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Top Five for Floating Fun

9 July 2015 | Imogen Greenberg

London Calling takes to London’s waterways and brings you recommendations of canal side spots and floating fun to enjoy on sunny afternoons. With a café and roastery, pop up, bike shop, bookshop, cinema and theatre, you won’t need to touch down on land for a while.

The Counter Café

Perched on the edge of the Olympic Park, near Hackney Wick, is the Counter Café. Its also home to a coffee roastery, where piles of coffee beans are specially roasted to create the great coffee they serve in the café. This summer, they’re hosting one of the best Canal pop-ups, The Flamingo Pier, which takes over the floating pontoon and canal side boat for DJ’s, street food, cocktails and craft beer from Crate Brewery, just up the canal (another great spot, where they also make great pizza). Each party is themed around a different location or ‘postcard’, and so far they’ve visited Kerala, the Seychelles and Bali amongst others.

More about Counter Café and Flamingo Pier and what’s coming up next.

 

Lock 7

In East London near Cambridge Heath, Lock 7 claims to have been London’s first cycle café, its founders inspired by a trip to Copenhagen and the bike culture there. With a café, cycle repairs whilst you wait and a team committed to getting and keeping people on bicycles, Lock 7 is the place to pause if you’re cycling the length of London’s canals.

More about Lock 7 here.


Word on the Water

London’s only floating second hand bookshop, Word on the Water was only just saved from closing by a successful campaign that saw Granary Square offer them a place to pitch up permanently. The London Bookbarge is brought to you by Paddy ‘The Doctor’, John ‘The Professor’ and the mysterious ‘The Captain’. Join their growing and loyal following, and head down there to check out a great second-hand collection at reasonable prices.

More about Word on the Water here.


The Floating Cinema

An award winning and extraordinary floating structure, an arts venue and a cinema, The Floating Cinema is one of a kind. It’s currently on tour around the waterways of the UK, but returns to London in August and September for Extra-Terrestrial, a programme of film and events across London’s waterways that explores life beyond Earth. It promises sci-fi cult classics, a summer space school and on-board talks bringing together scientists, writers and enthusiasts.

More about The Floating Cinema and Extra-Terrestrial.

 

Puppet Theatre Barge

For over 30 years, Movingstage Marionette Company has been creating puppet shows on an 80 ft barge. With a passion for puppets, and a knack for reviving traditional fairytales, the performances appeal across the board to adults and children. They spend most of the year at Little Venice, before taking a brief holiday in August to Richmond on Thames. Their summer programme includes The Three Pigs and the Wolf and Fowl Play, a farm yard adventure.

More on the Puppet Theatre Barge here.

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