for children, including ‘Where’s Wally?’ hunts, Harry Potter activities, drama workshops and storytellers.

There will also be a wide range of author events and talks for adults – from ‘The Bewildering Business of Book Covers’ by Martin Davies to ‘The Exploits of Colonel Blood’ by Angus Donald.

Take a look at the BookBuzz Festival programme for full details of all the events and activities and find out how to book your free tickets.

For regular news of events in our libraries sign up to the Bexley libraries enewsletter.


London Borough of Culture exhibition

London Borough of Culture

The Greater London Authority has put together the first London Borough of Culture exhibition, which will feature content from the bidding boroughs.

The free exhibition will reveal a snapshot of local culture from the 22 bids the GLA received and will open to the public on Monday 26 February at City Hall.

It will be on display until 13 March at City Hall from 8.30am until 6pm each working day.


Book Buzz is coming…

Cllr Peter Craske took a tour of the borough’s libraries this week, to highlight some of the great things happening during Book Buzz – Bexley’s first book festival.

More information and the full programme for the festival are available online.


Dino Live! comes to Bexley

Hall Place & Gardens may not be where you would expect to spot a Tyrannosaurus rex roaming through the undergrowth, or a Pterodactyl stretching its wings, or even a Velociraptor guarding its eggs, but until 4 February that’s exactly what you’ll find at the Dino Live! exhibition.

The exhibition was officially opened on 8 January by the Mayor of Bexley, Cllr Peter Reader, who then welcomed a class of Brampton Primary School pupils to take a look at the moving – and roaring – going on in the Great Hall of the historic house.


Along with the impressive animatronic dinosaurs there is also a dino drawing activity area, an educational display and the chance to take a photo with a giant dino egg.

Council Cabinet Member, Cllr Peter Craske said; “Bringing this fantastic exhibition to Bexley is a real coup for Hall Place & Gardens. Not many venues could house these magnificent monsters, but we are lucky enough to have the space. To see them in the Great Hall, roaring, flapping their wings and generally making their scary presence felt is amazing! We have a packed schedule at Hall Place & Gardens throughout 2018 and this is a great way to kick it off.”

Tickets cost £5  for an adult and £3 for a child under 16. Babies up to 18 months are free. Tickets are available for sale in the main house reception on the day. Gift vouchers are also available.

The exhibition is open 10am –5pm Saturday to Wednesday, 10am–6pm Thursday and 10am–8pm on Friday. Last admission will be 30 minutes before the closing time. Access after 4pm will be via the East Gates off the main car park.

Find out more about the exhibition.


Let it Glow – the video

In the run-up to Christmas, Bow Arts worked with the London Borough of Bexley to run free, artist-led lantern making workshops in Bexleyheath for children and young people.

The workshops culminated in ‘Let It Glow: Bexley’s first lantern parade’ – a festive procession of participants, carrying their handmade lanterns through Bexleyheath town centre.

Our thanks to Bow Arts for the delivery of a truly magical event.


Bexley’s first ever lantern parade

Local children proudly paraded their handmade lanterns through Bexleyheath Broadway on 7 December) during Bexley’s first ever winter lantern parade, Let it Glow.

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A large illumined puppet of Roald Dahl character Willy Wonka, operated and made by internationally renowned artist Tessa Garland, led the parade of around 40 handmade lanterns. Children and late night shoppers marched the length of the Broadway several times to the sound of a professional steel drum band, which performed their rendition of well-known Christmas Carols.

The Council commissioned leading arts and creative learning provider Bow Arts to run lantern making workshops, the parade and accompanying arts and crafts stalls, in partnership with the Bexleyheath Business Improvement District. Tessa Garland led the free workshops every Saturday for six weeks leading up to the event, showing children the skills they need to create and personalise their very own lanterns.



Bexley’s Winter Lantern Parade

Let it glow TV Screen

Date: Thursday 7 December
Opening Hours: 5pm to 7pm
Address: 4-5 Marketplace, Broadway, Bexleyheath, DA6 7DU

Join us for the London Borough of Bexley’s first Lantern Parade. A spectacle of light, featuring food stalls, music, an arts and crafts fair and late night shopping in Bexleyheath Broadway.

Local children that have taken part in the free pop-up lantern making workshops with internationally renowned artist and curator Tessa Garland, will be taking their creations out to light up the High Street. The parade will take place along the pedestrianised area on the Broadway. It will begin and end at 4-5 Marketplace in the Broadway, near the Christmas tree and opposite Starbucks.

Adding to the festive fun, is a special arts and crafts fair and food stalls, offering a unique festive shopping experience, alongside late night shopping in several shops on the Broadway and in The Mall.

A selection of artists will be selling alternative and original handcrafted Christmas gifts. One trader is Kay Davis, a graduate of Central Saint Martin’s based in South London, whose paintings and illustrations are based on childhood memories and Caribbean culture. Kay will also have hand painted fashion items that will only available at the fair. There will also be the chance to see a small collective of international artists called ‘Point and Place’ who have developed an original board game called Hexagons, a memory game using original artworks and photographic images.

Let it Glow is free to attend. We advise participating in the parade to arrive 15 minutes in advance to light lanterns.

Whether you’re participating in the parade, or looking for alternative handmade Christmas gift, come and get festive and #LetItGlow in this celebration of arts and crafts at Bexley – the perfect countdown to Christmas!

Pop-up workshops are running at the former Bensons Bed shop in Bexleyheath Broadway, every Saturday from 11am to 4pm until Saturday 2 December and are free to attend.