Waterloo Festival 2016

Click here for:  WATERLOO FESTIVAL 2017


Waterloo Festival 21st - 26th June 2016


Hats off!  

Following a highly successful five-year series of festivals themed around The Legacy of War, the 2016 Waterloo Festival will be focusing on “transformation” – in particular, the transformation of local industry and commerce in the area over the past 200 years, most notably within the hat-making industry. 

Did you know, for example, that Hatfields and the surrounding area is steeped in the history of hat-making, with the bowler hat being invented by Thomas and William Bowler in Nelson Square in 1850?  In recognition, this year’s Festival will include an exhibition of hats, an illustrated talk by Royal hatmaker, Rachel Trevor Morgan, an exciting Fascinator-making workshop by a local milliner, and a free Mad Hatter’s Tea Party open to the whole community! 

There are other events focusing on the local area, including guided walks with Stephen Humphrey, a local historian, and a special Quiz Night set and compered by Matt Brown, Editor at Large of Londonist.

Music is always a highlight of the Waterloo Festival. This year, the  Gala Concert from the internationally renowned Southbank Sinfonia features the Bach Magnificat as its centrepiece.  The orchestra will be joined by distinguished choir Vox Musica. There will also be a late night performance of John Coltrane’s modern jazz classic A Love Supreme by the Gary Crosby Quartet  - part of a mixed arts evening  called Waterloo's Got Style! wtih choral and instrumental performances, poetry by local poets and drama. 

Another highlight will be an exclusive London performance by Palestinian dance group Baqoun, based in Beit Sahour, a small town close to Bethlehem, and touring the UK for the first time.

Add in some special events for young people, and you can see that this year’s Waterloo Festival promises to be even better than ever!  I hope that everyone will find something to enjoy, and hope to see you at our events this June.

Jeffrey Risbridger

Chair of the Waterloo Festival Committee


Click on the brochure below to find out what's going on in this year's Waterloo Festival.




The full programme of events with links to buy tickets is listed below:




Choral Workshop for Children with Amy Bebbington 

Amy is in demand as a choral clinician and has worked in the UK and USA.  She is part of the Choral Conducting tutor team for the Association of British Choral Directors and recently spent five years as Choral Director for the Royal College of Music Junior Department Choirs. 

As a guest clinician/ teacher trainer/animateur, Amy has worked for the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain, BBC2’s The Choir.  The workshop is being held for a local school, but is open to all who would like to come and watch.

Time 10.00 am  Venue St Andrew's Church  Tickets FREE


Old Vic New Voices Community Drop In: Wonderful Waterloo                

Join the Old Vic New Voices team as we explore the expansive and exciting history of our home Waterloo, its changing landscape and celebrate its residents old and new.

Time 7.00-9.00 pm  Venue  St. John's Church  Tickets FREE (but registration is essential)


WEDNESDAY 22nd JUNE                 

Fascinators Galore! 

Make your own Fascinator for that wedding you’re going to...  Acclaimed hatmaker JWH offers a unique workshop teaching the skills required to create a unique hat which you get to keep!  No previous experience needed, basic sewing skills helpful. All materials are provided. 

Time  2.00 pm  Venue St. Andrew's, Short Street, SE1 8LJ  Tickets  £30



Quiz Night, organized by Matt Brown 

A special London-focused quiz night compiled and compered by Matt Brown, Editor-at-Large of Londonist.  Come and pit your wits and show your knowledge of our city! Pay bar.  Raffle.  In aid of The Friends of Kampala Music School.  Teams of up to 6, but if you don’t have a team, just book a ticket and we’ll sort out a team for you.   

Time  7.00 pm  Venue  St. John's Church  Tickets £10 To include fish and chips (or vegetarian options). Advance booking essential, and will close 20th June.



Walk: Industrious Waterloo  

Did you know that Waterloo used to be a hive of industry? Fashion, millinery, printing and much more all flourished here. Local historian Stephen Humphrey will lead a walk from St John's to the Cut/Southwark tube, on the history and development of Industry in the area.  Repeated on Saturday 25th June at 2.00 pm.

Time  11.00 am  Venue  St. John's Church  Tickets £5


My Life in Hats

Royal hatmaker, Rachel Trevor Morgan, will be offering a fascinating insight into her life and career in a talk illustrated with some of her beautiful hats.  This is a Festival event not to be missed, and includes a question and answer session.  

Time  3.00 pm  Venue  St Andrew's, Short Street, SE1 8LJ  Tickets  £5  Free if combined with the Fascinator-making workshop on 22nd June



For our Gala Concert, witness the vibrant young musicians of St. John’s resident orchestra transform into artisans of the venerable Baroque tradition. With acclaimed choir Vox Musica, they bring to life treasures almost 300 years old including Bach’s radiant Magnificat.

Southbank Sinfonia: Julian Perkins director / harpsichord

Vox Musica: Michael Berman director

Handel: Overture from Alexander’s Feast

Rameau: Suite from Les Boréades

Handel: Coronation Anthem: My heart is inditing

Vivaldi: Concerto for violin, two oboes, two flutes and bassoon

Bach:  Magnificat

Time  7.30 pm  Venue  St. John's Church  Tickets £8/£12  Family ticket £25   


FRIDAY 24TH JUNE            

Lunchtime Concert with Ian Sharpe on piano   

Programme will include music by J.S. Bach, Scarlatti, Schubert, Gershwin, Chopin and Ian Sharpe.  Ian Sharpe is a graduate of the Royal Manchester College of Music.  Ian gives piano recitals to raise money for various charities. Last year, he made a CD to help raise money for St.Luke’s Hospice in Sheffield, and profit from this concert will go to this year’s nominated charities. 

Time  1.00 pm  Venue  St. John's Church  Tickets £5


In Harmony Lambeth meets Southbank Sinfonia

Southbank Sinfonia is delighted to join forces with In Harmony Lambeth, for their second year of this exciting partnership. In Harmony Lambeth is primarily a social programme which uses the pursuit of musical excellence as a way in which to enrich the lives of children, young people and their families in Lambeth.

On the anniversary of their very first joint-performance, both orchestras will be uniting once again for the culmination of several months working side-by-side!

For further details, visit www.southbanksinfonia.co.uk

Time  6.00 pm - 6.30 pm  Venue St. John's Church  Tickets FREE  


Waterloo’s Got Style!

An evening of music, dance, poetry, jazz, food, drink … St John’s Crypt and Church will be buzzing with performance, entertainment and inspiration.  

The acclaimed jazz band, based at the Southbank Centre, the Gary Crosby Quartet will end the evening with a performance of John Coltrane’s A Love Supreme which will start at about 10.00

Before then, throughout the evening in different locations in the church you will discover other performers. Walter Fabeck will accompany the silent film The Festival of Britain, 1951 a film by Gilbert Tomes, from Screen Archive South East. Singer/songwriter Shanon Shah will perform favourites old and new. Poetry collective Southwark Stanza will perform Titfer Tat - poetry from under their hats'.  The Rye Poets collective will perform pieces from their collection the tie.   Pianist Virginia Thorn will play pieces both well known and surprising.  And more…..

There will be a prize for the most stylish costume and most stylish hat!

Last year’s Waterloo 200 re-enactment was remarkable; this will be a celebration of local and international artistic talent, in the atmospheric setting of St John’s.  Come and discover little known parts of the building and participate in an abundance of music and word!

A cold buffet, alcoholic and soft drinks will be available for additional purchase.  £12/£8. Family ticket £25

Time  From 7.00 pm  Venue  St. John's Church and Crypt  Tickets  £8/£12 Family £25


Gary Crosby Quartet: A Love Supreme

British jazz bassist Gary Crosby and his quartet come to St John's on Friday June 24th for what promises to be a riveting evening.  They will perform 'A Love Supreme', the four-part jazz suite considered by many to be John Coltrane's finest work. Performed in the church setting of St John's, this will be a unique occasion. Come early if you want to enjoy the rest of the  evening.

Time 10pm  Venue  St John's Church  Tickets £8/12 Family £25 Tickets



Come and play Beethoven

Free for participants and audience members

Perform alongside an orchestra like no other! Southbank Sinfonia is looking for talented musicians to join the ranks of our orchestra for a rehearsal and performance of the first movement of Beethoven’s spell binding Violin Concerto. This mighty orchestra will be conducted by David Corkhill, who has worked extensively with the Philharmonia and acclaimed ensembles around the world.

Amateur musicians of all ages are welcome to apply, but we do ask that applicants are of a grade 5 standard or above to get the most that this experience has to offer. If you are not quite there yet in your musical journey, we would still love to invite you, your family and friends to the lunchtime performance at 1.00 pm.

Time  Rehearsal 10.00 am - 12.30  pm, Concert 1.00 pm  Venue  St. John's Church  Tickets  FREE

Further information and application details, visit www.southbanksinfonia.co.uk


Industrious Waterloo Walk

Did you know that Waterloo used to be a hive of industry? Fashion, millinery, printing and much more all flourished here. Local historian Stephen Humphrey will lead a walk from St John's to the Cut/Southwark tube, on the history and development of Industry in the area. 

Time  2.00 pm  Venue St. John's Church  Tickets  £5


Baqoun – Palestinian Dance Workshop

Come and learn to dance, the Palestinian way! We are privileged to welcome the Baqoun Palestinian Dance troupe from Beit Sahour, a small town close to Bethlehem, touring the UK for the first time.  This short workshop will give you a taste of traditional Palestinian dance re-interpreted for today.  No previous experience required! 

Time  4.00 pm  Venue  St. John's Church  Tickets FREE


Baqoun Performance Palestinian Dance

We are delighted to be hosting and supporting as one of our nominated charities, Baqoun, a thrilling performance of traditional dance from a group of young Palestinian dancers on tour in the UK for the summer. 

Time  7.00 pm  Venue  St. John's Church  Tickets £8/£12 Family £25  Includes a light supper.  


SUNDAY 26th JUNE         

Festival Eucharist 

Come and join us for the annual Festival service with St John’s choir. We are delighted to welcome Revd Sally Hitchener, founder of Diverse Church and chaplain of Brunel University to preach.  The St John’s Choir will sing the service by Bob Chilcott – A Little Jazz Mass. Free.   

Time 10.30 am  Venue St. John's Church  Tickets FREE


Mad Hatters’ Tea Party

"No room! No room! Of course there’s room," said Alice, crossly. Come and enjoy tea and cake and ices and jelly and a Bouncy Castle and games in the rich tradition of the Mad Hatters’ Tea Party.   Wear your best hat but be careful it’s not sold.  A prize for the best adult costume and the best child’s costume.   

Time 3.00 pm  Venue St. John's Church  Tickets FREE


A Festal Choral Evensong

From the 1662 Book of Common Prayer with the choir of St Thomas-on-The Bourne church in Farnham.

Time  5.30 pm  Venue St. John's Church  Tickets FREE  


THROUGHOUT THE FESTIVAL  -          Hats Galore!  

An display of the weird and wonderful, a celebration of the hatter’s art… including hats from the archives of the National Theatre, and hats by local hatmaker Jenny Hobson.  

Time  10.00 am - 6.00 pm and during events  Venue St John's Church  Tickets FREE



St John’s Church

Opposite Waterloo Station, beside the roundabout by the IMAX cinema and next door to Kings College.

St John’s Waterloo, Waterloo Road, London SE1 8TY  
Telephone: 020 7633 9819

Email: festival@stjohnswaterloo.org 


St Andrew’s Church, Short Street, SE1 8LJ

St Andrew's is a new building at the end of Short Street, opposite the Young Vic Theatre.



During the Festival our St John’s Food Court will be open as usual, serving hot and cold drinks and light refreshments.



We are grateful to our corporate sponsors:




St John’s Waterloo is committed to encouraging historic and contemporary connections between the church and the communities in which it’s involved through art, reminiscence and creativity.

To work with us on this Festival project or to donate funds and become a Sponsor or Supporter, please contact Canon Giles Goddard  
Telephone: 020 7633 9819
or email: festival@stjohnswaterloo.org



Online  (see ticket buttons on this page).

Alternatively,  telephone the Parish Office
(open 9.00 am till 1.00 pm or leave a message) 020 7633 9819.

You can attend in person at St John's between 10.00 am - 6.00 pm.



The Friends of Kampala Music School

This charity, established in 2009, is passionate about the advancement of classical music for young people across Uganda.  With its network of dedicated supporters, funds have been raised for musical instruments, student bursaries, and in November 2012, a new home for music located in central Kampala.  The bursary scheme supports the school’s maxim that “no young person with talent and motivation should be turned away because of inability to pay for lessons.”


From Bethlehem with love

This ambitious project, overseen by the Diocese of West Yorkshire and the Dales, has brought Baqoun, a group of young Palestinian Christian dancers based in Beit Sahour, a small town close to Bethlehem, to the UK for the first time for nine performances across the country.  The project aims to enable people in the UK to become more aware of the challenges facing those living in the Palestinian West Bank, as well as offering an evening of great entertainment.


The Bridge at Waterloo

The Festival is part of the Bridge at Waterloo, St John’s £2m project aiming to provide opportunities, skills and employment for young people. Plans for the development of St John’s to provide better facilities for all will be on show during the Festival.



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