One of the best things about the British 10k is after you’ve soaked in the iconic sights of Westminster, there’s so much more to do afterwards.
Whether it’s more sport, discovering weird little quirks, shopping, grabbing a bite with your crew or some posh nosh with your family, there’s so much to explore, play and experience after the race.
Here’s the official Virgin Sport guide to the British 10K After-Party, with guest recommendations from Fred Butler, designer, blogger, Run Dem Crew member and author of It’s a London Thing, An Insider’s City Guide.
EXPLORE THE SUMMER STREETS
LOCATION: Regent Street
Once the run’s over be sure to check out the 5th edition of Regent Street Association’s wonderful “Summer Streets”. Every Sunday in July the street closes to traffic and becomes your playground — as a bonus, the British 10k weekend theme is Health & Lifestyle. Go and enjoy all the activations they have to offer!
There will also be 10% discounts at the following shops:
o Artesian at The Langham
o Barker Shoes
o Carnaby Brasserie
o Heddon Street Kitchen
o ICEBAR London
o Links of London
o Masala Zone
o Oliver Sweeney
o Palm Court at The Langham
o Petrichor Restaurant at The Cavendish London
o Roux at the Landau at The Langham
o Sakagurao Sartoriao Savini at Criterion
o The Balcono
o Tommy Hilfiger
DRINK, aka PIMM’S PIMM’S PIMM’S
Best Pimm’s stop: Marquis of Westminster, 50 Warwick Way, Pimlico, London SW1V 1RY, 11am-12pm Sunday
Post-race, let your hair down and ask for the goblet of Pimm’s…
Best Pub Garden: Gordon’s Wine Bar, 47 Villiers St, WC2N 6NE, 12pm — 10pm Sunday
Wins our vote for best smelling bar too, with wine & cheese wafts like no other!
Best Bubbles: The French House, 49 Dean St, W1D 5BG, 12pm — 10:30pm Sunday
There’ll be no shortage of bubbly with a choice of over 30 champagnes here. Mais oui.
Best Rooftop Bar: Aqua, 240 Regent St [Entrance 30 Argyl St], 12pm — 6:15pm Sunday
With pretty views, you’ll need to bring dress to match — note, no sportswear or sport shoes allowed here.
Best Cosy Hideaway: Villiers, 31A Villiers St, WC2N 6ND, 9am — 7:3opm Sunday
A cosy escape from the hustle and bustle, plus weekend brunch menu served until 5pm.
Best Themed Pub: The Sherlock Holmes, 10 Northumberland St, WC2N 5DB, 8am — 11pm Sunday
No mystery here — just classics like Lamb Shank and Sherlock’s Own 8oz sirloin steak.
FRED’S RECOMMENDATION Favourite Café: Bar Italia, 22 Frith St, Soho, London W1D 4RF, 7am-5pm Sunday
Stand at the Art Deco mirrored counter to sip an espresso to witness the mix of regulars signal for their drinks without explanation. It’s open late opposite Ronnie Scott’s Jazz club, making it the quintessential late-night Soho spot.
FOOD AND FUEL
Best Full English: The Black Penny, 24 Great Queen Street, WC2B 5AA, 9am — 6pm Sunday
A beautiful mid-late 19th century façade contains this quaint café, with a head chef to boot.
Best Sunday Roast: Blacklock, 24 Great Windmill St, W1D 7LG, 12pm — 5:30pm Sunday
We are salivating recommending this spot with classic chops and spot on cocktails. It was once a brothel as well.
Best for Vegetarians: The Palomar, 34 Rupert St, W1D 6DN, 12:30–3:30 and 6pm — 9pm Sunday
Find modern-day food of Jerusalem with North African, Southern Spain and Levant influences here, with a kitchen bar to see the chefs in action.
Best High Tea: Mad Hatter’s at Sanderson, 50 Berners St, W1T 3NG, 1pm — 5pm Sunday
Tumble down the rabbit hole at this Wonderland and enjoy afternoon tea bites paired with Alice-inspired tea infusions. Smart casual dress code.
Best Pies in Westminster: Rules, 34–35 Maiden Lane, WC2E 7LB, 12pm — 11pm Sunday
Established 1798 in Covent Garden, this is not only London’s oldest restaurant but also boasts some of the best pies n mash in town.
Best Non-British Burgers: Meat Market, Tavistock Street, WC2E 8BE, 12pm-11pm Sunday
If you’re looking for a drastic departure for all things British, check out this American burger joint that evokes Los Angeles or New York. Order the dead hippie burger.
Best Place for Dogs: J Sheekey Atlantic Bar, 28–32 St Martin’s Ct, WC2N 4AL, 12–3:30pm and 5:30–10:30pm Sunday
This informal horseshoe shaped bar also welcomes your favourite four-legged companion on the terrace, while you dig into fresh seafood.
FRED’S RECOMMENDATION: Taro, 61 Brewer, Street, Soho, London, 12:30pm-9:30pm Sunday
After a race it’s key to get the largest, tastiest lunch down you without fuss. Taro is an institution for its portion size, speed, value for money and value for LOLS. The buzzing atmosphere is hilarious and it’s even more fun looking around to see what everyone else is eating. #instagramfriendlyfood
Ronnie Scott’s, 47 Frith St, W1D 4HT
The most famous jazz club in London (and perhaps the world) that features a range of music beyond just jazz.
Wigmore Hall, 36 Wigmore St, W1U 2BP, 9:30am — 7:30pm Sunday
If you’re looking for a quiet place to relax post-race excitement, pop over here to eat or drink with a beautiful architecture background and sonorous tones of classical music.
FRED’S RECOMMENDATION: The 100 Club, 100 Oxford Street, W1D Legendary live music venue that has played host to acts including Oasis, Rolling Stones, B.B. King and Louis Armstrong. As a bonus, all of these classic moments appear as a gallery of photographic prints around the venue’s walls.
PLACES TO CHILL
Victoria Embankment Gardens, Villiers St, London WC2N 6NS
Near the Tate Modern, this little oasis is a break from the hurly burly of the tourist land of Westminster and Trafalgar Square.
Somerset House, Strand, WC2R 1LA
This exhibition / gallery / event / music coffee space was once the home of three Catholic queens. Always worth a visit as there’s plenty going on at all times.
St James Park, SW1A 2BJ
Look out for pelicans on the lake, and our mates at November Project LDN also meet up here to hustle on early Wednesday mornings.
Green Park, SW1A 1BW, UK
Finish the day where you started and relax by gazing over to Buckingham Palace. Toast the Queen from your picnic rug!
FRED’S RECOMMENDATION: Regents Park, NW1 4NR, UK
Regents Park is a serene sanctuary within spitting distance of Oxford Circus. Four hundred varieties of roses are pruned to perfection in the most idyllic English picture-postcard setting of the Queen’sMary’s Gardens. There are also artworks to find amongst the foliage, still on display since from the Frieze Sculpture Park.
COOL DOWN WITH A DIP
Serpentine Lido, Hyde Park, S Carriage Dr, W2 2UH, 10am — 6pm Sunday
Cool the day down with 110 yards + of open water swimming — dive in among the swans and other sun seekers in Hyde Park!
FRED’S RECOMMENDATION: Oasis Sports Centre, 32 Endell St, WC2H 9AG, 9:30am — 6pm Sunday
Arguably THE most central sun trap and swimming pool in London, Oasis Sports Centre has both an inside and an outside pool on its Covent Garden sun deck. It’s one of the city’s swimmer’s best kept secrets. Until now. Sorry.
STATUES & QUIRKY POINTS OF INTEREST
World’s smallest police station: Trafalgar
The building housed a telephone that flashed light upon ringing to draw the attention of officers on duty in Trafalgar Square. The lamp on top allegedly comes from HMS Victory (Nelson’s Ship).Nowadays used as the storage cupboard for Westminster cleaners.
Traffic Lights, with Pride
Lookout for these special Pride-themed lights on the Pedestrian crossings around Trafalgar Square! See if you can spot the pair who look like they are running.
Find this little passageway linking Birdcage Walk and Old Queen Street, where there once used to be– you guessed it — cock fights.
“Napoleon’s nose” on Admiralty Arch
The urban myth will have you believe that this sniffy statue was modelled after Napoleon and placed at a height for cavalrymen to rub for good luck. But it is actually the work of Hackney-based artist Rick Buckley, who has fixed 35 noses to various London landmarks. Only around ten still survive today, including the one on Admiralty Arch. Go be nosey and check it out.
FRED’S RECOMMENDATION: Fourth Plinth
The Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square originally built in 1841, now hosts a series of commissioned public artworks by world class artists. Look out for the current giant thumbs-up gesture by David Shrigley, titled ‘Really Good’ and take it as affirmation on your race day performance! Even better get a medal snap in front of it.
British Museum, Great Russell St, WC1B 3dG, 10am — 5:30pm Sunday
If you’re interested in mummies, this museum has an excellent Egyptian section and will teach you everything you need to know about the art of mummification.
National Gallery, Trafalgar Square, WC2N 5DN, 10am — 6pm Sunday
A lovely place to get lost in — view classics like Van Gogh, Turner and Michelangelo as well as the current Chris Ofili tapestries exhibition.
The Photographers’ Gallery, 16–18 Ramillies St, 11am — 6pm Sunday
Photo buffs, this is the largest public gallery in London dedicated to photography. Picture that.
Halcyon Gallery, 144 New Bond St, W1S 1SN, 12pm — 5pm Sunday
Andy Warhol fans, don’t miss this gallery — a beautiful and uncluttered space filled with modern and contemporary art.
Opera Gallery, 134 New Bond St, 12pm — 5pm Sunday
Check out this spot to see some pieces from artists like Banksy and Damien Hirst, as well as some lesser known but equally fun Japanese artists.
Institute of Contemporary Arts, The Mall, SW1Y 5AH, 11am — 11pm
Be sure to check out “A Human Surge” (Cinema 1) on 9 July at 6:30pm
FRED’S RECOMMENDATION: Phonica Records, 51 Poland St, Soho, London W1F 7LZ, 12PM-6PM Sunday
It’s the most friendly, accessible record shop for newbies and novices. It’s also the place where the world’s top DJs will stop off when they’re in town playing the capital’s various venues. If you’re planning a pit-stop, turn into the lay by of the adjacent carpark for The Vinyl Factory exhibition space.
We can’t wait for The British 10k and the after party — a big thank you to the lovely Fred Butler for all of her recommendations to make this after-party guide complete. Check out her book available on Amazon for more tips on London, and see her website and Instagram for more inspiration.
See you at the British 10k on 9 July! Entries close 30 June, so get your entry now before it’s too late.