Free And Cheap London Events: 9-15 March 2015

By Londonist Last edited 41 months ago
Free And Cheap London Events: 9-15 March 2015

Interesting and unusual things to do for a fiver or less this week, sponsored by CommuterClub.

All Week

London may not be the only city with air quality problems but Hydrogen Week looks at what can be done about it.

HYDROGEN WEEK: City Hall hosts an exhibition about hydrogen, and how it can power London’s low carbon future. Part of Hydrogen Week. Free, just turn up, 9-13 March

LAST CHANCE: Sarah Sze's Victoria Miro Mayfair exhibition features fragile sculptures created from rudimentary objects such as twigs, cut-out pieces of paper, string and clips. Free, until 14 March

GRAYSON PERRY: The artist's exhibition at National Portrait Gallery offers snapshots of modern life in the form of tapestries and other household objects. Free, until 15 March

ARCADE GAMES: Why not try out Novelty Automation, a new Covent Garden funfair with arcade games that are the handiwork of engineer and cartoonist Tim Hunkin, and his fellow inventors. Free entry, coins needed to play, open Wednesday-Saturday

Monday 9 March

MONDAY MUSICIANS: Have a go at playing folk dance tunes from the British Isles and associated traditions at Cecil Sharp House in Camden. All instruments and levels are welcome but the event is most suitable for musicians with some knowledge of written stave notation. £5/£4, just turn up, 7pm

READING GROUP: Rich Mix Reading Group is different from other reading groups. Instead of having to read the book before coming, or pretend you’ve read it, each week read a short story and poem are read aloud at the event together, with a chance to share thoughts and comments at the same time. Free, just turn up, 7pm

Tuesday 10 March

War Girls at The National Archives

WAR GIRLS: At the National Archives in Kew, Ruth Sillers will be talking about and performing extracts from her own audio book compilation, War Girls, which features the unsung experiences of women in the First World War as told in their own words. Free, prebook, 2pm-4pm

RAILWAY POLLUTION: This year's Frank Carter Lecture at UCL will be given by Professor John Thornes, a well-known climatologist, who will talk about the under-reported pollution created by railways, especially diesel trains, in London and other UK cities, and also by the London Underground. Free, 5pm

DOGS OF WAR: Tonight is the opening of Bishopsgate Institute's Dogs of War exhibition, featuring images from what is possibly the largest number of canine pictures ever gathered by one person. Free, just turn up, 6pm

BOOM & BUST: Liars' League is at The Phoenix in Cavendish Square, where four short stories will be read, and one will be recorded for BBC Radio 4. £5, just turn up, 7pm

SPEAKEASY: Drink Shop Do's Speakeasy features readings from M. R. Carey, Francesca Haig, Antonia Honeywell, John Ironmonger and Sarah Pinboroug on the theme of pandemics, disasters and the collapse of civilisation. Free, from 7pm

NIGHT HOWLS COMEDY: The Mediterranean Cafe in Soho is the location for Night Howls monthly comedy night. Tonight the line-up includes Twisted Loaf, Joz Norris and Sophie Pelham. Donations, just turn up, 7.30pm

Wednesday 11 March

BEER AND CIDER FEST: The London Drinker Beer & Cider Festival begins today at the Camden Centre in Euston. See other upcoming beer festivals. £3.50 per day, until 13 March

CROMWELL'S PALACES: Gresham College hosts a lecture at the Museum of London, showing Oliver Cromwell in an unusual light — as someone interested in French furniture and fashions and holding court in princely style. After the execution of Charles I, Cromwell took over many of the Royal Palaces. Free, just turn up, 6pm

BLOOMSBURY EVENING: Priya Parmar, author of new novel Vanessa and Her Sister, talks about it at Waterstones on Piccadilly. It focuses on the early years of the Bloomsbury Group, starting from the two young sisters we now know as painter Vanessa Bell and writer Virginia Woolf. Free, prebook by email piccadilly@waterstones.com, 7pm

LEGO ROBOTS: Head to Drink Shop Do to create a robot from Lego, helped along by a cocktail or two. Free, from 7pm


The list continues after a message from our sponsor.

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Thursday 12 March

JOSHUA REYNOLDS: The Wallace Collection's Joshua Reynolds exhibition opens today, featuring not only significant portraits but lesser known ‘fancy pictures’ and a rare history painting. Take a look at our map of Joshua Reynolds's London to get you in the mindset. Free, until 7 June

ANTONIA FRASER: Author Antonia Fraser is the subject of tonight's National Theatre Platform, where she's talking about her childhood memoir, My History. Followed by a book signing. £4/£3, prebook, 7pm

EGYPTIAN FILM: UCL's Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology's film club screens 1983 BBC drama The Cleopatras, which paints a darkly comic picture of the pleasures, horrors and power politics of the royal court of Ptolemaic Alexandria from 145-30BC. £5 donation, prebook, 6pm

RICHARD III: This British Academy lecture will explore the wide ranging impact of the discovery of Richard III's skeleton in a Leicester car park, and its ramifications for disciplines as diverse as archaeology, history, literature and drama. Free, prebook, 6pm

ACID MURDERER: Jonathan David Oates has written a book about John George Haigh, the Acid-Bath Murderer who killed six people, and gives a talk about the crimes at Kensington Central Library. Free, prebook, 6.30pm

HORNIMAN LATE: Horniman Museum stays open late for an adults only evening focusing on Maori artefacts, in particular Taiaha, a Maori weapon which resembles a cross between a staff and a club. £5, prebook, 7pm

POETRY SLAM: Enjoy a night of poetry and spoken word at Genesis Cinema, before voting for your favourite act of the evening. £3, prebook, 7pm

CONE BRA: To celebrate Madonna releasing a new album, Drink Shop Do offers the opportunity to make your own cone bra, one of her most iconic fashion pieces (nobody mention that cape). Free, from 7pm

COMEDY BACK RUB: Comedy Back Rub at Camden Head features performances from Birthday Girls, David Mills and more. £3, prebook, 7.30pm

Friday 13 March

SWEDISH FILMS: The artFix store in Soho hosts a four-day long Swedish film festival supported by the Swedish Embassy. All films were released in the last five years, and many have not been shown in the UK before. £2 per event, prebook, 13-16 March

LUNCH CONCERT: The RCM Wind Ensemble performs a lunchtime concert at Bishopsgate Institute. Free, just turn up, 1.05pm

CARRY ON CLEO: The Petrie Museum hosts a screening of 1964 film Carry On Cleo, starring Amanda Barrie as Cleopatra and Kenneth Williams as Julius Caesar. £5 donation, prebook, 6pm

UNLUCKY: Steel your nerves and join Vanessa Woolf and Nigel of Bermondsey for a candlelit night of horrific urban legends and site specific ghost stories in a dark, cold secret location in Peckham. Dress very warmly and bring a candle in a jar. Adults only. £3, prebook, 9pm

Saturday 14 March

The Classic Car Boot Sale returns to Southbank Centre

CLASSIC CAR BOOT: The Classic Car Boot Sale returns to Southbank Centre with vintage homewares and clothing being sold from the boots of classic cars. Also on site are food stalls, heritage fairground rides and roaming street theatre. £4, just turn up, 14-15 March

FAMILY WORKSHOPS: The Fleming Collection near Green Park runs a monthly family workshop, giving visitors a chance to create their own artwork based on current exhibitions. Age 3+. Free, just turn up, 12pm-2pm

KIDS POETRY: SPIN, a childrens’ show developed by poetry experts Apples and Snakes, comes to Ealing Central Library. The interactive show, bursting with rap, poetry and storytelling is led by Paul Lyalls, Alex D Great and storyteller Sally Pomme Clayton. Free, prebook, 2pm-3pm

MATHS ON TOAST: Head to Pancras Square Children’s Library for free family workshops along a theme of shapes. Free, just turn up, 2pm-5pm

GALLERY TOUR: Curator Emma Enderby leads a tour of the exhibition Leon Golub: Bite Your Tongue at the Serpentine Gallery. Free, just turn up, 3pm

MIDNIGHT APOTHECARY: Enjoy a special night of cocktails and music at the Brunel Museum’s Engine House, where the pop-up cocktail bar Midnight Apothecary celebrates both Mother’s Day and St Patrick’s Day. Tickets include optional guided tour of Brunel’s underground shaft. £5, prebook, from 6pm

RING OF WATER: There’s a screening of Italian film Ring of Water at the new, not-for-profit, volunteer-run Deptford Cinema. Two boxers are set to meet in a make or break bout that each one desperately needs to win. Both believe that winning would mean a better life. 18+. £3, prebook, 8pm

Sunday 15 March

ST PATRICK'S DAY: The annual St Patrick's Day Parade and Festival takes place in Trafalgar Square with an Irish food market, children’s activities and lots of Irish community organisations. See Irish music, song and dance on the main stage. Free, just turn up, 12pm-6pm

FAMILY DAY: Keats House in Hampstead hosts a day centred entirely on the idea of family. Kids can draw up their family tree or write a complaint to mum (that’ll go down well on Mother’s Day). Free, just turn up, 1pm-4pm

OPEN MIC: Singers, rappers, dancers, comedians and spoken word artists perform in front of a live audience at Allsortz at Rich Mix. Free, tweet @Allsortz1 to gain entry, 7pm-11pm

Check out our map of free things to do in London for more frugal fun.

Last Updated 08 March 2015