Best things for architecture fanatics to do in London this Mother's Day

Helen Cahill
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The Brutalist Architecture Of London
It's not hard to find architectural wonders in the city (Source: Getty)

Bored of brunch? Feast on architecture with your mother this weekend instead.

Here are some of our top picks for design fanatics this Sunday:

Red House, Bexleyheath

If your mother is into William Morris, take her on a trip to his house in south London.

Morris designed his arts and crafts house in 1859 in collaboration with Philip Webb, who is also known for his work on Lincoln's Inn. Red House is a National Trust property and you can sign up for a guided tour between 11am and 1pm. To walk around Morris' masterpiece at your leisure, turn up between 1:30pm and 4:45pm; the house shuts at 5pm.

The Japanese House exhibition, the Barbican

You can discover Japan's post-war history through its architecture in the Barbican's gallery space this weekend at "The Japanese House".

Our reviewer was certainly impressed by the display, saying it is a "must-see not only for architecture geeks and Japanophiles, but for anyone with an interest in how spaces around us reflect our dreams and aspirations". Read his five-star review in full here.

Standard tickets are £14.50 and the exhibition runs until 25 June.

Barbicans 25th Birthday Concert
The Barbican building itself is also worth a visit on the weekend (Source: Getty)

Circling the Square, Riba

Bank junction could have looked very different if acclaimed architect Mies van der Rohe had been allowed to follow through on his vision for the site now occupied by No 1 Poultry. Find out why van der Rohe lost out at a free exhibition on at Riba's Architecture Gallery, "Mies van der Rohe and James Stirling: Circling the Square". Doors open at 10am on Sunday, and close at 5pm.

For more information about the exhibition, check out our preview.

Lea Valley Walk

For the more ambitious property buffs, a walk along the Lea Valley will take you through a stunning cross-section of the city's architecture and open spaces. The total 50-mile route takes you from Waltham Abbey to East India Dock, but is split into six sections for those who are looking for a milder Sunday afternoon. For more information on the route, consult Transport for London.

Visit the National Theatre

Whether you're seeing a play, or grabbing a drink in the theatre bar, visiting the National Theatre is perhaps the simplest way to enjoy some excellent architecture in London this weekend. Denys Lasdun's brutalist maze, home to three theatres, was opened by the Queen in 1976 and has since been a favourite with theatre-goers and architecture buffs alike (but it did not win over Prince Charles, who said it looked like a "nuclear power station"). This weekend, you can still bag tickets for Twelfth Night, starring Tamsin Greig as Malvolia.

National Theatre Construction
The "nuclear power station" under construction in 1975 (Source: Getty)

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