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Welcome to our 11th fortnightly newsletter!

Don't forget our picnic in Regents Park is a week away - Saturday 10th August - hope to see you and your friend there.  If you know you'll be away please encourage your friend to come.  We'll be in the North-East corner of the park near Gloucester Gate, NW1 4HG, cross Outer Circle and enter the Park, you will see the children’s playground in front and we will be on the left.  Nearest tube Camden Town, best bus 88.  

The map was in our last newsletter which is now on our website and you can find here.  Email to let us know if you, your friend (or both) plan to come, so we can look out for you. Here's a photo from last summer...

It's festival time in London!

We probably should have told you earlier but Cubitt Sessions, the wonderful live music festival has been running in Coal Drops Yard, Kings Cross since last week but there's still great music to be experienced over the weekend: artists from the English National Opera, Naala (British-African fusion), Kabantu a Mancheser-based quintet, Vula Viel duo (Ghanian jazz), Hannah James' Jigdoll (performance, song, dance, accordion) and Cherise Adams-Burnett reviving Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald classics are all still to play on 3rd and 4th Aug.

And its all free - just turn up and bag yourself a deckchair or beanbag!
It's also the final weekend of the National Theatre's free outdoor festival of arts and entertainment - River Stage - on the Southbank. Each weekend they offer a full line-up of events for all ages: from family workshops and theatre, to club nights and DJs. And it's all free too! 

This weekend (3rd/4th) is the final party weekend to close the festival. There will be something for everyone including family theatre, dance, music and much more.  Check out the events here.

And Summer by the River by City Hall and Tower Bridge (south side) is the the largest free outdoor festival in the capital running for 3 months throughout the summer.  There are farmers' markets, workshops, dance, music, open air theatre, film screenings and much more....throughout August.  Check out events here. 
Meanwhile the Proms are in full swing at the Royal Albert Hall until 14th September with concerts, talks, workshops.  The full line up can be seen here.

Promming is standing room in the arena or balcony and is a great London tradition.  £6 tickets are available online on the morning of the concert or you can queue for promming tickets which are released an hour before the show begins - another great London tradition.  More info on promming (cheap standing tickets) here.


And more things to do for free in London:

1. We Londoners may prefer to avoid Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace but its very popular and free! It takes place every other day at 11am Monday/ Wednesday/ Friday/ Sunday.
2. London has great markets so here's a link to where they are and when they happen.
3. The Southbank Centre has free cultural and music events throughout August.  Find out what's on here.
4. If you and your friend like walking and exploring try part of the Jubilee Greeway Walk - 60 km of walks and cycle routes to mark each year of the Queen's reign.
5. And Kew Gardens should be on your list of free things to do with your friend as we now have community membership so no need to pay the entrance fee just email us and we'll send you the voucher.
6. Not only is the V&A's wonderful collection in South Kensington open daily and free but so is the V&A's Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green

Have a great August!
The HostNation team

PS. Our previous 10 newsletters with lots of ideas and links to refugee projects are now all available on our website under news
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