Free And Cheap London Events: 1-7 September 2014

By Silvia Baretta Last edited 69 months ago
Free And Cheap London Events: 1-7 September 2014

Interesting and unusual things to do for a fiver or less this week. For more ideas have a look at our Free & Cheap page.

See this and other photos of famous 20th century performers at the Osborne Samuel gallery. Details below.

All Week

BRIDGE EXHIBITION: Museum of London Docklands's largest ever art exhibition, Bridge, is now open. It consists of historical and contemporary depictions of London’s bridges in the form of artwork, film and photography. It also considers how bridges are used in London today. Free, just turn up, until 2 November

ART: Osborne Samuel gallery in Mayfair dedicates an exhibition to photographer David Farrell, internationally renowned for his images of many of the greatest musicians, actors, authors, dancers and artists of the 20th century. Free, until 20 September

UNLIMITED: Southbank Centre celebrates the talent of disabled artists with Unlimited, a short-term arts festival. Expect art exhibitions, theatre and comedy from artists who are constantly breaking boundaries and challenging stereotypes. See website for full programme, until 7 September   

Monday 1 September

RIVER THAMES: Everyone is invited to contribute to the The Big Thames Tidy, taking place at Gabriel's Wharf. Help to clean the capital's much-loved river: full equipment, supervision and support is provided — see more information on the website. Free, just turn up,10.30am-1pm

NATIONAL THEATRE: Ancient and Modern historian Bettany Hughes and theatre scholar Oliver Taplin discuss the place of women in religion and their depiction as dangerous and tragic figures. The talk takes place at the National Theatre and is connected to the current production of Medea. £4/£3, prebook, 6pm

COMEDY: Hello Comedy Club is on stage at the Catford Constitutional Club, entry is zip all. Free, just turn up, 8pm

FOREIGN LANGUAGE: Interested in learning a new language? Lingua Diversa Group offers an introductory lesson to Brazilian Portuguese at its offices in Holborn. £5, prebook by email, 6.30pm-7.30pm  

Tuesday 2 September

WAR MEMORIALS: The Guildhall Library dedicates an afternoon talk to the First World War memorials in London, hosted by Blue Badge guide Tim Kidd. Free, prebook, 2pm

FILM SCREENING: Shorts On Tap cinema event takes place at Cafe 1001 in Shoreditch. Seven noir short films will be on screen, including a selection of shorts from Central Film School London. Free, prebook, 8pm

GREAT MAPS: Discover the greatest maps in the world, from the lost tube stations on the original Underground maps to the first lunar landing in the company of Jerry Brotton, who will be signing his new book Great Maps. £3, prebook by email, 6.30pm

CANDLE LIGHT: The Sir John Soane's Museum opens its doors late and gets lit by candlelight. The event is on a first-come first-served basis so we suggest you get there early to avoid disappointment. Free, just turn up, 6pm

Join a free lunch lecture at the Grant Museum of Zoology.

Wednesday 3 September

GAMERDISCO: The Book Club in Shoreditch hosts an evening of video games and music. Take part in a big tournament on the screen, there will be prizes and give-a-ways throughout the night too. Free, just turn up, from 7.30pm

LUNCH BREAK: The UCL's Grant Museum of Zoology in London hosts a free lunch lecture about animals and engineers. The event is followed by a drinks reception and a private view of the museum. Free, just turn up, 6.3opm

BAT TALK: Take part in a bat walk at Fulham Palace, hosted by Groundwork London, who will introduce you to the world of bats. Free, prebooking by email is essential, 6.45pm

ART PERFORMANCE: In order to celebrate the opening of its new exhibition You cannot step twice into the same river, Pumphouse Gallery in Battersea presents an evening performance featuring artists Patrick Coyle and Holly Slingsby. Expect a theatrical performance and a river walk. Free, just turn up, from 7pm

CINEMA NIGHT: Whirlygig Cinema returns to Hackney Picturehouse, with three different filmmakers screening and talking about their films. This time the focus is on filmmakers who are heavily influenced by music, or where the sound design forms a major part of the final work. £4, prebook, 7.30pm

FILM SCREENING: Shoreditch arts centre Rich Mix hosts a screening of Jamilia, a romantic fable based on the life of the Kyrghiz writer Chingiz Aitmatov. A discussion will take place after the screening. Free, just turn up, 7.30pm

Thursday 4 September

NEW EXHIBITION: Karokoa is the new exhibition at Rich Mix, focusing on the consequences of climate change. On display, photos documenting the life of people living in the equatorial village of Kiribati and how their lives are being threatened by climate change. Free, until 28 September

FILM FESTIVAL: Peckham and Nunhead Free Film Festival starts today. There will be over 30 screenings taking place at 25 different venues like pubs, parks, historic buildings and cafes. See website for full programme. Free, until 14 September

ARTS MARKET: Spitalfields Arts Market offers the public a chance to buy affordable art directly from the artists, cutting out the usual commission fees and leaving both artist and buyer happy and with fuller pockets. Free, until 7 September

LUNCHTIME GIG: Flute player Rosanna Ter-Berg holds a lunchtime performance at JW3 arts centre in Finchley Road. Free, prebook, 1pm

SUMMER NIGHTS: The ever-popular Camden Lock Night Market is back — but tonight is the last chance to enjoy it. The main focus is international street food, accompanied by live music, film screenings and late night shopping. Free, just turn up, from 5pm

ONLY £1: Hoxton's Stags Head presents Only One Pound music event. On stage there will be three different bands performing: expect guitar tunes, folk and even psychedelic rock. £1, just turn up, from 6pm  

FRENCH MUSIC: The Sparrows of Paris duo formed by Carolyn Saint-Pé and her accordionist perform live at the Brasserie Blanc in Tower Hill. They bring you back to 1920s Paris with songs from Edith Piaf and other famous French singers. Free (you need to buy a drink), just turn up, from 7pm

Friday 5 September

ART EXHIBITION: Tipping Points is the new exhibition by artist Edgar Ameti, who focuses on the precarious balance between existence and erasure in the ongoing practice and experience of day-to-day life. The exhibition takes place at the Conway Hall and tonight you can join the free private view. Free, until 30 September

TATE BRITAIN: The historical art gallery opens its archive and hosts a display of recently catalogued library and archive material. On display, a variety of artworks including the papers of artists Barbara Hepworth and John Wells. Free, prebook, 12.30pm

MUSIC ON A BOAT: Join Tiller Flat Folk Club on board of The Golden Hinde II in London Bridge. All proceeds help to restore the historical galleon. £5, prebook, 7pm

CONCERT: The Aidan Woodcock Charitable Trust presents classic chamber music by Wolf, Dvořák and Schumann performed by young string and piano players in a Maiastra concert, at St Anne’s Church in Kew Green. Free (donations welcome), just turn up, 7.30pm

So Vintage London is at Spitalfields Market this Saturday. Details below.

Saturday 6 September

RECORD FAIR: Old Spitalfields Market hosts a record fair, with specialist traders covering a wide range of genres, and vinyl aplenty. Free, all day

VINTAGE FAIR: The monthly celebration of all things vintage is back at Spitalfields with vintage fashion, homewares, jewellery and accessories. Get into the groove and it could be your lucky day; street style snappers will be rewarding stylish shoppers with £5 vouchers and the opportunity to book in for a free vintage personal shopping appointment with an expert. Free, just turn up, 11am-5pm

VINTAGE KILO: Buy your vintage clobber by weight at the South London Vintage Kilo Sale. Stock up on retro clothing and accessories, get it weighed, and pay £15 per kilo of bargains (usually around four or five items). At Lambeth Town Hall, entry £3/£1, 11.15am-5pm

DIG A LITTLE: Dig A Little Record Fair returns to the Forest Tavern in Forest Gate. The daytime meet-up is for anyone interested in music. Specialist sellers will be on hand with records to sell and trade and there’ll be DJs providing the tunes. Free, just turn up, 12pm-6pm

SATURDAY SOCIAL: Jimmy Plates is the resident DJ of the periodical music night happening at The Social. Head to the club in Oxford Circus for free music and a pint. Free, just turn up, from 5pm

CLUB NIGHT: The Beautiful Octopus Club at Royal Festival Hall is a multi-media club night, celebrating the best of learning disability culture. It consists of 20 DJs across five stages, as well as live dance, theatre and poetry performances. Free, just turn up, 7pm-12am

MOTOWN MUSIC: Live music venue Barfly in Camden has a Motown & Soul Special, with live music from Dirty Soul Rockers, Black Knight and Kris Widakay. Plus, it’s free to have a go on the Monte Carlo-style roulette table, with the chance to win drinks. £5/£4, prebook, 10pm

KATE BUSH: Feeling Gloomy, a club devoted to playing sad music, has a Kate Bush themed evening. Takes place at The Phoenix in Cavendish Square. £5, prebook, 10pm

Sunday 7 September

FOOD ASSEMBLY: Nunhead Food Assembly has its family-orientated launch event at The Ivy House pub in Nunhead. There will be music, face painting, quizzes and a chance to meet local producers who will supply food to the assembly. Free, prebook, 10am

CHARITY SHOP: For one day only, the St Paul’s YHA hostel has a pop-up charity shop. Clothes, jewellery, shoes, bags and random belongings left behind by guests or kindly donated by travellers will be available to buy. Free, just turn up, 10am-5pm

BUS GARAGE: It’s the last of the series of Bus Garage Open Days, and although Dartford Bus Garage is slightly outside the realms of London, being in Kent, we reckon it’s still worth a mention. Take a 15-minute round trip on a heritage bus, see up to 30 different buses, including plenty of heritage models, and ride a bus through a bus wash. Free, just turn up, 10am-4pm

FURNITURE FLEA: Get your pad ready for winter at East London’s Vintage Furniture Flea, with homeware items dating back to the 50s, including glassware, crockery and atomic prints. Beats Ikea… £3/£2,just turn up, 10.30am-4.30pm

JEWISH MUSIC: Klezmer In The Park is a Jewish music festival organised by the Jewish Music Institute, and taking place at the Regent's Park Bandstand. There's also a kids zone with crafting, face painting and a balloon band. Free, just turn up, 12.15pm-6.30pm

GEEKATORIUM: As we warned you a few weeks back, The Geekatorium comedy night is making a comeback at a new venue, The Phoenix in Cavendish Square. Tonight’s victim is Iain Lee of The 11 O’Clock Show fame. We hear that Lee goes weak at the knees for anything to do with the TV show Lost, so it wouldn’t surprise us if that’s his specialist subject. £5, prebook, 7pm

Totally Thames

Londonist is proud media partner to Totally Thames, the river-based festival taking place throughout September. Each weekend, we’ll be bringing you our pick of Totally Thames events taking place on Saturday and Sunday. See individual events for prices and other information.

TALL SHIPS FESTIVAL: The largest fleet of Tall Ships to visit London in 25 years brings with it opportunities to board the Tall Ships moored along the Greenwich waterfront, fireworks displays, free cultural performances, music and entertainment and a crew parade and festival procession. 5-9 September

SENSORY FESTIVAL: Experience sights, smells and sounds of the London of a bygone era at the Thames SENSEation Festival on Northbank. Saturday and Sunday

TESTING LONDON’S BRIDGES: Kirkaldy Testing Museum in Southwark brings its metal testing machine back into action for one day only. See the machine that Victorian engineers used to ensure that the bridges they were building were safe. Sunday, 10am-4pm

Come join Londonist Afloat on the Thames 0n 20-21 September.

Check out our map of free things to do in London for more frugal fun. Or pop over to who also have plenty of great ideas.

Last Updated 30 August 2014