From its foundation in 1768 the Royal Academy of Arts has provided a voice for art and artists. We are an independent charity led by eminent artists and architects—the Royal Academicians—and we pursue our mission through exhibitions, education and debate.
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John Constable RA
Richard Rogers RA
Sandra Blow RA
Wolfgang Tillmans RA
Cornelia Parker RA
Grayson Perry RA
● Fully booked
Meet at HSBC, 8 Canada Square, London E14
Join Friends on this private tour of the intriguingly diverse art collection owned by HSBC, led by the Art Manager and an expert from Sotheby’s.
£33. Includes drinks and nibbles.
Army & Navy Club, 36-39 Pall Mall, St James's London SW1Y
Join us for a private tour of the Army & Navy Club, affectionately known as the “The Rag”.
£30. Includes coffee/tea/biscuits on arrival.
Meet at Hall, Dunster Court, Mincing Lane, London EC3
Join Friends for this tour of Clothworkers’ Hall, one of the Great Twelve Livery Companies of the City of London.
St Paul's Cathedral, London EC4M. Meet RA representative on the steps of the West Portico.
Our guided tour of the contemporary art on display in St Paul’s Cathedral includes Bill Viola’s ‘Martyrs’ and a brand-new water installation arriving in early October.
£30. Includes entry to St Paul's Cathedral.
The Sir Hugh Casson Room for Friends, the Keeper's House, Royal Academy of Arts, Piccadilly
Christmas starts at the Royal Academy with a glass of sparkling wine and a luxury Christmas wreath-making workshop, using fresh foliage from the Tregothnan estate in Cornwall.
£45. Includes wreath-making and a glass of sparkling wine.
Royal Opera House, Bow St, London WC2E
We are pleased to offer this behind-the-scenes tour of the Royal Opera House especially created for RA Friends, which includes a post-tour talk on their ambitious building project, ‘OPEN UP’.
£30. Includes light refreshments.
Burlington House, Royal Academy of Arts, Piccadilly
Be enchanted by the Royal Academy at Christmas, with private views of ‘Jasper Johns’ and ‘Dalí / Duchamp’, jazz music, late-night shopping, complimentary gift wrapping and Christmas treats.
£40 VIP / £20 standard
PriceWaterhouseCoopers, 7 More London Riverside, London SE1
With kind permission of the PwC partnership, we are able to offer a special introduction to PwC’s art collection and a tour of the art on display at their building, 7 More London Riverside SE1, designed by Foster + Partners.
£30. Includes drinks and nibbles.
Join the coach on Piccadilly outside the RA. Please note that the coach will leave promptly at 12:30pm.
Friends enjoy a private tour of Dorney Court, one of England’s most uniquely beautiful Tudor Manor Houses, as well as the small 12th-century church of St James the Less.
£65. Includes mince pies and a festive glass of homemade wine.
Meet at Black Rod's entrance, Houses of Parliament, SW1A. Directions will be included with your ticket.
Friends exclusively tour the Parliamentary Archives, learning about the process of the continuing preservation of the records of the House of Lords and the House of Commons.
The Sackler Wing and Tennant Gallery
We invite Friends of the RA to join us for an exclusive preview of the ‘From Life ’ exhibition before it is open to the public.
Free, booking required.
The Life Room, Royal Academy Schools
Friends of the RA are invited to win a place at a free life-drawing class in the RA Schools, led by a special guest tutor.
Free, admission via ballot.
St James's Church, Piccadilly, W1J
Please join us for our annual Friends Christmas Carols evening at St James’s Church, Piccadilly with festive readings by special guests including actors Simon Callow, Una Stubbs and Nicholas Rowe, and Royal Academician Farshid Moussavi.
Meet outside Walbrook Entrance, Mansion House, Walbrook, London, EC4N 8BH Nearest tube station: Bank (use exit 7).
Join Friends on a rare tour of the Harold Samuel Art Collection in Mansion House, one of the finest surviving Georgian town palaces in London.
Meet at Marlborough House entrance on the corner of Pall Mall and St James's Street, SW1A.
On this private tour we visit the suite of magnificent Fine Rooms in Malborough House, which include portraits by Allan Ramsay and Luke Fildes, ceiling paintings by Orazio Gentileschi and works by French decorative painter Louis Laguerre.
Meet at Spencer House, 27 St James's Place, London, SW1. Nearest tube: Green Park.
Friends privately tour Spencer House, built between 1756–1766 for John, the first Earl Spencer and an ancestor of Diana, Princess of Wales. It is considered to be London’s finest surviving 18th-century town house.
Main Galleries, Burlington House, Royal Academy of Arts, Piccadilly
We invite Friends of the RA to join us for an exclusive preview of the ‘Charles I: King and Collector’ before it is open to the public.
Free, booking required.
Meet the RA representative outside Caxton Hall,10 Caxton Street, London, SW1H 0AQ.
Walk in the footsteps of those who won votes for women on this guided walking tour, exclusively for RA Friends.
Meet RA representative in the National Gallery Dining Room, Sainsbury Wing, National Gallery, Trafalgar Square.
Our guided tour with National Gallery lecturer and art historian, Siân Walters, traces the fascinating and little-known role of women as patrons and painters, from the medieval period to the 19th century, as illustrated through the National Gallery’s collection.
£35. Includes coffee/tea and homemade cookies on arrival.
The Reynolds Room, Burlington House, Royal Academy of Arts, Piccadilly
The Philharmonia Orchestra comprises some of the world’s finest orchestral players. Join them at the RA for an evening of sparkling symphonies, performed with creativity, innovation and fearless virtuosity, followed by a private view of ‘Charles I’.
£80. Includes reception with drinks and canapés, concert and private view.
Meet at The Reform Club, 104 Pall Mall, London SW1Y.
Widely regarded as one of the finest Victorian buildings in the country, this palatial masterpiece by Sir Charles Barry has remained largely unchanged since it was opened in 1841.
£30. Includes coffee/tea at the end of the tour.
Meet at Linklaters, 1 Silk Street, EC2Y. Linklaters offices at 1 Silk Street are opposite the main entrance to the Barbican Centre
Curator for the multinational law firm Linklaters, Catherine Shearn, leads this tour of their London headquarters, which houses over 1500 artworks ranging from the 1950s to the present day.
£30. Includes drinks/nibbles at the end of the tour.
Meet at Central St Martins main reception, Granary Square, N1
Friends explore the Museum and Special Collections of renowned art, design and fashion college Central St Martins, which house some of the most innovative fashion pieces created by staff and students.
Meet RA representative at Tower Hill tube station.
One extraordinary man was witness to some of London’s most tumultuous events. Join our guided walking tour through Restoration London with Samuel Pepys and his famous diaries as our inspiration.
Meet outside the main entrance to Trinity House (between the canons), Trinity Square, Tower Hill, EC3. Nearest tube station: Tower Hill.
Join us for a special private tour of Trinity House, which overlooks the Tower of London. Designed by architect Samuel Wyatt and built in 1796, Trinity House is home to the UK’s largest maritime charity concerned with the safety, welfare and training of mariners.
£30. Includes coffee/tea and biscuits at the end of the tour.
Meet at Dr Johnson's House, 17 Gough Square (off Fleet Street), London, EC4A. Full directions with ticket.
Built in 1700, Dr Johnson’s House is one of the few residential houses of its age still surviving in the City of London. Join the curator for an exclusive after-hours tour and enjoy a twilight glass of wine in the peace of this atmospheric house.
£30. Includes a glass of wine/soft drink.
Walk in the footsteps of those who won votes for women on this guided walking tour, exclusively for RA Friends
Meet RA representative in the courtyard at the Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House, Piccadilly, W1J.
Join Westminster Guide Anthony Davis as we discover 400 years of literary connections within this fashionable part of London adjacent to Piccadilly and the home of the Royal Academy.
Meet for coffee at 10.30am in the National Gallery Dining Room, First floor of the Sainsbury Wing, The National Gallery, Trafalgar Square, London, WC2N.
Join fellow Friends for this very rare opportunity to meet the National Gallery’s Head of Art Handling, Patrick O’Sullivan, and his team.
£50. Includes coffee/tea and homemade cookies.
Meet outside Chancery Lane station
Join us to walk the streets of Charles Dickens’s London, in a tour led by his great-great-great-granddaughter, Lucinda Hawksley.
Meet at The Lords Tavern, St John's Wood Rd, London, NW8. The Tavern is a 10-minute walk from St John's Wood tube station.
Join fellow Friends for a tour of “the home of cricket”, with a special introduction to the works of art held in the clubhouse from the curator of collections, Adam Chadwick.
£30. Includes coffee and biscuits at the Lord's Tavern.