Africa on the Square
Africa on the Square returns to Trafalgar Square for the third time on Saturday 15 October. This popular event celebrates African arts and culture. There’ll be a range of activities highlighting communities from across the continent.
You can expect a fantastic line-up of entertainment on the day including live music, DJs, dancing and a talent show. Plus an African market, food stalls, fashion show and lots of fun stuff for kids.
Africa on the Square is organised by the Mayor of London for Black History Month 2016.
The Mayor organises and supports lots of different events to celebrate the many cultures and communities of London. To find out what’s coming up sign up to the Events newsletter.
Plan your journey on tfl's journey planner
Watch Africa on the Square 2016 highlights:
Africa on the Square is supported by:
Watch clips from last year's event
You can plan your journey with TfL’s Journey Planner.
The nearest railway station is Charing Cross. It is 325 metres away, approximately three minutes’ walk. Charing Cross rail station offers step-free access and a step-free route to Trafalgar Square.
The nearest Underground station with step-free access from platform to street level is Westminster. This is served by the Jubilee, District and Circle lines. Outside Westminster station buses 12, 24, 88 or 453 have low-floor buses which call at a stop within 150m of Trafalgar Square.
Charing Cross Underground station is served by the Northern and Bakerloo lines. It is the closest Tube station. However it does not have step-free access.
Visit the TfL website for accessible Tube maps.
Routes 3, 6, 9, 11, 12, 13, 15, 23, 24, 53, 77A, 88, 91, 139, 159, 176 and 453.
All these routes lead to Trafalgar Square. However, 9 and 15 are heritage buses and do not have a low-floor.
Visit the TfL website for more information on buses.
Find out about registering and pre-booking Dial-a-ride services.
The nearest Blue Badge parking spaces to Trafalgar Square are:
- St Martin’s Street – five spaces - 321 metres from Trafalgar Square
- Outside Canada House – one space - 33 metres from Trafalgar Square
- Suffolk Street – one space - 644 metres from Trafalgar Square
- Spring Gardens – one space - 321 metres from Trafalgar Square
To find other blue badge parking bays nearby, use the postcode WC2N 5DN and search the City of Westminster’s website. To see where the bays are, click the ‘View results on a map’ button on the search results page.
The café on the square is open from 10am-6pm daily. There is seating inside, plus outside seats and wooden tables. The café is on the lower terrace of Trafalgar Square, on the square’s east side, right of the central staircase.
Trafalgar Square also has a number of public toilet facilities for men and women with disabled toilets and baby changing facilities.
Accessible facilities at Trafalgar Square
There is a wheelchair accessible lift on the north-west corner of Trafalgar Square. Event stewards will be available to assist wheelchair users travelling between upper (north terrace) and lower terrace levels of Trafalgar Square.
Wheelchair accessible public toilets are available on the lower terrace of Trafalgar Square. This is on the west side of the square to the left of the central staircase. These are open daily from 8am to 8pm.
Trafalgar Square’s cafe is wheelchair accessible, and has a low-level counter and induction loop. Free drinking water is available upon request in the cafe.
Additional accessible facilities for Africa on the Square
All staff and stewards will be briefed on disability awareness.
The wheelchair accessible viewing area will be on the North Terrace, at the top of the central staircase. Some seating will be available for companions in the wheelchair viewing area, and for those less able to stand. A hearing loop will be available in this area.
Guidance dog welfare area will be available next to the lift, on the upper North Terrace on the west side.
On the north west corner of Trafalgar Square (on the upper terrace) a Mobiloo wheelchair accessible portable toilet will be provided. The mobile toilet has a hoist and changing table. Mobiloo users needing to use the hoist must bring their own sling with them. This is for your own safety and convenience – and to prevent any cross-contamination between different users. Further details below and at www.mobiloo.org.uk
- Autolift BBW 1350 Tail Lift with a 1.6 metre platform.
- Astor Bannerman Nivano CTB adjustable height changing table.
- Arjohuntleigh Maxi Sky 2 electric hoist, allowing access to all areas of the Mobiloo.
- Toilet with retractable grab rail to each side.
- The Arjohuntleigh Maxi Sky 2 electric hoist has easily interchangeable spreader bars, allowing different types of sling to be used with the same hoist.
The African Market
The African Market will include stalls selling a range of African themed goods, including fashion with clothing for men, women and children, accessories, jewellery, home décor, books, perfume, arts and crafts and lots more. Plus delicious African street food.
|Name of Company||Type of Product|
|House of Loulee & Meen Clothing||Clothing & gifts|
|Dolls by Verona, C & AMI Book||Toys & Books|
|E & G Designs||Clothing, Gifts & Toys|
|The Adventures of Obi & Titi||Children's Books|
|Kiki Loves London||Clothing|
|Alive and Kicking||Sports Equipment|
|LAFI Burkina||Toys, Accessories, Bags & Purses|
|Purete Nature||Haircare & Skincare|
|Art N Spice Creations||Art & Accessories|
|Gida Collective||Art, Jewellery, Clothing & Accessories|
|Gambia & Senegal Collective||Clothing & Accessories|
|Obatala & Qemamu Mosaics||Home & Fashion Accessories|
|Akiss Africa||Clothing & Accessories|
|Box of Prints||Fabrics|
|Veronique Designs & Djalis Creation||Jewellery|
|Artsfro & Aquarius B||Art|
|Fes Design||Home Accessories|
|Joli Create||Home Accessories|
|Meta Meta Arts & Crafts||Art|
|Maridadi Kenya||Clothing, Jewellery & Art|
|PureGoodness & Coco Daville||Haircare & Skincare|
|The Calabash Hub & Sista London||Accessories, Bags & Purses|
|NHS - Blood & Transplant||Enrolling new blood donors from BAME community groups|
|Sapelle||Clothing, Jewellery & Accessories|
|Afrocentric805||Children's Clothing, Accessories & Toys|
|Fee Uhssi & Bolono Mali||Clothing, Accessories & Jewellery|
|Curios Vault||Clothing, Jewellery & Accessories|
|Honey Malaolu||Clothing, Jewellery & Accessories|
|Velvet and Rose & Leekhaya||Jewellery & Accessories|
|Africa Fashion Week London||Clothing|
|Teah-Wilson/TWDS||Jewellery & Accessories|
|Afroretro & Aso||Jewellery & Accessories|
|Peace of Afrika||Accessories|
|Gitas Portal||Clothing & Accessories|
African Street Food
|Name of Company||Type of Food|
|Shocka's Coconut Hub||Coconut Water|
|Habesha Ethiopia & Eritrea||Ethiopean & Eritrean Traditional Cuisine|
|Spinach & Angushi||Ghanaian inspired Vegetarian & Meat dishes|
|Exotic Tagine||Traditional Moroccan Cuisine|
|Jollof Box||African Cuisine|
|Global Fusion Vegan Creole||West African and European Food|
|Cally Munchy||African and Caribbean Fusion Food|
|Ethiopiques||Ethiopian vegetarian & Vegan Cuisine|
|Cham Cham||Sierra Leone & Liberian Cuisine|
|Big Mama Food||Traditional African Cuisine|
Music stage at Africa on the Square
- Joyce Rhythms (South Africa)
Joyce Rhythms is a South African jazz singer based in London. She performs classic African Jazz and her own original songs. A personal journey into the music from the heart-beat of the townships of South Africa.
- MOBO UnSung
MOBO has become a byword for the celebration of urban music, producing the world-famous MOBO Awards and so much more. At this year’s event is a performance by finalist from MOBO UnSung, an exciting initiative geared at identifying and showcasing new, ground-breaking, unsigned artists and their music.
- Mudibu (Burundi)
A solo acoustic artist from Burundi, Mudibu has worked on different musical projects, including a celebration of the music of Otis Redding. In 2015 Mudibu produced a solo album “Inzatsa” (meaning Fireflies), with songs almost entirely in Kirundi, his mother tongue.
- Nelson & Friends (Mozambique)
Nelson & Friends is a collective in East London of afrofusion, which blends Mozambique music with jazz and funk. They play irresistible rhythms and captivating melodies, which makes it impossible for even the most reluctant dancer not to get up on their feet and move.
- Kasai Masai (Congo) featuring Diamond Mutete (Cameroon)
Kasaï Masaï brings us the traditional sound of the most remote equatorial villages with an urban twist. The band is named after a river, Kasai, in the heart of the rain forest. The Masai are a dignified tribe whose lives still centre around a nomadic existence.
Diamond Mutete, actress and singer, originally from Cameroon. She performs world music and sings in her original language Douala, including Makossa (popular Cameroonian urban music style) and African folk.
- Seddick Zebiri & Seeds of Creation (Algeria)
Legendary Seddik Zebiri, from Algeria and his multicultural band, Seeds of Creation, play an intriguing blend of traditional Berber music with reggae, Jazz and raw psychedelic sounds that will transport you from London deep into the heart of the Sahara.
- Bukky Leo & Black Egypt (Nigeria) Afrobeat, Acid Jazz
While growing up in Lagos, Nigeria, Bukky Leo was spotted practising his first saxophone by afrobeat drummer Tony Allen. He was immediately ushered into Tony’s newly formed band ‘Mighty Iroko’s’ and later went on to play with the great Fela Kuti. In 2010, Bukky was engaged in the studio recording with Black Egypt. Now you can find Bukky Leo and Black Egypt performing in top UK venues and at international festivals.
- Young talent showcase
Four selected acts aged 16-25 will be welcomed to the stage, with the audience choosing the winner and Air France presenting the prize. 2015 winner Kianja will make a special guest appearance.
Esther Alade has a vivacious personality and is sure to reach out to the audience at Africa on the Square. Currently host of OHTV’s Naija Bites; a Nigerian cuisine cooking show, Esther has previously hosted a variety of events including Kings of Comedy at the IndigO2 and BEN TV’s Magazine Show.
Usifu Jalloh, The Cowfoot Prince
Usifu Jalloh is much more than a compere, he is a great storyteller and performer with a style which encompasses international languages, music and dance. One thing is for certain, he will engage and entertain the audience with his unique style and exuberance.
DJ Rita Ray
A welcome return to Africa on the Square for Rita Ray. As a DJ, Rita plays the whole spectrum of global music. She is also a broadcaster, presenter, curator and performer. She presents the African music review for Focus On Africa on the BBC World Service, is a regular contributor to the Arts hour and presenter of the Global Beats series. You can hear her on SOAS.FM Radio