11 Amazing Buildings You Should Go And See For Open House London 2019

Will Noble
By Will Noble Last edited 59 months ago

Last Updated 27 August 2019

11 Amazing Buildings You Should Go And See For Open House London 2019

Over 800 buildings, walks, talks and tours form Open House London Weekend this year. While many pre-bookings have now sold out, there's still a dizzying list of places you can turn up and explore on the day. To make that task slightly simpler (or perhaps more difficult), here's our list of 11 places that've caught our eye. Plenty are new for 2019.

1. Centre Building, Kingsway

Take a guided tour of the LSE's brand new Centre Building, which opened in May 2019. Flexible and sustainable, bright and breezy, we wish we'd have had the opportunity to study in a building as whip smart as this one. Times and info

2. Building BloQs Workshop, Tottenham

Who says British industry is dead? Over 350 workers — crafting with wood, metal, textiles and laser cutters — call this vast open access workshop home. Meet crafts and trades people, and discover their tricks of the trade. Times and info

3. Baitul Futuh Mosque, Morden

If you've not visited one of London's grand mosques, you're missing out. Baitul Futuh is a wonderful place to start; built on the site of an old dairy, it's a captivating blend of Islamic and modern British architecture. Times and info

4. Roca London Gallery, Fulham

Water is the influence behind Roca London Gallery — another cultural landmark from Zaha Hadid Architects. Get lost in the sci-fi curves of this singular gallery — and appreciate a space that's art in its own right. Times and info

5. Southwark Integrated Waste Management Facility

The name sounds as bland as any you could imagine, but a trip to Southwark Integrated Waste Management Facility is an eye-opening, behind-the-curtain glimpse at how one of London's boroughs is dealing with the pressing issue of sustainable waste management. There's also a birds of prey display, upcycling craft workshops and HGV and diggers to ogle. Kids will love this one. Times and info

6. Coal Drops Yard, King's Cross

A shopping centre like no other, you may have already passed through Coal Drops Yard, but on this Open House, you can pause to appreciate the details. The collection of Victorian buildings — originally designed to store coal — have been reinvigorated by Heatherwick Studios, thanks to modern technologies like vast steel trusses and structural glass, combined with 80,000 roof slates taken from the same place in Wales as the original roof material was. Times and info

7. Clitterhouse Farm, Cricklewood

This miniature farm's history may date back to 1321, but this is its first Open House. Explore the farm buildings and abandoned workshops, and listen to talks on the farm's past and future (it recently dodged demolition). This'll be a particularly pleasant one to tick off if the weather's good. Times and info

8. Meridian Water train station, Upper Edmonton

Did you know that a new London train station opened in June 2019? That it cost £47m to build? That four million people are expected to use it annually? Discover more about Meridian Water station, on one of these architect-led tours. Times and info

9. New Museum of London, Smithfield

London waits with bated breath for its new museum, transplanted into the heart of Smithfield. In the meantime, you can snoop behind the scenes at this Open House, on a tour led by someone with a special connection to the building (you could end up with an architect, curator or market trader). Expect healthy queues. Times and info

10. Republic: The Import Building & Public Realm, East India

We're suckers for a statement staircase, and this renovated office complex has a humdinger. The Import Building has taken a dour 1990s space, and transformed it into an uplifting area, complete with ground floor gym, cafe and rooftop deck. An excuse to visit an area of east London that you might not get out to much. Times and info

11. The Fellowship Inn, Bellingham

One of London's 'improved public houses', the Fellowship Inn was opened in 1924, as a new kind of pub — one which took the focus away from drinking, and instead promoted family-based entertainment and dining. The Fellowship has a rich history, one involving Fleetwood Mac and a giant of British boxing. It reopened as the Fellowship and Star earlier this year and, following years of neglect, is now more welcoming than ever. Times and info

There's no need to pre-book any of these Open House picks, although some may involve queueing for a while.