Take A Plastic-Free Pledge: Refill Merton Launch

 

Sustainable Merton, the borough’s leading environmental charity, is excited to announce the launch of Refill Merton, the latest addition to their #PlasticFreeMerton campaign. Sustainable Merton, the borough’s leading environmental charity, is excited to announce the launch of Refill Merton, the latest addition to their #PlasticFreeMerton campaign.

Research shows that despite more people than ever carrying reusable water bottles, over 71% of us feel uncomfortable asking for a refill at restaurants, cafes and bars, if we’re not buying something at the same time.

Plastic bottles now make up one-third of all ocean plastic pollution and there are now over 159 plastic bottles for every mile of beach in the UK. The overall impact on our wildlife is catastrophic, with 100,000 marine mammals and turtles and 1 million seabirds being killed by plastic pollution every year.

Sustainable Merton, the borough’s leading environmental charity, is excited to announce the launch of Refill Merton. This national award-winning scheme by City to Sea, tackles plastic pollution at the source. Through bringing a local Refill chapter to Merton, Sustainable Merton aims to disrupt the social norm of buying bottled water when on-the-go, and make carrying a reusable bottle the new normal.

 

How does Refill work?

Through the Refill App, you will be able to easily identify friendly local Refill Stations where you can ask for free tap water.

By using the Refill App and saying no to single-use plastic, you are helping to protect our oceans, combating climate change, and saving money all at the same time.

There are currently 28 venues in Wimbledon offering free water refills, with many more joining soon. Download the Refill App for the location of your nearest Refill station.

 

“Combatting plastic pollution is an issue that is close to the heart of many of our volunteers. If this is something that you are passionate about, consider joining us as a Community Champion. We will help you become an ambassador for sustainability in your community.”

– Rachael Edwards, Community Champions Project Manager and Volunteer Coordinator at Sustainable Merton

 

Refill Merton will officially be launching on Wednesday 22nd January, 11am-2pm (inside Centre Court Shopping Centre, Wimbledon – outside Lakeland).

Come out to learn more, take a plastic-free pledge, and help Sustainable Merton combat plastic pollution one Refill at a time!

 

Find out more about the Refill launch event here.

 

Michael McIntyre helps to raise over £30k for Polka Theatre

Michael McIntyre charms 600 Polka Theatre supporters with new material, helping to raise over £30k for Polka Theatre’s redevelopment.

Polka Patron and acclaimed comedian Omid Djalili presented a stellar line-up at the ‘Big Charity Comedy Night’, a fundraising event including Michael McIntyre, Dominic Holland, Tez Ilyas, Holly Morgan and Emma Sidi.

In the stunning Grand Hall at Battersea Arts Centre, audiences spent the evening hooting with laughter to Omid Djalili’s wild stories, hearing Dominic Holland’s pride in his ‘favourite’ Spiderman son and Holly Morgan (and her husband’s) married feminist double act with musical impressions from the world’s divas.

Polka Patron Omid Djalili MC’d the event, bringing on the evening’s headliner Michael McIntyre, who said: “It’s been brilliant supporting Polka. Good luck with the redevelopment! The audience has been fantastic and I’m glad I could help raise a significant sum for Polka.”

Peter Glanville, Polka’s Artistic Director reflected: “We have raised over £7 million to create a wonderland for children and families in the heart of Wimbledon and Merton. We are currently fundraising for the final £400k we need, so events like these are really helping us move forward with our target. Thank you to everyone for coming to the show and our amazing Patron Omid Djalili for making the Big Charity Comedy Night possible.”

The funds raised from this special, one-off comedy night were in aid of Polka’s redevelopment appeal. New planned features of the Polka Theatre will include the Adventure Theatre for 0-5’s, a free-to-all playground and interactive indoor display by set designer Laura McEwen.

 

 

About Future Polka

Celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2019, Polka is the UK’s leading theatre for children up to the age of 12. The £7.5m redevelopment will be the first since the charity opened its doors back in 1979 and will ensure Polka remains at the forefront of children’s theatre for future generations, providing innovative, challenging and thought-provoking work for an increasingly culturally diverse young audience. The development includes a new Adventure Theatre specially designed for young children up to age 5, a new rehearsal and development studio, and a creative learning studio designed with particular reference to children with sensory needs, as well as improved access facilities.

 

Further information on Polka

Polka is one of the few theatres in the UK dedicated exclusively to children. Based in Wimbledon since 1979, Polka creates world-class theatre to entertain and inspire young audiences. Over 90,000 children visit Polka every year to experience engaging, fun and exciting theatre, often for the first time. We strive to spark the imagination, stir the emotions and fuel a sense of discovery in all children. Learning and participation is at the heart of Polka’s work, encouraging children to explore and develop creatively. We offer opportunities for all children, regardless of age, ability, culture or background, working in close partnership with schools, libraries, children’s centres, community associations and a range of other community organisations.

Polka is first and foremost a local theatre, loved by the people of Merton, South London and the wider community, but enjoys an international reputation, known throughout the world as a pioneer of theatre for children, consistently setting the standard and raising audience’s expectations.

 

Many Wimbledon-based businesses have also supported this redevelopment, yet there is still 400k needed to complete the works. Find out more and donate here.

 

Polka Theatre will be re-opening at the end of Summer 2020. For further information visit the Polka website.

 

*Photo Credit : Oscar May

Main Image (from left to right) : Peter Glanville, Michael McIntyre and Omid Djalili

Middle Image: Omar Djalili

Bottom Image (left to right) : Lynette Shanbury Polka joint CEO, Holly Morgan’s Husband, Tez Ilyas, Holly Morgan, Omid Djalili, Dominic Holland and Peter Glanville Polka CEO

February 2020 Half-Term Events

Looking for something to do with the kids this Half Term? Wimbledon is filled with workshops and activities that are sure to delight children of all ages!

 

Polka Theatre 

Despite being closed for renovation, Polka Theatre are hosting a great range of interactive activities to spark the curiosity in your little ones this half-term. All events below will be held at New Wimbledon Theatre.

  • PROPerty of Polka Drama Workshop: Tuesday 18 February, 10.30am – 3.30pm
    Delve into the box of Polka props to see what you can find… a mask, puppet, hat, a ship in a bottle and so much more! A creative acting workshop for budding actors to develop short scenes and then show these off to family and friends at the end of the day.
  • Sing a song with Polka: Wednesday 19 February, 10.30am – 3.30pm
    Join this all-singing, all-dancing, all-acting Musical Theatre workshop! Bring some of our favourite Polka songs to life from a number of our popular shows including; Chocolate Cake, The Everywhere Bear and The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me. Share what has been created with family and friends at the end of the day.
  • Polka’s Treasure Chest of Stories Workshop: Thursday 20 February, various times available.
    Create a brand new ‘Once Upon A Time…’ adventure together with our storyteller, who will use these four magical words to help take you on a journey to the farthest reaches of your imagination. Bring in your treasured toy and go on a magical story adventure. Where will we go? What will we see? Who will we be?!

 

Wimbledon Library 

  • Storytime: Monday 17 February and Thursday 20 February, 11am – 11.30am, and Tuesday 18 February, 2.15pm – 2.45pm
    Listen to your favourite stories in this exciting fun-filled half hour.
  • Little Folk with Albo: Friday 21 February, 11.15am – 11.45am
    Sing-along to nursery rhymes and folk songs, for children.

 

The Entertainer

  • Various demonstrations including children’s favourites Bukugan and Power Pux, and a Lego Make and Take.
  • Great 44 Cats, PJ Mask and DC Superhero competitions with fantastic prizes to be won, including family trips to Legoland and more!
    All between 10am – 4pm, Monday – Friday.

(Check The Entertainer page for further details)

 

Odeon

  • Share a great viewing experience with your children this half-term and let their imaginations run wild with Odeon’s selection of children’s movies featuring everything from fairytale fantasies to animated favourites. Visit their website to check up-to-date listings of great family friendly films that will turn any frown upside down.

 

Centre Court Shopping

 

  • Pop-Up Planetarium: Running between 11am – 4pm, daily from 15th – 21st February.
    Explore the night sky in Centre Court’s Shopping ‘To the Stars and Back’ pop-up planetarium this half-term. Includes a 20-minute show inside the pop-up planetarium with dress-up suits and space food available too!  Book your place under the stars by visiting centrecourtshopping.com.

 

Set Your Sights On Something New In Wimbledon

 

 

Please see venue websites for details of age ranges for events and associated costs.

Book Your Next Holiday


Try a Change of Pace

 

Need to slow down after the busy festive period? Chase away the winter blues with a change of pace.

Ski the slopes of Switzerland or Slovenia, rub shoulders with celebs in the south of France, take a wander through the cobblestone roads of Rovinj, Croatia or soak up the sun in Saint Lucia.

With the addition of Hays Travel, Wimbledon now has five travel agencies at your fingertips, including the award-winning Iglu.com.  Try a tailor-made trip or an organised tour.

Booking your next holiday has never been easier.

 

Travel services in Wimbledon

 

Get Healthy in 2020

Rejuvenate your mind, body and soul

Wimbledon is home to a number of fitness, health and wellness facilities to help you work towards a healthier happier you.

  • Calm your mind and feel good with yoga, pilates or treatments at Jiva Health Wimbledon. Introduce a friend and receive 20% off any class pass.
  • The Wimbledon Library hosts an array of activities including Mindfulness Workshops, Tai Chi-Qi Kong and free lunchtime Well-Being talks.
  • Osteoperformance offers complementary healthcare for rehabilitation and well-being.

View more Lifestyle locations in Wimbledon

 

Jiva Health

Fuel your healthy eating habit

If you’re meeting friends for a social meal or grabbing a bite on the go, there are plenty of healthy eating options in Wimbledon.

  • Whether you’re attempting Veganuary for the whole month or simply choosing more plant-based foods during the week, try Bill’s Wimbledon new vegan menu featuring beetroot steak, tiger fries and superfood cold pressed juices, to start the year of right.
  • The mother-daughter team at Lu-Ma are passionate about creating a place where healthy eating is easy and serve food that nourishes the body.  They offer gluten free, vegan, and vegetarian options and their takeaway packaging is completely compostable.
  • Enhance your health and well-being at Health Zone. They take a holistic approach to providing you with products and advice to keep you healthy year-round.
  • If you’re on the go, Joe & the Juice serve a variety of nutritious and healthy options to Re-Build, Energize or Stress Down.

View more locations to Eat and Drink in Wimbledon

 

Switch up your skincare regime

With end-of-year celebrations all wrapped up, the party season may have taken its toll on your skin. That, together with facing extreme temperature conditions – moving from the chilly outdoors to powerful office heating systems and back again – leaves many of us feeling dehydrated particularly on our face. Now, is the perfect time to switch up your skincare regime, treat yourself to a thirst-quencher and a radiance boost to brave such elements.

Elys is a great destination to shop your favourite Beauty brands (Clinique, Dermalogica, Lancôme and Sisley to name just a few) and receive expert, individual advice from their team of consultants. If you have your skincare sorted, why not look ahead to the new season and start thinking about your makeup colour palette for Spring? The likes of Bobbi Brown, Hourglass, NARS and M.A.C. have the latest products featuring the hottest colour trends ready and their artists are waiting for you to go swatch them for yourself!

View more Shops in Wimbledon

 

 

“With the New Year comes a refuelled motivation to improve on the past one” — Gretchin Bleiler

What to See in Wimbledon

 

Set your sights on something new

 

The New Year signals new beginnings – a time to reflect, set goals and explore something different. From live music to theatre performances, comedy and community events, there’s no shortage of things to see and do in Wimbledon Town Centre.

Look for a superb line-up of performances this season at the New Wimbledon Theatre, including the show-stopping musical On Your Feet!, Matthew Bourne’s legendary film adaptation of ‘The Red Shoes’ and Adam Kay’s ‘This is Going to Hurt’.  If it’s live music or comedy you’re after, head to the Studio at New Wimbledon Theatre for Jazz in a Broad Way or Comedy Round Mine.

The Polka Theatre is set to re-open late 2020 and is still running activities in Wimbledon Library and the Studio at New Wimbledon Theatre.

 

See What’s On in Wimbledon

 

Sparrow    

 

Looking for something a little more low-key? Take a wander through Wimbledon to view the new ‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ art collaboration with artist Louis Masai, on Alwyne Road. This street art aims to raise awareness of the decline of British birds in London, particularly the House Sparrow, renowned for its birdsong and seen as a vital part of urban life. Watch the public reaction to the art.

Or go further afield and head out for a stroll to visit the landmarks of Secret Wimbledon or the Rainbow Crossing on The Broadway, next to New Wimbledon Theatre and CMYK bar, which celebrates the town’s inclusivity.

 

 

‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ Street Art

‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ is new wall art installation in Wimbledon Town Centre, created by Love Wimbledon, in collaboration with artist Louis Masai and local photographer and culture campaigner Cindy Sasha. This piece aims to raise awareness of the decline of British birds in London, particularly the House Sparrow, renowned for its birdsong and seen as a vital part of urban life.

Brought to life by a London-based artist, often best known for his dynamic and inspiring wall murals of endangered animals, ‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ features a male house sparrow and female house sparrow inferring the question of ‘where has the sparrow song gone’. Based on the hit single ‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ by Icelandic musician Björk, the art reflects how birdsong has reduced over time, due to the population decline of this bird species.

The disappearance of birdsong could have a profound impact on human health. The natural sounds of birdsong have been linked to improved mental and emotional health amongst humans. Hearing birdsong allows us to connect with the natural world and can be the perfect antidote to the pressures of modern life.

According to The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB), there is a severe decline in the UK house sparrow population, estimated as dropping by 71 per cent since 1977. This has led to the RSPB now red-listing House Sparrows as a species of high conservation concern.

Rather than adopting the newer patchwork style, seen in much of Louis Masai’s more recent work, the artist drew on a more realistic, older style of painting to embody the central message of this piece – the critical situation facing British birdlife. Louis Masai is a London-based painter, sculptor and street artist, who uses his art in the form of murals, paintings and installations to highlight and initiate discussion surrounding climate change, endangerment of species, conservation and species equality.

Wimbledon has seen a renaissance in cultural experiences ranging from music, theatres, art galleries and literary festivals. It is a place where there is often more than what meets the eye. As said by Cindy Sasha, “street art can change a landscape of a town centre. I love it when the love spreads through art and sends such a positive message – we need more of it!”. Love Wimbledon create and fund a variety of cultural and environmental notions including the first rainbow pedestrian crossing in the UK, in partnership with Merton Council, to show support to the LGBTQ community in Wimbledon Town Centre. Find out more here.

 

“This collaboration has brought an important message to Wimbledon, whilst also developing a stronger and more vivid cultural strategy for visitors to experience the town centre. The art is impactful, meaningful and has had a positive response from business, visitors and local residents. We were pleased to hear we have a crew of House Sparrows in Wimbledon Town Centre – something to be truly celebrated.”

Sally Warren, Love Wimbledon

 

Find this new street art piece on Alwyne Road, off Wimbledon Hill Road, in Wimbledon Town Centre, and help to spread this message. Watch the public reaction to the art.

 

New Year’s Eve in Wimbledon 2019

Welcome 2020 in style and celebrate New Year’s Eve in Wimbledon. With a fantastic selection of bars, clubs and pubs in the town centre to choose from, it’ll be a night to remember.

 

601 Queen’s Rd
601 Queen’s Rd is the perfect backdrop for socialising; a table to dine, space for celebratory drinks or private spaces to party the night away. Ring in the 20’s with your chosen tribe in style and an in-house DJ playing until 2am. A selection of drinks packages, canape menus, social bowls, sharing boards and delicious menu packages available.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Garratt & Gauge
New Year’s Eve at The Garratt & Gauge means a Black Tie Blowout. Open from 8pm – 2am, playing the best music to get you on the dance floor.
Tickets available now at a discounted price!
Note: prices go up nearer the time.

 

All Bar One
Get your tickets for the incredible and show-stopping New Year’s Eve Cîroc party at All Bar One Wimbledon. Arrive in style with a complimentary Cîroc French Martini, then raise your glass as the bar brings the year to a close with plenty of fabulous cocktails, delicious nibbles, epic live DJ sets and late-night partying.

Tickets are limited so book them now and pre-order a limited-edition Cîroc vodka bottle, engraved with the All Bar One Logo & NYE 2019!

(T&C’s apply)

 

The Old Fizzle

Join the 1920’s Speakeasy New Year’s Eve Party at The Old Frizzle. Dine-in between 6pm – 9pm and enjoy two courses for £20 or three courses for £25. Add 1.5 hours of bottomless free flowing fizz to kick start the evening for just £16 or turn up fashionably late and enjoy the party with the DJ until 2am.

New Year’s Day – cure that 2019 Hangover and recover with the all-day Brunch, Bloody Good Mary’s & Berocca cocktails to help you begin the New Year.

 

  

The Prince of Wales
See in the New Year with live music at The Prince of Wales and the brilliant OB1s playing until late or visit Bertie’s Bar, the secret little cellar bar downstairs, for a Top Hat and Tiara party.

From 9pm – 2am.

 

Smash
Get ready for the best retro New Year’s Eve party around. Their DJ will be playing a musical roller coaster of hits from the nineties and noughties, so sing loud and be proud of the decade you love most!
Party in style by booking one of their special NYE pizza, ping pong & drinks packages, all of which include complimentary entry.

 

Tunnel 267

Welcome in the future with the New Years Eve party at Tunnel 267, Wimbledon’s only nightclub! Tickets start from only £5.

 

Suburban Bar & Lounge
Ring in the New Year, Suburban style and enjoy free entry all night for celebrations with friends in a comfortable, friendly and fun environment.
With party tunes and cocktails that will get everyone in the mood to dance into 2020. Including a Happy hour from 7pm – 9pm and a Prosecco Cocktail Special from 11pm – 1am.

Help Those in Need Locally

There are loads of ways you can help organisations in Wimbledon who are supporting those in need locally.

Merton Street Pastors, who have been conducting late night patrols around the streets of Wimbledon for ten years, are appealing for help in the form of volunteers or donations. Merton Street Pastors aim to care, listen and help as much as they can and their presence helps to make Wimbledon safer, whether it’s a listening ear, a pair of flip flops or help to a bus, taxi, train or tram they’ll do what they can! Find out how you can help here.

In addition to its regular and hugely popular Meet Up Mondays event, The Alexandra Pub in Wimbledon will also be hosting another wonderful Don’t Be Alone Lunch on Christmas Day, for the fifth year. Landlords, Mich and Sarah always say that the hardest part of this is getting people to take the plunge and join, rather than spending Christmas alone. There’s no need to even book – just pitch up when doors open at midday on Wednesday 25th December. Follow The Alexandra on Twitter to keep up to date with news about these events and spread the word!

Wimbledon Guild runs many events throughout the year aimed at reducing social isolation and lonliness, helping people experiencing difficulties, and enabling older people to be active and healthy. They hold regular clubs and classes, talks to entertain, enlighten and inspire, and trips to places of interest around London, Surrey and the local area. They will also be hosting a Carol Service on Tuesday 10th December. Wimbledon Guild relies on financial donations from local people, businesses and organisations. Find out how you could help here.

Big Toy Rehoming at The Entertainer – Bring your unwanted toys in to The Entertainer Wimbledon, who will rehome them via the Salvation Army. The Big Toy Rehoming aims to reduce plastic waste by prolonging the life of toys, while helping to ensure every child has the opportunity to play this Christmas.

Homeless Donations Appeal

  • Prince of Wales – the Wimbledon pub is collecting donations for Merton’s Faith in Action, which operates a homeless drop-in centre to support vulnerable people in our community. They have already received donations of shoes, warm clothing, toiletries, sleeping bags and tinned food. Donations welcomed until the New Year.
  • Wimbledon Station’s Shoe Box Appeal – On Friday 13 December 2019, between 7am – 7pm, staff at Wimbledon Station will be on hand to receive shoe boxes filled with donations for the homeless in Merton.

Winter Wonderland Brings Christmas to Wimbledon

Town Centre lights up as the festive season begins in Wimbledon

Love Wimbledon’s Winter Wonderland brought a joyous warm glow to our town centre on Sunday 1 December. With The Broadway closed to traffic, thousands of visitors filled the streets, enjoying festive entertainment, tucking in to traditional treats and getting hands-on with a host of activities for all ages. Shoppers were also treated to a huge array of unique and handmade gifts, including original art, homeware, clothing and accessories from local artisans at our Christmas Market.

Visitors tucked in to all the festive favourites such as mince pies, mulled wine, popcorn and candyfloss, along with a huge range of exotic cuisines from India, Portugal, Germany, Greece, Brazil and South Africa. And new this year, the Sticks N Sushi Tent proved a great addition!

Entertainment featured classic carols and contemporary favourites on The Piazza bandstand and inside Centre Court, along with local dance group and brass band performances, and larger-than-life Christmas characters mingling with the crowds. There were fun family photo opportunities inside our giant snow globe, the light tunnel and Christmas unicorn vignette and our traditional live ice carving drew in the crowds who watched in awe as a stunning reindeer evolved from the frozen block.

New to Winter Wonderland this year was the Games Tent. Designed with older kids in mind, it featured Roll-A-Ball Reindeer, the Snownado and Snowman Alley, plus regular firm favourite, the challenging Snowboard Simulator. And of course, our hugely popular Snowman and Pudding bouncy castles were there for the younger children, along with a very busy Make ‘n’ Take Tent.

A spectacular fireworks display lit up the evening sky, courtesy of Centre Court Shopping Centre.

Thank you to everyone for coming and to the businesses for supporting this most wonder time of the year.