Apollo 11 Moon Landing Anniversary Events In London

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Apollo 11 Moon Landing Anniversary Events In London
Image sadly not the author's own.

That's one small step for man...

The first humans landed on the moon on 20 July 1969. The 50th anniversary is not going unmarked. London alone has dozens of events, from film screenings to sleepovers.

Highlights and headlines

You'll be over the moon if you're a space fan in the Royal Borough of Greenwich. The National Maritime Museum has the largest exhibition about the moon in London. Meanwhile, those living towards Woolwich should check out the full programme of the Moon Festival, which includes a street party, talks, pub quiz and all-night moonwalk.

Over in South Kensington, the Science Museum has a Summer of Space Festival while the Natural History Museum houses a giant model moon. More details of these and other happenings are given below.

Exhibitions and installations

GIANT MOON: Luke Jerram's Museum of the Moon opened at the Natural History Museum in May, and quickly became an Instagrammer's favourite. London's largest bauble gives you a chance to bask in the moonlight while studying the cratered surface up close. Look out for free daily performances beneath the model. Until 1 January 2020. Free, just turn up, normal opening hours.

Giant moon
Museum of the Moon, Natural History Museum. You can do yoga in its selenic glow

LUNA MAPS: Cartographers were charting the moon centuries before we made the voyage. See some of the finest at The Map House (54 Beauchamp Place, SW3 1NY) at an exhibition called The Mapping of the Moon: 1669-1969. Highlights from the exhibition include signed memorabilia by astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Jim Lovell. 21 June-21 August. Free, just turn up, Mon-Fri, 10am-6pm, Saturday, 10.30am-5pm.

MOON-SIZED EXHIBITION: What reckons to be the biggest exhibition about the moon opens at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich. Called simply The Moon, this show takes a broad look at our satellite, from an ancient Mesopotamian lunar calendar to artefacts from the Apollo 11 mission. Opens 19 July, £9/£5.85, prebook or turn-up, 10am-5pm daily

A signed photo of Alan Bean walking on the moon, part of The Mapping of the Moon: 1669-1969 exhibition (see above)


DOCUMENTARY: Catch a free screening and Q&A of BBC2's new documentary 8 Days: to the Moon and Back, on the Science Museum's IMAX screen. 28 June, free, prebook, 7.30-9.30pm

HELEN SHARMAN: Britain's first space traveller joins veteran broadcaster James Burke at the Science Museum for a screening of rare Apollo 11 footage, followed by Q&A. 17 July, £12, prebook, 7-8.30pm

SPACE SHORTS: London Short Film Festival curates a series of films of an astronautical persuasion. Catch them at the Science Museum. 26 July, £10, prebook, 7-8.45pm


Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock

MAVERICK WOMEN & THE MOON: A star-studded evening of talks and performances at Greenwich University on how the moon has inspired creative women over the centuries. Speakers include Margaret Atwood and Helen Lederer. 20 July, £40, prebook, 6.30-10pm

HOW THE MOON AFFECTS EARTH: A talk by The Sky at Night's Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock looks at the moon's many affects on the Earth, and how our satellite has influenced human culture. Hear it all at the Tramshed, Woolwich. 21 July, prebook, £10/£12, 6-7.30pm

WORSHIPING THE MOON: Join Christina Oakley Harrington, founder of Treadwell's bookshop, at Greenwich University for a look at how witches understand the moon as goddess, how they relate to it, and how it informs their cosmology, along with some of her most memorable adventures in her life as a practising witch. 24 July, £10, prebook, 7-9,30pm

MOON AND THE LAW: Can anyone own part of the moon? What are the legal, ethical and political consequences of lunar exploration? An eye-opening talk at Greenwich University. 25 July, £12, prebook, 7-8.30pm

MOON HOAX: Dallas Campbell, off the telebox, hosts a panel discussion on why some people still believe that the Apollo moon landings were faked. Although such claims have been convincingly debunked (and will be again tonight), the lunatics keep on coming, thanks to 'fake news' amplification on social media. This one's also at the Science Museum. 31 July, £10, prebook, 7.30-9pm


The Moon Festival plans some unusual events, including a lunar pub quiz and an all-night moonwalk

YOGA UNDER THE MOON: Sure, you could just admire the NHM's giant moon, but to feel its full allure, you might try meditating in its selenic glow. Yoga and wellbeing classes run regularly throughout the summer at the Natural History Museum. Family yoga events are also available. Various dates. £26, prebook, evenings (adults), 8.30-9.15am (family)

STREET PARTY: The Moon Festival opens with a street party in General Gordon Square, Woolwich. Expect lunar-inspired music, storytelling and  performance. 19 July, free, just turn up, 6-10.30pm

STORYTELLING NIGHT: Following the street party, stay out late at a late-night lunar storytelling event with Laura Sampson and Sam Enthoven at Artfix in Woolwich. 19 July, free, prebook, 11pm-1am

PUB QUIZ: Fingers on Buzz-ers... It's the Moon Festival's big moon pub quiz. The venue is Woolwich's wonderful Dial Arch, and you're promised lunar-themed cocktails and food. 21 July, £5, prebook, 8-10pm

WINE & CHEESE UNDER THE MOON: The moon might not be made of cheese but it does make the perfect partner to a wine and cheese event. Four cheeses, each paired with a wine, can be sampled beneath the Natural History Museum's giant moon. 23 July, 13 August, 20 August, £48.75, prebook, 7-8.30pm or 9-10.30pm

AUDIO-VISUAL GIG: The Moon Festival comes to a close with lights, sounds, projections and a talk from the Royal Observatory's astronomer, all below and on deck at the Cutty Sark. 26 July, £17, prebook, 8pm-11.30pm

HIP-HOP AND GOSPEL: The Natural History Museum is certainly making the most of its giant moon model. Between the yoga and cheese & wine tastings, this one-off event will see hip-hop producer DJ Yoda and House Gospel Choir Soundsystem fill the lunar chamber with their music. A paid bar will operate. 2 August, £36.50, prebook, from 7pm

A space themed sleepover at Science Museum

Family events

MOON GAZING: Have you ever studied the moon through an 18-tonne Victorian telescope? Now's your chance. Royal Observatory Greenwich hosts an evening of moon-gazing (weather permitting) plus a moon-themed planetarium show. 6 July and 6 August, £16/£8, book ahead, 6.30-7.45pm and 7.15-8.30pm.

SPACE SLEEPOVER: You'll probably never get to sleep on the moon — only 12 people have — but you can have fun pretending at this family sleepover event at the Science Museum. The all-nighter is packed with moon-themed activities, including entrance to the IMAX cinema and Wonderlab. Plus, kids (recommended age 7-13) will get a pair of spacey pyjamas. 20-21 July, £85, prebook, 7pm-10am

APOLLO 11 FAMILY FESTIVAL: If the sleepover seems a bit exhausting (although that is sort of the point), then try instead the Science Museum's daytime festival aimed at families. The festival marks the highlight of the museum's Summer of Space, which includes many other out-of-this-world activities not listed here. 20-21 July, free, just turn up, normal opening hours

MOON KITES: One for the little ones. Board the Cutty Sark to help create a traditional Malaysian moon kite inspired by the ship's voyages. 3-4 August, free with entry, just turn up 11.30am-1.30pm and 2-4pm

We are happy to consider further events, exhibitions and activities in these listings. Please email matt@londonist.com with suggestions or comment below.

Last Updated 10 June 2019