The National Theatre building is open Monday-Saturday, 9.30am-11pm.
Bank Holday opening times can vary and details can be found on the Your Visit page
The Bookshop is open throughout this period and the Box Office is open until 8pm. Opening hours of our restaurants and bars vary - please visit the food and drink pages for individual opening times.
Currently, we have no performances scheduled at the National Theatre on Sundays.
During the summer months, The Understudy and Kitchen open on Sunday - find out details on the foood and drink pages. Summer Bookshop opening hours are detailed on our Bookshop page. Free events and performances may be scheduled around the building and details will be listed on our What's on page.
The National Theatre is usually open on bank holidays but opening times may vary. Please check the Your Visit section of the website for details.
National Theatre shows often transfer to the West End, and details can be found in the 'Other venues' section of Your Visit.
Cloakrooms open 90 minutes before the show begins for Olivier and Lyttelton performances, 60 minutes before the show begins for Dorfman performances and 30 minutes before Talks in the three theatres. Cloakrooms for West End productions open as the foyer opens.
Cloakrooms will close 30 minutes after the performance ends for matinees and 15 minutes before the building closes in the evening. Please be aware that items can not be left in the cloakroom between performances.
We strongly request that you do not bring large bags to the National Theatre, as enhanced security measures are currently in place. We cannot guarantee that we will be able to accept these larger items.
For security reasons, staff may ask to search bags on arrival. If you decline the search, you cannot be admitted to the building.
National Theatre, South Bank
Enhanced security measures are currently in place. We strongly request that you do not bring large bags to the National Theatre. Only bags measuring less than 30cm x 30cm x 15cm are permitted in the auditoriums.
We may ask to search your bags on arrival. If you decline the search, you cannot be admitted to the building.
Coats and bags can be left in the free cloakrooms. However, for security reasons, staff may ask to search items deposited there. If you decline the search, you cannot be admitted to the building.
West End, Gielgud Theatre
Large bags are also not permitted into the auditoriums of our West End productions. Currently cloakrooms at the Gielgud Theatre are unavailable so if you have a large bag you will be refused entry to the theatre.
Cloakrooms open 90 minutes before the show begins for Olivier and Lyttelton performances, 60 minutes before the show begins for Dorfman performances and we cannot accomadate bags before these times.
Please note: On arrival at the building, our security teams may ask to search your bags. If you decline the search, you cannot be admitted to the building.
Free Wi-Fi is available throughout our foyer areas. The network name is NT Public and does not require a password. If you have trouble accessing our Wi-Fi, please visit the box office on the ground floor for information and assistance.
You’re welcome to bring laptops and tablets to use in the foyers. As a theatre our performances make certain areas very busy after 1pm (on matinee days) and 6pm (all days). During these times we ask that tables in those areas are made available for theatregoing audiences to use. If you’re working, but not attending a performance, our front of house team will be happy to try and point you in the direction of less busy areas.
Our foyers are open to the public all day Monday – Saturday. There are places to get food and drink (including Espresso Bar & Kitchen), the Bookshop, and things to do for free including Exhibitions and the chance to look backstage. There are also quieter areas throughout the building with free wi-fi.
As a theatre our performances make certain areas very busy after 1pm (on matinee days) and 6pm (all days). During these times we ask that tables in those areas are made available for theatregoing audiences to use. If you’re working or holding meetings, our front of house team will be happy to try and point you in the direction of less busy areas.
Photography and filming is not permitted in any of our auditoriums but you are welcome to take pictures in our foyers to document your visit to the National Theatre. If you wish to take photographs for portfolio work or will be using professional-level equipment, you will need to sign a non-commercial agreement at the box office before you begin taking photos.
Filming or commercial photography must be arranged in advance. Please contact us for more details.
We have lots of seating throughout our foyers which can be used for meetings and discussions but, unfortunately, we are unable to reserve spaces for specific groups. Please also be aware that the foyers get busy and noisy from around 90 minutes before our performances start and so may not be suitable for meetings.
Currently, we don't have any live music scheduled for our foyers. We will, however, have a number of free events outside the National Theatre over the summer which will include live music. Please check back nearer the time for details.
There is a Travelex ATM machine which issues British Pounds, Euros and American Dollars, located in the Lyttelton Stalls foyer next to the glass lift.
If you still have unanswered questions, please contact us