Here’s How You Can Uncover The Secrets Of London’s Most Exclusive Buildings

Alex Landon Alex Landon - Editor

Open House

Open House gives Londoners the chance to peek inside some of the city’s greatest and most secret buildings… for free.

Are you a nosy neighbour? Take it to the next level this week, as the annual Open House London event has returned to the capital for an extended run. Each year, over 800 buildings usually closed to the public throw open their doors, letting you peek inside and uncover some true hidden gems. This year, the festival takes place from September 4 – 12, offering even more opportunities to get yourself out, about, and peeping at some seriously swish interior decor.

Aside from being the perfect opportunity to poke our noses into other people’s business, Open House is all about celebrating the capital’s finest architecture and design. The buildings that partake include private homes, government buildings, and historic sites, with some very famous spots included. Highlights for 2021 include a tour of dramatic Nunhead Cemetery, City Hall, New Scotland Yard (home of the Metropolitan Police), the ornate Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office building, and the most coveted ticket in town: Downing Street. That one is available by ballot entry only, so count yourself lucky if you’re one of the 48 people selected to visit.

Last year, the majority of tours went online as a result of the pandemic, and whilst they’re mostly back IRL in 2021, Open House London remains a mix of online and in-person events. They’ve carried over some of the most popular events from last year, including guided and self-guided walking and cycling tours around some of the city’s most interesting spots. Open House London is embarrassment of riches for the truly nosy – there are plenty of fine places to explore, so it’s time to go a-wandering!

You can see the full list of available buildings, book tickets, and enter ballots, on the Open House London website.

Also published on Medium.

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