Things To Do In London Today: Friday 24 January 2014

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An evening of Kraftwerk-related entertainment and insight at the Science Museum, details below.


BLOOD: Today’s opportunities to donate blood are at YMCA Hall in Barbican, The Hop Exchange on Southwark Street, Chiswick Town Hall, Walthamstow Assembly Hall and Ilford Town Hall. Free, see site for terms and conditions

ART: If you like art with a side of live performance, then head to Sprueth Magers Gallery for its new exhibition 'Humans', by Alexandre Singh. Expect live performances twice a day. Free, just turn up, until 29 March

MORE ART: New installation at the Saatchi Gallery: “New Order II: British Art Today”, not to miss if you’re around Sloane Square. Free, just turn up, until 23 March

SCOTTISH LONDONDERS: A day of talks, activities and traditional Scottish dances, exploring the lives and stories of Scottish people in London, and hosted at the London Metropolitan Archives. £10, prebook, 10am-4pm

WALK AROUND TOWN: 'Creatives, Canons and the New River' is the theme of the walk around Essex Road and Upper Street, spotting where Elizabeth I stayed in the heart of Canonbury. Meeting point outside Essex Road station. £10/£7.50, prebook, 11am

BURNS CELEBRATION: Wreath laying in homage to Robert Burns, the day before his birthday. Meeting point is Burns statue at Victoria Embankment Gardens. Free, just turn up, 12.30pm

REGULAR MUSEUM LATES: See in the weekend with a spot of culture at the British Museum, National Gallery, Tate Modern, or National Portrait Gallery. Or you can join a special event at the V&A focusing on the role of Black and Asian soldiers during the First World War (6pm). All free, just turn up.

PLAY DISCUSSION: Playwright Dennis Kelly and director Melly Still discuss their new version of Georg Kaiser’s play From Morning to Midnight, which is at the National Theatre until 26 Jan. £4/£3, prebook, 6pm

DOCTOR WHO: Learn about the history and development of this much-loved programme, courtesy of Andrew Cartmel – script editor of the show during Sylvester McCoy’s tenure as the Doctor in the 1980s. At St Mary’s Community Centre in Islington. Free, just turn up, 6.30-9pm

STORYTELLING: Join London Dreamtime’s storyteller Vanessa Woolf and musician Nigel of Bermondsey in a secret and slightly muddy location near Deptford Bridge (revealed upon booking) for a nighttime storytelling expedition. Dress warmly. £3, prebook, 6.30pm

BURNS NIGHT: Borough Market’s wine (and whisky) haven Vinopolis is offering a pre-Burns whisky tasting supper, including a whisky cocktail reception followed by a tasting of four Scottish whiskies and finally a three-course traditional Scottish meal including the Address to the Haggis. £60, prebook, 6.30pm

DANCING SHOES: Carablanca is London's longest-running tango club and is based in Conway Hall, Holborn. For beginners, visitors or regular dancers. £12/£10, just turn up, 7.15pm

MUSIC IN A MUSEUM: Contemporary music group Icebreaker re-imagine tracks from a range of Kraftwerk albums. The location is the IMAX Theatre inside the Science Museum.  £19, prebook, 7.30pm

PUNK OR GYPSY?: Today’s music tip (we have a selection of them this week), as recommended by our friends at LondonGigGuide, are the garage beat punk band The Mobbs at Fiddler’s Elbow in Chalk Farm (£5, just turn up, 8pm) and the 'Cabarave' duo My Bad Sister at The Magic Garden in Battersea (£3 or free before 8pm, just turn up, 7.30pm)

READING: One of our favourite authors, Christopher Fowler, heads the bill at Polari at the Southbank Centre, with Joelle Taylor, James Maker, Keith Jarrett and Anya Nyx. £5+bf, prebook, 7.45pm

COMEDY: Hooray! Festival of the Spoken Nerd is back with a new show full of science, songs and general geekery. See Helen Arney, Matt Parker and Steve Mould at Bloomsbury Theatre, £15/£13 + bf, prebook, 8pm

Good Cause of the Day

You’d better book ahead and take part in the first ever Sainsbury’s Sport Relief Games, coming to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park from Friday 21 to Sunday 23 March. One weekend with three fantastic fundraising events where you can run, swim or cycle your way to raising money. Prices to enter range between £10-£35, see website for further details.

London Connection Puzzle

For the first time in the history of this column, nobody has successfully guessed the connection from the first three clues (it is a very geeky one). The full set, including the final one, are: ‘General Charles George Gordon’, ‘Dean Stanley’, ‘Charles Darwin’ and 'the Duke of Wellington'. EDIT: we now have a winner so no need to email.

From the Archive

On this day in 2012, we published this article about Heathrow’s aeroplanes flying over central London. Read more about London’s largest transport hub and the history that led to ‘Heath Row’ becoming one of the world’s biggest and busiest airports.


This week’s theme is ‘weird and wonderful sculptures of London’. Today’s entry is an old favourite in Kensington Gardens. The Elfin Oak is a tree stump thought to be some 900 years old, originally from Richmond Park. You'll find it in the north-west corner of Kensington Gardens near Black Lion Gate. In the 1920s, Ivor Innes sculpted dozens of tiny figures into the wood, including the bookish fellow below. Today, it's perhaps the most unusual structure to have been awarded Grade II listed status.


Previously: the most delightful sculpture in London, the infinite army of sculptures in Stables Market, Boy with Dolphin, Crushed Tortoise Timepiece.