The News Room: Midweek Musings

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Happy midweek Londoners. Yes, our posts have been few and far between for this month but I have the best excuse. Holidays. Glorious holidays. Slightly begrudgingly back in the cold (for now) so here’s a little London update.

- Londoners have been rated as the best bluffers! Grosvenor Casinos carried out the survey to coincide with poker face research. King of the Londoners, Boris Johnson, was nominated best bluffer!

- David Beckham has a new underwear range for H&M. I don’t really know what else to say. Go and look at it. Now.

- Benedict Cumberbatch has landed the role of The Jungle Book supervillian, Shere Khan, in the upcoming film adaptation.

- It’s one of the biggest weekends in London – Carnival baby! Bring on the rum, bring on the chicken. This weekend marks Notting Hill Carnival, with childrens day on the Sunday and adults on the Monday. The parade is set to start at 9am and through to 7pm – happy bank holiday!

Christina x

The News Room: London Update

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Hello!

We’re so sorry that we haven’t updated much recently, it’s holiday/house moving season but we’re back now (after a weekend of sun, sangria and siestas in Madrid)!

Let’s see what’s been going on in London…

- It was announced today that rail fares in London are set to increase by 3.5% in 2015. Oh goodie. The London Assembly Labour group have suggested that today’s figures mean that London transport fare rises for January 2015 are likely to be something along the lines of:

Bus and Tram Pay as You Go – up to £1.50

PAYG TfL Rail Services Zone 1 – up to £2.28

Zone 1-2 monthly Travelcard – up to £124.82

Zone 1-4 annual travelcard – up to £1,863

- According to Forbes, London is the most influential city in the world! New York comes second and Paris was in third place. Read more about how awesome London is here: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/11040489/London-the-most-influential-city-in-the-world-according-to-Forbes.html

- It’s time for Big Ben to get cleaned up! The hands were stopped at 12:00 for cleaners to scale the clock face, but the bell will still chime.

- Sports-wise, the Premier League started again this weekend.  I’ve resigned myself to the fact that plans will soon have to be scheduled around Arsenal games…

I hope everyone is enjoying the last of the sunshine (I think our summer is coming to an end – but we had a pretty good one this year!)

Helen x

The London Lense: Spectra

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“Spectra”

This exhibit is by Japanese artist Ryoji Ikeda, and it is shining as London’s World War 1 centenary light. It’s in Victoria Gardens, by the House of Parliament. I saw it last night and it was spectacular. Completely surreal and dazzling, it is a beautiful idea. The light can be seen for over 12 miles, so if you’re London based, look towards Big Ben when the sun goes down to see it.

Helen x

The Emporium: Secret Cinema presents Back To The Future

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Following last week’s cancellations, Secret Cinema finally launched its Back To The Future extravaganza last night and wow, was it worth the wait!

I’ve tried to only mention things in this review that I’ve seen in other places online so as not to spoil the event for anyone who is going, although I know a lot of photos and videos have been shown on the news, but I just won’t be specific about what actually happens!

Secret Cinema prides itself on the immersive cinematic experience, and Back To The Future was certainly that. This experience was not as secret as I know previous events have been, especially with all the hype surrounding it, but it exceeded all my expectations.

Arriving in East London, the queue was a sea of denim on denim, spotted frocks, curls and gilets (and of course a few people dressed up as the Doc). We handed in our phones and stepped in to Hill Valley.

Wandering around Hill Valley, we could visit the Texaco garage, play games in the arcade, write cards in the post office and order food and drink from Lou’s Diner. They even had cash machines in the Bank of America (although I’d advise you to get cash out beforehand). I was SO impressed by the level of detail in the main square, and the Hill Valley Fair itself was a lot of fun. Dancing crazily to Johnny Be Good at the Enchantment Under the Sea Dance was probably one of the most fun things I’ve ever done. The atmosphere was amazing and everyone got involved, which made it even better. For those who want a way to remember the event, you can buy disposable cameras (head to the arcade), which I thought was a really nice touch.

The food there was mainly burgers and fries, although there were a few stalls with cakes and brownies – I had a jam and cream scone with my wine, very civilised! Yes, there were (very) long queues for food, but I wasn’t expecting otherwise, and you didn’t have to wait long at all if you just wanted a drink.

Back To The Future is such an enjoyable classic film, and for me, there was just the right amount of live experience and flashy lighting and effects to enhance the cinematic experience, so much so that I’m thinking about going again! The huge amount of effort that went into it was obvious from the moment you arrived, and full credit to the actors who did an incredible job.

Tickets are available at http://www.secretcinema.org/tickets, and if you still aren’t sure, just trust me, it’s worth the price – put your phones away, grab a picnic blanket and your skateboard/dancing shoes and go!

Helen x

The News Room: Midweek(ish) Musings

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Happy almost weekend Londoners! Let’s get straight into whats been going on this week.

- England are winning at something! We are currently ranked first in the Commonwealth games with over 100 medals. Best of luck to Tom Daley who’s diving today…will definitely be watching that one.

- Something incredible happened this week in the celebrity world and I’m really excited to type it. Orlando Bloom punched Justin Bieber. I think Bloom deserves a hero of the year award for this no? #TeamBloom all the way.

- British beauts Benedict Cumberbatch and David Tennant are planning to launch a challenge against the Arts Council to explain why it has axed funding to Richmond’s Orange Tree Theatre.

- Secret Cinema got the ball rolling again last night as they finally opened to the public with fans declaring it was worth the wait. Helen went and loved it so watch this space for her thoughts.

- Stuck for something fun and different to do this weekend? Check out The Kopparberg Urban Forest in Dalston for tasty treats, fresh ciders, cocktails and live music. Very excited!

Above photo taken at the Southbank at sunset.

Christina x

The Emporium: Gone Burger Gone

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Move over Honest Burger, there’s some new players in town and boy do they have game. Gone Burger are currently in residence at The Railway Tavern in Crouch End every Friday and Saturday and serving up a storm.

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Gone Burger use their very own secret recipe in the Burger Rub before cooking it to perfection in front of your face. Next comes the presentation – let’s just say they don’t just make these burgers, they build them. Burger architecture some may say. Oh and “when it come to gherkins, ain’t nobody better than Perkins” true story.

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So, enough of the boys and the building let’s get down to real talk. I went for the original Kickflip – organic beef, cheese, salad, garlic mayo and whiskey smoked barbeque sauce. Unbelievable. I was sold on the first bite. There’s so much variety to choose from on the menu so something for everyone.

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The Railway Tavern is run by my gorgeous friend Velieda Kilcullen, her and the boys will be in residence every Friday and Saturday cooking up a storm so get yourselves down there for, I kid you not, The Best Burger in London.

p.s. don’t bring up sheep.

Christina x

The News Room: London Update

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(Trafalgar Square on Saturday)

I can’t believe it’s nearly August already, this year is flying by! The sun was still around this weekend, although it seemed a little cooler in the mornings. I did Race for Life yesterday morning so was very grateful that I wasn’t running in 25 degree heat, but luckily the sun came out in time for Christina, who spent the day frolicking in the sea J

Let’s have a round-up of the weekend news…

- TFL announced that, from September 16th, customers will be able to pay for the Tube, London Overground, DLR and Trams with contactless payment. The technology will calculate the best value for contactless payment, with Daily and ‘Monday to Sunday’ fare capping. (Source: @TFLOfficial)

- The much-anticipated Secret Cinema event, Back to the Future was cancelled last week. Due to open on Thursday, those behind the event gave little notice of the cancellation to those attending, and haven’t given much information since… (Read more about that here) I’ve got tickets for this Thursday, so hopefully everything will go to plan!

- A train at Mile End underground station on Saturday morning narrowly missed being hit by masonry falling into a tunnel. No-one was hurt, and although the Central Line was suspended for a while, it was declared safe, and the damages will be repaired during engineering hours.

- As Christina mentioned in Midweek Musings, The Commonwealth Games kicked off last week, and England are second in the medals table, we have 23 Gold medals so far! There are lots of familiar faces stepping onto the podium, including Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee, Tom Daley and Nicola Adams.

- Camden Beach opened at the Roundhouse this weekend, bring back the sunshine, we want to go!

Helen x