10 top picks for London Festival of Architecture 2017

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10 events that are not to be missed at London Festival of Architecture 2017

With London Festival of Architecture kicking off today, architecture editor Jessica Mairs has revealed her top picks, from a stomach-churning installation based on the Smithfield meat market to tours of the capital's ill-fated housing estates. 

Now in its 10th year, the London Festival of Architecture takes place throughout June.

This year's programme takes the theme of Memory, a topic that participants have used an opportunity to conjure up a range of unusual sensorial installations, as well as reflect on the future for London's post-war architecture.

Architectural yoga classes at Sir John Soane's Museum, a glimpse inside one of the city's last remaining music halls and an architectural bake off are also on the cards.

Here are our top tips for what not to miss:


Silvertown tours and flyover design competition

Walking tours will take in the historical sites of Silvertown, an area of London's docklands set to be completely transformed in the next few years. It will be one of the last chances to take in the derelict Millennium Mills – a flour mill used in more recent years as a set for innumerable films – before its redevelopment. The Carlsberg Tetley Building will also be open for tours and a choir will perform live.

Six practices also present their shortlisted designs for a new workspace below a flyover in Silvertown: Architecture for London, B + C Architects, John McAslan + Partners with Pedder & Scrampton Architects, Langstaff Day with Meanwhile Space, Surman Weston, and You & Me Architecture.

16-30 June
Various locations in London's docklands


Dulwich Pavilion by IF_DO

Emerging London architecture practice IF_DO has created an events pavilion in the grounds of John Soane's Dulwich Picture Gallery in south London.

Mirrored panels reflect the London stock brick and Portland stone facades of the building for visitors to enjoy during a series of themed late-night events or from the pavilion's bar and cafe.

2 June - 8 October
Dulwich Picture Gallery, Gallery Road, Southwark, SE21 7AD

Find out more about Dulwich Pavilion >


Smellery of Smithfield

Described as an "olfactory adventure" through old Smithfield meat market, Metropolitan Workshop will convert its studio into a different scentscape each week based on a nostalgic tale of the building – which is being converted into a museum.

5-30 June
Metropolitan Workshop, 14-16 Cowcross Street, EC1M 6DG


 Unlocking Pentonville by Sarah Wigglesworth Architects Unlocking Pentonville by Sarah Wigglesworth Architects

Anticipating the decommissioning of London's infamous Pentonville prison, Sarah Wigglesworth Architects will imagine its new future through a weekend of workshops, walks and public debates. Dezeen columnist Owen Hopkins will chair a talk on memory.

17-18 June
382 Caledonian Road, N1 1DY


Concrete Paintings by Charlie Warde

Sections of the concrete structures of Brutalist buildings including Ernő Goldfinger's Trellick Tower and Robin Hood Gardens by Alison and Peter Smithson feature in these paintings by Charlie Warde. He created the works during his artist's residency at Trellick Tower, and they will be on show throughout the festival at the Another Country showroom.

1 - 30 June
Another Country, 18 Crawford Street, W1H 1BT


Post-war craft: How LCC Architects redefined high-rise living 

Also looking at London's post-war architecture, this photography exhibition hones in on south London's 20th-century social housing developments. Specifically, the shots by Matthew White look at the output of London County Council Architects (LCC), which was once the world's largest architecture department.

1-3 June
Anise Gallery, 13a Shad Thames, Bermondsey, SE1 2PU


London Tomorrow: A weekend with the London School of Architecture

The first batch of graduates from London School of Architecture will present 30 new models for living in the capital under the themes of New Living, City Amenity, Creating Culture and Future Prosperity. Their models respond to issues including climate change and population growth, as well as inequalities in income and healthcare.

23-25 June
Somerset House, Strand, WC2R 1LA


Segal self-build: past present and future

This tour offers an opportunity to explore the self-built housing estate Walter Segal designed for Lewisham in the 1980s. It will be led my present-day self-build enthusiasts Rural Urban Synthesis Society, which is working on a community housing project based on Segal's principles.

4 June
Walters Way, 8 Walters Way, SE23 3LH


Temple of the Tongue by Bompas & Parr

Visitors to this "sensual and provocative installation" exhibition will be fed treats from Bompas & Parr's kitchen by invigilators brandishing crystal-tipped spears and played tunes from a "cocktail pipe-organ".

19 - 22 June
Bompas and Parr, 3 Grange Yard, SE1 3AE


Estates of Memory by Architects for Social Housing

A week-long programme of walking tours and exhibitions examines the post-war social housing estates threatened by demolition across the city. Walks will be led by residents of the Excalibur Estate in Catford – one of the last prefabricated housing estates in the city – as well as Patmore Estate, Central Hill Estate and Cressingham Gardens.

17-24 June
Various locations across London