I thought I'd try putting together a list of the best free events taking place London this month. I thought how difficult can it be? In a world where paid-for events get the promotion, quite hard. Please help.
Weekend 1: July 2/July 3
» Greenwich and Docklands International Festival (Sat): This year's final events are dancing at Canary Wharf, and mechanical animals and percussive fireworks in Woolwich.
» Firepower Royal Artillery Museum (Sat): Woolwich's Royal Artillery Museum closes permanently this week (the last day is Friday 8th) so this is the very last weekend to visit (only £3).
» March for Europe (Sat, 11am): Big demo, starting out Hyde Park way, aiming to end to political indecision about Britain's future. Good luck with that.
» Bermondsey Carnival (Sat, noon-8): Music-based event in Southwark Park, with Paul Young the half-six headliner.
» Leytonstone Festival Weekend Launch Party (Sat, noon-6): Puppetry, a market and live music, peaking with a samba parade, as a prelude to a fortnight of events.
» Art Night (Sat, from 6pm): Ten art installations in important central, often out-of-the way, locations, pre-booking not always necessary.
» Jester Festival (Sat, Sun): Stage and stalls, sports and funfair, across the weekend from noon on Fortune Green NW6.
» The Big Fair (Sun, 11-5): Heath Street is taken over by over 100 stalls, as part of the Hampstead Summer Festival.
» Transported by Design (Sun, noon-6): TfL takes over Regent Street with a cavalcade of vehicles, moquette, roundels and other design classics, zoned into past, present and future. A proper one-off.
» Greenwich World Cultural Festival (Sun, 12.30-5pm): International-themed family event around Eltham Palace (includes juggling and samba workshop in the moat).
» Leyton Get Together (Sun, 1-7pm): Soulful event with a Rio theme, a javelin's throw from the Olympic Park.
Weekend 2: July 9/July 10
» The Mayor's Newham Show (Sat, Sun, from noon): A slightly worthy shindig in Central Park, East Ham.
» Urban Art Fair (Sat, Sun, 10am-6pm): 200 artists stage an outdoor gallery in Josephine Avenue, Brixton.
» Hayes Carnival (Sat, 12.30-6pm): Family-focused fete in Barra Hall Park (includes appearance by the Verona Chard Musical Balloon Band).
» People's Day (Sat, noon-8pm): Lewisham council's big summer bash, in Catford, with Misty In Roots.
» St Margarets Fair (Sat, noon-7.30pm): Proper heart-of-the-community fete, running since the 1970s, near Twickenham.
» Bow Back Rivers Cruise (Sat, 2-6): A public cruise to celebrate plans for re-opening the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park waterways.
» Wapping Summer Shindig (Sat, 2pm): Music, a guided walk, and the Wapping River Police Museum will be open.
» Eid Festival (Sun, noon-6): Annual food'n'culture event in Trafalgar Square to celebrate the end of Ramadan (bet Sadiq'll be there)
» Hackney Summer Fete (Sun, 2-7): A sprawling affair around St John's church, including dog show.
» Swing East (Sun, 2pm): 1951-themed event at Chrisp Street Market, with dancing and vintage cars.
Weekend 3: July 16/July 17
» Il trovatore (Thur 14th, 7.15): Verdi's classic is screened live in Trafalgar Square, courtesy of the Royal Opera House. Anvil Chorus, anyone?
» Lambeth Country Show (Sat, Sun): Thank goodness this marvellous stalwart survives, filling Brockwell Park with semi-rural entertainment and civic pride from noon.
» Walthamstow Garden Party (Sat, Sun): Festival of arts and music (and food) in Lloyd Park, with a bit of help from the Barbican.
» Copped Hall Extended Tour Day (Sun, 10am-1pm): Enjoy the house and garden of this under-renovation mansion by the M25, near Epping. [my report from last month]
Weekend 4: July 23/July 24
» Anniversary Games (Fri, Sat): A major celebration of athletics at London Stadium, just before West Ham move in, and prominently sponsored by a yoghurt.
» Roman Road Festival (Sun, 11am-7pm): The third year of mixing talent, heritage, culture and arts amid the trading centre of E3.
Weekend 5: July 30/July 31
» RideLondon (Fri, Sat, Sun): Annual cycle safari, with QEOP warm-up on Friday, the amateurs ambling around in central London on Saturday and the professionals heading off to Surrey on Sunday.
» Rainbow Afternoon Tea Boat (Sat): If you're the sort of person who likes pissing their money away on sugar-based frippery, this 80 minute meringue-fuelled boat trip with "unlimited Tea Pigs" should devour £63 with ease.
» ? (???): Sorry about that. Surely there's more free stuff happening, surely.