Do you dare do it in the dark? London is such a visual city that it’s easy to forget the importance of your other senses. The Royal London Society for Blind People (RLSB) invites you to experience what it’s like to be a blind young person in the capital over the coming weeks, taking part in fun London events using all your senses except sight.
This year’s London Without Limits Festival offers opportunities to try dining, dancing, dating, shopping, food and drink tastings, visiting a farm and playing the piano — all blindfolded. Here are some highlights:
Blindfolded Borough Market:
It always smells good in Borough Market but this Blindfolded Tasting Tour will really focus your senses. Take a friend and you can do the self-guided sensory tour set by Kevin, a blind young person at RLSB, to explore the tastes and textures of the market. The Blindfolded Tasting Tour of Borough Market is available every Thursday in July from 2.30pm to 4.30pm.
Grub Club are offering special sensory supper clubs each Saturday in July. You can expect a four-course blindfolded dinner with some additional elements. They say, "join a magical journey and sensory bombardment of taste, touch, smell and sound as we explore a new supperclub experience combining food, theatre and trust." Tickets are £38.50 available from Grub Club. The surprise blind tasting menu suppers take place at Three Little Birds, Clerkenwell 7.30pm.
Herne Hill Street Piano is celebrating its birthday and London Without Limits is bringing the blindfolds along so you can try and play the piano using your fingers and ears only! RLSB blind young pianists will be on hand to help you and there'll be a 'playoff' between the blind pianists and blindfolded sighted pianists with the audience judging who gives the best performance. While you're there, try blindfolded beer tastings and enjoy a slice of piano shaped birthday cake. Herne Hill Piano Party is on 5 July, 12-4pm.
Blind wine tasting:
Without your sight, will you know if it's red or white? If you can't see the label and have only your tastebuds to rely on who knows what grape varieties or types of wine you'll like. Or hate. Tickets are £27.50 per person, which includes blind tasting of eight wines, some mixed meze, and a donation to RLSB. Blind Wine Tasting is at Vinoteca Soho on 7 July, 7pm.
Literally. Match.com are running a blindfold dating event which includes a salsa class, drink and food for both vision impaired and sighted people. You have to be a match.com member to sign up but the event promises to challenge all your preconceptions as you rely on your brain to process information about the people you meet and dance with. Love is Blind takes place on 13 July at Minster Exchange, EC3 at 7pm.
Experience Vauxhall City Farm, its animals and vegetation through touch, smell and sound. Kids and adults alike are welcome to join in fun games and super sensory experiences, all for free. Take the super sensory tour of Vauxhall City Farm on 22, 23, 29 and 30 July, entry is free. NB, we're going this week — watch out for a video report back.
Developers and designers, fancy a challenge? Join a two-day Hackathon which aims to find innovative ways to use technology to help improve employment and dating for blind young Londoners. Food and drink will be provided so you can focus 100% on being creative. Email email@example.com to join. Hackathon takes place on 25 and 26 July at Clerkenwell Workshops.
It all kicks off with a launch event on Carnaby Street on 29 June where you can try putting on lipstick without looking, blind taste smoothies and cocktails, try blackout sunglasses, do arts, crafts and yoga blindfolded (not necessarily at the same time) and many other fun things. And get tickets now for special closing event, Dancing in the Dark at wonderful Wilton's Music Hall on 30 July featuring Imogen Heap, Shlomo and London Contemporary Voices.
London Without Limits runs from 29 June to 30 July. Check out all events online.
Londonist is proud media partner to London Without Limits.