CHILDREN: WHAT TO DO TODAY IN LONDON

Waterloo Jive, Bernie Spain Gardens, Gabriel's Wharf London SE1 Sunday 2pm to 6pm. Free (0171- 401 2255 for more info)

Your kids may be able to do the latest Spice Girls routine but can they jive? This afternoon of dancing on the South Bank (which is part of the Coin Street Festival) will kick off with a kids' class to get everyone familiar with the steps. Later, there'll be a children's dance competition. Music will be provided by Volare and the Vendettas and the Sugarfoot Stompers. There will also be stalls selling retro clothes, records and music.

Newham Festival, Beckton District Park South, Strait Road, London E6 Sunday 1pm to 8pm (0181-472 1430 ext 21788 for more info)

There's more free entertainment out in East London this weekend with the Newham Festival, which seems to get bigger and better every year. As well as two stages and dozens of acts (Carleen Anderson is heading the bill) there's loads specifically for kids. The quick rundown includes clown workshops, stilt walkers, a fun fair, a circus tent, a city farm and horse and cart rides. There's also street theatre plus a carnival parade as well as lots of stalls and refreshments, including a beer garden for adults.

Carter's Royal Berkshire Steam Fair 2pm to 11pm on Saturday and 2pm to 10pm on Sunday. Priory Park, Priory Road, Hornsey N8 (01628 822221 for more info)

This beautifully decorated traditional steam fair, which tours London in a fleet of vintage vehicles, arrives in Hornsey this weekend. As well as the usual sideshows and rides on Saturday at dusk there will be a free firework display for those who like big bangs.

... AND BEYOND

Hever Castle, near Edenbridge, Kent (01732 865224). pounds 5.50 adults, pounds 3.60 children, pounds 14.60 family ticket

Head to Hever and let your kids see how they fought in the old days. There'll be jousting at 2pm this Saturday and next Saturday and archery at 2.30pm this Sunday and next Sunday.

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