Minutes from Covent Garden, Trafalgar Square and the Houses of Parliament, our South Bank neighbourhood is London’s cultural and creative district. Nestled along the river Thames, it is an area of incredible history, architecture, culture and regeneration.
Home to great national centres for art and culture, a vibrant and growing community and some of London’s finest achievements in architecture, such as the National Theatre, Southbank Centre and London Eye, the South Bank offers something for everyone.
Here we highlight attractions in the local area that we recommend checking out as part of your visit to Leake Street Arches.
HOUSE OF VANS
Embracing and fuelling creative expression through art, music, skateboarding, BMX, street culture and fashion; House of Vans offers a solid platform for the local communities to experience and engage with Vans’ ‘Off The Wall’ spirit. With creative expression at the forefront; the space incorporates an art gallery, a VansLab artist incubator space, a cinema, a live music venue, premium café and bars, not to mention a skater built and designed concrete bowl complete with mini ramp and street course.
The Vaults Theatre is London’s foremost theatre for the bold, the fresh and the fearless. Their mission is to collaborate and conspire, embracing artists from all walks of life to come together and inspire others. The 176 seat Vaults Theatre is home to London’s unconventional theatre scene and is situated in an abandoned space, in an archway beneath Waterloo station.
The National Theatre is dedicated to making the very best theatre and sharing it with as many people as possible. They stage up to 30 productions each year, ranging from re-imagined classics – such as Greek tragedy and Shakespeare – to modern masterpieces and new work by contemporary writers and theatre-makers.
The British Film Institute South Bank is a four-screen cinema venue that shows a huge selection of classic and contemporary films each year, with new and re-releases, film seasons, and director and actor retrospectives. The onsite Reuben Library gives access to a huge collection of books, journals and digitised material about the world of film, television and the moving image. The Mediatheque, is a unique place to watch and discover wonderfully curated treasures of British film and TV history. With its large high definition touchscreens and cinema seats, it creates the perfect environment for researchers, film enthusiasts or those simply nostalgic for the telly of childhood.
BFI IMAX CINEMA
Boasting the largest screen in the UK, watching a film at the BFI Imax is a completely immersive experience. The programme ranges from the latest blockbusters to world-class alternative content and educational presentations.
Since opening in 2000, The London Eye has become the UK’s most popular paid for visitor attraction. At 135m, the world’s largest cantilevered observation wheel is a beautiful symbol of modern London offering incredible views across the capital.
Tucked under Waterloo Bridge, you’ll find the Southbank Centre Book Market. Stocked with second-hand books, including classics, contemporary titles, maps and prints, it’s a lovely spot to browse. Open every day until 7pm – whatever the weather!
The Southbank Centre (incorporating Royal Festival Hall, the Haywood Gallery, Queen Elizabeth Hall and the Purcell Room) is a world-famous, multi-venue arts centre, with a dynamic year-round festivals programme and an inclusive ethos. The UK’s largest arts centre was founded as part of the Festival of Britain in 1951. It’s a place where people experience world-class art and culture that stimulates, inspires, educates and amazes.