Those must-do-before-40 experiences we’ve all dreamed about, but haven’t got round to yet. No more procrastinating. 

Maybe it’s been to finally get that tattoo you’ve always umm’d and aah’d about, or to conquer your fear of heights by jumping out of a plane. Or to bash the shit out of domestic objects at London’s smash-it-up Scrapclub. 

“Everyone carries their own colour of stress, from the mundane to the intense,” explains Scrapclub’s co-founder Wajid Yaseen. “There’s nothing like Scrapclub to offload it!” 

Tooled up with bats, hammers, pipesand all manner of assorted heavy-weight weapons, the object of Scrapclub is to annihilate a load of junk – TV screens, computers, pianos, cars – unleashing your inner aggression in the most satisfying way. 

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Revenge: get your own back on technology

“We came up with the idea on the back of a performance piece [co-founder] Joel Cahen and I were involved in which had a certain amount of contained destruction – we wondered what it would be like for an audience to not only witness a ‘destructivist’ action, but to have a hands-on, first-person involvement,” Yaseen says. 

Is there one object folks particularly enjoy smashing? “People love destroying pianos, and we seem to have an almost endless supply of them from people who don’t want them anymore,” Yaseen reveals. 

“The overwhelming emotional experience is joy at the inevitable fate of these derelict objects.”

Maybe destruction is not your bag, but you have long harboured a fear of heights. Then now is the time to conquer it once and for all – by throwing yourself out of a plane. 

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Hang on: Griffith-Jones, two miles high

“Nearly every human has an inbuilt fear of falling, so to be able to overcome this by exiting a perfectly good aircraft is a euphoria like no other,” explains Skydive London’s instructor Dylan Griffith-Jones. 

“The feeling, the buzz and the emotion of the whole situation is a sensory overload whilst falling at over 120mph. To be suspended under 400sqft of nylon one mile above the ground after this is a surreal, peaceful and awe-inspiring experience.”

So what can you expect when you take on your very own Point Break daredevil moment? 

“It affects people in different ways,” Griffith-Jones says of his experience of leading tandem jumps. 

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Do look down: conquer a fear of heights

“Some [people] are sick, normally on the instructor. A small percentage do faint – I must confess to coming within inches of this myself during a tandem jump last year – but most people really enjoy it and can’t explain the feeling. Some even come back and train to do it on their own!”

With loads of once-in-a-lifetime opportunities in and around the capital, you have no excuse for not getting out there and ticking things off. There is no time like the present!

More bucket list items>


Scrapclub. Sep 15. 3pm. £10.  
Cody Dock, E16 4TL  
Tube | Star Lane DLR

Skydive London.
Fri, Sat & Sun. Mar-Dec. £190  
Redlands Airfield, SN4 0AA



Photos: Mark Stone; Jonny Moulder

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Climb a really big tree – across London

Remember when you were young and used to climb trees for fun? There’s no reason you can’t do that now, as Mark Hawes and Nick Cranston, the brains behind the Big Tree Climb, enthuse. Qualified tree surgeons who wanted to share their love of trees with others, the duo hold group events across the country, and can be booked for private events, too, during which you climb a tree (roped in of course) then zipwire down. Fantastic. 

Times and dates vary 
Various locations



Stand on stage and sing like a proper rock star – across London

Karaoke is so last millennium – right now Rockaoke is where it’s at. Rather than singing along to some tinny backing track, you take to the stage with a full band behind you. With over 200 songs to choose from you can emulate your rock ‘n’ roll heroes.

Find regular Rockaoke nights across London at the Tooting Tram & Social, Soho’s Madame Jojo’s, The Alice in Houndsditch and The Star Of Kings in King’s Cross. Next is Kensington’s AAA bar.

£6, Fri, Sep 6, 8pm 
11-13 Kensington High Street, W8 5NP  
Tube | High Street Kensington



Learn how to survive in the wild – Surrey

If you were stranded in the wild without a Ray Mears to help, would you know what to do, or would you be left crying, cold and hungry in the mud? Learning vital survival skills is something most of us no longer do, so pick it up now. Trueways Survival runs courses of different lengths up and down the country including this five-dayer in the wilds of, err, Surrey, where you’ll learn how to forage for food and build a shelter. 

£150+, Oct 14, from 10am 
Confirmed on booking 
Station | Walton-on-Thames

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Get a tattoo – Docklands

Have you always wanted a tattoo but never had the guts to actually go through with it? No more stalling: now is your time. The International London Tattoo Convention opens its doors later this month with body art stars from around the world in attendance.

You can check out some of the most tattooed folk on the planet, watch tattooed burlesque performers such as Sweden’s Elegy Ellem, who will be in town for the weekend, and get some inspiration before you sit down in the chair and let the artist put the needle to your skin. 

Sep 27-28, 11.30am-1am. 
Sep 29, 11.30am-8pm 
Tobacco Dock, E1W 2SF 
Tube | Tower Hill


Do a Bungee Jump – Docklands

It’s an obvious one, but you haven’t proved your mettle until you‘ve plumetted earthward with a rubber band around your ankles. This site by The O2 sees you take on the rite of passage endeavour from 160ft high. Good luck.

£75, Daily, times vary 
The O2, SE10 0DX 
Tube | North Greenwich


Learn to Cook a New Cuisine – central London

L’Atelier Des Chefs runs a smorgasbord of cookery classes for the beginners (you’ll have to own up!) and those looking to take on a new cuisine or upgrade their skills. You can learn to cook a cod with butterbean, chorizo and tomato stew in 30 mins (Sep 3, 5pm) or immerse yourself in Thai on a longer course. 

£15+, Times and dates vary 
19 Wigmore Street, W1U 1PH 
Tube | Oxford Circus

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Fly over London in a hot air balloon – Tower of London

What better way to see the capital than from the perfect vantage point of a hot air balloon as you fly over the likes of Westminster and the Emirates stadium at dawn? 

£189, Times and dates vary 
Various take-off sites within a couple miles of Tower of London


Donate Blood – central London

Time to do something philanthropic: give blood to help someone else in need.  

Free, Times and dates vary 
West End Donor Centre, W1W 8NB  
Tube | Oxford Circus



Drive a £165,000 car – Weybridge

You’ll get to experience the power of the SLS AMG Merc at this purpose-built handling circuit, which has a wet skid circle so you can push the car – and quite possibly the pro instructor by your side – to their limits. It has a 6.3-litre V8 engine and does 0-60mph in under four seconds. 

£75, dates and times vary 
Mercedes Benz World, KT13 0SL 
Station | Weybridge


Take up boxing – south London

Get fit in a friendly environment, while simultaneously learning how to pummel someone to the ground – it’s a skill you want ticked on your bucket list. BoxLondon runs classes for those with experience in the ring as well as for those who are new to pugilism. You can set your own pace and no one is going to drop you in the ring and say “fight” unless you’re up for it. It’s not fight club!

£15+, Tue, 7.30pm-8.30pm & Sat,
11am-12pm Tooting Leisure Centre, SW17 0NE  
Tube | Tooting Broadway

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Finish a triathlon – central London

Some people might think about running the marathon, but if you want to put yourself to the test and really find out your strength and your limits then go one step further and take on a triathlon –applications are currently open for the 2014 Virgin Triathlon.

Who wants to just do a piddly little jog around the city streets? With this event you’ll be taking on a 1500m swim, a 40km bike ride and then a 10km run. Back to back!

Jul 27 & 28 2014 ExCel Centre, E16 1XL 
Tube | Prince Regent DLR

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Go mad in Harrods – west London

The legendary Harrods in Knightsbridge is London’s king department store. It occupies five acres in west London and inside you can get anything from its 330 departments, from clothes to toys to cars to holidays, and eat pretty much anything too at its 32 restaurants. Thing is, such opulence comes at a price, and a pretty steep one, too. So give yourself a budget, as much as you can afford, and go wild. Retail heaven!

Various prices, Mon-Sat, 10am-9pm.
Sun, 11.30am-6pm 
87-135 Brompton Road, SW1X 7XL  
Tube | Knightsbridge


Go wild swimming – across London

Swimming pools are overcrowded and have too many damn kids and too much chlorine. For a back-to-nature experience you need to do what real swimmers do and go wild swimming. Taking a dip outdoors in a natural pond or river that is pretty much hidden means you can be all on your own, and is an experience everyone needs to have tried at least once.

Although by name it doesn’t sound too idyllic, Hythe End gravel pit is a 2km-long lake with crystal clear water, and there are other top rated spots in London too, such as the streams in Eynsford and the Hampstead ponds located in the midst of the wild, hilly heathlands of north London. You could even take it up a notch and go wild skinny dipping.

Free, dates and times vary 
Across London


Be an extra in a movie – across London

You might not be able to snag the lead role as the next Bond villain or star opposite Al Pacino, but you can still find a way to stand next to them – be a movie extra. Go get your face up there on the silver screen and have a great story to tell for years to come. “Did I tell you the time I worked with Cate Blanchett? No? Well…”

Free, various places


Volunteer – west end

Give up your time to help others out, such as at the American Church Soup Kitchen, which aids the homeless.

Free, daily, 10am-12pm W1T 4TD  
Tube | Tottenham Crt Road


Earn a Guinness book of world records title – wherever

Some fella in Turkey called Ilker Yilmaz has already nailed the record for the farthest milk squirting distance – from his eye. But if you have a particularly crazy skill, or an idea for something that will have you recognised around the world, then go for it! Now is the time to become the world’s best continuous boomerang thrower or king consumer of scotch eggs. 

Various places

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Have a massive pillow fight – central London

Why should having a pillow fight only be the kind of caper you get up to when you’re young? That’s exactly what the people who run National Pillow Fight Day want to know. In hundreds of cities around the world, a mass pillow fight is staged, allowing you to mash the heck out of other slumber-pouch-armed combatants.

Feathers will be sent flying into the air as they were in April of this year in Trafalgar Square (above). There’s only one rule: don’t hit anyone who doesn’t have a pillow. That would be mean.

2014 date TBC


Photos: Getty