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Just 10 days and counting

Tuesday October 11, 2016

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There are a few milestones to pass when it comes to planning one of our lock and key dating parties. There’s the planning phase, the marketing phase and the slightly worrying phase and the event itself phase.

Every big event we put together sees us through the same process.

The planning stage is primarily about finding a venue and this is a surprisingly tough part of the job. Despite there being some 9000 licenced venues across London, finding the right one can be quite a task.

The venue has to right for our party.

Often, venues will quote capacity figures that are somewhat on the cosy side. We need lots of space so people can mingle easily. We also need a Central London location not far from the tube, and of course, the cost does play a part too.

Fortunately, we’ve built up a good network of contacts over the years so finding places isn’t as tough as it was.

Setting a date for the big day is next in line. Is there a tube strike? When is the FA Cup final? These are all questions that we need to know the answer to.

We then plan how we’re going to get the word out. We’ve settled on a mix of marketing methods – some new and some tried and tested. Each involves an aspect of planning, management, and normally design.

The worrying phase comes when we launch all our marketing and wait and see if anyone actually wants to come along.

For our next event, our Autumn Lock and Key Party we didn’t have to wait long. We saw an immediate surge in sales that took us to a capacity of around 30% full in a matter of days. That’s great, however 30% is quite a long way from 100% and that’s where the worrying bit comes in - we have to ensure that not only is the event full, but that we have an equal male to female ratio attending.

Fortunately, the dating gods have been kind to us and at time of writing, with about 10 days to go we are almost 80% full and the gender mix is remarkably even.

We’re now pretty sure we’ll sell the remaining places we have and the event will be a great success.

Our lock and key events are really becoming quite popular. They are a massively fun way to meet people in a really sociable environment.

In the age of the dating app it seems that people really do value to opportunity to meet offline after all. 

If you’re interested in finding out what all the fuss is about. Book your ticket here.




The beauty of Speed Dating London lies in its no-nonsense approach. You take an equal number of single girls and guys, put them in a room and give them a few minutes to chat with every other member of the opposite sex.

When you get there

Original speed dating events in London normally begin at 7.30pm. You will need to register with our hosts and to begin with they will issue you with a score sheet. This will help you to keep track of the singles that you would like to meet again and perhaps go on a date with. After a short period of mingling, your host for the evening who will run through detailed instructions and give you your starting position if you are a guy or table for the event if you are a girl.

Meet & Mingle

A London speed dating event is split into two halves, each lasting around an hour, there will be an interval at half time of about 15 minutes for speed dating London. You will have between 4 and 5 minutes with each person, after which you need to tick a box on your score sheet - "yes, I would like to meet this person again" or "no. Thanks but no thanks". Or "friend" if you'd like to get to know them platonically. Make sure that you do this after each date to keep track. Afterwards there is an opportunity for everyone to meet and mingle informally - this is often where the real action begins, so make sure you don't disappear too quickly!

Complete your score sheet

After the event you simply tick who you liked on the Original Dating website and the site works about your matches automatically. If the dates you have ticked as a "yes" have reciprocated you have a match. You will be able to view the first names and message them via our site online without revealing your email address until you are ready to. You'll be having proper first dates in no time.