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BIOSCIENCE FESTIVAL: The Great British Bioscience Festival kicks off today at the Museum Gardens in London's Bethnal Green. For three days, BBSRC researchers are exhibiting the best of British bioscience — full programme on the website. Free, until 16 November
PADDINGTON: London's most famous ursine resident is everywhere at the moment, thanks to a certain film. Today Museum of London opens a small exhibition, A Bear Called Paddington, featuring objects that chart the bear's progression from page to screen. Free, just turn up, until 4 January
ARCTIC EXPLORATION: British Library's Lines In The Ice exhibition examines why Europeans are drawn to explore the Arctic, particularly the Northwest Passage, and how Arctic exploration has influenced our culture. Exhibits include early European maps of the Arctic. Free, just turn up, until 29 March
PRIVATE PEACEFUL: Treat the kids to a Friday night performance of Michael Morpurgo's novel Private Peaceful at artsdepot in North Finchley. Commemorating the war centenary, it relives the life of Private Tommo Peaceful, a young soldier awaiting the firing squad at dawn. Age 8+. £15/£13/£10, prebook, 5pm
MING LATE: Experience the pleasures of the early Ming court in this evening of performance, demonstrations, talks and workshops in the Great Court at British Museum. Listen to zither (a stringed instrument) performances and practice the art of calligraphy. Free, just turn up, 6pm-9pm
DRONE DEBATE: Can drones (unmanned aerial vehicles) play a role in field research, exploration and conservation? This is up for debate at the Royal Geographical Society in South Kensington. Guests are Steve Roest, Co-founder of ShadowView Foundation, which provides UAVs for environmental, conservation and humanitarian relief operations, and Mark Allen — this year’s recipient of the Land Rover Bursary. £5, prebook, 6.30pm
TRICKSTERS: Russell Brand, illustrator Chris Riddell and their band of tricksters present a one-off, multi-media performance of The Pied Piper of Hamelin at the Royal Albert Hall. All tickets include a copy of Russell Brand’s The Pied Piper of Hamelin. All profits go to literary charities. From £22.90, prebook, 6.30pm
MARY MCCARTNEY: The highly regarded photographer is at the V&A Museum to discuss her career, artistic influences, and her photography books. Her work has mainly focused on rare moments of unguarded, emotionally-charged intimacy. £15, prebook, 7pm
MARY BEARD: She's at Trouble in Soho for Answer Time, which sees her discuss current affairs with Conservative MP Therese Coffey and Green Party leader Natalie Bennett, chaired by Newsnight’s Allegra Stratton. £10, prebook, 7.30pm
CONCERT: The Aidan Woodcock Charitable Trust presents classic chamber music by Bach (arr Schinina), Haydn, Webern and Beethoven performed by young musicians in a Maiastra concert, at St Anne’s Church, Kew Green. Free admission (just turn up). Donations welcome. 7.30pm
VIOLINS: Violinists Flora Curzon and Piotr Jordan together form Gaia Duo, and tonight they play music by Mozart, Bach, Telemann and Ysaye, as well as traditional and improvised music from all over Eastern Europe at the Brunel Museum in Rotherhithe. £10, prebook, 7.30pm
FOOD FUN: A far out evening of food-inspired absurdities featuring an installation of meat bunting, dada infused animation, music from Rudi Zygaldo and European Young Jazz Musician of the Year Elliot Galvin — plus activities involving the weird and wonderful Gruff Theatre At Battersea Arts Centre. Free, just turn up, 9.30pm
BLOOD: Today’s opportunities to donate blood are at St Olave Parish Church in Fenchurch Street, Redbridge Town Hall in Ilford, and the usual donor centres. See site for terms and conditions. Scared of donating blood? Watch our video.
Find more London events in our Free & Cheap events listings. Want to see your event in these last-minute listings? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org at least 48 hours before the event, and we will consider it for inclusion. Note: due to high volumes of email, we can’t always reply.
Have You Tried …
…Wingit? Now available on Android as well as iPhone, Wingit is a smart little app that solves the problem of “I want to do something now, but what is going on nearby?” Using your location, Wingit scans social media to find cool stuff near where you are and brings it straight to your phone. From performances to pop-ups, screenings to street art, download the free app today on the App Store or Google Play to see what’s going on just round the corner.
This week’s Things To Do In London is sponsored by Wingit.
Good Cause of the Day
If you've got a few spare pennies kicking around, why not donate them to this crowdfunding campaign to create Inside Hackney, a free community guidebook celebrating the best of the Borough. The campaign is more than 1/3 of the way to the £6,000 target with two weeks left.
From The Archive
If you buy into the philosophy that the internet was created for the purpose of cats, you'll want to meet Oyster, the cat who went travelling -solo- on the Victoria Line last year.