Things To Do In London Today: Tuesday 28 May 2013

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Getty Images Gallery’s Best of Archive

GIVE BLOOD: Today’s opportunities to donate blood are at outside County Hall on Belvedere Road, and the Salvation Army International Headquarters on Queen Victoria Street. Free, just turn up, see site for times and conditions

ARTIST CENTENARY: The London Group is the UK’s longest running artists’ collective, and to celebrate its centenary, it’s putting on a two-part exhibition filled with works by existing members and emerging artists. Today is the start of the second part. Free, just turn up, until 7 June

DISCOVER V&A: Today and Thursday you can learn more about the world’s most famous romance – that of Victoria and Albert – and how it led to the creation of the Royal Albert Hall. £3.50, prebook, 10am and 1pm

GETTY: This is the last week you can see Getty Images Gallery’s Best of Archive. The exhibition presents a selection of of iconic images from the Getty Images Archive, the world’s largest commercial photography archive with a collection of over 90 million images to choose from. Free, just turn up, 10am-5.30pm

POETRY GARDEN: Chelsea Fringe continues this week, and today at Potters Field Park a pop-up poetry garden is sprouting. Head along for poetry readings followed by a workshop. Free, RSVP via email, 11am-4pm

FAMILY CONCERT: The Royal Albert Hall’s very own Albert’s Band performs a family concert today as part of its Family ignite concerts. The little ones are encouraged to attend in their favourite regal outfits (although we’re sure Spidermans will still be welcomed). £5/£3.50, prebook, 12pm and 2.30pm

HORROR: Horror and supernatural writer extraordinaire Joe Hill launches NOS4R2 (see what he did there?) at Foyles. £10, prebook, 6.30pm

LITERATURE: Some excellent choices at the London Literature FestivalClaire Tomalin lectures on Jane Austen and Pride and Prejudice (£10, prebook, 6.30pm), Christopher Fowler, VG Lee, Sophia Blackwell, Anny Knight and Greg Mitchell are guests at Polari (£5, prebook, 7.45pm) and Lionel Shriver discusses her new novel Big Brother (£10, prebook 8pm).

CRAFT: The Make Escape celebrates its first birthday with a Makeversary event at The Hackney Attic. Make hats, sew collars, and create decorations while listening to a live DJ set. There will also be live illustration, exhibitions and prizes. Happy Birthday! Free, just turn up, 7.30pm

Random London Fact of the Day
Gird your loins for the crappiest ‘random fact of the day’ we’ve ever published. Did you know that long-running children’s show Chucklevision was often filmed in Pinner, north-west London? We know, we know, you’re craving for more details now…but the only reference we can find is this brief mention on Wikipedia. Whatever, go visit Pinner. It’s gorgeous and ye olde. And Simon LeBon grew up here. And our mate Geoff saw Barry Cryer in a local pub yesterday. Pinner!

Recommended Indie Bookshops of the Day
This week, we’re celebrating London’s literary gems. Pick up the latest Dan Brown, splash out on a fine edition of Gatsby, or just get to know your local bookshop owner.  

South: Bookseller Crow on the Hill, Crystal Palace
One of the larger independent bookshops we’ve visited, but the shelves are still carefully curated. Also has a fantastic blog and Twitter account (@booksellercrow), and not far away from the Crystal Palace dinosaurs. Ah, the dinosaurs. They love a bit of Dan Brown.

London Weather, by Inclement Atlee
It is our unrelenting mission to improve the accuracy of the Londonist weather forecast. To that end, we snuckled into the Met Office over the weekend to see how the professionals source their information. Well, gentle reader, you would be alarmed and appalled to see the jerry-rigged weather-forecasting tools they employ. On Helen Willetts’ desk we found an ‘average temperature indicator’ which seemed to be little more than a set of Yahtzee dice. Nina Ridge had adapted the old game of ‘pin the tail on the donkey’ to ascertain wind direction. John Hammond’s desk was empty, save for a sign saying “Gone to consult the haruspex”, whatever that means. And on Carol Kirkwood’s chair we found this:

 Honestly, we’d advise you to ignore this bunch of charlatans and rely upon us for your forecasting needs. To that end, it’s going to be mostly pissy today, with lots of wet everywhere. Or so our tarot reading tells us.

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