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Seasonal Celebrations!

Ice Skating Where’s Santa Pantos and Children’s Theatre

PLUS! An exclusive interview with Dame Jacqueline Wilson

Issue 125 November/December 2018

Welcome to the November/December issue! CONTACT US: Families North West London Magazine WATFORD


Editors: Heather Waddington andRICKMANSWORTH Janine Mergler











@FamiliesNWLon Readership of over 60,000 local parents, carers and teachers every issue. Published seven times a year. For families from birth to twelve.

UPCOMING ISSUES: Jan/Feb 2019 - ‘Nurseries and Childcare’ Deadline: 25 November 2018 Mar/April 2019 - ‘Planning ahead…Spring and Summer camps and Activities’ Deadline: 1 Feb 2019 Send in your news, stories and advertising bookings to the details above.


Feature images used under license from Other images have been supplied by independent sources.

5 Could it be… ADHD?

8 Could you work from home? 6 Interview with Dame Jacqueline Wilson

14 Where’s Santa?

16 What’s on

20 Ice Rinks

22 Theatre & Panto’s

Cover image:

Where is Families North West London?

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Families North West London Magazine is part of Families Print Ltd, a franchise company. All franchised magazines in the group are independently owned and operated under licence. Families is a registered trademark of LCMB Ltd, Remenham House, Regatta Place, Marlow Road, Bourne End, Bucks SL8 5TD. The contents of Families NW London Magazine are fully protected by copyright and none of the editorial or photographic matter may be reproduced in any form without prior consent of Families North West London Magazine. Every care is taken in the preparation of this magazine, but Families North West London Magazine, its distributors, the franchise company, Families Print Ltd, and LCMB Ltd cannot be held responsible for the claims of advertisers nor for the accuracy of the contents, or any consequence thereof.

Families North West London Magazine is distributed bi-monthly throughout north west London. An area bordered by the A40 to the south, by the A5/M1 to the east and out towards the M25 in the north and west. You can collect a copy FREE from scores of outlets: schools, nurseries, play groups, clubs and classes, sports centres, children’s libraries, family doctors and baby clinics, theatres, your local council offices and children’s shops. If you would like to stock copies to give to parents, please let us know.

Network Rail partners with Thomas & FriendsTM to teach children railway safety The Stay Safe with Thomas story book sees the mischievous Thomas having fun on the railway over being safe, putting both himself and his friends in harm’s way. He learns valuable lessons on the dangers of not stopping at a level crossing when the red light shows, leaving gates open to allow animals on to the tracks and when people stand too close to the edge of a platform.

NEWS The Langham, London launches Children’s Afternoon Tea with Daunt Books The Langham, London has long been linked to some of literature’s most famous names, and in a new partnership with Daunt Books, the Regent Street hotel will be encouraging its younger guests to immerse themselves in a world of books.

Network Rail, along with British Transport Police, hopes the story book will encourage parents to discuss rail safety with their young children, in the same manner that they teach them about other dangers they may encounter when out and about. Network Rail and the British Transport Police (BTP) are distributing copies of the book to local libraries, nurseries and doctors’ surgeries across the country. A free, electronic version of the book will be available to download from 16 October 2018. To download your free copy of the Thomas & Friends: Stay Safe with Thomas book please visit:

The Afternoon Tea is specially conceived for creative minds, with jigsaw puzzle sandwiches to un-piece and cake to assemble into the shape of a dog before devouring it. Each little tea eater can then retreat into a special curated minilibrary of books from Daunt Books, from which they can choose one lovely tome to take home. The Langham’s Children’s Afternoon Tea with Daunt Books is priced at £29 per child (12 years and under) and is available now for bookings from 12 noon until 5.30pm. For further information and to book, visit or call 020 7636 1000.

Odd Socks Day for Anti-Bullying Week Anti-Bullying Week runs from 12 to 16 November 2018 and the theme this year is choosing respect over bullying. The aim of the week is to support schools to help children understand: • The definition of respect • That bullying is a behavioural choice • That we can respectfully disagree with each other i.e. we don’t have to be best friends or always agree with each other but we do have to show each other respect

• That we all need to choose to respect each other, both face to face and online Students are being encouraged to wear odd socks to school on Monday 12 November to show their support and raise money for a good cause. To get involved, visit

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NEWS New Academic support services in Harrow!

Talking to young children about war this Remembrance Day Remembrance Day this year will be on Sunday 11 November and will be especially significant as it will mark 100 years since the original agreement to end fighting during the First World War in 1918, also known as Armistice Day.

Opening its doors in January 2019, the Olivier School has been established to bring together some of the best teachers in the region to teach and prepare children for success in their educational journey. With general consensus amongst parents that large class sizes hinder the potential of their child to excel at school, clinical research finds that class size has very little impact on a child’s quality of education. The evidence from a total of 113 studies in developed nations – including the UK, the US and Europe – over the last 25 years, by the Melbourne Education Research Institute revealed that lowering the number of pupils in the classroom adds about four months of teaching per year, whilst focusing on getting a teacher with the best expertise adds about two years for every year of teaching. With class sizes capped at 12 children per class, and a teacher to child ratio of 1:6, the Olivier School promises to offer an exclusive mix of high quality teaching along with well-structured and progressive courses aimed at children three to eleven years old. With over decades of experience, their teachers have helped children to gain scholarships and entry into some of the most selective schools in the UK, including Harrow School, Haberdashers’ Aske’s, Henrietta Barnet, North London Collegiate, QE Boys, St Pauls, and Westminster School, to name but a few. To find out more and to enrol your child, visit

Accordingly, you can expect that there will be a great deal of media coverage given to this significant commemoration and your child may be prompted to ask you questions. Discussing war with children can be quite difficult. Recognising this, CBeebies has produced a short animation, simply titled ‘Poppies’ to help convey the notion of remembrance in a way that resonates with a young audience. It is a really beautiful piece to watch and would be a great way to introduce any discussion of Remembrance Day. The 2 minute film follows a bunny who starts off playing in a meadow, which then becomes a WW1 battlefield. The film can be viewed on the CBeebies website at

Enter to WIN a Family Ticket! Christmas is coming to ZSL London Zoo like never before, as the world-famous attraction shimmers with seasonal sparkle – and we’re giving you the chance to win a family ticket for two adults and two children to Christmas at London Zoo between 26 Dec 2018 – 1 Jan 2019. With the animals tucked up in bed, explore a trail where fairy-tale meets fantasy and larger-thanlife pea-lit wild animal sculptures rise high into the night sky. Surround yourself in sparkle as the path draws you through the Light Vortex and into contrasting tunnels, some delicate and some spectacular, festooned by a Tunnel of Light of over 100,000 glistening pea-lights. Soak up the atmosphere with a vintage carousel ride*, and other family rides* whilst you enjoy traditional treats*. Complete your stroll under the stars with mulled wine* or hot chocolate* whilst the aroma of roasting chestnuts fills the air, before picking up an irresistible gift or two at London Zoo’s shop Christmas at London Zoo will be open on selected dates between 22 Nov 2018 - 1 Jan 2019. For more information, opening times & tickets visit: Or call 0844 995 1372** **calls cost 7p per minute plus your network access charge *additional charges apply For information on Christmas trails around the country visit

QUESTION: How many pea-lights are used to make the Tunnel of Light at Christmas at London Zoo? • Over 100,000 • 50,000 • 25,000 Visit to enter! TERMS OF PRIZE The family ticket is valid for two adults & two children to Christmas at London Zoo between 26 Dec 2018 – 1 Jan 2019. Winner to select timeslot. Chosen date and time slot subject to availability. Any purchases from food stalls, fairground rides are at the winner’s own expense. Parking costs are not included. Travel costs are not included. Prizes are not transferable and may not be used in conjunction with any other offer. There are no cash alternatives.

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Family Health

Could it be… ADHD? Dr Sarkar, explains what symptoms to look out for if you think your child is suffering from ADHD? Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a group of behavioural symptoms that include hyperactivity, impulsivity and difficulty in focusing and paying attention. Awareness of the disorder has grown exponentially over recent years, but Dr Sarkar believes that diagnosis and treatment is still a problem for many parents and looks to shed some light on symptoms, advising when one should seek professional help. Dr Sarkar says. “If you have worries over your child’s behaviour or your school have advised concerns with behaviour / ability to access learning due to behavioural issues, then there are things that you can look out for to help you identify whether you should seek professional advice for ADHD.  Sometimes, as a parent it can be difficult to know what constitutes as normal and what doesn’t – very often there is a fine line and it is difficult to be objective about your own child. “The obvious behaviours to look out for include struggling to sit still and follow instructions, high activity levels and inattentiveness. But these symptoms can be subjective, and it can be more helpful to understand how these problems can

manifest themselves in daily activity. For example, does your child find it difficult to keep friends, does he interrupt conversations, is he impulsive, does he have problems with anger, does he lose possessions and is forgetful, or does he find it difficult to complete a task even as mundane as getting dressed or tidying up a bedroom.   If not diagnosed and managed timely, children with ADHD can experience persistent symptoms that can be carried through to their teenage and adult years and lead to: • Dropping out of school • Self-esteem issues • Risk taking behaviour e.g. substance misuse • Involvement with law and order • Anxiety disorder • Depression • Inability to keep a job or maintain long- term relationships In addition to this, ADHD can also co-exist with other related conditions including: • • • • •

Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Learning Difficulties Dyspraxia or Dyslexia Tics or Tourette’s Syndrome Depression, anxiety

“A rule of thumb is to look at these difficulties and reflect whether they are more problematic for your son or daughter than for children generally at the same age. If you are struggling with your child’s behaviour go and see your GP. There are also many resources online available and One Stop Doctors has recently launched a whole host of paediatric services to include developmental issues with both Paediatric Consultants, Child Psychologists and other therapists on hand”. Dr Sharmishtha Sarkar, Consultant Paediatrician at One Stop Doctors, specialising in behavioural and neuro – developmental (including Autism and ADHD) issues. Our One Stop Doctors private Clinic in Hertfordshire has a team of specialist paediatricians and child health experts. To book an appointment or find a specialist please call 01442 331 900 or visit

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Beaker’s Back! An exclusive interview with Dame Jacqueline Wilson


ame Jacqueline Wilson is arguably Britain’s favourite contemporary children’s author. She has over one hundred published books to her name, most of which deal with the often troubling and unvarnished realities of being a real-life child or parent. First published in 1991, Tracy Beaker quickly became Jacqueline’s most well-known character. Now, over a decade after her last literary appearance, the fiery, former foster-kid is back in new book My Mum Tracy Beaker, and while she’s now mature and mother to Jess, she’s still the same Tracy readers know and love. Families Magazine is lucky enough to have secured an exclusive interview with Dame Jacqueline Wilson in which our readers and their children ask her some of their most burning questions about her new book and her life as a writer.

Why do you think Tracy is one of your most popular characters? Harbinder, age 7, Croydon I think because she’s naughty! She has reason for her bad behaviour, of course, and she’s

naughty but she’s not spiteful, she’s funny. I think she’s a character that children would like as a friend - I’m not sure about adults, I think a little of her as a child goes a long way!

How have you made the grown-up Tracy as appealing to children as Tracy, the child? Lily’s mum, Leeds I’ve kept her, not exactly naughty, but mischievous. She’s quite surprising - she might suddenly do something a bit mad, or a bit silly. I think being a mum has slightly changed her because she’s a very loving, caring mum, Is Tracy’s daughter the same or different to Tracy? Olivia, age 8, Aylesbury They certainly look alike, but Jess is a quieter girl, partly because she has had a much easier, more loving, caring upbringing than Tracy herself had. Jess is probably more studious, and more of a bookworm, but when push comes to shove Jess can certainly stand up for herself too.

Did you and your illustrator, Nick Sharratt, disagree at all about how Tracy and her daughter should be drawn? Rosie, age 9, Twickenham I mostly leave it to him, and certainly I think he has done Jess wonderfully. He suggested that Jess might wear glasses, which I thought was a very clever touch because it gives them that little bit of difference, and also Jess is a total bookworm and it just looks right for her to be wearing her little glasses. I was very pleased with that addition.

Call us to arrange an individual appointment

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Education from when they are one year old, any child likes to sit on a lap and hear the simplest of stories, and I also suggested that even when your child has learned to read, sometimes it’s fun to read aloud a book that they might not necessarily tackle themselves because it’s a bit difficult to get into, or the vocabulary is quite hard, but they would love to listen to the story. If they are doing colouring, or building something, or just petting the dog or whatever, or at bedtime, children do still like to be read to aloud.

Your books depict real children’s real lives and challenges in a way that few others do – how do you get inside the heads of your characters? Lizzie’s mum, Glasgow Bizarrely, I can remember very vividly what it is like to be a child. I mean, ask me what happened or how I felt about something a couple of years ago and my mind is a complete blank, but ask me what I was worried about when I was nine, say, and I remember entirely. It’s just a happy trick of nature that I can take myself back. What’s been the highlight for you of being the Children’s Laureate? Emma’s mum, Portsmouth It gave me a chance to speak to lots of children and teachers and librarians, and the particular thing I wanted to promote was reading aloud to children. Because right

What advice would you give to aspiring writers, young or old? Amaya’s mum, Harrow I always suggest aspiring writers read lots to enrich their imagination and increase their vocabulary and try and get into a regular writing habit. Maybe keep a diary - just so you learn to write even when you don’t feel like it!

When did you first become a writer? Emily, age 10, Sevenoaks Well, by the time I was fifteen I had written what was - at least in length - a full book. It wasn’t very good though! It was about two sisters, Margot was about fifteen, the narrator, and the sister was about eighteen. They had a car and went on a drive through France and Spain and got boyfriends! It wasn’t the most inspiring work! How do you select names for your characters? Readers at the Chatterbook Group, Ringwood Library, Dorset I like to try and have slightly unusual names, and if they are pertinent to the story that pleases me - for my identical twins in my book Double Act, I had them called Ruby and Garnet because they are both red jewel stones. For The Illustrated Mum, the mother Marigold has a great passion for tattoos and has called her girls the rather outlandish names of Star and Dolphin, simply because they are very popular tattoo icons. With Tracy I wanted a quirky, bouncy modern name - and with Hetty Feather, Hetty is an oldfashioned name and Feather because she’s light as a feather! My Mum Tracy Beaker by Dame Jacqueline Wilson is out now, published by Doubleday

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Working from Home:

The Pros and Cons


o you want to work from home? For many parents the chance to work from home on a regular basis is the Holy Grail. Not only does it cut down on endless hours spent commuting and travel bills, but it means you are around for your family in case of an emergency. Yet working from home isn’t for everyone. Ask yourself some questions. Do you work best as part of a team, bouncing ideas off each other? It is possible to exchange ideas with people via Instant Messenger and technology is enabling people who work remotely to have virtual colleagues in their home office, but if face to face contact is important to you, then you might find working from home a struggle. You may be able to mitigate this, of course, through creating or joining a local business network or ensuring you get out regularly to meetings or other events - or even just to walk the dog! The advantages of working from home are significant. In addition to those mentioned above, the wellbeing of most parents would be enhanced by not having to deal with rush hour traffic or train delays and the anxiety of not getting to school or nursery pick up on time. Once you have decided if homeworking is for you, you need to consider what you need to work successfully from home.

“It is good, if possible, to draw a line between home and work so you can close the door on work both mentally and physically at the end of the day” ■ Try to have a Separate Work Space It is good, if possible, to draw a line between home and work so you can close the door on work both mentally and physically at the end of the day. Having a separate space - a room, an outdoor building etc - creates the sense of ‘going to work’. It also means that your work papers are kept separate and away from small hands! Alternatively, if you don’t have a separate space, you can still create the feeling of going to work by walking round the block before you start work or after the school run.

■ Create a Routine Some people like to do the difficult calls or tasks early in the day to get them out of the way and to kick start the day. Take regular breaks, do some exercise and get out and see people. Let people know your working hours and let neighbours and family know you are working and not lounging about at home.

■ Get Good Childcare Employers may stipulate childcare if you are working from home. In any event, it is very stressful trying to work from home with small children, particularly if they don’t have regular sleep patterns. If you are working from home while other colleagues are in the office, ensure that you are visible by attending selected social events and meetings and keeping up with people in the office as much as possible. As with everything, it takes a bit of experimentation to know what works best for you. Compromises may be involved. Ultimately, it is only you who can judge what is best for your family’s circumstances - and, of course, as with all things parenting, those circumstances may change with time...! Mandy Garner is Editor of Workingmums. advertises homeworking opportunities and offers tons of advice on how to set up your own business and different ways of working, including case studies in a variety of sectors.

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Mummy on the Edge


Angelina and The Teen

don’t think I can call her Mini, Midi or even Maxi-me anymore for I realise now that it is unfair to make her share her moniker with M&S underwear sizing. So “The Teen” did well in her GCSEs and now that we’ve moved dahn Norf Larndon, we’ve gone Catholic (-school). The years of Saturdays spent at the excellent Sai School of Harrow came in handy – not only for the A* in Hinduism GCSE that she gained but also for her being well practised at pretending to pray. She’s joined a band (music, not pirates/thieves) as pianist; it took me a few weeks, but to her relief I have finally stopped asking her why on earth she isn’t the singer. Renting out of my house was delayed due to the death of my father who was kind enough to schedule it during the summer holidays. We are learning to live without having him over every Monday night to eat dinner with us and make us watch terrible Indian soaps on the telly with him. The Teen misses him very much but we remind ourselves that were lucky to have him with us so long... The house in Bushey is now all set up for someone to move in and has NEVER been so tidy. This is not an advert but if you do happen to be looking to rent a threebedroom generous-gardened end-of-terrace

corner property insulated with ACTUAL LOVE… Naturally, I have been feeling a tinge of sadness when hanging around while essentials like energy efficiency certificates are drawn up. So many years of tears and joy in the house with then Mini-Me. So many painfully frank Mummy on the Edge columns written about our unconventional life every two months, in bed and in the kitchen and on the sofa and in the garden and (rarely), even at the desk. Life changes. The combination of reaching mid-forties and having a daughter, stepdaughters, nieces and Twitter has pushed me onto a path of feminist radicalisation. I have consigned my phone to be charged away from my bed at night time; too many sleeps have been dominated by thoughts of current, crushing patriarchy and how it has transpired that the definition of the word woman is now a contentious issue. I wanted to take The Teen on her first (and my second) ever march to show her she could make a difference and be Part Of Something and maybe help prevent a dystopian future of medicine shortages and long queues at European passport control. Unfortunately, the march’s timing clashed with the Cashmere Sample Sale I had marked in my diary. But she really wanted to go, so I couldn’t let her down. As a first march,

it was ideal. Lovely sunny weather, family atmosphere and absolutely HUUUGE! We were definitely Part of Something at a time when it feels like pretending to pray or even really praying just won’t cut it.

Listen to Angelina’s popular chat show Dessert Island Discs on live on www. Thursdays at 10am or catch up at angelina-melwani *facebook. com/angelinamelwani * twitter @appleina * mynotesfromtheedge. *Instagram @ mynotesfromtheedge

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Managing gift giving this Holiday Season By Susie Ramroop


very parent I know strives to give their child the best possible life. At this time of year, it is tempting to express this in the form of gift giving. Children are overwhelmed by choice at this time of year, and start asking for everything in real time. Here are some tips to manage expectations and set them up with some tools for life.

■ Prioritise

What is the real motivation for buying your children a gift. To make them happy? To keep them occupied? There is a tipping point for anyone’s attention span; where just enough suddenly becomes too much. Typically, the more you buy the less valued the gifts are, and their play time and enjoyment is diluted.

I spend much of my time, as a Coach, simplifying: getting people to choose not only what brings them joy, but also what is going to make a difference in their lives. Play this game at home to choose what’s important: dinner at the local restaurant twice this month or somewhere special once? And for the kids: money for the Christmas fair, or a horseriding lesson? Teaching our children to choose is an incredibly empowering thing to do. It will mean that when times are tough, or they feel challenged, they won’t focus on what little they have, they will focus on the thing they value most. Choosing one thing doesn’t need to be about a lack of money or a tactic to combat greed.

■ Wait it out

■ Restrain yourself

A child may be captivated in the moment by an advert, and then forget about it a week later. These gifts are often quickly discarded. Wait it out. If your child really wants something they will keep coming back to it, like we do: when we see something in a shop and then can’t stop thinking about it - it must be something we really want.

Largely the thing to watch out for here is us, not the kids. Kids ask for a lot, but their expectation of getting it comes down to how often we give them what they ask for. It can feel easy to throw another thing in the basket when shopping for kids but ask yourself if it is really going to make a difference. Or will it overwhelm them?

■ First thing’s first

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My approach is to give one main gift and have a lucky dip of small gifts which range from 50p to £5. These gifts are spread out between Christmas and going back to school, and they bring so much more joy than huge numbers of packages under the tree. It also means my daughter can pace herself and manage her own attention span. So if your motivation is to bring joy to your child, don’t overwhelm them with too much. Teach them to choose what is going to make the most positive impact and leave the rest. This is a gift for life!

For more about Susie you can find her at


Winter Fun – Indoors! By Claire Winter


uring the winter months, there’s no avoiding spending much more time indoors. It’s tempting to allow the kids to while away the time on devices or playing on their Xbox. But there are ways of keeping your kids off their screens and still having fun, even within the four walls of your own home.

Here’s Families guide to some fun bad-weather-day activities. ■ Make a Cardboard Town Get hold of a giant cardboard box or add lots of small ones together to make a town using large felt tips or paint. Let their imaginations run riot, and they can add cars and wooden/ plastic people to make it more realistic.

■ Set Up an Indoor Treasure Hunt Write some cryptic clues and hide a treasure trail of items for them to find. They may want to design one for you to do too!

■ Get Cooking This is satisfying for them but also a treat for you (hopefully!). Suggest they plan a threecourse meal for dinner. Get them to design a menu and research how to make the dishes online or refer to some recipe books. I think getting them to look in the fridge and come up with some dishes with ingredients you already have teaches them a great a life skill too. A pasta sauce or an apple crumble are tasty, rewarding but simple dishes to make. If you have smaller children baking something

simple like fairy cakes or biscuits would obviously be more appropriate.

■ Play Cards Teach the kids the card games you used to play as a child. If you can’t get them interested in Patience or Gin Rummy, look up some cool card tricks for them to learn and show their friends.

■ Have a Kitchen Disco My favourite thing to do on a rainy day is to have a party in the kitchen. Choose the most

appropriate room in your house and sort a great playlist of music that will get the whole family moving. Have a ‘dance off’ with your kids.

■ Make a Magazine Set up a news desk in the house and decide what the magazine is going to be about. Think up a great name and get someone in the “team” to design the front cover. Send out some roving reporters to write some news stories and create some fun features. The whole family can get involved!

■ Set up a Racing Track Use masking tape to create a huge carracing track around the house or living room, create a second track alongside it and get the toy cars out and race away!

■ Try Balloon Ping Pong or Table Tennis Blow up some balloons and use some table tennis bats or make your own with some sticks and paper plates. Alternatively, if you have a table tennis set, drag out the dining table, set up the net and hold a tournament. Hours of fun!

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Local Clubs and Classes Directory PARTIES Mini Maniacs are an Award Finalist Party Entertainment Business. Specialising in themed and non themed children’s parties for 1-9 year olds. From princesses to Discos, Bouncy Castles to Mascots, we have it all. Our reviews are outstanding and our entertainers are unbelievable. Book today to see the magic for yourself!  07711980132  www. www. Perform Parties - Based around a colourful theme, Perform’s energetic party leaders use a magical mix of songs, games and laughter to create fun-filled, action-packed parties. Call 0207 255 9120 or visit The Windmill Studio Centre (HA4) Fun for kids, hassle-free for parents, birthday parties at The Windmill Studio Centre, Ruislip Manor, for 1-10 years boys & girls include invitations, party leader & assistant(s), freshly prepared food, decorations, music, lights, games, dancing, props and prizes. Optional extras - adult refreshments, face-painting and party bags. Lots of themes from Princesses and Super Heroes to Monsters, Trolls, Makers and Mad Hatters! Modern & clean venue.  01895 624755 

CLASSES FOR GROWN-UPS Adult Art Classes in Stanmore (HA7) Drawing, painting and mixed media art classes for adults. Weekday morning studio sessions in a relaxed, supportive environment.  020 8954 2897 or 07500 006 099  BaB – Bring a Baby courses for adults. All Bring a Baby Courses are designed for you, the grown up, but are fun and engaging for your kids too. Their courses get 5* reviews because they make it possible for you to learn a new skill and be with your children. Photography, Knitting, Embroidery, Cake Decorating and more.  Busy Lizzy Hillingdon (UB) Fitness and fun for mums and little ones. All you prenatal, postnatal and baby classes together in one place. Free trial class available!   0333 939 8787 Capital Connection Chorus - female A capella harmony (HA4) Calling women who love to sing! Particularly need lower range voices at present. Perfect way to meet new friends and sing with a great group of women. Wed night 7.45pm to 10.30pm at Ruislip Community Centre.  www. Eggless Cake Delights (HA) offer eggless baking, cake decorating and dessert classes for kids & adults in Harrow. Classes are held in small groups in hands on and Demo format, during weekdays, weekends and during term holidays in a friendly environment.  07737847405 or info@  Meditation Every second and fourth Thursday of the month, 8.00pm at the Stables, Eastcote House Gardens, Eastcote Village, HA5 2FE Feel energised, increase happiness, improve mental clarity and memory recall, flush out negative thoughts and improve physical and mental health. Ten minute stress relief treatment for newcomers.Cost: FREE (voluntary charity donations welcomed). No booking needed, all welcome. For more information contact Alexandra Barrett ,  0775 334 90 24 Movers and Shapers (NW6) Fitness with babies in tow. Book online. www. 020 7624 8687  Yogabellies Aquabellies (various) Beautiful water based yoga classes for women throughout their lives. The sessions incorporate traditional yoga asanas (postures) adapted for water, water relaxations and positive life building experiences for women, mothers and mothers to be. There are AquaBellies - Aquanatal yoga for pregnancy, AquaMamas, post natal and AquaBelles aqua yoga classes suitable for all women. NEW YogaBelles: yoga designed for a unique women’s body.  07840 904887  anjli@ Zest For Life Studio is a new secret fitness oasis for vitality and wellness near you. Let me welcome you in my garden studio to share an invigorating hour of zesty fitness, a unique programme of toning circuit & zumba: enjoy a variety of class at 9am, a personal touch, small group of 6-8. In&outdoor classes.  -

First Aid MCS Training (HA1, HA5) Paediatric First Aid Course. Accepted for full and voluntary Ofsted Registration. Certificate valid for 3 yrs.  Margaret 07814 191 395 

LANGUAGES AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT All Saints Toddler Group (HA8) Every Thursday 10am-11.45am. Everyone welcome. A small friendly group run by the pre-school, with qualified staff on hand to provide help and support if needed. At Waltham Drive, Queensbury, Edgeware, HA8 5PQ.  07985 284 498/07958 473 475.  Baby Lab (WC1E) Have fun for free with your baby making discoveries about brain development at the Centre for Brain & Cognitive Development. Birkbeck College, Malet St, London. Travel expenses refunded. 020 7631 6258  www. Chinmaya UK (HA) Do you want your children to connect to their Indian culture through stories, games and celebration of festivals? Go along to Bal Vihar classes to explore culture and values in an engaging, positive environment. Every Sunday in Harrow and Hendon for children aged 5-17.  www. 07812 146428 Club Petit Pierrot (NW3/8/11) French Parent & Toddler group for 2-4 year olds in Hampstead at the JW3 Centre (NW3). Mon from 10.30am-11.15am and will be a multi-sensory session, totally in French, with many fun and varied activities including songs, rhymes, music, arts & crafts, dances and movement, language games, and puppets…all great fun! There will also be new fun French after-school classes on Weds for 4 to 6 yr olds and 6 to 8 yr olds in St Anthony’s School for Girls, Hampstead (NW11). Multi-sensory sessions with arts & crafts and music & movement also take

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place in St Mark’s Church Hall, St John’s Wood/Maida Vale (NW8) on Thurs, Fri and Sat.  020 7385 5565  www. Gujarati Masti Maja classes by Sansaar (HA5) Fun and interactive Gujarati music, song and dance classes for 3 to 6 year olds in North London, to help your child speak Gujarati confidently. Saturday morning at 9am and 10am at St Lawrence Church in Eastcote, Pinner.  Little Stars Baby Club (HA9) A fun and friendly baby club where new mums with babies from birth to sitting can relax and meet new friends whilst babies play and explore with a range of lovely sensory toys. Every Friday 9:30-11:15am at Powell Suites @ Chalkhill Community Centre, The Welford Centre, 113 Chalkhill Road, Wembley Park HA9 9FX. £2.00  0208 385 1836  The Northwood Speech and Language Therapy Practice (HA6) An Independent Practice providing an exceptionally high quality, caring and individualised service for promoting the communication needs of children. We offer Speech and Language Therapy sessions within a modern clinic base, nurseries and schools. 01923 824 074 07956 994721  Portuguese for Children (NW6) Every Saturday, from 10am to 12pm, the International Gospel Church on Belsize Road will be open for children from 4 to 12 years of Brazilian-English parents to enrol. Lessons will include how to read and write and Brazilian culture, including music. Lessons run from September and February 2016 and are free.  Guju Tots Swagatham! Kem Chho? Come along to a FREE taster of these fun-filled 45 minute classes in NW London to help kids 6 months to 5 years learn Gujarati through songs & stories! Interactive, relaxed classes, plus plenty of material to practice at home!  07956 385 316  www.


Forest School Sessions for Parent and Toddlers and Home Educators starting in Oxhey Woods in January every Monday. Children are introduced to the wonders of the woodland through play, song, story telling, craft and practical skills.  Emma on 07900 215512 or  www.

Sign Language

Sing and Sign (Various) Fun classes combining the benefits of baby signing with music to develop language, memory and attention skills. Babies 6-30 months. Bushey, Rickmansworth, Stanmore and Harrow. 

HEALTH AND WELLBEING Wellbeing Kids Workshops (WD3) Well-being workshops for children aged 9-12yr and 13-17yr olds. Holiday masterclasses to support the holistic mind, body and spirit learning. By exploring emotional intelligence, imagination, yoga, mindfulness, role-play and many more creative/ outdoor activities.For more information, please contact Anita  07956 849614, 

Massage & Yoga Human Values Based Yoga After school classes run in Harrow by a qualified yoga teacher with over 40 years yoga experience and over 30 yrs teaching yoga in various settings, including adult education and family learning, community clubs, hospitals and mental health centres. For adults and children 6-11 years.  Joyce on 07912 879 103  YogaBelliesKidz Family yoga (HA & WD) Share the mental and physical benefits of yoga...peace of mind, relaxation and increases body strength and flexibility! YogaBellies Mum and Baby yoga: Monday afternoons (birth to 10 mths) YogaBellies Little Angels pre-school yoga (18 mths to 4 yrs): Sat mornings, Bushey YogaBelliesKidz family yoga (4-12 yrs): Sat & Sun mornings, Bushey NEW: YogaBelles Mum and Daughter (13-16 yrs): Weekday evening, Bushey 07840 904887 ; members/anjli

ACTIVITY CENTRES Aspire National Training Centre, Kidz Zone activities (HA7) Wide range of activities available from 6mths to 12yrs. 020 8954 5759  kidzzone@ Wood Lane, Stanmore, HA7 4AP JAMtots (HA4) An interactive daytime activity centre for parents with babies and toddlers. All pay as you go with a variety of sessions that include Parent & Toddler Groups, Musical Tots, Gym Tots and one off events plus special visits from Jimmy the JAMtots Bear. 01895 624755  Rumble Tumble Harrow (HA1) Harrow’s only indoor supervised soft play children’s play group. Why not take advantage of the Drop & Shop facility and have a stress free shop, or book a special event in the Party Room available for all occasions. You can even relax and have a snack in the restaurant while your little ones are playing. 0208 427 8847  info@ The Windmill Studio Centre (HA4) An exciting activity centre that has just about everything to offer for all ages from babies to adults including classes, courses, complementary therapies and room & studio hire. 01895 624755  www.

MUSIC & MOVEMENT Beat Building Vibrant & energising music classes using African drums and funky percussion. Great songs and games get the imagination glowing & introduce the concepts of beats, rhythmic patterns, time keeping & also encourage sharing, taking turns and listening. A wonderful introduction to music and rhythm, beat Building is brilliantly fun! 07721 623 171  www. beatbuilding Colourstrings (various) Music Kindergartens for babies, toddler, and children up to 6 yrs with small, age-related classes. Classes are enjoyable and inspire learning, developing inner hearing and core music skills.

New class starting in Hendon in Jan 2017. 020 8444 9435  www. Diddi Dance Harrow & North Hillingdon (various) At diddi dance we enhance children’s endless energy and enthusiasm through funky, full of fun sessions that build confidence, co-ordination and creativity. Classes in Pinner,Ruislip & Stanmore with new ones opening soon. To book a FREE TRIAL contact tejal. Mini Maniacs (Various) Multi award nominated classes that are filled with music, dance and exploration plus plenty of excitement. Engaging activities, the classes take you up tempo then down tempo, leaving parent and child feeling like they’ve been on a tummy tickling roller coaster!  Monkey Music (Various) Award-winning Monkey Music introduces babies and young children to music in a way they understand and enjoy - and is brilliant fun for children and adults too! The unique four-stage curriculum, written by classically trained musicians, ensures that classes are a “good fit” for pre-schoolers. Parents across the UK have voted it as “Best National Toddler Development Activity” and “Best National Pre-school Development Activity”. Age guides are as follows: Rock’n’ Roll from 3m, Heigh Ho from 1yr, Jiggety Jig from 2rs, Ding Dong 3- 5yrs. Classes are open 6 days a week, at venues in Uxbridge, Eastcote, Northwood, Harrow and Stanmore. 020 8427 6595 

SPORTS AND EXERCISE All Stars Cricket Gives boys and girls aged 5-8 the chance to play, learn great skills and make new friends! 8 week course starts May 2018.  Better leisure centres (various) We exist to make community services and spaces better for everyone. That means providing access to quality community leisure and fitness facilities - and more - at a price everyone can afford.  uk/families Capoeira Academy UK (HA) Classes in Stanmore providing outstanding and fun classes for children aged 4+years. A unique blend of martial arts, dance, acrobatics and music; capoeira develops skills for life with inspiring and nurturing teachers. 07841342874  capoeiracademyuk@gmail. com www. Echo’s Equestrian Centre (SL0) A small friendly livery yard and Pony Club Centre in Iver, Buckinghamshire. Junior Pony Club and a Hoof Club during the holidays. 07895 706053  Enjoy-a-Ball classes (Various) Sports coaching for 3-9 yr olds in a fun, positive and non-competitive environment. Ten ball sports for the perfect introduction to sport. Physi-ball classes - Ball skills and core skills for toddlers aged 18mths to 3 yrs. Classes run in Mill HIll, Finchley, Golders Green and Muswell Hill. Enjoy-a-Ball parties are for super-active 3 - 9 year olds. They are full of high energy games loved by boys and girls alike! 0333 334 0845 or 07763746886  Everyone Active (various) Why should your child learn to swim? Swimming is lots of fun for people of all ages and also provides loads of health benefits which can help to keep you and your children healthy and happy at the same time. What’s more, swimming is the only sport which can save your child’s life. Drowning is still one of the most common causes of accidental death in children, so being able to swim is an essential life-saving skill.  To find out more about learning to swim at your local leisure centre visit Field End Flyers Saturday Morning Community Cycle Club (HA5) Saturday in Term Time, Field End Rd for ages 5–11 yrs. Join the friendly team of British Cycling Coaches at 9.45am, and learn fun skills, race on the amazing fully enclosed Cycle Track, make new friends and enjoy a whole morning of fun till 12.30 - (refreshment break half way through). All you need is your own bike, helmet, gloves and water bottle and a shower proof jacket.  Tracey Harrow Junior Hockey Club (HA1) run sessions for children aged 4- 16 years on Sunday mornings and Tuesday evenings at The John Lyon School Playing Fields, Sudbury Hill, Harrow, Middlesex HA1 3NA. Everyone welcome please contact us for more information  harrowhcjuniors@ Ignite Tennis (HA3) Coaching courses for ages 3+ at Kenton Lawn Tennis Club. Also fun Tennis Camps during the holidays. Contact James on 07852 180905  Kaishi Karate School Kaishi Karate School runs classes for children and adults in North London. Karate helps with discipline, confidence, coordination and fitness. First class is a free trial and free karate suit to new members during the month of October. Call on 07875501674 or see class times on  www. Little Kickers (Various) Enabling children aged 18mths up to their 7th birthday to develop their coordination, balance and agility through football activity classes Mill Hill, Swiss Cottage, Hampstead, Golders Green, Muswell Hill, Friern Barnet 020 8201 1084  Ruislip, Northwood/Oxhey, Pinner, Harrow (HA2), Harrow on the Hill and Watford  0208 123 9346  or Harrow (HA3) Bushey and North Wembley  0208 422 0676  London Academy of Gymnastics and Dance (LAGAD) Wembley and across North London (N2, N3, N8, N10, N14, N15, N20, N22, NW11, HA9). Quality, fun and safety conscious classes with fully-trained, highly-qualified coaches. Classes for youngsters from 3.5 years through to advanced levels. Wembley club opens for the summer term in a brand new Sports Hall at the Ark ElvinAcademy (HA9). Wembley Classes for ages 3.5 to 11 years (up to Year 6), all abilities welcome. Holiday Camps, Birthday Parties and Adult Ballet (N10) also available. LAGAD aim to inspire and ignite a passion.   0208 883 4675 Rugbytots - the UK’s first rugby based play programme for 2-7 year olds. Focusing on developing your child’s motor skills and confidence with funfilled programmes aimed at improving general ball skills, balance, agility and coordination. Currently classes in Watford, Rickmansworth, Bushey and Stanmore.  For more information contact

Local Clubs and Classes Directory SportsKids Academy (WD3 & HA3) SportsKids Academy provide 4 -16 year olds with an exciting and educational sports programme at weekends. We encourage and develop young people to grow as athletes and individuals. We have an extensive programme of team and individual sports as well as weekly team building challenges. ALL CHILDREN participate in a wide range of different sports , grow in confidence through leadership skills and have fun making lots of new friends.  Their programme includes; American Football,  Dodgeball, Handball,  Basketball, Rugby, Softball,  Gaelic Football, Rounders,  Athletics,  Cricket,  Gymnastics, Tennis,   Fencing, Lacrosse, Archery, Netball, Volleyball, Martial Arts, Football,  Badminton,  Hockey,  Orienteering and Golf.  07983392479  TISKA (HA1/9) Learn the fascinating art of Karate. Classes held in Wembley and Harrow. Families welcome, minimum age 4 yrs. 07739 572487  Y Active (HA2) New Harrow classes booking now for children and adults at the YMCA. A beautiful studio with free parking and a play garden. Baby, Ballet, Gym, Soft Play and Classes from £4.40. 020 8832 1576 

Swimmimg Aqua Vie Swimming based on effortless swimming and true water confidence. Fun classes for babies & Children from 6wks+ to all ages including Adults. New Tues, Wed & Sunday morning classes in Bushey WD23.  01923 245 772  or email office@aqua-vie. com Brent Dolphins (NW10/HA0) Swimming lessons for children 5 years and over at Willesden and Vale Farm. Sessions are held in a fun and friendly environment from beginner to competitive swimming level.Further details are available on our website  or you can email our Club Secretary at: . Splashtime Swim School (various) Swimming lessons, Holiday clubs and After school club held at Quainton Hall School.  Splashtime Swim School 07903126486 Children’s Activities 07794078452

THEATRE AND PERFORMING ARTS Beverley School of Performing Arts (HA8) After school & Saturday classes in Ballet, Tap, Modern, Jazz, Street, Singing & Drama for boys and girls aged 3-18years. ISTD and LAMDA examinations to advanced level. 07974 750 224  Huzzah Performing Arts & Mindfulness Build confidence from the inside out with a Huzzah weekly class. Drama, dance, singing and a touch of mindfulness. Ages 4 - 7. Saturday 1 - 2.20pm in Queen’s Park. Sunday 10 11.30am in West Hampstead. Sign up for a FREE TRIAL  Creative, calm, confident kids. Italia Conti Ruislip (HA5) Performing Arts School for 2yrs to adult, Haydon School Eastcote. ISTD Ballet, Tap and Modern, Street dance, Break Dance, Hip Hop, Musical Theatre, Singing, LAMDA, acting, Gymnastics, Lyrical. Call or email for a Free Trial 20 8838 8747  www. JAM2000 Performing Arts & Agency (HA4) Truly like no other, with classes available in dancing and drama from 2.5 years – adults, male and female plus an incredibly busy Agency that is always looking for new recruits for TV, films and commercials.  01895 624755  Perform Weekly drama, dance and singing classes. Confidence building fun for 4-12s. A unique mix of drama, dance and singing specially formulated to bring out every child’s true potential. Classes are kept small to ensure lots of individual attention. Perform offer no-obligation FREE trial sessions. Venues in Croxley Green, Golders Green, Northwood, Pinner, Harrow, Hatch End, Kensal Rise, Kentish Town, Queens Park, Stanmore and Wembley.  020 7255 9120 / Jigsaw Performing Arts Schools (Various) “A new school year is here, which means that children across London and the Home Counties are taking to the stage as Jigsaw begins an exciting new term of drama, singing and dance classes; the perfect activity to escape the cold, wet October weekends. Classes are designed to develop children’s confidence, focus and social skills, while having fun and making lots of new friends. With more children attending Jigsaw Performing Arts Schools than ever before, now is the time to book a two-week trial and discover these unique benefits at a school near you. For more information or to book a two-week trial,  www. or call 020 8447 4530. Sharpe Academy of Theatre Arts (HA1, HA4, HA7, WD3) Performance based theatre school with venues based in Harrow, Rickmansworth, Ruislip and Stanmore where children 3-21 attend weekly classes in preparation for full scale Musical Theatre productions. 01923 437693  www. Stagecoach (Various) Training in three disciplines: drama, dance and singing. Great for building confidence, making new friends and beginning to hone talent and enthusiasm for performing, or being coaxed out of their shell by having fun!  Harrow 020 3504 0100 Harrow on the Hill & Sudbury Hill 01923 248 294 Stanmore & Harrow Weald 020 3504 2154 Watford 01727 768 738 Queen’s Park 020 7723 5861 Northwood 01442 263 599  Wordworks Studio (HA5) Individual and group classes in Speech, Drama and Communication Skills for children 3-18yrs. 

Dance Harrow Theatre Dance & Pinner Theatre Dance (HA) Ballet, Modern, Tap and Street Dance. In Harrow, Pinner and Ruislip. ISTD qualified teachers and exams. Classes for children aged 3+.  07804 910 551  Info@ Instep School of Ballet (HA/WD) Trains students of all ages and abilities in ballet, tap, pointe and performance. The school offers examinations with the Royal Academy of Dance (ballet) and the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance (tap), and all teachers are fully qualified and registered with the RAD and ISTD. They produce a summer show each year. Classes in Harrow, North Harrow and Bushey.  07814 793 772  instepschoolofballet@yahoo. London Academy of Gymnastics & Dance (LAGAD) LAGAD is a specialist company passionate about the provision of high quality, dynamic and fun dance & gymnastics classes. Starting in September 2018, brand new Ballet and Street Dance classes for children aged 3 ½ years upwards at the Ark Elvin Academy. All abilities welcome, Trial Classes available throughout the Autumn term. Wembley (HA9) and venues across North London Contact: 0208 883 4675 / The Van Niekerk Academy of Dance (HA7) Ballet classes to develop poise, technique and expression through dance, for boys and girls aged 3-16 years with Royal Academy of Dance examinations  020 8950 2457  www

ARTS AND CRAFTS Art Classes for Kids (and Adults) in Stanmore (HA7) Drawing, painting and mixed media art classes for children and adults. On-going, small groups Mon–Thurs afternoons and Saturday mornings in Term Time for children from Year 1 up. Weekday morning studio sessions for adults in a relaxed, supportive environment. 020 8954 2897 or 07500 006 099  Art and Craft Club (HA5) Term time, Mon 4.30-5.30, Sat 10-11am or 11-12pm at Harrow Arts Centre. New activities introduced every term; drawing, painting, printmaking, collage, sewing, fabric printing and much more! For 5-11yr olds. Materials provided. Qualified teachers. 07946 055 422  Artzania Art and Craft Activity Club (HA) A new and exciting Arts and Crafts activity club for children ages 1-11 yrs open during term time and holidays. They offer and Mother Toddler Group art club (aged 1-4 yrs) and an Afterschool/ Holiday Club (ages 5-11yrs) Contact to book your place: Keshma 07419343105  Blank Canvas Art Club (HA4) Do your kids love Art? Then welcome to the club! Sign them up for these fun classes where I teach art techniques to 5+, 7+ and 11-18 year olds. Weekly term time classes & holiday workshops, with public or small group private options are available in Ruislip Manor & Eastcote. Special member’s benefits, sibling discounts and a refer a friend scheme are available so why not book now & let them develop a love of Art that will last a lifetime! Contact Suzi at , 07773 819 603 8 Messmakers! (HA5) A gentle and fun introduction to creative arts for the very young and their families, with lots of mess and none of the tidying up! Exploring different materials and textures each week. Ages under 5, come dressed for mess! 0208 416 8989  Stitch Club (HA5) Stitch and Sketch Club for children and teens. Start with simple hand sewing then developing sewing machine and design techniques to design and create your own items. Saturday Sketch Club develops looking and drawing skills and confidence. Also parties and one-off workshops. Adults’ weekly Dressmaking sessions and occaisional Beginners workshops.  E:

AFTER SCHOOL CLUB/EDUCATION SUPPORT All Saints Pre-School Queensbury (HA8) Free childcare for 2-5 yrs, 15-30 hours. Visit anytime Mon - Fri. Waltham Drive, Queensbury, Edgeware, HA8 5PQ. 07985 284 498/07958 473 475.  1Point4Teacher (HA) Do you have a child in KS1 and KS2? Does your child need more of a challenge? Then give 1Point4Teacher a try today. Lessons from a qualified primary school teacher, with a class ratio of 1 adult to 4 children. English tuition on Mondays and Tuesdays, covering reading comprehension and SPAG (spellings, punctuation and grammar) with math lessons on a Wednesday. Harrow, 5 minutes from Kenton Library.  or email the Head Tutor Mrs Edwin on Brownies and Guides (Various) Rainbow, Brownie and Guide Units exist across the area which provide fun activities for girls aged from 5 onwards.  or Peggy Brand 020 8205 7597 Champs Learning (HA1) A very structured tuition course for English, Maths, Science and 11+ exams. Courses run at Harrow College. 020 3004 9007  Click IT! Computer lessons for Children (HA2) Fun, exciting and educational weekly computer lessons for children aged 2-5. Classes held at nursery schools all over North West London. Have fun learning with technology: mouse and keyboard skills and devices including graphic tablets, trackpads and digital microscopes. Every lesson is designed to complement the EYFS curriculum. Free trials available. 020 8434 7111.  www.clickit-kids. DiscoG Coding Boot Camp (various) Weekly Coding Programme teaches Primary and Secondary School children the basics of coding. Using the Python Programming Language and the Raspberry Pi 3 your child will create fun and engaging gadgets that spring to life with lights and sensors, and prototyping devices that will ‘amaze and inspire’. Tailored courses written to support the National Curriculum for GCSE and A Levels. Adult courses are also available. Gerard on 07767 300940  info@ Elisa’s Tutorial School (HA8) Experienced private tutor in Edgware. Programmes for children from 2.5-16 yrs. If your child needs a little extra help, in English maths verbal and non-verbal 4+ 7+ and 11+ preparing for entrance exams or you just want to give them every advantage, Elisa can help. 99% success rate. 020 8958 1192 07956868119 

Explore Learning centres provide maths and English tuition to 5-14 year olds of all abilities. Visit their website to find your nearest centre or call to book a free trial class!  Field End Flyers Saturday Morning Community Cycle Club (HA5) Saturday in Term Time adjacent to Field End Junior School, Field End Road, Eastcote, HA4, for children aged 5 – 11 yrs. Join the friendly team of British Cycling Coaches at 9.15am and learn fun skills, race on the amazing fully enclosed Cycle Track, make new friends and enjoy a whole morning of fun till 11.30 - (refreshment break half way through). All you need is your own bike, helmet, gloves, water bottle and a shower proof jacket.  Contact Tracey at The Harrow Woodcraft Folk (HA) Elfin group for children, 6 to 9yrs. Parents wishing to join their children should contact the District Secretary; John Woolf: 020 8428 2409 or  www. Holidaytime After school club is part of Activetime Children’s Activities limited (HA1) Pick’s up from four local school’s at the end of the school day, then take the children back to the club for a snack and the daily activity. They are open Monday- Friday 3pm-6pm The Cadet Centre, Elmgrove Road, Harrow, HA1 2QA. Nicole 07794078452  www. Integratedbrain - Improve Co-ordination for learning! (UB5) Activities to help those with poor co-ordination, dyspraxia, dyslexia or fine motor difficulties. Small groups of 4/5 children working to develop better allround motor integration. Usha Patel 07766 837 616 ushapatel.raviv@ JKEducate Educational Consultancy and Tutoring (various) Tutoring, Assessments, Consultancy for children 5-18yrs. 7+, 11+, GCSE, A Levels, SEN, EFL. 020 3488 0754  Karen Wilkin Tuition (HA) 4+/5+ tuition. One to one, tailor made, handson, fun sessions in the comfort of your home. Experienced Montessori teacher with excellent results in all the top schools. Term time and holiday sessions available. 07887 984 401, Knowledge Above Standard (HA7) Maths, English, Verbal and non-verbal reasoning, 7+, 11+ 13+ exam preparation. 07985 588 085  Leaders are Readers (HA5 & N21) Offer specialist experience and accelerated learning in their award winning Saturday School, and also run popular Summer and Winter Schools during holidays. 2 hours spent per subject, including English, Maths, Learning to Read and Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning. All programmes are for ages 3.5 to 11 and the success rate is 90% for helping pupils prepare to sit entrance exams, including 4+, 5+, 7+ and 11+. Childcare vouchers accepted. 01992 651 300  www. The London Tutors (Various) Specialises in providing 11 Plus classroom based learning, to yr 4 and 5 students. Prepare students to sit exams for Grammar and private schools.  For a call back email your name and number to Love 2 Learn (HA) Experienced Primary School teacher and tutor for year 1 to year 6 in Pinner. 11-12 week session taught in small groups. Topics include Creative Writing, Mental Maths, Persuasive Writing, Public Speaking and Cross Curriculum Education. Mrs S Mukhtar. 07958 728184  Lumilie’s Learning World (HA) Children’s Educational/Developmental Classes for 2yrs-5yrs. Interactive Musical Activities, igniting children’s senses to a world of multiple learning opportunities. Expanding curious minds through language, communication, education and creative experiences. Classes at Harrow Arts Centre - Call Andrea 07914 953123 to book your FREE TRIAL.  Mastermind Tuition (HA) Specialists in 11+. Maths, English, Verbal and Non-Verbal, Grammar & independent School Preparation. £15 per session. Classes in Harrow and Northwood. 075 10 10 50 50. www. Math’scool Award-winning Maths Tuition plus out-of-lesson homework support. 0333 12 33 445  The Olivier School (various) offers outstanding courses for children aged between 3.5 -11 years old. Classes are held at Mount Stewart School in Harrow. Children are enrolled for either Saturday or Sunday 10am-2pm, term time. Summer School for 3 weeks over the school break. Enrolment is now open  for a January 2019 start. Number Works ‘n’ Words (Eastcote) Maths and English tuition classes which target identified needs to improve achievement levels. They set goals for your child, monitor progress and provide regular progress reports. Cater for all levels from Reception to Year 11.  The Play Shelter After School Club at Malorees Infant & Junior Schools (NW6) - 3.30pm to 6pm term time. Play schemes available out of term-time. 0207 407 6744. www. Pinner Tuition Centre (Pinner) After school and Sat tuition for Reception to Year 11 by fully qualified teachers. Tuition in Maths, Reading, Spelling, Writing, SATS, 11+ and GCSE. Free assessment. Ofsted Registered.  www. The Rainbow Club (various) Specialise in preparing for 3+, 4+ and 5+ entrance exams. 07850 045 471  Raviv Practice London (UB5) Catch up reading course. Improve reading age by 1 year in 3 months of home based work. The computer interventions is similar to having a tutor in your home with daily monitoring and feed back. Usha Patel on 07766 837 616  (registered therapist) Stem Den (HA6) Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths for children aged 5 to 13 years. Develop problem solving skills and learn programming. At St John’s School in Northwood.  Susan Daughtrey Education (SDE) SW Herts courses are based on more than 25 years experience preparing students for 11+ tests. All courses have been personally written by Susan Daughtrey M.Ed, author of the market leading verbal reasoning Technique and Practice series. Every year since 1987, over 90 per cent. of the students on the courses have achieved success.  020 7683 0734  Type IT! - Touch Typing Lessons for Children (HA2) Learn to touch type! Weekly lessons and intensive holiday courses for children from age 8-18. Highly recommended for children with dyslexia. Classes are held at their office in Harrow on the Hill, HA2 0JT. Free trials available. Adult classes also available.  020 8434 7111.  wendy@

Families North West London 13

What’s On

 UB Harlington Locomotive Society (UB3) 16th December is the annual Mince Pie Run! This Christmas event sees Father Christmas arriving by train to meet the young visitors. Warm Mince Pies will also be available from the Tea Bar, along with the usual refreshments. This special Open Day is open from 11am to Dusk.

Where’s Santa?  HA Pinner High Street (HA) Pinner Pantomime Evening will take place on 29 Nov this year. A great fun evening featuring a Pantomime Theme Window Dressing Competition and shopkeepers dressing up in costumes. Rides for young children and music, concluding with a magnificent fireworks display in Pinner Memorial Park. Ruislip Lido (HA4) Santa Specials on Sun 2, Sun 9, Sun 16 and Sat 22 Dec. Trains will run regularly from approx 11:20am until 5pm and you should allow approx 1.5 - 2 hours for your visit. The train ride, lasting about 12 minutes, will carry you on an enchanting ride through the woods and around the Lido to Santa’s Grotto at Woody Bay Station. On arrival, Santa will be waiting for a chat with the children and a photo opportunity with all the family before EVERYONE (yes – grownups too!) receive their presents. Squire’s Garden Centre Stanmore (HA7) Christmas Circus - The Greatest Snowman from Sat 24 Nov to Mon 24 Dec. Frosty the

Snowman has always been a huge fan of the circus, so when he gets the chance to join the Christmas circus, he just can’t say no. There’s only one problem, he can’t do any circus acts! After the show each child will meet Santa and if they have been very good, they will receive an early Christmas present!

 NW Kenwood House (NW3) An Audience with Father Christmas every weekend in Dec. Join in the festive fun with the man himself at Kenwood House this Christmas. Meet Father Christmas as he tells festive tales amidst the yuletide decorations. RAF Museum London (NW9) Christmas Grotto from 14th – 16th Dec. This year the Christmas Grotto returns to the RAF Museum. Get into the festive spirit and take the whole family to meet Father Christmas. Every child will have the chance to meet Father Christmas one-to-one and receive a present and there will be a chance to take photographs at the end of your visit.

Hillingdon Narrowboats Association (UB9) Santa Claus and his band of merry elves are back in the grotto at HNA this year, and are hoping to see lots of good boys and girls to give them a present! Children and their parents can catch the Santa Canal Trip, and take in a cruise up the canal, calling in at Santa’s canal-side grotto on the way back to see if he got anything for them. Trips will run from the Coy Carp public house in Harefield on 1st/2nd, 8th/9th , and 15th/16th Dec. HillingdonNarrowboatsAssociation

 WD Aldenham Country Park (WD6) Go along and see Father Christmas at the Frost Fair at Aldenham Country Park, taking place from Thurs 15th to Sun 18th November. Cassiobury Junior School Christmas Market (WD17) Annual Christmas Market from 11am-4pm on 25th Nov. Santas Grottos -Ride on Santa’s sleigh pulled by two horses -Fun fair -Game stalls -over 20 stalls selling perfect Xmas gifts -food and drink. Intu Watford (WD17) Santa arrives at Intu Watford from Friday 23rd November. Go along and see him in his magical grotto. Nascot Wood Schools’ Association Christmas Fair (WD17) At Nascot Wood Infants & Junior schools on Nascot Wood Road in Watford from 12 – 4pm on Sat 8 Dec. Adults £1 - Children FREE. Go along for a family fun filled afternoon. Visit Santa in his Grotto, play games, enjoy the entertainment and browse the stalls for Christmas gifts. All topped off with mulled wine and mince pies. National Animal Welfare Trust, Watford (WD25) Christmas Bazaar and Fun Dog Show on 2nd Dec. Lots of fun stall with loads of goodies for all the family as well as gifts for Christmas. Santa will be there so make sure that you pop in to see him. Rickmansworth (WD3) On specific dates between Mon 3rd to Mon 17th December, Santa will be making his way around the streets of Rickmansworth! For a full list of dates and the route, please head to the Rotary Clubs of Rickmansworth’s website. Watford Colosseum (WD18) Go along for a festive performance of Santa Claus and The Magical Christmas Journey, and afterwards all of the good boys and girls in the audience will meet Santa and receive a special present of their own.

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What’s On

 Further Afield Ashridge Estate (HP4) Take your dog and join Father Christmas on a walk around the meadow on Sun 9 Dec from 11am – 12pm. Put on a Christmas hat and hang a bauble from your pet’s lead for this fun, festive walk. Prizes for the best Christmas theme. £1 per dog, pay on the day. Burston Garden Centre (AL2) Go and visit Santa in this new and magical Christmas grotto. Children will be led by one of Santa’s elves into a Winter Wonderland, complete with twinkling Christmas trees and woodland creatures. Children will make their very own reindeer food to take away with them and complete a Christmas themed activity sheet. The children will then settle down on bean bags ready to listen to Burston’s own talking reindeer ‘Sprout’ tell the story ‘Twas the night before Christmas’. Buckinghamshire Railway Centre (HP22) Festive Day Out With Thomas every day in Dec! Go and see Father Christmas in a grotto with a difference: on a steam train pulled by Thomas! Take a steam train ride with Thomas the Tank Engine when all children will receive a present from Father Christmas - whilst you are waiting, you will also be visited on the train by Cha Char Chimps for a little Sing-Song! Chiltern Open Air Museum (HP8) At the special Christmas event find out about how Christmas was celebrated in the past. See a selection of the Museum’s buildings decorated for Christmas as they would have been during the time period that they represent. Father Christmas will be making his annual stop at the Museum and will greet visitors as he sits by the fire in Haddenham Cottage. Kew Gardens (TW9) This winter, Kew will transform into an enchanted wonderland between 22nd Nov and 5th Jan. New this year, enter the moonlit woods and step into a Laser Garden where refracting lines of light playfully bounce across the branches. Along the trail youngsters will delight in spotting

Santa and his elves performing, and there will be a festive fairground with a Victorian carousel and helter-skelter rides. Knebworth House (SG3) Go along to the Knebworth Winter Fair for a traditional, festive 3 days at from 9th – 11th Nov. Featuring 200 craft, gifts, food & drink stalls, a themed outdoor food and drink village, programmed feature stage and an enchanting Santa’s grotto. Lauderdale House (N6) On 1st and 2nd December, go to Lauderdale House’s grotto and meet jolly old Santa Claus! Every year a magical Christmas grotto springs up in Lauderdale House as Father Christmas pays a special seasonal visit. Kids of all ages can go along to meet the man himself! Legoland Windsor (SL4) Go along on 1st, 2nd, 8th, 9th and 15th - 23rd Dec to experience the Ultimate LEGO® Christmas at the LEGOLAND® Windsor Resort. Wonder at twinkling lights, snow-dusted pine trees, exciting seasonal festivities and see the Park as you have never seen it before... all with a sprinkling of festive LEGO magic! Meet Father Christmas himself, deep within the Magic Kingdom and receive a special LEGO® Gift!

Odds Farm (HP10) Christmas Spectacular daily from 1st to 24th Dec. Odds Farm Park has been sprinkled with even more Christmas magic and spectacular surprises than ever before! Take your Christmas Spectacular Pass through the Enchanted Forest, to start your magical journey to the North Pole. Meet the Elves and Father Christmas, head into the Elves’ Workshop to create your extraordinary take home gift and finally step into the Toy Shop to choose your Christmas Spectacular present! Paradise Wildlife Park (EN10) Santa will be arriving at Paradise in his beautiful horse & carriage on Sat 17th No at 10:30am sharp. You can also enjoy a short ride in his horse and carriage. Santa will then officially light the Christmas Tree before taking pride of place in his grotto, where he will be every weekend until Christmas and everyday during the school holidays until Christmas Eve! Paultons Park (SO51) Christmas is a special time of the year at Paultons, meet Santa in his magical Grotto, experience Peppa Pig World in a festive setting and enjoy selected rides and attractions, including Lost Kingdom and Critter Creek, across the Park. The event starts on 24th Nov and runs on selected dates until 23rd Dec.

Leicester Square (WC2H) Christmas just wouldn’t be Christmas without a visit to Santa... A chance for children to meet the man in red in person, and tell him their dearest wish. Go along to Leicester Square from 10th Nov to 24th Dec and hear a festive fairytale, meet Father Christmas’s and his helpers, and receive a wee gift.

Willows Activity Farm (AL4) Santa Spectacular from 21st Nov - 24th Dec. There is so much to do at Santa Spectacular with a full day out of indoor and outdoor fun including meeting Santa and receiving a golden key to his Toy Shop, attending Elf Academy, and saying hello to Santa’s reindeer.

Mead Open Farm (LU7) New for 2018! Make magical memories at The Magic of Christmas at Mead Open Farm packed full of mayhem, merriment and magic. There’s so much included…Meet Father Christmas, Group story with Father Christmas, Magical Enchanted Forest, Reindeer Flying School and more! Plus full entry to the farm. Selected dates from 1st-24th Dec.

Wyvale Garden Centre Tring (HP23) Santa will be in his grotto from 17th Nov to 24th Dec where you can also join him for a festive breakfast, lunch or tea!

Up to 50% off the First Two Months Nursery Fees T’s & C’s Apply

✷Funding available 15 & 30 hours subject to T’s & C’s

Families North West London 15

What’s On

What’s On

listings for all the family Compiled by Anna Blackshaw

To promote your local event, coffee morning, nearly new sale, parenting courses or community group in the next What’s On listing (Jan/Feb 2019 issue) send your entry by 25th Nov 2018 Email Listings in this section are FREE for most non-commercial ventures. Please check details of the events before setting off in case anything has changed since going to print. for all our local weekly regular events. It’s updated every day! Mon 12 – Fri 16 Nov - Anti-Bullying Week 2018 (various) The theme for Anti-Bullying Week 2018 has been announced as ‘choose respect’. CBeebies star Andy Day and Anti-Bullying Alliance patron, and his band Andy and the Odd Socks, are supporting Anti-Bullying Week 2018 and are encouraging students to wear odd socks to school during the campaign to show their support and raise money for a good cause. There will also be Anti-Bullying Week School Staff Awards for those inspiring members of the school workforce who go the extra mile to support pupils and prevent bullying. Thu 15 – Sun 18 Nov - Frost Fair at Aldenham Country Park (WD6) Relocated from Hatfield House, Aldenham Country Park provides all the space for this exciting established Christmas Fair. Wonderful gifts for family & home, Original and unusual crafts, Fine foods direct from the producer, Great choice of street foods, Festive atmosphere and Father Christmas and Over 150 exhibitors.

Christmas at London Zoo

NOVEMBER Ongoing (HA3) The Olivier School offers outstanding courses for children aged between 3.5 -11 years old. We supplement a child’s primary education through carefully constructed programmes delivered by highly experienced and qualified teachers. Children are enrolled for either Saturday or Sunday 10am-2pm, term time. We also run a Summer School for 3 weeks over the school break. Enrolment is now open on for a January 2019 start. There are very limited places on each course and it is advised that parents book early to avoid disappointment. Sat 10 Nov – Lord Mayor’s Show 2018 (various) See the new Lord Mayor of the City of London take to the streets in a glittering coach as part of a three-mile long ceremony full of innovation, spectacle and pageantry. The Lord Mayor’s Show connects the 21st century City to its mediæval roots to give you the oldest, the biggest and the best free day out in London. The procession will pass Mansion House at 11am. Sat 10 Nov - Lots for Tots Sale: Francis Coombe Academy (WD25) An indoor table top sale for people that want to sell their second hand baby, toddler and children’s items, and those that want to buy them. Our visitors can browse each sellers table and pick out exactly what they need, paying the seller direct. 10am until 11:45am. £1 entry per adult.

Sat 10 Nov - X1 Church Fireworks Display at Holy Rood Primary School (WD17) Bonfire Night 2018 will soon be here, bringing with it an explosion of colour in the skies over Watford!! At this year’s event there will be an amazing professional fireworks display, entertainment, games and stalls, plus food and refreshments available. Gates open at 5:30pm display at 7pm. Sat 10 Nov – Wed 2 Jan - Christmas Carnival 2018 at Waddesdon Manor (HP18) Visit Waddesdon this winter for Christmas celebrations that are like no other you will ever see at a UK historic house. Decorated both inside and out, there truly is something for everyone at Christmas Carnival. Away from the Manor’s lavish interiors, visitors will be able to enjoy state-of-the-art animations and light installations, taking them on an enchanted journey through the grounds. Complementing the breath taking decorations will be a delicious assortment of festive food and drinks.

Thu 15 Nov – Sun 2 Dec - Uxbridge Christmas Market (UB8) The first traditional Christmas market in wooden chalets to be held in Uxbridge. Situated between two Shopping centres and next to both, the Tube and Bus station, this is the ideal Location. West Londoners will be able to enjoy the festive season to the full on their doorsteps, including Christmas light switch on, The Christmas Parade, Christmas Carols and Santa’s grotto as well as the Christmas Tavern of course the Christmas market craft and gift stalls. A not to be missed event . 9am-5pm on Uxbridge High Street. Sat 17 Nov - Cheeki Monkeys Baby & Children’s Market Watford (WD18) Family Fun Day/ Indoor Pop-up Baby & Children’s Market. At Westfield Academy, Tolpits Lane, Watford, WD18 6NS from 12-2pm. Pre-Loved, Craft, Business, Entertainment Stalls. Buy/Sell children toys, clothes, equipment. Goody Bags - first 50 visitors. Adult £1, Kids FREE. Facebook @CheekiMonkeysRickmansworthandWatford Sat 17 Nov - Parmiter’s School Christmas Gift Fair (WD25) The Parmiter’s School Christmas Gift Fair is a popular annual event for those looking for Christmas gifts with over 70 professional stalls. Go along and have a browse and pick up some great presents for the family. Try your luck on the chocolate, toy and bottle tombola’s and the grand raffle. Hot food & refreshments together with mulled wine and mince pies will be available. 11am - 4pm at Parmiters School. Adults £1.50, Children free.

Sun 11 Nov - A Day to Remember: Community Takeover Day (HA5) Marking 100 years to the day since the end of the ‘war to end all wars’, join Harrow Arts Centre for a day of remembrance featuring creative heritage activities, performances and workshops for all the family throughout the day exploring this milestone in British history. 12-4pm. www.

Paediatric First Aid Courses Sat 8th Dec, Sat 26th Jan 2019 - Harrow on the Hill

Suitable for Ofsted Registration. Includes some home study.

Certificate valid for 3 years Cost = £85

Contact Margaret at or on 07814 191 395 for bookings Other dates available

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What’s On Sat 17 Nov - Remembrance Poetry Writing Workshop (SW3) Join a family-friendly poetry writing workshop at the National Army Museum. Lieutenant-Colonel Jo Young and Isabel Palmer, the two poets-in-residence, will guide you through writing your own piece of poetry inspired by the First World War. 12-1pm for children ages 5-8 and 2-4pm | Children ages 9-12. Free, limited space, booking required. Sat 17 Nov - Being Human Festival (E2) Go along to the V&A Museum of Childhood for a day of workshops exploring and celebrating motherhood and creativity.Guest speakers including visual artist Mary Martin (winner of the 2017 Mother art prize) consider how artists, academics and activists can creatively balance the challenges of motherhood and the place of the mother in contemporary culture. Sun 18 Nov - Family Day: To Autumn (NW3) Create a beautifully illustrated shape poem or collage inspired by the season at the monthly creative family workshop at Keats House. 2 – 4pm, free, drop in. Sat 18 - Sun 19 Nov - Glitter Emporium (WD17) Nothing gets you Christmassing quite like glitter! Young (and old) can chose from a selection of face stencils and glitter tattoos to get you in the festive mood at Intu Watford. When you’re done, don’t forget to pop by the Letter to Santa Station to pen that all important letter to Father Christmas - just pop it into the letter box and we’ll put in a good word with the big man for you! www.intu. Wed 21 Nov - Kids in Museums: Toddler Takeover Day (SE10) The annual celebration of children’s creativity in museums taking place at the Cutty Sark. The day’s activities are designed and led by children from a local school, who will present themed arts, crafts, storytelling and play for the youngest visitors and their carers. 10am-2.50pm. Thu 22 Nov - ‘Kids in Museums’ Takeover Day (SW3) Kids in Museums takeover day features a multitude of creative activities for the under-5s, their families and carers. These storytelling, craft and rhyme-time sessions at he National Army Museum are inspired by animals of the First World War. They are devised and run by local primary school children. Families are invited to explore the galleries where the children will be hosting these interactive sessions throughout the Sat 22 Nov – Sun 6 Jan – Hyde Park Winter Wonderland (W2) Open daily from 10am – 10pm, entry to Hyde Park Winter Wonderland is free with child tickets to attractions like Peter Pan On Ice, Backyard Cinema’s The Snowman Experience, Zippos Christmas Circus and more starting from as

little as £5 with family deals from £20. Plus there’s a brand new dedicated family entrance! A brand new Santa Land features a 45m long Ice Slide and an Ice Trike Trail plus a FREE Santa’s Grotto! www. Thu 22 Nov – Mon 1 Jan - Christmas at London Zoo (NW1) Christmas will be coming to ZSL London Zoo like never before this winter – with a magical new family experience. On select dates visitors are invited to journey through the Zoo on a festive Christmas light trail, experiencing the landmark London location in a different light. After the sun sets and the animals have bedded down for the night, the Zoo will transform into a fairyland of twinkling decorations - celebrating the festive season with a series of illuminated animal sculptures, light tunnels and Christmas surprises. Thu 22 Nov – Sat 5 Jan - Christmas at Kew 2018 (TW8) This Christmas, Kew Gardens will once again transform into a magical after dark explosion of festive colour, as visitors embark on an illuminated trail inspired by the Gardens themselves, for the much-anticipated Christmas at Kew 2018. Now a firm favourite in the London festive calendar, this year’s trail will offer an utterly new experience of art, light and sound from a roster of incredible international artists. Sat 24 Nov - MUM2MUM Market Baby & Kids Nearly New Sale (HA3) The next mum2mummarket baby & kids nearly new sale in Harrow is at Weald Rise Primary School from 2-4pm. Buy top quality preloved baby and children’s goods at a fraction of the high street price. All great brands in top condition. Go along and grab some incredible bargains! Sat 24 Nov - Lots for Tots Sales: Rickmansworth School (WD3) An indoor table top sale for people that want to sell their second hand baby, toddler and childrens items, and those that want to buy them. Our visitors can browse each sellers table and pick out exactly what they need, paying the seller direct. 10-11.30am. Sat 24 Nov - First World War Animal Crafts (SW3) Did you know animals played a vital part in the First World War? From horses and camels to dogs and pigeons, learn more about the different animals that served and the important jobs they did at the National Army Museum. Make your own ‘Top Trumps’ cards. Which animal will come out on top? Create your own paper animal puppet to take home. 10.30am–1pm and 2-4.30pm.

DECEMBER Sat 1 Dec - Dino Snores for Kids: Christmas Special (SW7) An action-packed night of Christmas activities, followed by a sleepover at the Natural History Museum. This sleepover is an opportunity for kids aged seven to 11 to explore the Museum after dark. Take part in fun, educational activities with a seasonal touch - and watch out for the T. rex hidden in the shadows. Sat 1 - Sat 22 Dec - Pop-up Performance: Festive Weekends (SW7) Go along to the V&A Museum every Saturday in December for an interactive performance celebrating a Victorian Christmas. You are warmly invited to a Victorian Christmas party exploring all things festive, from Christmas cards to trees. Find out how Victorian children entertained themselves on Christmas Day. Performances take place at 11am, 1pm & 3pm. Sun 2 Dec - Santa Dash (HA4) Due to popular demand the Harefield Hospital Santa Dash is back and it’s merrier than ever! So why not slip into your Santa suit and walk, jog, run or scoot along in the scenic 1.8km route round Ruislip Lido. It’s the perfect way to kick off the holiday season with a bit of fun and festivities all whilst raising money for a very worthwhile cause. Sun 2 Dec - Cheeki Monkeys Baby & Children’s Christmas Market Rickmansworth (WD3) Family Fun Day/ Indoor Pop-up Baby & Children’s Market at Mill End Sports Social Sports Club, 52 Penn Rd, Rickmansworth, WD3 8QN from 12-2pm. Pre-Loved, Craft, Business, Entertainment Stalls. Buy/Sell children toys, clothes, equipment. Goody Bags - first 50 visitors. Adult £1.50, Kids FREE. Facebook @ CheekiMonkeysRickmansworthandWatford Sun 2 Dec - Family Craft (NW3) A creative workshop to bring Kenwood House’s world famous paintings to life. Families will get to work together to try out different art and crafts whilst exploring the house and finding out more about its collections. Sessions will take place in the house. Just turn up between 12pm4pm to take part. This month make and take home your own pop up Christmas card. Continued on page 18

The Van Niekerk Academy of Dance • Ballet classes for boys & girls aged 3-18 • Outstanding Royal Academy of Dance examinations results • Established 17 years in Stanmore • • • •

Successful places at Royal Ballet School, Tring Park, Central School of Ballet, London Senior/Junior Ballet, London Studio Centre, Ballet West Numerous cups/medallists – British Federation of Festivals Contemporary/Jazz classes Mat Pilates for adults and senior ballet students

Suzanne Van Niekerk (RAD Qualified Teacher) T: 020 8950 2457 “Develop poise, technique and expression through dance”

Families North West London 17

What’s On

Cirque du Soleil: Totem 12 Jan-26 Feb Continued from page 17

Sun 2 – Sun 23 Dec - Drop-in Design: Festive Weekends (SW7) Enjoy architecture inspired seasonal making on Sundays in December at the V&A Museum. Celebrate the festive season and design your own sensory Christmas tree decoration inspired by architecture. Sun 3 Dec - Stories on the Sleigh (WD17) Join the beautiful Christmas Princess for interactive storytelling throughout the day at Intu Watford. For those who love to get arty, head over to the craft station to make your own Countdown To Christmas calendar to take home and count how many sleeps there are until the big day! Sat 8 Dec - Treasures of the Anglo-Saxons (NW1) Riddle, talk, draw and create your way to knowing more about the Anglo-Saxons at the British Library. In this exciting and interactive workshop for families you can explore some of their treasures before making your very own treasure to take home. Craft a beautiful jewelled book cover and then draw a story or write a riddle to keep inside. 10.30am and 1pm. Ages 5-11 yrs. Sat 8 Dec – Dawnosaurs (SW7) A free event that lets children on the autism spectrum enjoy the Natural History Museum with their families and siblings, free from the hustle and bustle of the general public. A dedicated Sensory Room will also be available for those children needing a quieter and calmer space. You can apply online three weeks before each event. Spaces are in high demand, and priority will be given to first-time attendees. Sat 9 Dec - Icy Hall of Mirrors (WD17) Explore the festive hall of crazy mirrors which will distort your reflection at Intu Watford. Make your way through and pop over to the craft station to create your own Christmas decoration to hang on the tree when you get home.

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Sun 10 Dec - Frozen Games (WD17) Join in the fun at Intu Watford with interactive games including penguin puzzles, Snow Shy alley, pin the nose on the reindeer and more. Have a go at the Christmas spot the difference could be in with the chance to win a fab prize. watford Mon 10 - Wed 12 Dec - Anything Goes (HA2) John Lyon presents Anything Goes, with music and lyrics by Cole Porter. Taking place at the Ryan Theatre in Harrow-on-the-Hill at 7pm. Tickets are £5 (£3). 020 8515 9400 Mon 11 - Fri 22 Dec - Stories on the Sleigh (WD17) Join staff from Gymboree at Intu Watford on Santa’s sleigh for festive story time every weekday between 12.30-1pm and 3.30-4pm. Find the sleigh on the lower mall next to Marks and Wed 12 Dec - Christmas Carol Concert (WD17) This Christmas, Watford Palace Community Choir invite you to join them as they sing a medley of carols and festive favourites. Everyone is welcome to go inside, warm up and prepare for the holiday season with a fun evening of yuletide song. Wed 12 Dec - Watford Philharmonic Society Present A Christmas Cracker (WD18) Join Watford Philharmonic for their very popular family celebration of Christmas. Fun, festive music, carols and plenty of opportunity for audience participation at Watford Colosseum! Michael Clayton will be leading the usual mix of carols, familiar festive music and plenty of opportunity for audience participation! Sun 15 Dec - Cheeki Monkeys Baby & Children’s Christmas Market Watford (WD18) Family Fun Day/ Indoor Pop-up Baby & Children’s Market at Westfield Academy, Tolpits Lane, Watford, WD18 6NS from 12-2pm. Pre-Loved, Craft, Business, Entertainment Stalls. Buy/ Sell children toys, clothes, equipment. Goody Bags - first 50 visitors. Adult £1, Kids FREE. Facebook @ CheekiMonkeysRickmansworthandWatford From Sat 15 Dec – Cbeebies Christmas Show: Thumbelina (various) The much-anticipated annual CBeebies Christmas Show is coming to the big screen for a family friendly Christmas cinema experience in 2018. CBeebies’ favourite personalities are lined up to star in this unique adaptation of the original Hans Christian Andersen tale, Thumbelina, available in UK cinemas from the 15 December 2018. Sat 15 - Sun 16 Dec - Freezing Frost Fairs (E14) Imagine a winter so cold that Thames freezes and an elephant can cross the ice! It happened over two hundred years ago during London’s last frost fair. Go along to the Museum of London Docklands and create a frost fair scene that recaptures the magic of these special celebrations on the Thames. 12–1.30pm & 2.30-4pm. Sun 16 Dec - Rudolph Rave 2018 (WD18) There’s fun for all the family this Christmas at the Rudolph Rave at Watford Colosseum! With a DJ on the decks playing classic dance tunes, a sprinkling of Christmas songs and chart tunes, glow sticks, gallons of glitter, giant balloons, a spectacular laser-light display and a licensed bar for the big kids, this family-friendly party afternoon will make Christmas 2018 truly unforgettable for everyone. Go party with Santa, Rudolph and friends. Wed 19 Dec – Sat 5 Jan – Circus 1903 (SE1) From the award-winning puppeteers behind ​War Horse, Circus 1903 comes to the Southbank Centre in London fresh from the Paris Theatre in Las Vegas. Stunningly created larger-than-life puppet African elephants join a huge cast of the most unique, jaw-dropping and dangerous acts from all four corners of the globe in this turn-of-the-century circus spectacular. From acrobats to contortionists, jugglers to trapeze, high wire performers and much more, this show will amaze, captivate, and transport audiences of all ages to the mesmerising Golden Age of circus. Thu 20 Dec - Christmas Carol Singalong (N6) Join the Christmas Fairy at Lauderdale House for a gallop through your favourite Christmas tunes. A fun and festive way to spend an hour this December! This Christmas singalong session is open to everyone, young and old, and is free to attend. As always, we will be holding a festive arts and crafts session before the singalong, for children to create their very own Christmas lanterns. 5-6pm, no ticket needed!

What’s On

Hyde Park Winter Wonderland – credit Stephen Frak Fri 21 Dec - Handmade Holidays (E14) Many wartime holiday decorations were handmade in the ‘make do and mend’ spirit of the times. Be inspired by wartime celebrations at the Museum of London Docklands, and create your own holiday decorations. Sat 22 Dec - Away at the Fair (E14) Let your imagination transport you back in time to London’s famous frost fairs. In this interactive storytelling session at the Museum of London Docklands, learn about the games, activities and even shops that covered the Thames during these special winter celebrations. Sat 22 Dec - Sun 23 Dec - Season’s Greetings (E14) Be inspired by winter celebrations and design your own holiday cards at the Museum of London Docklands. Be sure to give them to friends and family to remind them how important they are to you. Sat 23 - Sun 24 Dec - Feed your Reindeers (WD17) Flying all over the world is hard work. Go along to Intu Watford and create your own reindeer feed to leave out for Rudolf and his friends on Christmas Eve. Thu 27 – Sat 29 Dec - Ahoy! Film Screenings (E2) Enjoy children’s classic pirate films, accompanied by themed craft activities at the V&A Museum of Childhood. Activity at 3pm followed by film at 3.30pm. £4 per person, free for under 3s. www.

Mon 31 Dec – Kids Countdown (SE1) Families are invited to start their New Year revels early at this countdown party for kids at the Southbank Centre. If kids are too little to stay up until midnight, they are welcome to start the celebration early and with their very own Kids’ Countdown. With all the same ingredients: a countdown clock, confetti cannon and the familiar tune of ‘Auld Lang Syne’. This will be a New Year’s Eve to remember.

JANUARY Sat 12 Jan – Sat 26 Feb – Cirque Du Soleil: Totem (SW7) Cirque du Soleil is delighted to announce that due to popular demand, its famous show TOTEM will return to the Royal Albert Hall in London in January 2019. On an island evoking the shape of a giant turtle, TOTEM traces the fascinating journey of the human species from its original amphibian state to its ultimate desire to fly. Through a visual and acrobatic language, TOTEM explores the ties that bind Man to other species, his dreams and his infinite potential. Mon 14 Jan – Mon 18 Feb – Anger Management for Parents and Teens Together (HA1) A 6 week course at Hope Harrow which looks at improving both parent’s and teens’ understanding of anger and share tips and strategies on how to enhance relationships. 020 8863 7319

Thu 24 Jan – Thu 21 Feb – Money Matters Course (HA1) This course is for every parent who feels they would like to spend less and try and save . If you would like to find out how to manage your household budget more effectively then this is the course for you. This 5 week programme aims to make the issue around money, engaging and fun. Parents have constant pressure on their finances, having to meet expectations and demands from their children. It’s not always easy to find the time and space to make the subject of money, and its challenges, part of family life and the children’s understanding. At Hope Harrow from 9.30-11.30am. 020 8863 7319 Thu 31 Jan – Thu 28 Mar – Effective Parenting Course (HA1) A 7 week programme at Hope Harrow, to help parents and carers learn practical communication skills for everyday life and to develop their abilities to bring up confident, co-operative and happy children. 020 8863 7319



Families North West London 19

What’s On for families, couples, friends or colleagues, test out skating skills in Hyde Park Winter Wonderland’s most popular attraction. Located within beautifully leafy surroundings, skaters will glide around the Victorian bandstand under a canopy of twinkling lights in perfect festive spirit.

The Natural History Museum Ice Rink

ICE RINKS Thu 25 Oct – Sun 6 Jan – The Natural History Museum Ice Rink (SW7) The iconic Natural History Museum Ice Rink will be returning for the 2018 festive season. Set against the stunning backdrop of one of London’s best-loved landmarks, skaters can take to the ice at the enchanting rink. This year, the glistening ice rink will be topped off once again with a sparkling 30ft Christmas tree. The Café Bar, run by Benugo, will be open for seasonal treats, as well as providing a perfectly positioned viewing balcony. Fri 2 Nov – Sat 16 Feb - Ice Rink Canary Wharf (E14) Get your skates on, Ice Rink Canary Wharf has returned to Canada Square Park for 16 magical weeks of ice skating beneath the twinkling lights. Open seven days a week, it's the perfect place to enjoy one of London's most loved winter traditions. Back by popular demand, the path leads you on a new route this year underneath the park's enchanting canopy of trees. Wed 14 Nov – Sun 13 Jan - Skate at Somerset House with Fortnum & Mason (WC2R) The stunning Edmond J. Safra Fountain courtyard is the backdrop to London’s most beautiful ice rink, where you can skate day or night with family and

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friends. Skate Lates features an extra special series of music nights throughout the season - the perfect start to your weekend. Aprèsskate, treat yourself at Fortnum’s Lodge with one of our Skate Extras – all designed for two to share; relax and take in the spectacle rink-side with a drink or warming snack in the Skate Lounge. Thu 15 Nov – Sun 23 Dec – Winterville Ice Rink (SW4) The open air Ice Rink is 600 metres square and constructed from real ice. It’s open Tues to Sun and open to all abilities. If gliding across Clapham Common doesn’t appeal, then why not enjoy a winter warmer in the neighbouring cafe, where you can check out all the action in comfort. Wed 21 Nov – Mon 24 Dec – Willows Farm Village Santa Spectacular (AL4) As part of their Santa Spectacular, Willows Farm will have a Magical Ice Rink where you can Glide around the synthetic ice with ski boots available to fit all sizes. Great fun for the whole family! Thu 22 Nov – Sun 6 Jan – Hyde Park Winter Wonderland (W2) Polish up those skates as the UK’s biggest outdoor Ice Rink returns… but this year, it just got even bigger! Perfect

Fri 23 Nov – Sun 6 Jan - Tower Skate (EC3N) Ice skate at the Tower of London and you don’t just get to do it with the city’s most iconic historical landmark as a backdrop – you’re actually in it! As you glide around the 1040m² rink, take in the magic and ambience of the castle beside the Thames, which offers a unique and unforgettable setting. There’s something for everyone whether you are a novice or an expert, new this year try the early morning sessions – perfect for little skaters and families, leading into picturesque afternoons and bustling evenings. Sat 24 Nov – Sun 13 Jan - Big Skate (WD18) The outdoor rink, made with real ice, will return to The Parade in Watford for the festive season, offering fun for all the family. The Big Skate is open seven days a week start the day with a serene morning skate or enjoy a post-work spin as the ice rink opens from noon until 9pm. For those who prefer to keep their feet firmly on the ground, the perfect spectating spot can be found in the rink-side bar. Dates TBC – Ice Rink at JW3 (NW3) Whether you want to practice your Double Lutz or just your Double Klutz, go and skate on North West London's favourite pop-up ice rink at JW3. With a skating area of 200m2, the outdoor ice rink comes complete with glimmering lights, vibrant music and an electric atmosphere. For those who aren’t as steady on the ice, the helpful penguin stabilisers can be pre-booked as can the seated banana toboggans for less confident little ones to have fun on. 23 Nov 2018 – 6 Jan 2019 Hampton Court Ice Rink (KT8) A popular event which offers exclusive discounted prices for families, advanced booking is recommended at this famous royal residence. The rink is open every day — except Christmas Day — from 11am to 9pm, and from 10am on weekends. From 17 December, the rink will be open every day from 10am. For more information and to book tickets, visit www.

What’s On

What’s On Children’s Theatre and Christmas Shows We couldn’t fit them all in! More online

Compiled by Anna Blackshaw

We aim to be as accurate as possible, but these listings are compiled several weeks beforehand and may be subject to change. Please check with the venue directly before setting out.

The Alban Arena Civic Centre, St Albans 01727 844488 Thu 6 Dec – Sun 6 Jan Cinderella Don’t miss this hilarious, funpacked family pantomime, Cinderella starring Rachel Stevens (S Club 7), children’s favourite, Ben Faulks (CBeebies’ Mr Bloom) and local legend, (this time wearing the trousers!) Bob Golding. Cinderella promises to be spectacular, top-quality entertainment with the emphasis on strong casting, high production values and a genuinely funny script.

Artsdepot 5 Nether Street, North Finchley, N12 020 8369 5454 Sat 1 - Sun 2 Dec - The Night Before Christmas On the night before Christmas, Emily stares out of the window, hugs her teddy and waits excitedly for the morning, while in the corner a little mouse called Eddie can’t understand why only humans are allowed to get presents. So he sets off in search of Father Christmas to find out for himself. Along the way he dodges the family cat, gets directions from a cowardly robot and is given some unexpected advice from the magical fairy on top of the tree.

Will Eddie get an answer? Will Emily get her wish? And what is that funny-shaped present sitting under the tree? Ages 3+ Tue 4 Dec - Sun 6 Jan - The Gruffalo’s Child Following hot on the heels of The Gruffalo’s sell out tour and his monstrous West End success comes The Gruffalo’s Child - with attitude! Just how brave is she? Find out for yourselves by joining her at artsdepot this Christmas. One wild and windy night the Gruffalo’s Child ignores her father’s warning and tiptoes out into the snow. After all, the Big Bad Mouse doesn’t really exist... does he? Tall Stories returns, bringing Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s award-winning sequel to life in this magical, musical adaptation. Songs, laughs and scary fun for children aged 3 and up and their grown-ups.

The Beck Theatre Grange Road, Hayes. 020 8561 8371 Wed 21 Nov - Bring Your Own Baby Comedy Bring Your Own Baby Comedy is the UK’s number one baby friendly comedy club! The show features some of the funniest comedy stars from the circuit and TV. This event is all about you… the parents! Soft flooring, toys, buggy parking and baby changing are provided so that your baby is happy and you can

relax, have a coffee (or a cheeky G&T if you prefer!) and be entertained! Wed 28 Nov – Sun 2 Dec British Airways Cabin Crew Entertainment Society: Sinbad Join the crew on a trip to Baghdad as they return with their family pantomime, Sinbad. Along the journey, you will meet the evil Stagnacia Van Quish, the sea witch who is plotting world domination but Sinbad will stop at nothing to prevent her in her quest as the adventure unfolds. Will he be able to save the day under the watchful eye of his mother, Betty BevMaker? Will good conquer evil? Be transported to a magical and colourful world by BACCES. Fri 7 – Sun 30 Dec - Peter Pan Swapping the cobbles of Coronation Street for Captain Hook, Ryan Thomas stars in this year’s high-flying pantomime adventure, Peter Pan. Set sail with your shipmates and head for Neverland this Christmas where you’ll be hooked on the swashbuckling pantomime adventure - Peter Pan. Featuring magnificent scenery, beautiful costumes, an abundance of comedy and stunning flying sequences, it’s the perfect treat for the festive season and outstanding entertainment for all the family! It’s an adventure you won’t want to miss – hook your tickets now!

Cadogan Hall 5 Sloane Terrace, London SW1X 020 7730 4500 Sat 1 Dec - West End Does: Christmas Start the festive season in style with this West End family extravaganza featuring stars of West End and Broadway performing songs and carols alongside the fabulous orchestra and gospel choir, Sing Gospel. The concert will be supporting the work of Make Wish Foundation UK. Wed 12 Dec - Carols by Candlelight A sublime concert of carols and seasonal classics, staged in full 18th-century costume in an evocative candle-lit style setting. Sun 16 Dec - Royal Philharmonic Orchestra: Christmas Cracker Christmas isn’t the same without attending the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra’s Christmas Cracker. This fun, festive concert is back for two performances of glittering Christmas songs, seasonal music and sing-along carols. As the beautiful Christmas tree illuminates Cadogan Hall’s stage and mulled wine is served to complement the wintry weather, there will be no doubt in your minds that Christmas has well and truly begun! Continued on page 22

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What’s On Campus West Theatre The Campus Welwyn Garden City AL8 0300 3039 620 Sat 15 Dec – Sun 6 Jan – Aladdin A story of a magic lamp, a wishgiving Genie and true love, this high flying pantomime tells the story of penniless hero Aladdin and his quest to win the hand of the beautiful Princess Yasmin. Abanazar, an evil sorcerer intent on world domination, promises Aladdin riches beyond his dreams if he finds the lamp hidden in a cave. From the team behind the box office hits Beauty and the Beast and Dick Whittington, Aladdin is Christmas entertainment at its very best, guaranteed to make you laugh, cheer and boo – so pop along for an action-packed adventure that will have the family chuckling all the way home! Peter Pan - The Beck Theatre Continued from page 21

Fri 21 Dec - Paddington Bear’s First Concert & Father Christmas Screening The charming score of Paddington Bear’s First Concert for symphony orchestra and narrator will take you on a journey with Paddington himself, from his first meeting with the Brown Family right up to his debut as a conductor at the Royal Albert Hall! The second half provides the whole family a magical Christmas treat joining Father Christmas as he gets ready for his busiest day of the year, Christmas Eve – broadcast on the big screen while the Mozart Symphony Orchestra provides a live soundtrack. Early booking recommended – all ages welcome.

Cambridge Theatre 32-34 Earlham Street, London, WC2H 020 7087 7745 Until 20 Oct 2019 – Matilda the Musical Matilda The Musical is the multi-award winning musical from the Royal Shakespeare Company, inspired by the beloved book by the incomparable Roald Dahl. With book by Dennis Kelly and original songs by Tim Minchin, this is the story of an extraordinary little girl who, armed with a vivid imagination and a sharp mind, dares to take a stand and change her own destiny. Winner of a record-breaking seven Olivier Awards in 2012, the show has won over 70 international awards since its opening in November 2011 when it received 5-star reviews across the board.

Chickenshed Chase Side Southgate N14. 020 8292 9222 Wed 21 Nov – Sat 5 Jan - A Christmas Carol Join Chickenshed for a magical and brilliantly uplifting retelling of the unforgettable story of Ebenezer Scrooge, that “squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous, old sinner”. Follow his spooky encounters over the course of one incredible night, and his journey ultimately to become the friendly, charitable man who “knew how to keep Christmas well”. Chickenshed has updated, renewed and refreshed this amazing and heart-warming tale for 2018 in an entirely brand new musical version, set in 1930s Britain. Wed 5 – Sun 30 Dec - Christmas Tales The fun and festive show, Christmas Tales, is back for another year! With a sprinkle of magical snowflakes, Tales from the Shed has been supersized to bring this colourful, energetic and vibrant show to the Rayne Theatre. With puppets, singing, dancing and some larger-thanlife characters, Christmas Tales is guaranteed to entertain the very youngest of audience (and grown-ups too!), leaving everyone happy and joyful at this most wonderful time of the year! Ages 0-7 yrs

Compass Theatre Glebe Avenue, Ickenham UB10 01895 673 0200 Sun 25 Nov - Compass Christmas Join the Friends of Ickenham Hall as they take you through Christmas past and present, in honour of the 50th anniversary of Compass Theatre. All proceeds go towards the upkeep of the venue.

The Snowman - Watford Colosseum

Thu 6 Dec – Sat 5 Jan - Aladdin 2018 DKproDuktions return to Compass Theatre with their 8th winter pantomime - Aladdin in December 2018. This will be another great value, professional pantomime featuring plenty of songs, laughter, animated scenery and magical entertainment for all the family. NEW The show at 4pm on Fri 14 Dec, will be a Relaxed Performance to provide an opportunity to include members of the community such as those with learning or communication difficulties and those with an autism spectrum condition, who may have felt unable to attend more traditional styles of pantomimes in the past. Sun 16 – Mon 24 Dec - The Santa Show Its Christmas Eve at the North Pole and the elves are making final preparations to Santa’s sleigh, when disaster strikes! Santa’s computer has crashed and he needs your help to resolve the problem before Christmas gets cancelled.Will the girls and boys help Santa save the day? Performance includes songs, a gift and the chance to meet with Santa. Ages 2+

Harrow Arts Centre Hatch End HA5 0208 416 8989 Sat 15 Dec - Beauty & the Beast Harrow Arts Centre are delighted to welcome back Immersion Theatre for a second Christmas with their most spectacular pantomime yet, Beauty and the Beast! Bursting with audience interaction, laugh-out-loud comedy, and a host of charttopping songs, you are cordially invited to be our guest and join the fun as we proudly present a festive treat like no other. Brimming with energy, magic, and romance, this larger-than-life pantomime will enchant the entire family and leave you spellbound!

Little Angel Theatre 14 Dagmar Passage, Cross St, N1 020 7226 1787 Fri 16 Nov – Mon 24 Dec Finding Santa Following on from the hugely popular Santa’s Little Workshop, Little Angel Theatre once again brings to life magical puppetry in this brand new interactive Christmas adventure for all the family.Ever wondered how letters for Santa Claus get to the North Pole? What if something went wrong along the way? And how will Santa’s elves make sure his mail is delivered on time? A comical adventure full of quirky characters, where the audience will help decide how the story unfolds. Ages 3-8 yrs

Lyric Theatre Shaftesbury Avenue, London, W1D 7ES 0844 482 9674 Fri 23 Nov – Sun 13 Jan - Room on the Broom Live Join the witch and her cat on their mission to defeat the dragon in Tall Stories magical, musical adaptation of the classic picture book by Julia Donaldson and Axel

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Scheffler. The witch and her cat are flying happily on their broomstick when they pick up a helpful dog, bird and frog for a ride. But this broomstick’s not meant for five and ‘CRACK’ it snaps in two! Enjoy songs, laughs and scary fun for children aged three and up in the Olivier Award nominated show.

The O2 Arena Peninsula Square, London SE10 0208 463 2000 Wed 26 Dec – Sun 6 Jan Disney On Ice Presents Dream Big Audiences will set sail with the wayfinder Moana as she makes her European debut live on ice in Disney On Ice presents Dream Big. Alongside Moana and demigod Maui are eight tales of courage and heart, including Frozen, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and Tangled. Plus, arrive early to celebrate 90 years of Walt Disney’s “true original,” Mickey Mouse.

Puppet Theatre Barge Little Venice W9 (During the summer the Barge is at Richmond, TW10) 020 7249 6876 www. Sat 1 – Mon 31 Dec - Mr Rabbit meets Brer Santa Brer Rabbit is back to his mischievous ways in this Christmas adventure full of fun and surprises. Will Mr Fox outsmart him this time? Staged with beautiful lighting, unique hand-carved marionettes, and voiced by Rudolf Walker, better known as Patrick Truman in Eastenders ‘Mr Rabbit meets Brer Santa’ promises to capture the imagination of young and old! Ages 3+

The Radlett Centre 1 Aldenham Avenue, Radlett, WD7 01923 859291 Sat 17 Nov - Vienna Festival Ballet presents The Nutcracker Be swept away on a magical adventure in one of the most famous classical ballets of all time – The Nutcracker. With its combination of enchanting choreography and unforgettable music, this fabulous ballet is an early Christmas treat like no other. Sat 8 Dec – Thu 3 Jan - Aladdin Upstage Productions return with a fantastic traditional pantomime for all the family! Bursting with fabulous music, hilarious comedy, dazzling sets and costumes as well as loads of audience participation. Join in the fun this Christmas, with songs and laughter and follow Aladdin’s exciting adventures involving colourful pantomime characters, a scheming sorcerer, a golden lamp, a beautiful princess, a cave full of treasure and just a touch of friendly Genie magic! Ages 3+

What’s On Ryan Theatre Harrow on the Hill, London, HA1 0333 6663366 Mon 10 - Wed 12 Dec - Anything Goes John Lyon presents Anything Goes, with music and lyrics by Cole Porter. Taking place at the Ryan Theatre in Harrow-on-the-Hill at 7pm. Tickets are £5 (£3). 020 8515 9400 enquiries@johnlyon. org Sat 15 – Sun 16 Dec – Cinderella Presented by The Hillplayers, the best fairytale is coming to Harrow on the Hill. Cinderella lives a life of drudgery, bullied by her horrible Ugly Sisters and Evil Stepmother. Meanwhile, the King and Queen are determined that their son the Prince should find a suitable bride. So they invite every eligible maiden in the kingdom to a fancy dress ball – will this be the chance that Cinders has been waiting for?​Go and enjoy this magical, musical pantomime this Christmas. www.hillplayers.

Unicorn Theatre 147 Tooley Street, SE1. 020 7645 0560 Tue 13 Nov – Sun 6 Jan - Philip Pullman’s Grimm Tales: Once upon a Christmas... A most delicious selection of Philip Pullman’s favourite fairy tales by the Brothers Grimm, re-told and re-worked for this Christmas. Enter a world of powerful witches, enchanted forest creatures, careless parents and fearless children. But beware, these gleefully dark and much-loved tales won’t be quite what you expect… Ages 8+ Sat 15 – Thu 27 Dec - Ready Steady Colour’s Christmas Feast Take a seat in the make-believe Christmas restaurant, choose your ‘food’ and colour it in. And while you’re decorating your plate with cranberry

red paint, salt and pepper glitter and bread sauce glue, the restaurant’s waiting-staff will entertain you with comedy, music and storytelling. A Line Art’s Anna Bruder has developed a huge following for her unique brand of interactive art and musical theatre shows where children and adults take part together. Ages 3+

Sat 22 – Sun 23 Dec - The Sleeping Beauty Ballet Theatre UK’s spectacular production, set to Tchaikovsky’s glorious music with stunning classical choreography, by the Artistic Director, Christopher Moore, reawakens the magic of the world’s favourite fairy tale.

Watford Palace Theatre

Watersmeet High St, Rickmansworth WD3 01923 711 063

Fri 7 - Mon 31 Dec – Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

Clarendon Road, Watford WD17 01923 225 671 Wed 5 Dec – Sat 5 Jan - Jack and the Beanstalk The most magical event of the year is back, full of all the ingredients you’ve come to love about the Watford Palace Theatre Pantomime… A lavish spectacle with live musicians on stage, stunning sets and costumes, song, dance and slapstick, performed straight from the heart by a talented company of new faces and Palace favourites. For 2018 join Jack, Dame Trott and their traditional pantomime cow on the most giant adventure of all! The ultimate seasonal treat for you, your family and friends, created especially for you in Watford by our devoted team.

Watford Colosseum Rickmansworth Road Watford WD17 0845 075 3993 Mon 17 Dec - The Snowman This Christmas, join us on an immersive magical journey and experience the heartwarming tale of The Snowman, screened with live orchestra. Celebrating 40 years of it’s publication, this BAFTA winning classic, featuring the song “Walking in the Air”, this cinematic gem features Raymond Briggs’ story with music by Howard Blake, performed for you by Orpheus Sinfonia. This wonderful event is preceded by an interactive introduction, Orpheus Sinfonia will guide the audience to discover and find the instruments of the orchestra.

The Sleeping Beauty

Winston Churchill Theatre Pinn Way Ruislip HA4 01895 250615 Wed 28 Nov – Sat 1 Dec Scrooge Enter the Christmas spirit with this production for all family. Ruislip Operatic Society is proud to present Scrooge the musical, based on the 1970 film Scrooge and Charles Dickens ‘A Christmas Carol’. Will Ebeneezer Scrooge spread some Christmas cheer when confronted with his ghost’s of Christmas Past Present and Future?

From the team behind last year’s spectacular Beauty and the Beast, expect a show bursting with all the ingredients of a classic fairy tale pantomime, live music, colourful sets plus plenty of comedy, fun and laughter. Go along for a magical adventure to meet a Wicked Queen with a jealous streak, a handsome Prince who’s searching for love and the fairest of all damsels in distress. Not forgetting a magic mirror, a tempting juicy red apple and seven friendly dwarfs. Don’t miss this fabulous family treat!

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Profile for Heather Waddington

Families NW London Nov/Dec 2018 issue 125