Family Ceilidh and Midnight Apothecary Saturday 25th November

Neptune St flier

Illuminate Rotherhithe brings two events, each very different from each other. A free family Ceilidh Dance experience for everyone to join and a special edition of the popular Midnight Apothecary in the Brunel Museum (this is a paid event)

Family Ceilidh at the Mayflower Hall

Mayflower Hall | 31 Neptune St, London SE16 7JP | 4pm – 6pm |Disabled access | Free

First, families are invited to join us for this free event at the Mayflower Hall in Neptune from 4pm. This is an afternoon to dance and have fun all together. If you are not familiar with Ceilidh, don’t worry. We have put together a quick explanation.

Everyone is welcome and no booking required.

This event is possible thanks to Ceilidh Tree Band, FA Albin & Sons and MT Tobin Ventures

What is a Ceilidh?

Many of you may think of a Ceilidh as a fun filled night of wild dancing, good music and great fun and that’s correct. Yet, originally the word Ceilidh (pronounced as kay-lee) descended from the Gaelic word for ‘gathering’ or ‘party’

The beauty of a ceilidh or Barn Dance is that everyone can take part, young or old, experienced dancers to beginners and even those with two left feet!

Ceilidh in England has evolved a little differently from its counterparts elsewhere in Britain and Ireland. English ceilidh sometimes abbreviated to eCeilidh can be considered part of English Country Dance (and related to Contra). English ceilidh has many things in common with the Scottish and Irish social dance traditions. The dance figures are similar using couples dances, square sets, long sets and circle dances. However, the English style requires a slower tempo of tune accentuating the on-beat, the central instrument often being the English melodeon, a diatonic accordion in the keys of D and G. Dancers often use a skip, a stephop or rant step depending on region. This contrasts with the smoother style and more fluid motion seen in Ireland, Scotland, or (the walking) in Contra. Many ceilidh dances involve a couple, but this doesn’t limit the number of partners any one dancer has during the ceilidh. Often dancers will change partners every dance to meet new people.

(Read more about Ceilidh here)

Although still a minority event in recent years popularity has increased, particularly within younger generations and with the rise in more modern interpretations, with groups like ‘Manchester Céilidh’ formed in 2004 and running regular events directly targeting students and younger dancers

Midnight Apothecary American Thanksgiving Special

Brunel Museum | Railway Ave, Rotherhithe, London SE16 4LF | 6pm – 10.30pm | Disabled access may be limited| 18 and over | £8

Midnight Apothecary Goes Down the Shaft with Tom Carradine, Champagne Charlie and Tricity Vogue for an American Thanksgiving Special

Get ready for the four Cs:  Cocktails, Cabaret, Campfires and Candlelight!

Fancy a very special Thanksgiving-themed Midnight Apothecary Down the Shaft on Saturday? Campfire cocktails, a cavernous underground chamber, cabaret, candlelight and…. a massive Sing-A-Long!

“Britannia Does Liberty”
Join our very special guests – the dapper duo Champagne Charlie and Tom Carradine as they take you on a whistle-stop musical Sing-A-Long around the good old U.S. of A.
What these vintage-loving, moustachioed stage husbands don’t know about the golden age of American music isn’t worth knowing.
Expect Joplin (both Scott and Janis!), Gershwin, Porter, Berlin and a few surprises. Complete with tap dancing and raucous audience sing-a-longs it promises to be a veritable Thanksgiving feast of cabaret.
And don’t forget the hot rum toddies and toasted marshmallows round the firepit in the roof garden! Booking essential. Tickets £8 from

WISE16 Midnight ApothecaryThe campfire in the brunel museum roof garden will be roaring as usual to warm your cockles and toast your complimentary marshmallows. The giant flares, hurricane lamps and all round cosiness will be very much in evidence.  The deluxe hot rum toddy stand will insure your blood is pumping and your singing voice is warmed up.  But that’s only the start of it. You are invited to descend the brand new grand staircase of Brunel’s underground  Grand Entrance Hall, described as one of the most exciting new performance spaces and cultural attractions in London today for a very special SINGALONGA knees up with some amazing cabaret talent. And of course they will be serving their beautiful seasonal botanical cocktails and Hiver honey beer in their underground cocktail bar.

Oh and please dress warmly – the friendly team can warm your cockles with a hot toddy or two but it gets blimmen’ chilly!

This event is sponsored by Midnight Apothecary

Click here to book

Illuminate Rotherhithe is a celebration of our community’s history. Incorporating free events – talks, music and dance, it takes place across SE16 from 23 – 27 November 2017.



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