The Handbook
The Handbook

10 Evening Plans That Don’t Involve Alcohol

Only mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midnight moon… Night is the new day and London is the best place to make the most of it. Here’s some suggestions for how to use your evenings to the max, and without even visiting a bar…

Escape Rooms 

Escape rooms are hard enough, let alone if you add alcohol into the mix, you need your brains sharp to work out the clues, not slightly tipsy with G&Ts. There are lots to choose from in London now, but we want to have a go at the Sherlock Holmes inspired escape room at InsideOut – Escape London. Moriarty has kidnapped Holmes, can you used quick thinking and detective skills to discover where he’s been hidden?

Make Your Own 

Make Your Own (M.Y.O) is perfect for those looking to get creative and catch up with friends without the cocktails. You can BYOB but equally you can just get involved with the arts and crafts. All the classes are beginner friendly and include the likes of tote design, calligraphy, t-shirt painting and ceramics. You’ll currently find them in Borough, but they are set to open in Peckham Levels soon!

Redemption Bar

If there’s one place you can’t drink then it’s Redemption and that’s because the ‘free-from’ restaurant doesn’t serve alcohol. Instead you’ll find the likes of Bees Knees sparkling wine and FitBeer an alcohol free beer from Bavaria. With a vegan, sugar-free and wheat-free menu to match, Redemption is the one place you can spoil yourself without spoiling yourself.


V&A Modern Dating Lates

If you’re nursing a hangover from the aftermath of Valentine’s Day, this may be the museum late you’ve been waiting for. Exploring every weird, wacky and frankly maniacal aspect of online dating you’ve ever encountered—or hope never to— this series catapults audiences down the rabbit hole of online dating, whilst introducing you to some frank and fantastic speakers along the way. Not to be missed, this series is free and places are allocated on a first come first come service. Definitely swipe right on this one.

Adidas Pop up Training Space

This year, Adidas continues its successful string of fitness pop ups. Each week a slew of female bloggers, fitness fanatics and brand champions host an array of classes, ranging from Yoga to HIIT and back again. As an added extra, Adidas drafts in a celebrity to run the occasional class, adding some extra pizazz to your work out, and a fantastic opportunity to upgrade your social media game on the side too. Based in trendy Brick Lane, my recommendation is going to a class, smash out your fitness goals, then limp to Beigel Man, and go smash a bagel. You earnt it, sister.


Bitch Lit Book Club

Alright, alright, so this book club does involve copious amounts of cheese and wine but these evenings aren’t strictly about boozing; though a tipple or two is a welcome addition to brain twizzling conversations about literature…

A once monthly book club, Bitch Lit Book Club host fun and irreverent discussions of new feminist texts. This is an amazing event for all of us who want to become a little more “woke” and for the rest of us who are still trying to decide whether or not we can pull off the word “woke”.

XOYO Orchestral Nights

Full disclosure, at time of writing I am lying in bed my ears still ringing, and my brain still belting out “Girl” on repeat from the Destiny’s Child night I’ve just returned from.  It’s fair to say I am a big old fan of these nights. The nights range from Dr Dre to Daft Punk, and while the orchestra isn’t the main event- my friend and I lamented how quiet the cellist was- it’s a bloody brilliant mid-week night. Good for a boogie and endlessly crowd pleasing, it’s basically the show-reel of a band’s greatest hits. Serving up some feel good classics, these nights are a welcome musical throw back, and a fab opportunity to have a dance with your nearest and dearest.

Transport Museum Late, Bright Young Things

Hitting you with another museum Late, the Transport Museum is showcasing the arts and atmospheres of the eras that defined our transport system in London. While this museum may not necessarily be at the top of your list, these lates sound like a raucous rattle through 20th century Britain. An immersive evening, experience the culture, art and music that shaped each individual period. Meandering through the golden age of the 20s and 30s, sharped up that Charleston and work on your “no I’m not smug we have air conditioning on the tube” face. Because no matter how bad the Central line gets in the height of summer, it was probably worse 90 years ago. Relive other people’s commuter misery, but to music. And, as per usual, mind the gap.

Silent Disco, The Shard

I defy anyone who doesn’t love a silent disco. It simply isn’t possible, particularly when partnered with the panoramic views. Go belt out some anthems with reckless abandon; have a giggle at others belting out anthems with reckless abandon. It’s good to be silly, particularly when no one can hear you. Think of it like singing in the shower, only much, much better.

PGT Reels

Scottish reeling is probably one of the more chaotic, shambolic and hilarious ways of spending a Thursday evening (and that includes getting leathered with colleagues in the boozer next door…) Dust off the cobwebs of 9-5 and go for a spin with PGT; a raucous group of reeling enthusiasts, PGT is based out of High Street Kensington and meet weekly for a dance. The set-up is generally more organised than drunkenly grooving in a club, though not so uptight that anyone minds you stepping on their toes…much. Dancing in a mixture of partners and larger groups, enjoy a stomp around the dance floor, swerving the mundanity of mid-week binge drinking with a clap of your hands and a flick of your heel. Prepare to be exhausted from smiling, feeling all kinds of old school exhausted from being twirled and thrown around.