Sun’s out, buns out. We pick the London hotspots where you’ve got a green light to grill
When temperatures reach sky high in London, cooking dinner on a grill in the great outdoors is one of life’s simple pleasures, and you don’t need to head out of the city to indulge in a barbecue. Just make sure you don’t scorch the grass and put your rubbish in the bin when you’re done, okay?
Most of London’s lush green spaces are reserved for picnics only, but there are some major parks and local gardens where you’re officially allowed to fire up the BBQ. Here are the best spots in London where it’s totally chill to grill.
London’s best BBQ spots
Lincoln’s Inn Fields, Holborn
The most central spot we could find, Lincoln’s Inn Fields is the largest public square in London – and it allows barbecues!
Central London parks aren’t just for stuffing sarnies into your face at lunchtime. You can barbecue in most Camden parks and this huge flame-friendly public square (the biggest in London, no less) is no exception. ou can’t take disposables here but you can set up a small barbecue of your own, as long as you throw your rubbish away in the nearby barbecue bins. We think it’s a great spot as it’s right by Holborn Station – you’ll never run out of supplies either with the amount of local supermarkets around! Work off the meat with a post-picnic tennis match.
Highbury, N5 1AR
The sound of sizzling sausages fills the air at Highbury Fields whenever the weather allows
Islington Council is the only council in the capital to allow barbecues in all of the borough’s parks – and Highbury Fields is the perfect option. Just over the road from Highbury & Islington Station is a beautiful spot which is absolutely ideal for setting up for the day and having a barbecue with friends. Often full of groups of people having picnics, parties and celebrations – feel free to take along your disposable and fire it up, as long as you have a stand and you clear up after yourself!
For fancy barbecue fare and punchy marinades, stock up at Godfreys butchers just north of the park. It is worth checking this one out before lighting up, though. Islington Council are currently consulting on limiting the barbecue area of the park to just one section, as well as implementing a 9pm curfew for the summer.
Caledonian Park, Holloway
Market Road, N7 9PL
Get your alfresco flame on in this petite patch of green.
Another lovely spot to hit if you’re around Islington is Caledonian Park. More secluded than Highbury Fields, the park is handily also open to visitors using barbecues.
The Islington park is home to community gardens, an imposing Grade II-listed clock tower to sit beneath, some woodland and gardens to wander through and basketball courts to burn off those burgers – an all-round great spot to spend a sunny afternoon. Bypass Highbury & Islington and get off at Caledonian Road station to find this stunning spot.
Burgess Park, Southwark
Albany Road, SE5 7QH
Sausages with a view of The Shard? Yes please!
Southwark has one special public park where you can grill – and that’s the delightful Burgess Park, a grand green space stretching from Camberwell and Walworth to Peckham and the Old Kent Road, with scenic lakeside barbecue areas. There are designated barbecue areas around the lake, which are lovely spots with purpose-built barbecues ready for you to use. These are perfect if you didn’t quite make it to the supermarket before the disposables were all gone! Always grill responsibly – scorched grass and litter isn’t a good look.
Waterlow Park, Highgate
Highgate Hill, Highgate, London N6 5HD
Drool over your barbecued banquet, while enjoying views of the city skyline.
Grill the day away on this gentle grassy slope. Dubbed a ‘garden for gardenless Londoners’, this scenic north London park welcomes fair weather feasting.