This year’s Wimbledon Championship is already looking exciting, with Andy Murray safely through to the second round of the men’s competition (although you can’t say the same for the majority of the other British players unfortunately).
If you want to go along to see the tennis for yourself, you should probably know that the process of getting Wimbledon tickets can be quite difficult – if you’re not a member of the Lawn Tennis Association (whose members get first dibs on tickets) you can enter the annual ballot (which you needed to complete last year for this year’s competition), queue on the day or obtain tickets through online reseller sites. If you want to go down the queueing route be prepared for a very early start – stewards hand out the limited number of wristbands for the Show Courts to those at the front by about 7:30am each morning! There’s a FAQ on the official Wimbledon site that details how this system works.
If you don’t fancy waking up with the dawn chorus but still want to experience something of the atmosphere of Wimbledon then the popular live screenings are probably the best solution. This year there are six sites across London where you can see all of the action – take along your own strawberries and champagne and you could almost be there!
Canada Square Park, Canary Wharf
This is a surprisingly pleasant spot in the shadow of One Canada Place, ust a short walk from both the Jubilee Line and the DLR stations. It also happens to be where the ice rink is set up every Christmas.
General Gordon Square, Woolwich
Public entertainment in Woolwich seems to be on the up this year – it’s been a major destination as part of the annual arts festival and the big screen in Gordon Square is screening Wimbledon every day throughout the competition. Woolwich Arsenal DLR is very close by.
Cardinal Place, Victoria Street
Down in SW1, the elevated garden above Marks & Spencer is hosting another big screen. This spot has nice raised banks of seating so you can get comfortable, and Wagamama’s right there if you get peckish. You’re overlooked by employees from both Microsoft and the Department for Communities and Local Government however…
Broadgate Circus, Liverpool St
Another winter ice-skating spot, this circular ampitheatre at the back of Liverpool St station is bound to be a favourite with city workers. It’s surrounded by chic little eateries and lots of drinking establishments if you need to take a break from the tension of watching Andy Murray struggling through a set!
New Street Square, City of London
Another City choice, although I’m not sure how comfortable this one’s going to be given that it’s largely concrete! No weekend screenings however – anyone who wanders around the area at the weekend will tell you there’s a rather post-apocalyptic air about the City on Saturdays and Sundays… You’ll find it near Chancery Lane tube.
Bankside Mix, Southbank
Bound to be a popular destination with a mix of locals and tourists, the Wimbledon big screen is getting the star treatment this year, with competitions taking place alongside the tennis. Waterloo station is your best bet for this spot.