PREVIEW: Totally Thames

The annual festival returns once again from the 1st until the 30th September, celebrating the river and to get people to engage with it. 

Steve Faldo Memorial Barge Judy Spanswick
Steve Faldo Memorial Barge, (c) Judy Spanswick. 

For this year’s festival, the programme has been curated around the issue of plastic pollution in our rivers and oceans, Handel’s 300th Anniversary of Water Music, and stories of the river.

The programme features over 150 events on, beneath and beside the River Thames including concerts, film screenings, exhibitions, installations, performances, walks, a boat party and even a wild swim.

Highlights of this year’s festival includes Working River: London’s Boatyards (throughout September) which  will bring the living history of the boatyards on the Tidal Thames alive through oral history, film and photography in a series of exhibitions. Composer Iain Chambers will  return with his third edition of the Bascule Chamber Concerts (22nd – 24th September) and The Great River Race (9th September) – London’s 21.6 mile River Marathon with over 300 crews from all over the globe.

Adrian Evans, Director of Totally Thames said: “For this, our 20th birthday edition, we are exploring the working river and the history of Thames boatyards through spoken word and oral history; through photography and film. ”

Meanwhile the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan commented: “This festival celebrates one of our city’s major assets, bringing its history to life through a fantastic variety of free activities including concerts, exhibitions, installations and performances. From learning about environmental issues facing the river to hearing about those who live on it, there’s something for everyone to get involved in this September.”

Totally Thames runs from the 1st until the 30th September. For more information visit:

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