It's the LondonNet Newsletter...
11 November 2004, Issue 167
www.londonnet.com / www.londonnet.co.uk


What's Up:
London for Free, Offers, Attractions
London Diary:
Heat beats Hats, by David Clee
Theatre, Music, Cinema,Comedy, Art, Clubs,and Restaurants
London Hotels:
London and Worldwide hotel deals
News: Latest news from London
Competition: Triple Axels could get you iced...
Talkback: Does Gerri pick up the tab?

Find out more:
Advertising Info
Subscribe/Unsubscribe to Ahoy
Hotel Genie


What's Up




Fancy a twirl? Win two tickets to ice-skate at romantic London venues. Details below ...

Lord Mayor's Show
Saturday 13 November, 11am, free!
Floats, bands, a parade and a fair in Paternoster Square, the Lord Mayor's Show is the City of London's annual hurrah to welcome the new Lord Mayor. Fireworks on the River Thames follow at 5pm (Tip: stand on the riverside near Blackfriars bridge for the best views). The parade goes via Gresham Street, Princes Street, Poultry, Cheapside, St Paul's Churchyard, Fleet Street, Victoria Embankment and Princes Street. All in all, a fun free day out for all the family and a quaint spectacle for visitors.


The Gore - Winter Special
(1st Sept - 31st Dec)
Single - 109 UKP Inclusive of vat
Double - 149 UKP Inclusive of vat

Bed and Breakfasts:
Hyde - From only UKP17 per person per night!

Generator - From only UKP9 per person per night


Free updates of available rooms/tenants in your area

For the latest information and tickets for a wide range of London's premier attractions see our regularly updated London Attractions page.

London Ice Skating
Spin away from bleary English winters on any of the assorted ice rinks around London.
Somerset House Ice Rink - Info and tickets
Greenwich Ice Rink - Info and tickets
Hampton Court Ice Rink - Info and tickets
Kew Gardens Ice Rink - Info and tickets

So This is Christmas
Feed your jolly Christmas cheer with LondonNet's guide to Christmas, and check back for updates...
For more information on Regent Street Christmas Lights, Trafalgar Square Tree Lighting,
and Christmas Eve at Westminster Abbey, click here...


Top Attraction Sellers
(27 October - 10 November)
1) London Eye
2) Tower of London
3) Madame Tussaud's/Planetarium


Heat beats Hats

In these difficult times, I assume I’m still sane because I prefer to buy stuff from shops on proper streets rather than those cocooned in fake plastic tree malls.

Nevertheless, at this time of year it has to be said malls have one advantage over normal shopping areas: they protect us from the cruel elements. In fact, it’s not so much the cold itself that causes trouble, but the relative temperatures of the outside street and the inside of shops. Survey after survey has shown that the rate of hat and scarf loss increases dramatically in the winter months as people, suddenly liberated from the cold, whip off their outer garments and fling them on to a nearby shelf. (Warning: if this is done in a charity shop, the chances are high that you’ll end up buying your own hat before you escape.)

Hence the rise and rise of malls. When the world’s first mall opened in Osaka, Japan, in 1977, there was a sign above the entrance which contained the slogan: ‘For all your hat free shopping needs.’ The hat issue is some major obstacle for proper shops to overcome, but it appears to me that they've missed a trick. These days almost all pubs and back gardens feature braziers, which suit Britain’s quick-change climate perfectly. Oddly, they’re only used in the summer. That’s like turning off your central heating when the nights draw in. Crazy.

What we need are braziers up and down every high street. They could incorporate them into any number of snazzy Christmas light designs, and you could save your hat for that trip to the north pole.

-David Clee





The Producers, Theatre Royal Drury Lane

Brooks Is The New Bard - Despite pre-opening drama, The Producers hems a new clean seam of satire in London's West End.

SHAKESPEARE was the master of manipulating the metaphorical tool of a "play within a play." But now it is the Brooks, not the Bard, who takes mirror imaging to the stage with his riotous musical, "The Producers," now playing at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane. The godfather of modern American satire, Mel Brooks recently brought the script of his 1968 film to the stage, with wild success in New York City. The London cast is headed by Lee Evans and Nathan Lane, who was rushed from the U.S. to fill the tap shoes of an ailing Richard Dreyfus.
Click for full review...
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Billy Elliot
Victoria Palace Theatre
24 March 2005 - 24 Sept 2005

GET YOUR Billy On - Tickets are one sale for the long-awaited musical from the Golden Globe Winner Billy Elliot. Incorporating the film's writer Lee Hall and choreographer Peter Darling, the show's music was composed by Elton John and stars three new theatrical hopefuls. With a production budget topping around UKP5 million, Billy Elliot is not one to miss. Not suitable for small children.
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Whose Life Is it Anyway?
- starring Kim Catrall, opens 8th Jan 2005
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Proper Christmas pantomime for Christmas, this time courtesy of Kevin Spacey and his creative appeal. Starring Sir Ian McKellen.
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Top Theatre Sellers
(27 October - 10 November)
1) Phantom of the Opera
2) One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest
3) Nutcracker
4) Lion King
5) The Producers

London Theatre A - Z Guide
London Theatre Reviews



New Gig Highlights:

Saturday July 9 & Sunday July 10, 2005
7pm, National Bowl, Milton Keynes

Oasis's star has fallen over the last couple of albums, plagued by derivative material and the usual personal problems faced by megalomaniacal rock stars. Two months ago, though, they did the smart thing and released a comprehensive DVD focusing on their brilliant and massively successful first album, Definitely Maybe, to remind fans of their power at their prime. It has sold well, showing that fans hadn't forgotten that string of three albums (Definitely Maybe, (What's the Story) Morning Glory?, and Be Here Now) which effectively aped 60's rock and put a unique spin on it to make Oasis the biggest English band of the mid 90's. Along with Blur and Pulp, they brought British music, specifically Brit-pop, to worldwide prominence.

The Mancuian quintet still have retained enough of a fan base, even through various line-up changes and mixed reactions to their last two studio albums (Standing on the Shoulders of Giants and Heathen Chemistry), to headline a show at the National Bowl, Milton Keynes in July. They have also announced two more stadium shows to follow, including a home show at Manchester and a show at the new rock scene hotbed of Glasgow.

Oasis has always been the Liam and Noel Gallagher show, but it has become even more so with the changes. Not that there's particularly a problem with that, as the battling brothers have managed to write many memorable songs. The question is whether past triumphs will be able to outshine their occasional onstage bickering. As their live album Familiar to Millions showed, no matter what happens, it is sure to be a rock n' roll spectacle.
- Steve Marshall

Order Tickets -  First Call (First Call Tickets)
Order Tickets - Ticketmaster (Ticketmaster)

The Darkness
Tuesday 23 November, 7 PM
Carling Academy Brixton, 24 UKP

There is plenty of good news for the Darkness's rabid legion of fans this week. Rumours that singer/guitarist Justin Hawkins had sustained a hand injury that would prevent him from playing on tour turned out to be exaggerated, and now the band has added yet another London show to their already full UK itinerary.

The arena-rock spewing, lovable louts are taking things to a slightly more intimate venue (for those unable to get a taste of their upcoming three shows at Wembley Arena) as they play Carling Academy Brixton in three weeks. They are still touring in support of their massive hit album, Permission to Land, and love or hate the rock n' roll excess of their music, they put on a flamboyant live show that is sure to rock the socks off even the most cynical fan. - Steve Marshall
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Goldie Looking Chain
Thursday 24 February, 7 PM
Carling Academy Brixton, 15 UKP
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Wednesday 1 December, 7 PM
Astoria, 14 UKP
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Our Picks:

Mark Knopfler
Royal Albert Hall
31 May 2005 7.30 PM

While he is probably best known for his work with Dire Straits, Mark Knopfler has built a two-decade solo career by scoring movie soundtracks. Most notably among these are his first solo effort, Lost Heroes, as well as his takes on the Princess Bride and Wag the Dog. Nevertheless, he's managed to find time to release 4 proper solo works (the first of which wasn't until 1996, after the proper break up of Dire Straits), the most recent of which is Shangri-La. Expect Knopfler to draw from all eras of his career (no doubt including a couple cuts from the Dire Straits' mid-80s blockbuster, Brothers in Arms) for this one-night stand in a special venue.
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Carling Brixton Academy
4th & 5th February 2005, 7pm

Mighty futuristic German metal: what could be better?
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The Astoria
5 December 2004, 7pm

Although the members of Ash are only in their mid-20's, the critically acclaimed Northern Irish rockers are already scene veterans. They come to the Astoria in support of their 5th album, Meltdown, returning to their signature sound of catchy punk tunes with a soft edge.
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Destiny's Child
Earl's Court
2 & 3 June 2005
UKP 30.00

Destiny's Child have not released much since 2001's Survivor (lead singer Beyonce Knowles has instead chosen to focus on successful solo projects), but fans in the UK have not forgotten the new R&B trio with a string of Top 40 hits. They swarmed Virgin Megastore at Picadilly Circus to meet and greet the band last month, leading to the impression that their Earl's Court gig will be more of the same.
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Lollo Meier
(Gypsy Swing Jazz Master Class)
All at Le Quecumbar - 42-44 High Street, Battersea, SW11
11 December

Learn of what, exactly, Gypsy Swing Jazz consists at another of Le Quecumbar's renowned shows.

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Velvet Revolver, London
Brixton Carling Academy 7:00pm - 21 January, 2005
Carling Appolo Hammersmith 7:00pm - 22 January 2005,
23 January 2005

Conclude the butt-rock era, and then throw those musicians into a new, upcoming band, and wage it against drugs, and what
do you get? A must see.
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Gig Tickets:

Top Rock & Pop Sellers
(27 October - 10 November)
1. Velvet Revolver, London
2. The Darkness, Brixton Academy
3. REM, London
4. Destiny's Child, London
5. Babyshambles


Classical Picks:

The Nutcracker, ENB at The Coliseum
21 December - 8 January, The Coliseum

A great Christmas treat for all the family, English National Ballet's extraordinary production of The Nutcracker is a feast for the senses. Vibrant, eccentric and magical; designer Gerald Scarfe and choreographer Christopher Hampson have conjured up a colourful and bold Nutcracker, now in its third year. More info...
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The Ring of Nibelung Pt II: Siegfried, ENO The Coliseum
10 November - 3 December 2004, The Coliseum
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Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake, Saddler's Wells
Lez Brotherston designs this award-winning ballet, courtesy of the creative mind of Michael Bourne. Beginning in 1995, Swan Lake is the longest-running ballet in the West End, and is sure to please crowds this Christmas.
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Royal Ballet, Royal Opera House
2nd Dec 2004 - 14th Jan 2005

IF YOU'RE PLANNING a Christmas treat you could do far worse than witness the return of Cinderella, in this lavish new production from last Season. A downtrodden young girl, a glass slipper and a handsome prince combine to make the perfect piece of story-telling, and with a fairy godmother around, anything can happen: pumpkins become coaches, rags turn to ball gowns and there's bound to be a happy ending. Ashton's first full-length ballet, given its premiere in 1948 to great acclaim, draws together a wealth of 39 beautifully drawn characters, portrayed against the wonderfully evocative themes
and colours of Prokofiev's great score.
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Classical Tickets:

Top Classical Sellers
(27 October - 10 November)
1. Nutcracker, The Coliseum
2. Kasabian, London
3. Cinderella, Royal Opera House
4. Sylvia, Royal Opera House
5. Romeo and Juliet, The Coliseum




Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason (15)
Comedy (2004) 107mins UK/US
Director: Beeban Kidron
Starring: Renee Zellweger, Colin Firth, Hugh Grant
Bridget Jones (Renee Zellweger) has a brand new perfect life: good job as top journalist, inspiring human-rights lawyer boyfriend Mark Darcy (Colin Firth), and soaring self-esteem, but some inkling of such change leaves a fresh trail of questions teetering after her. Marc Darcy's new never-ending-legs colleague, the importation of Daniel Cleaver (Hugh Grant) into her working quarters and a mini-break threaten to topple Bridget's newfound kingdom before she has a chance to reign...
Click for full review...
Showing at these cinemas...


Anacondas: The Hunt For The Blood Orchid (12A)
Angel On The Right (L'Angelo Della Spalla Destra) (12A)
The Hillside Strangler (18)
Ladies In Lavender (12A)
Reconstruction (12A)
Shaolin Soccer (12A)
Toolbox Murders (15)
A Way Of Life (15)


Interview With Agnès Jaoui and Jean-Pierre Bacri
Discussing Comme Une Image (Look At Me), which won Best Screenplay at Cannes this year. Click here...


A to Z of London Cinemas
A to Z of Films showing in London this week


Complete History Of America (Abridged) - Criterion Theatre
Just after a certain election, from November 2nd
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Bill Bailey (Part Troll) – Apollo Theatre
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The Comedy Store
London's most popular comedy club has been
splitting sides for twenty two years now.
The likes of Paul Merton, Jack Dee and Jo
Brand have all taken to the stage here.
Click here for info...



Raphael: From Urbino to Rome
The National Gallery, Trafalgar Square
20 October 2004- 16 January 2005, 10AM - 6PM, open until 9pm on Wednesday
UKP9; UKP8 Senior Citizens/Concessions; UKP4 Students/Children; UKP18 family tickets (2 adults and up to 4 children, 12-18)

AT 15, in the tiny Duchy or Urbino, Raphael's self-portrait spoke of his precociousness - a self assured style and grasp of complex artistic techniques gave doubt to the true age at which he painted it. There is no doubt, however, of his tenacity. Nine years later, Raphael was painting the Pope in Rome, glorifying the largest of cathedrals and wealthy patrons with a quickly perfected stroke and a winning talent...
Click for full review...
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To purchase tickets for a selection of leading London Club venues try our
online service. You'll have the peace of mind of knowing you've got your
tickets and at most venues you'll be able to jump the ticket queue. Venues featured include:
- Fabric
- The End
- Borderline
- The Cross


How Does It Feel To Be Loved
9PM- 2 AM, 5UKP, 3UKP members (free membership)
First Friday of the month @ Canterbury Arms
8 Canterbury Crescent, SW9 7QD
Tube: Brixton
Third Friday of the month @ Buffalo Bar
259 Upper Street, N1
Tube: Highbury and Islington

It Feels Great To Be Loved: A tribute to Peel and finally, a club night for the rest of us...

SOMETIMES it really is just about the music. It is certainly the case with "How Does it feel to be loved?", anyway. Truly a welcoming, everyman type of club night, HDIFTBL combines an incredibly unpretentious, unobtrusive venue far from the more discriminating West End (a pub in Brixton with carpet, flowered wallpaper and framed football kits as its main décor) with people who can't dance and aren't willing to let that stop them, and the night is all the better for it.
Click for full review...

Based on Page Visits on LondonNet (6 November)
1) The End
2) Fabric
3) The Cross
4) Ministry of Sound
5) The Fridge
Click for Club Venues and Listings
Club Tickets


Best Curry to share with B-List Celeb during Diwali - Hason Raja
Hason Raja scores up a few more tasty new tricks for Diwali 2004.

RICKY GERVAIS might not be the hippest of celebs, but Hason Raja doesn't really need a selling point other than the food, anyway. One of the restaurant's faithful regulars, Gervais brings groups of friends because he likes the laid-back atmosphere and, of course, the cuisine, according to Managing Director Rafu Miah.

A new menu welcomes November and Diwali, and surpasses Hason Raja's already above-average variety. Selections include Malai Naan, with Philadelphia cheese, spring onion and coriander, a Tandoori Dumka lobster, with saffron and cumin, and Machli Massala, a de-boned Tilapia simmered with onions, tomatoes and spices...
Click for full review...



Exclusive Deal:

Melia White House **** (Regents Park)
Double rooms from 99 UKP

High levels of facilities, including a health and fitness centre, and service coupled with a fine restaurant and handy central location make for an excellent choice of London hotel. Set next to Regent's Park (the one that contains London Zoo), the White House is within walking distance of Oxford Street and the British Museum. Via the nearby Great Portland Street underground station, the rest of London's attractions are within easy reach. Rooms feature a long list of facilities including satellite TV, radio, voice-mail, hair-dryer, tea/coffee making equipment, mini-bar and trouser press. No smoking rooms are available on a special floor and the outstanding Royal Service Floor at the top of the hotel provides penthouse accommodation plus a host of executive add-ons.

Three of the Best:

The Ritz***** (Piccadilly)
Style, sophistication and old-fashioned levels of genuine service
come together at one of the world's legendary hotels. New even
better exclusive rates for 2004, with half price deals on selected suites.

The Gore**** (Knightsbridge)
Winter Special
(1st Sept - 31st Dec)
Single - 109 UKP Inclusive of vat
Double - 149 UKP Inclusive of vat

The Hyde Hotel *** (Paddington)
Comfortable three star hotel offering the best value ever on LondonNet: just 55UKP for a double room!

London Hotel Chart:

Top Sellers (27 October - 10 November)
1) Columbia Hotel
2) Commodore Hotel
3) Swissotel The Howard

Best Value Accommodation for 2004:
Bed and Breakfasts
Budget Hostels

New additions and highlights from our sister site Hotelgenie.

The Burj Al Arab, Dubai:
Burj Al Arab is the world's only seven-star hotel and any reservations you may have about such a title will be quickly dispelled by the sheer magnificence and splendour of this project. No other hotel has such a striking presence inside or out and no other boasts such refined and attentive levels of customer care and experience. Hotelgenie.com has secured exclusive discounts to bring this incredible hotel within the reach of many dream-seekers.



Livingstone Faces al-Qaradawi Probe - Assembly to investigate mayor's links with cleric
New Arts Centre for Tottenham - 'Bernie Grant' venue gets go-ahead.




Win two tickets to go ice skating at one of three outdoor, romantic London skating rinks (Greenwich, Hampton Court and Kew) this winter.

Question: Name the 2002 Women's Ice Skating Olympic Gold Medalist, as well as her country.

How to Enter: Send an email with the correct answer to "[email protected]",
with the subject header "Skating Competition".

More Necessary Info: NB Include email, telephone number and postal address
(which will only be used for this compie - guaranteed).

If you don't include your details we can't send you info about the prize!

Even More Info: First correct answers out of the Editor's hat win the
prizes, details will be sent to the winner. The Editor's decision is final.

Closing Date: 3pm, 15 November 2004.

Last Ahoy! winner: Jenny Sagi, from New Cross, who will celebrate the blossoming of Raphael's fine talents at the National Gallery, thanks to her well-rounded knowledge of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Also serves as proof that too much television really does pay off!


Details of some of the best free competition sites on the web. Register today for your chance to win cash, cars and lots, lots more.


Readers say their piece
Send mail to: [email protected]


The Editor reserves the right to amend your contributions for reasons of elegance, space, legality and plain sheer bloodymindedness.

We welcome your views on any subject, questions about your visit and of course feedback about the newsletter or website.


Recommendations for the best 'celeb watching' restaurants at the moment please...
Amanda Marker


If you wanted our autographs, you could catch a lunchtime at The Cavern, in Raynes Park. If you're in need of real star-watching, however, Gerri Halliwell has been known to grab breakfast at Visible, on Portobello Road; The Ivy in Covent Garden holds the sticky-toffee-pudding-likes of Madonna and George Michael; C-Lists roam Attica on Foubert's Place; and Vingt Quatre on Fulham Rd is a place for 24 hour party celebs like Kylie Minogue and Robbie Williams. Also, see Ahoy!'s restaurant section for information on another celeb-dining experience. If you can spare a few [hundred] pounds, these places provide the chance to nosh with the celebs. If nothing else, most of them provide decent cuisine.



HotelGenie: Our handpicked selection of fine European hotels.


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