The glow of illuminated boats gliding down the river at dusk, watching the gentle waves left in their wake and the moonlight reflecting off the water’s surface…
Sounds like the start of a guided meditation, but this dazzling sight is coming to London in September, with Reflections — a one-off flotilla along the Thames.
A procession of vessels decorated with soft white lights (including Gloriana, the Queen’s rowbarge) will wend their way from Chelsea to Tower Bridge, creating a dynamic, work of art on the water.
Complementing the vessels will be various colourfully illuminated bridges already in situ, designed to evoke reflective thoughts on the city’s history.
The Thames is an experienced host of river celebrations, with the initial incarnation of the modern day Lord Mayor’s Show, The River Pageant, being held on the waters of medieval London around 570 years ago. The legacy lives on in the use of the term ‘floats’ to describe participants in carnivals or processions on dry land.
The Reflections flotilla can be seen from 7.15pm to 9pm on Saturday 24 September 2022, as part of the month-long Totally Thames festival. It’s free to watch — just pick a point along the route. It also forms part of the ongoing celebrations for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. Funds will be raised for the RNLI, facilitating construction of a new lifeboat station at Waterloo Bridge.