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Things to read
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Catch up with what's been going on in London with our latest news roundup.
Things to do today
LONDON ILLUSTRATION FAIR: Over 70 UK illustrators, designers, printmakers and publishers descend onto Bargehouse at OXO Tower Wharf to exhibit and sell their illustration work at the London Illustration Fair. £5, prebook, 4-6 December
CHOCOLATE FESTIVAL: Three days of chocolatey heaven take over the Business Design Centre in Islington this weekend. As well as a room full of chocolate, there's a tasting zone, cocoa spa and more. £12/£15, prebook, 4-6 December
SPITALFIELDS MUSIC FESTIVAL: Bring on the trumpets: Spitalfields Winter Music Festival begins today. The 12-day programme includes music, dining experiences, film screenings, historic walks, singing workshops and family entertainment. Today's highlight? 16th century London brought to life through music, with a pre-concert talk by The Gentle Author. From £5, prebook, 4-15 December
LATE AT TATE: Tate Britain is open late for an event on the theme of celebrity. Expect live music, performance poetry, a poetry flash mob workshop, discussions, film screenings and installations. Free, just turn up, 6pm-10pm
CHATEAU DE VAUX-LE-VICOMTE: Discover a magnificent chateau that drew royal envy on its completion and inspired the designs of Versailles at The Wallace Collection. Director Christoph Vogtherr, will be joined in conversation with the current owner of Chateau de Vaux-le-Vicomte to explore the château’s fascinating story. £12.50, prebook, 6.30pm
AFRICAN FOLK TALES: Storytelling wizards Crick Crack Club partner with The British Library for an evening of West African folk tales and fairy tales. Hear from renowned storytellers including Jan Blake and TUUP. £10/£7, prebook, 6.30pm
CURATOR TALK: Somerset House's new exhibition, Big Bang Data, explores how the prevalence of data today is changing the world. Tonight, the exhibition curators Olga Subirós and José Luis de Vicente discuss the exhibition and how the “datafication" of the world is transforming our society. £15/£12.50, prebook, 7pm
JUST A LITTLE SAMBA: Escape the cold and get tropical at Barrio Shoreditch's Samba party. Dress in carnival gear (we're talking feathers and tassels. Lots of them.) and dance the night away to drums and trombones. £5, prebook, 9pm
Fancy a film?
THIS WEEKEND: Head to Victoria Park's Winterville where you can watch movies in Winterville's Winter Night Garden courtesy of Backyard Cinema. There's Bad Santa, Nightmare Before Christmas, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Arthur Christmas, Jurassic Park, Jurassic World and Rise of the Guardians. Check times & tickets online.
SHORT FILM SATURDAY: We love short film. You can try it out at Grotto at the HoHo Theatre: Short Com Ye Faithful (groan) with an hour-long bill of underground comedy shorts on Saturday evening. Pay what you want or £5 advance for guaranteed entry.
MONDAY AT THE EXHIBIT: Balham's little indie cinema at The Exhibit wants to warm your cold heart on Monday night with a screening of Love Actually + tipples to get you through the film and dinner if you want it. Show at 8.45pm, tickets from £9.90.
TUESDAY CHOICE: Choose from Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone at Regent Street Cinema and Miracle on 34th Street at the Exhibit, Balham. Over in Hackney, Pillow Cinema is showing Elf and Love Actually.
Browse and book more film events.
Good cause of the day
Want to discover a new work by Jane Austen and raise money for pancreatic cancer research at the same time? Some of the country's finest comedic talents regularly join forces as Austentatious, an improv group which creates an 'undiscovered' novel by Austen. It's bloody hilarious. This time there's a twist: the cast, which includes Cariad Lloyd, Joseph Morpurgo, Rachel Parris and Andrew Hunter Murray, will swap clothes. Should spice things up. It's all for the Pancreatic Cancer Research Fund at Leicester Square Theatre on Saturday 9 January at 7pm. Tickets £12.50/£10.
London's lost railways
Have you seen our new video series, London's Lost Railways? It's exclusive to YouTube, so subscribe now to make sure you don't miss future instalments.
Find more London events in our Free & Cheap events listings. Want to see your event in these last-minute listings? Email us at hello@ 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.