Things To Do In London This Weekend: 12-13 October 2013

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Go bonkers for conkers at Hampstead Heath
Take aim for this yearís Hampstead Heath Conker Championships on Sunday 7 October 2007.

The sixth annual event promises to be a great family day out, celebrating what was traditionally known as Seed Gathering Sunday.

From 11.00am, visitors can join a two-hour walk across the Heath, learn about the various species of trees which grow on one of Londonís best known open spaces and gather acorns from the Heathís ancient boundary oaks. These will be propagated to eventually replace some of the older oak trees.

Then at 3.00pm, itís conker-off as the conker meister leads participants of all ages through their paces. There will be knock-out rounds for five categories ñ under fives, 5-8 year-olds, 8-12s, 12-16s and adults. The winner of each final will receive a trophy.

Paul Maskell, leisure and events manager at Hampstead Heath, said: ìThe Hampstead Heath conker championships get more popular with each year and are now established as a great chance for all the family to explore one of Londonís best-loved open spaces. Polish up your conker and join us.î


Notes to editors:
Seed gathering starts at 11.00am prompt. All ages are welcome and it is free. Meet at the Heath Education Centre, next to the Parliament Hill lido (off Gordon House Road). The walk will take two hours. 
The conker championships will take place at the Parliament Hill bandstand. Entry is free.
Where: (Conkers) - Parliament Hill bandstand, Hampstead Heath
When: Sunday 8 October, from 3.00pm
Transport: Kentish Town tube; Gospel Oak overground station
Cost: Free
Enquiries: 020 7485 4491
Conkers at the ready - it's Seed Gathering Sunday

All weekend

LONDON LIT: Wood Green Literary Festival celebrates London in its first every lit fest, organised by the Big Green Bookshop. Our preview is here. Events range from free to £6, prebook, events 9-13 October.

FILM: The BFI London Film Festival is underway. We have some recommendations for you.

MUSIC: If your listening has been heavy lately, Herne Hill Music Festival presents jazz, classical and lighter music from Friday until 19 October. This weekend there's free music in Carnegie Library, Opera Night at Methodist Hall and Voices and Winds for all the family at St Faith's. Consult the programme and buy tickets online.

SCI-FI: Oktoberfest generally means beer but this weekend in Stratford it means sci-fi, starships, zombies and anime. Sci-Fi London Oktoberfest runs from Friday to Sunday at Stratford Picturehouse and includes good films, bad films, film marathons, a pre-World Zombie Day "meat 'n' greet", an all-day event on Starship design and the Sci-Fi London pub quiz. Check out ticket info and programme listings online.

RUMFEST: Rum lovers head to ExCel this weekend where UK Rumfest presents over 400 rums to sip, savour and buy plus cocktail demonstrations, live music and a Tropical Food Market. Tickets £25+bkg, 12-5pm

OPEN STUDIOS: Artists in Kensington and Fulham open their studios to the public all weekend. Explore intimate spaces and diverse artworks. Download a map and full listings from the Pocket Arts website. Free, just turn up, 11am-6pm

COMEDY: New and established Irish comedy acts appear at the London Irish Comedy Festival, including Andrew Maxwell, Abandoman, Aisling Bea, a family-friendly show and a free comedy podcast recording. It's at the Irish Centre in Camden, check out listings and book online.

COCKTAILS: Drink the last of London Cocktail Week dry. It ends on Sunday.

BEING HUMAN: King's College London's arts and humanities festival starts on Friday looking at what it means to be human.

EALING: The fourth Ealing Autumn Festival joins in the celebration of Benjamin Britten's centenary with concerts, film, local history and kids stuff until 27 October. This weekend, trace the history of local flooding, enjoy a family oriented concert featuring Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra, find out about life and music in the 30s and take in a piano concert. Have a look at the festival website for more details.

RESTAURANTS: London Restaurant Festival is on. If you haven't made your reservations yet, check out our recommendations, and the full listings on the website.

MENSWEAR: Visit the Pop Up Flea market for men at St James' Piccadilly and "get handsome", apparently.

DRINKING: Try ales and ciders at beer festivals taking place in South Kensington and Croydon & Sutton this weekend.

Saturday 12 October

CIRCLE WALK: Spend a day walking in a circle around Central London. Free, just turn up, meet in the middle of Tower Bridge, 9.45am

FREE WALKS: It's Local London Guiding Day and qualified guides from Westminster, City of London, Clerkenwell and Greenwich are leading free walks on the theme of scandals, secrets and suspense! These hour-long jaunts take place every hour, on the hour from 10am-4pm. No need to book, just turn up. Check the flyer for meeting points. From 10am-4pm

CURIOSITY ROADSHOW: Wellcome Collection takes their wares to Camden Lock Market on a converted Routemaster bus for a unique object handling session. Free, just turn up, 10am-6pm

CLASSIC CAR BOOT SALE: Mosey down to Southbank Centre for London’s first classic car boot sale, with over 70 classic vehicles trading fashion, homewares, collectibles and food. Browse the offerings or enjoy some of the free music from the top of an open air London Routemaster. £3, just turn up, 10am-6pm

BIG DRAW: Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park hosts the Big Draw launch event. Sharpen your pencils, dig out your sharpie and start feeling arty. Contribute to the Museum of Tomorrow, work with amazing artists, produce electric drawings, help a giant caterpiller across the Park and lots more. For all ages, free, just turn up, 11am-5pm

OXJAM: Shepherds Bush gets taken over by live music with 40 acts across four venues. Wristbands £10, Earlybirds still available online, 12-12

ZOMBIES: It's World Zombie Day. Register to get involved and shamble, groaning through Central London disconcerting tourists and amusing photographers. It's free to register, After Life party £5+bkg. Join Team Zombie and raise money for St Mungo's. From 1pm

BUS TOUR: At time of writing there are still tickets left for Dr Matthew Green's Coffeehouse tour of London aboard a vintage Routemaster bus.  Part of the National Trust Routemaster Road Trip series. Tickers £40, prebook, 2-6pm

BLACK HISTORY: Go behind the scenes at Hackney Archives and explore key, historic documents about Hackney's past. Part of the borough's Black History Month events. Free, just turn up, 2.45-5pm

SHAMBLES: Robin Ince and Josie Long present a live version of their Utter Shambles podcast at Stratford Circus (Friday too). Tickets £14/£12, 8pm

Sunday 13 October

GOLDFINGER: Midcentury East sets up in Erno Goldfinger's Haggerston School. Browse furniture, ceramics, glass, wallpaper, vintage fabrics, industrial, clocks, collectable posters and more. Entrance £8 on the door, 10am-4pm

CONKERS: Parliament Hill, Hampstead Heath, is the idyllic autumn setting for the Conker Championships and Heritage Festival.  As well as conker action at 3pm there'll be welly wanging, willow weaving, felt making, morris dancing, Victorian games and more. Free, just turn up, 11am-4pm

FILM: DocDays at Dalston Social screens Infiltrados, a documentary film about FARC – one of the world’s oldest and deadliest terrorist organisations. Followed by a discussion. Free, just turn up, 2pm

TROLLOPE: Take a walk with City of London Guide Paul Baker and explores the life and work of the great Victorian novelist, Anthony Trollope, especially his career working for the Post Office. Tickets £10, (contact Paul), meet at the statue of Wellington, Bank station, 2pm

BENGAL TO BETHNAL GREEN: The Grand Union Orchestra celebrate Bengali music and arts at Rich Mix. Free admission, 3-5.30pm

CONCERT: A concert organised by Action Against Hunger takes places at St Pancras International station today, hosted by BBC Radio 1Xtra DJ Sarah Jane Crawford and fronted by singer-songwriter Bo Saris. Free, just turn up, 3.30-5pm

NICK DRAKE: Classic Album Sundays will play all of Nick Drake's Bryter Later album in the beautiful chapel at the House of St Barnabus in Soho. All proceeds from the party go to the House homeless charity. Tickets £15, prebook, 6-9pm

TURKISH MUSIC: Turkish Mystic Sufi musician Latif Bolat presents music, poetry, Sufi mystic stories and images from the ancient land of Turkey, at Newington Green Unitarian Church. £5, just turn up, 7pm

Other good stuff

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Photo copyright Totman via City of London Corporation.

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