What’s on at the Woolwich Grand Theatre?

Fancy doing something slightly different on the weekends or a day off? If so, the Woolwich Grand Theatre may be the answer. The Woolwich Grand Theatre is both an arts venue and a cinema situated in the heart of Woolwich, and only a five minute walk from Woolwich Arsenal station.

Upcoming events at the venue include:

Roller Disco and family skate session

On Saturday 1st of February the Woolwich Grand Theatre will play host to a family skate session in the main hall, from 3pm to 6pm, followed by an adult’s roller disco from 7pm to 6pm. The family skate session would be a great day out for the whole family, and the kids are sure to have more than a few opportunities to laugh at their guardians donning their rollerblades. Skate hire costs £7.50, if you’re a keen skater and have your own the cost of entry drops to £5.00, and if you think it will be better (and safer) for everyone if you skip the skating all together spectator entry costs a mere £3.00. Prices vary slightly for the adult’s roller disco, with skate hire costing £10.00 and without skate hire costing £8.00 (spectator prices stay at £3.00). It’s great alternative weekend activity for friends and family to enjoy alike.

King of Comedy Night

Head down to the Woolwich Grand Theatre on Friday 28th of February from 7pm to 11pm to have a laugh, and leave all your troubles in the office (what a great way to start the weekend). The King of Comedy Night consists of ten acts battling it out to be crowned King or Queen of the evening, which the audience gets to decide. As the Woolwich Grand Theatre have said themselves: “This interactive principle is proving very popular among acts and audience members alike. So come down and enjoy the show, get involved and have a laugh on us.”

A Guide to Moving House

moving-houseStatistics – and real life – go to prove that moving house is one of the most stressful events in a persons life (third only to bereavement and divorce.) However with good planning and organization this does not need to be the case. Obviously a larger budget can offset stress vs cost more easily, by simply paying others to do all the leg-work, however, even this approach requires careful planning. Here at Woolwich Central we’ve put together 5 things to think about which will make ‘the big move’ that little bit less stressful, no matter what budget you’re working with.

  1. Make a list of people and companies you need to notify. This includes (but is not limited to) banks, electricity companies, internet providers, doctors, employers and the council. The Royal Mail re-direction service is a helpful way to ensure your bills don’t go astray. For friends and family members a simple e-mail will suffice- one less expenditure on stamps, and saves the arm ache of writing out all their addresses!
  2. Removals. Talk to family, friends and colleagues to see who they recommend, then get quotes from at least 3 different firms. Hiring professional packers is almost definitely worth the outlay, and if you’re going DIY then assure you have an excellent colour-coding  system for room allocations. Also think about insurance for your possessions whilst they’re in transit. Also (and it seems basic) but will your old furniture fit in your new house?
  3. Take this as an opportunity to de-clutter and clean! Get rid of anything that you never use: old relics from forgotten hobbies and dusty magazine collections. If you’ve forgotten you had them, chances are you no longer need them- there are even specialists who can help you ‘let-go’ and de-clutter.
  4. Ask for a guide for your new house. If you have a folder containing important info, from the numbers of local tradesmen to how to put the heating on, recycling schemes and burglar alarms, then your transition into your new home will be a lot easier.
  5. Finally, on the day get rid of all distractions. Send the children and pets away so you can focus on logistics. Collect up all spare keys and change the locks on your new home. Once the boxes are unloaded set yourself an un-packing deadline – stick to it!

This is just a very brief summary, but moving house is certainly a situation where the age old mantra ‘fail to plan and plan to fail’ holds true.  If you’re looking for help when moving, tweet us @WoolwichCntrl or check out this article.

What to do in London for Valentine’s Day

Romantic walk and a picnic on Hampstead Heath

Theres nothing quite as romantic as escaping the hustle and bustle with your loved one, leaving the traffic, sirens and crowds and taking in a breath of fresh air. Jane Austen and Emily Bronte certainly knew the power of the great outdoors to get your pulses racing , and luckily London boasts an unrivalled array of beautiful parks and open spaces for all of us to enjoy. Hampstead Heath, with its lakes, lanes and vast swathes of open ‘green-ness’ provides the perfect landscape for a romantic stroll- with Highgate village a great pit-stop for wearied wanderers. The view of the capital from the top of Parliament hill is unrivalled on a clear day, and perfect for a romantic trip out.

Dial Arch

Situated in the natural heart of Royal Arsenal Riverside in Woolwich, the original Dial Square building dates from 1720, this Gastro pub is a truly unique part of Woolwich history- the building itself acted as the gate house for the historic home of British defence and munitions production. Recently re-furbished to house a “plush and unique style, with exposed brickwork, chandeliers, and original artwork on the walls”, the Dial Arch is brimming with rustic style and character.  A warming fire with heart-warming food and traditional cask ales will assure that you and your loved one are comforted to the core this Valentines day- and its right on your doorstep.

Future Cinema

“WE ARE LIVE CINEMA” boasts the website in bold capitals. Future Cinema is a live events company that specialise in creating living, breathing experiences of the cinema. A totally new concept providing an immersion in the cinema, and bringing  back the concept of ‘spectacle’ – it is perhaps best explained by themselves: “Specialising in bringing events to life through a unique fusion of film, improvised performances, detailed design and interactive multimedia, Future Cinema create wholly immersive worlds that stretch the audience’s imagination and challenge their expectations.” Current viewings on offer are Casablanca and the Shawshank Redemption – whilst the latter is perhaps not top of the list for romance, Casablanca is heralded as one of the greatest love stories of all time, and the spectacle of either event will be sure to provide  a great evening out.

Cocktail Masterclass

What’s better than enjoying a delicious cocktail with your loved one on Valentine’s Day – why learning how to make them of course! London’s very own Harvey Nicholls run cocktail making master-classes twice weekly. The course promises to guide you “through cocktail bar alchemy, classic cocktail combinations and bartender’s top tips,” before they let you lose behind the bar to practice your newly found skills. The morning class is followed by a certificate presentation and lunch in the adjoining 5th Floor restaurant – reservation required.   If great drinks followed by great food don’t get you in the romantic spirit then nothing else will.

Tramshed

Set in a famous grade-2 listed tramshed building on Garden Walk and Rivington Street was designed by Vincent Harris and built in 1905 as an electricity generating facility for the Tramway System. Where gastronomy and culture collide, there is an art gallery on the bottom floor as well as a specially commissioned Damien Hirst work overlooking the restaurant- which can be equally enjoyed by private diners on the mezzanine floor. With a simple menu of chicken or steak, or chicken salad or steak salad, this isn’t one for vegetarians however. But for meat lovers, great quality and fantastic produce can be assured. Tramshed also offers takeaway chicken & chips, salads, steak sandwiches and coffee from 11am daily-  an ideal way to enjoy valentine’s day at home!

How to get fit in London: the alternative guide

The Thames Cycle PathNew Year, New You. Time to get fit and try to lose the ‘winter coat’ acquired over the season of excess. However, if the thought of a treadmill makes you give up before you’ve even started, there are plenty more options available to Londoners that the dreaded GYM… Here are Woolwich Central’s top 5:

Horse Riding:

There are a number of stables in London and it’s never too late to learn. Wimbledon Village Stables, the oldest stables in Britain, welcomes riders of all levels. They run a range of short courses for complete beginners including a one day course. It’s not cheap at £175 but a private instructor will take you through the basics and leave you raring to go.

Woolwich cycle path:

A great way to enjoy the crisp winter weather – just remember gloves and a positive mental attitude – cycling around the capital is an effortless way to exercise right from your doorstep. If you’re not lucky enough to have your own two-wheeled transportation system, then Greenwich cycle hire will be more than happy to help you out, and even have some great suggestions and tips on their website to inspire you further! With Greenwich cycle path just a stones-throw away, there really is no excuse not to give it a go!

Rollerblading:

Not just the reserve of bikini clad California-dwellers, Roller blading is taking off across London. Far more effective than any ‘legs bums and tums’ class, rollerblading is a great way to get fit and enjoy London. Citiskate run four and five week courses which take place in Hyde Park, Victoria and Kew and the Absolute Beginners course covers essentials such as stopping and falling! A four week course costs £145 which includes rental skates that you keep for the duration or £105 if you provide your own. Once you are able to stop at speed and handle more challenging terrain you can join in the Friday Night Skate which is held over a variety of routes.

Military Fitness:

Run by ex-military fitness trainers, these group work-out sessions have been springing up in parks across the capital. British Military Fitness (BMF) is the UK’s largest military style fitness, where it’s all about creating a motivating environment and maximising team spirit in the great outdoors. There are over 13 000 member across 80 local parks across the UK, and classes are run for all abilities.

Watersports:

Not the first thing to spring to mind when thinking of alternative ways to lose the winter paunch, but there are in fact many opportunities to take part in watersports across London.

The Docklands Sailing and Watersports Centre has access to Millwall Dock and the River Thames and offers 25 acres of sheltered water, excellent for those who wish to learn one of a variety of watersports in a safe environment. For further information on activities including sailing, canoeing, dragon boating and rowing log on to www.dswc.org. The British Canoe Union also provide useful details on where you can learn to canoe and kayak around London.

For more suggestions, visit www.allinlondon.co.uk.

What to do in London this Christmas

Christmas-in-London-e1289843849396Finding yourself short of things to do this Christmas season? Here is our guide to some of the top things to do in London that you might not have considered yet…

Woolwich winter warmer. Running from the 24th of November right up until Christmas Eve (perfect for last minute present shopping), the Christmas market in General Gordon square is providing plenty of local festive cheer to the Royal Greenwich borough. Other attractions include performers, fairground rides, the obvious presence of carol choirs and the slightly less traditional display of Owls.

The Natural History Museum Ice Rink. Where ice and culture collide… the stunning Natural History Museum provides the backdrop for a 1,000-metre-square outdoor ice rink, as well as a smaller rink for children. Obviously the mulled wine and hot chocolate flows for spectators, who can admire the scene from the café overlooking the ice. The trees are decked with thousands of fairy lights to add to the festive atmosphere. See the website for wheelchair-user sessions, and note the rink is occasionally closed for private functions.

Pantomime. For some, as integral to Christmas as re-runs of Only-Fools-and-Horses and Charades is the classic christmas panto (also known as the marmite of the theatre world). This year as ever, London boasts an array of shows from the classic and family-friendly “Beauty and the Beast”, or “Jack and the Beanstalk”, to the more avant-garde “Snow White and the Seven Poofs: The Climax”. Amongst the array of performances across all corners of London, as well as matinee and evening shows, there is bound to be something that takes your fancy.

Harrods Christmas shopping. Perhaps to come with a health warning and parental advisory notice (as in avoid letting your offspring loose in order to protect both your sanity and bank balance), nowhere embraces the consumer spirit of Christmas quite like Harrods. This year it has provided every little girl and boy’s dream in the form of a pop-up Disney store- complete with Princess Parlour – on the fourth floor. Attractions include limited edition glass slippers, an interactive area for families, and storytelling sessions. Once all this festivitiy has worn you out then you can retreat to the food hall and famed xmas hampers on the bottom floor. Ideal.