Spring has finally arrived after what has felt like a particularly long winter, but its arrival signals the start of life returning to some form of normality.
With the gradual lifting of lockdown restrictions and rising temperatures, people are keen to get back out into the world for events in London and evenings out with friends again. So, we've pulled together a few things to look forward to throughout spring as well as for when some of the wider restrictions which will hopefully get lifted, allowing people to see their nearest and dearest again.
With the UK's roadmap out of lockdown, people have set their sights on the days when you can meet in groups outdoors, either within the 'rule of six' or with one other household. As the days are starting to get longer and warmer too, it's a great time to start planning a small excursion to one of London's best parks for a picnic. Whether you've been longing for a trip to Hyde Park or Regent's Park with your besties or meeting up with close family in a local green space, the last few days in March will have been marked in many people's calendars for some heartwarming reunions.
One of the most recent attractions to be added to central London is Leicester Square's Scenes in the Square, an interactive statue trail which takes you on a cinematic journey to discover iconic characters from across the decades. The completely outdoor event is free for anyone who wants to get in on the action, with an audio narration from Alex Zane giving you some extra insight into the bronze statues you'll encounter - from Paddington and Bugs Bunny to Laurel and Hardy or Harry Potter, there's characters you'll find that'll leave you spellbound.
For many of us, the last year of lockdown has seen a dramatic rise in popularity of interactive media like video games as a solace for needing to spend more time indoors. The already popular pastime has gained even more momentum with attracting wider audiences than before, with future releases being aimed more towards specific groups to explore their stories. The London Games Festival 2021 is taking place between March 19th to 28th to showcase these future game titles, both at in-person event and online, with live broadcasts from developers and demos available to play from home. If you're interested in taking your hobby to the next level, or you're just curious about how far video games have come, then this is one to tune in for.
The Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race will be taking place on Sunday 4rd April this year, after unfortunately needing to be cancelled in 2020, where Cambridge will be seeking to gain another victory over Oxford after their win back in 2019. The current standings sit at 84-80 to Cambridge, but with a year out it could be anyone's year to claim the title. Although there are great spots to watch the race unfold along the River Thames, people are being encouraged to watch The Boat Race from home instead as it will be a 'closed' event this year. The Women's Boat Race starting at 3:50pm and the Men's at 4:50pm, with the coverage being broadcast by the BBC - fingers crossed next year people can attend in person!
One date that's got a lot of people buzzing is April 12th - the proposed date when pub gardens and restaurants will be allowed to reopen and serve up to groups of six exclusively outdoors. This has prompted many people to book tables at many establishments in London and across the country which have outdoor seating areas. If you've been wanting to show your support local businesses, then check which bars and restaurants nearby with outdoor space have bookings available and start planning your first night out after lockdown. Or, if you'd prefer to wait until you can sit indoors, this should hopefully be an option from May 17th when bars and restaurants should be able to seat groups of 6 indoors. Many favourite underground and rooftop bars in London will likely see their bookings fill up quickly, as well as local restaurants and cosy cafes which have been off the menu for months.
Later in spring is always when we might see reopening of indoor and outdoor theatres, as productions return to the stage and theatregoers can return to their seats to enjoy live performances once more. This is conditional on lockdown measures being lifted as part of step 3 but, just like with pubs and bars reopening, we could see theatre venues book up quite quickly given that capacity will likely be much lower than before. So, while some shows might not return until summer, if there's a particular show you've been eager to see or a familiar favourite you'd be keen to catch, keep an eye on tickets releasing in Spring for performances of Les Miserable and Hamilton on the West End.
As we get deeper into spring, it's likely that people will start booking summer events before long once there's a greater confidence around all restrictions being lifted at the end of June. However, the emphasis on things being done the right way to ensure the safety of the public means that once things are able to reopen, they should hopefully be back for the foreseeable future.
Have you been waiting until we come out of lockdown before looking at moving home? Spring might be the best time to take a look at our available property developments and start making plans around where you might want to move to.