Speakers Corner
Points of Interest & Landmarks
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Sunday
12:00 PM - 7:30 PM
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About
Speakers Corner in London's Hyde Park is the oldest free speech platform in the world. People won the right to speak in mass protests in the 1860s and early 1870s. Some people believe the tradition is connected to the right of the condemned to a last speech before being hung at the Tyburn gallows, a practice that stopped at the end of the 18th century. Every Sunday people from all sorts of convictions come to Hyde Park in the afternoon to spead their message or to have fun.
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3.5
314 reviews
Excellent
70
Very good
106
Average
92
Poor
27
Terrible
19

Brian K
Renfrew, UK562 contributions
Jan 2020 • Couples
I have known about speakers corner for a long time but had never been able to go during previous visits to London . There is a great history behind the reason/ purpose of the corner and there are a few information panels which give a brief over view of its history . Located in Hyde park it is easy to get to either on foot or by the tube . The day we went there was a fair number of people there . Some were in small groups having what seemed to be reasoned discussions . There was also a few people up on small step ladders who’s main thing seemed to just be to shout slogans loudly. Mostly about religion .. I regarded it all as a bit of street theatre and watched without joining in any particular argument . I think it all depends on the individual and perhaps the quality of the arguments bring put forward .. it’s worth a wander past and a bit of your time as you walk through the park .
Written January 20, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Richard K
Edmonton, Canada307 contributions
Apr 2018 • Couples
You would not make a special trip to speakers corner but if your in Hyde Park take 5 minutes to read the history of speakers corner not much to it but Hyde Park is worth the visit a great walk with lots of open space to enjoy only minutes from Marbel Arch.
Written May 8, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Harrovian
England46 contributions
Aug 2016
The characters may have changed over the years. There are not so many entertainers, comedians or well-versed hecklers anymore. But Sunday afternoon at Speakers' Corner is still the place to be for free speech, be it from a soap box, upturned milk crate or more likely a ladder.l

Feel free to join in discussions, challenge or merely observe on the site once occupied by George Orwell, Karl Marx and more recently Lord Soper.

The action takes place not on the actual corner itself opposite Marble Arch, but further down by the refreshment kiosk at the entrance to Hyde Park. On your way there do look out for the tall gentleman in a beret standing by the railings who wears a placard bearing the inscription "It's Going To Get Worse". His name is Bob and he will be more than happy to explain why.

Just be aware too that there are no public toilets in the vicinity and that the nearest facilities are quite a long trek across Hyde Park.
Written September 6, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

tjjohnsonn
14 contributions
Apr 2018 • Friends
I remember going to speakers corner as a child with my grandpaperent. I used to love attending and listening to people speak.
I can not believe how much something can change over time.
It's a hostile place now, I didn't feel safe.
There was many many Muslims praying; I always thought religious prayers weren't permitted at speakers corner??
Every spot their is a muslim with their face covered shouting and arguing and I heard them verbally abusing a gay man. Calling him vulgar names.
It's quite heated and hostile at speakers corner now. Police seem to just walk past Muslims praying and ignore them.
As an British citizen who has attended speakers corner since a child it has changed. It looks more like a pilgrimage from Mecca.
Very disappointed. I didn't feel safe at all there.
Written April 9, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Debi D
1 contribution
Apr 2018 • Friends
Might as well go to a local mosque 😡 and the law doesn't seem to apply to worshippers, especially the local ones.
Written April 22, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

John Smith
1 contribution
Sep 2018 • Solo
The action takes place only on Sundays starting at around 10:00am and can go on into the night weather permitting. The time it is busiest is in mid afternoon. If you want to get an idea for the kind of environment and topics that are often discussed, I would suggest you look up videos from "Content Over Everything" on Youtube. Topics can vary from politics, religion, veganism, current events, history, and so on. Of course, religion is always a dominant player with mainly Muslim and Christian speakers.

It terms of quality, it can vary from Sunday to Sunday depending on which speakers are present. For example, there were a couple negative reviews for this past Sunday here (March 17th) but the Sundays prior were far better. Some current speakers to look for on a variety of topics include Heiko, Bob The Builder, Pavlov, Ralph, Sheikh Danjuma, and Muhammad Hijab. The environment of the talks is not like a Ted Talk but is a more rowdy environment where speakers can often get heckled and asked questions throughout. It is usually all in good fun but sometimes things will get heated as men can get very competitive in debates. Also, sometimes the talks will take the form of a discussion with 3 or 4 speakers.

One thing I would suggest is that travelers also come ready to make a speech. This will scare some but really it is a great way to get involved in the process and share something you know. If more travelers did this, the quality of speakers and topics would rise further and encourage more to follow suit. All that you need to give a talk is maybe a sign or just the ability to call some people over. Women are also more than welcome to give speeches even though the bulk of the speakers are male.

A second thing I would suggest is that you start up conversations with other people in the park. Outside of the speeches themselves, these informal conversations can turn into interesting discussions of their own where you can meet people from all over the world. Since people are coming to this place to listen and talk, it is perfectly natural to engage people in this manner and is very different from the usual disinclination by some English people to engage in small talk elsewhere in London.

In terms of logistics, Speakers' Corner is nearby some great places to picnic or play with families. You could easily make a day of it where you get to enjoy some speeches and the beauty of the park itself. There is also a nearby refreshments stand where you can buy ice cream, coffee and some other smaller items. Plus, there is a McDonalds across the street and several ice cream trucks in the Park itself. People do film a lot of the speeches and as a consequence, don't be alarmed if you see some people covering their faces as a result. Some folks are camera shy for various reasons.

In terms of safety, this area is generally very safe. Sometimes you will have some arguments and some pushing and shoving but usually that is the end of it as there is typically a police van with officers present. I have seen people walking their dogs, bringing babies in strollers, or riding bicycles while listening to speeches. This is a very casual environment where you can wear what you like.

Finally, I really like this place and find it to be a truly unique place in the world. I strongly recommend you make the time to add a trip to the park and Speaker's Corner to your itinerary. Other folks may bemoan that the speakers aren't what they used to be. But those are the words said of older folks who wax nostalgic about the past. Really, if you aren't giving talks yourself, IMO you lose your right to complain too much. I saw go with the idea that you will participate and add to the experience.
Written March 20, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

There4TheFood
Brantford, Canada30 contributions
Aug 2018 • Couples
Hubby and I stumbled upon Speakers' Corner in Hyde Park while we were waiting to transfer buses. I have to say it was the highlight of my visit to London. There were several animated speakers, some with no audience, and others with large audiences. They seemed to be focused on religious views, but I didn't care, I was entertained by the constant chatter back and forth. We witnessed a few hecklers, and learned later that heckling is welcomed. It seems to be the true example of freedom of speech. When we were leaving the park, we spoke briefly with a police officer who confirmed that rarely does any violence break out. Truly an interesting cultural experience.
Written August 13, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Glenda A
Palmetto, FL212 contributions
Apr 2016
Hyde Park Speaker's Corner is a must see for anyone visiting London. Various speakers discuss various topics including religious views, and politics. For a visitor from the US, it is very refreshing to see an organized free speech outlet. The speakers and the audience are so passionate and stir up back and forth debates. Truly a unique experience.

Be sure to visit Speakers Corner on Sunday 11AM-3PM. We visited at 1PM and there were several speakers. It is located in the Northeast corner of Hyde Park. Best access is from the Marble Arch Tube or Bus Stop. There is a small concession stand with average priced food, drinks, and coffee. And there are porta pottys on site if needed. While you are there, take a walk through the park. There are also people just enjoying the day - riding horses, skating, bicycling, etc.
Written April 18, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

macsursu
Cyprus2 contributions
Visited Speakers Corner during June after an absence of 30 years , what a disappointment , in my youth it was a highlight of the weekend to visit SC , great speakers , great banter , wonderful hecklers and great fun all round .
Now , just a place for weirdos to congregate and to compete as to who can be the most rude and use the most dreadful language i have ever heard in a public place . I must add i am certainly not a prude having travelled the world and seen and heard it all .
Sadly the demise of another great British Institution .
Written July 21, 2009
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

MaggPie
USA1 contribution
The famed Speakers Corner has lost its luster, direction and focus on what it was originally intended to be; a forum of public awareness, open discourse and enlightenment. It has evolved into a freak show circus more to the likening of Jerry Springer, The View and Geraldo Rivera. It is a rare treat to be around Islamic Fascists and Radicals, Evangelical Christians, Acetic Jews, disenfranchised Palestinians and staunch non-believers including the "devil" himself!

Transvestites, janitors from Ghana, and an 80+ yr. old psychotic Socialist Party member will keep you laughing, or crying, for hours! Seriously don't come to learn, come to be entertained! I literally spent hours there one Sunday and was laughing until my stomach cramped up!

I know some of these kooks are trying hard to be serious, but most others are just acting the part. One guy will argue for hours on the merits of Socialism contrasts with the evils of capitalism then will try to sell you a CD of their earlier performance at the end of the session! A couple of these "speakers" even have a stooge that comes in to "heckle" them and it soon becomes a Vaudville act.

Not informative, not newsworthy and not new; but hilariously funny!
Written July 15, 2009
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Speakers Corner (London) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go

Frequently Asked Questions about Speakers Corner

Speakers Corner is open:
  • Sun - Sun 12:00 PM - 7:30 PM
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