Over the course of four very special days this summer (21 – 24 June), thousands of people will be given the keys to the City of London, as the Square Mile opens its doors to reveal many of its secrets and treasures.
Celebrate the City: four days in the Square Mile is your chance to enjoy the freedom of the City of London – and a unique opportunity to find out why the Square Mile is not as square as you might think!
Launching on Midsummer Day (21 June) with Tchaikovsky’s thunderous 1812 Overture performed in Guildhall Yard by musicians from Guildhall School of Music & Drama, Celebrate the City events – most of which are free-of charge – will include glittering exhibitions, City walks and talks, Livery Hall openings, family entertainment at the Cheapside Fayre, activities at the Barbican Centre and Museum of London, and music in many of the City’s churches.
Play some tunes on one of the golden street pianos that will mark the opening of the 50th anniversary of the City of London Festival or take part in the Midsummer street party at the climax of Spitalfields Music Summer Festival. You can even catch a glimpse of Magna Carta, one of the world’s most iconic documents, and enjoy a spectacular sunset from the Tower Bridge walkways.
Alderman David Wootton, The Rt. Hon. the Lord Mayor of the City of London and Patron of Celebrate the City, said:
“Celebrate the City is a wonderful showcase of the City’s world-class arts and culture in this very special year. As we honour HM The Queen in this, her Diamond Jubilee, and look forward to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, we have a unique opportunity to share, enjoy and celebrate our City with the rest of the world. The City of London is the foremost international centre for financial, professional and business services, but it is also a treasure trove of history, architecture and art. As Patron of this event, I am proud to play my part by encouraging people to discover its riches.”
The Rt Revd & Rt. Hon. Dr Richard Chartres, Bishop of London and Patron of Celebrate the City, said:
“During Celebrate the City, the Diocese of London’s City churches will welcome visitors from around the world with a vibrant programme of cultural events and increased access to their impressive and varied architecture. We look forward to working in partnership with the City of London Corporation and the many participating partners to ensure that the event truly shows the City of London at its very best.”
Sir Nicholas Kenyon, Managing Director of the Barbican Centre, said:
“In 2012, the eyes of the world are on London and over the course of this special long weekend, we want as many people as possible to visit the Square Mile and celebrate the City by enjoying its rich offer of heritage, architecture, the arts and culture. In collaboration with the Diocese of London, we are opening the City – to visitors, Londoners, new audiences and families – for four days of unparalleled activity to bring the City’s unique attractions to life. In partnership with the City’s great institutions, we’re offering something for everyone.”
Celebrate the City is a joint collaboration between the City’s arts partners, attractions, livery companies, churches, retail and hotels. It is promoted by the City of London Corporation and the Diocese of London with generous support from the City Bridge Trust. For a full list of participating organisations and updates, please visitwww.visitthecity.co.uk/culture2012 and www.visitthecity.co.uk/index.php/celebrate/partners/ or follow us on Twitter @celebrateatcity and facebook.com/celebratethecity; and during June, you can win exclusive Celebrate the City prizes by listening to Magic 105.4.