Free And Cheap London Events: 30 May-5 June 2016

By Londonist Last edited 20 months ago
Free And Cheap London Events: 30 May-5 June 2016

All week

A whole week of funfair in Finsbury Park. Image: Ged Carroll

FUNFAIR: Setting up camp in Finsbury Park, the Carnival Funfair comes to town this week. Expect family attractions, white knuckle wonders and even Pirates of the Caribbean. Free entry (tokens required for rides), just turn up, until 5 June

PUNK 1976-78: The British Library's punk exhibition explodes with a collection of Sex Pistol images, memorabilia and items from The Jon Savage Archive. Contains adult content and probably a fair few safety pins. Free, just turn up, 9.30am

UNWINDING: The RAF Museum presents Unwinding, an exhibition focusing on the off-duty pursuits enjoyed by Britain's RAF personnel in the first world war. It's a fascinating peep behind the front line revealing how our airmen coped with the stress of active service. Free, just turn up, 10am-6pm, until 17 February 2017

Monday 30 May

THE LOST LIBRARY OF JOHN DEE: Scholar, Courtier, Magician: The Lost Library of John Dee opens today at The Royal College of Physicians. Take a fascinating glimpse into the mind of the Elizabethan mathematician, magician, astronomer, astrologer, imperialist and alchemist and spy through his personal library. Free, just turn up, 9am-5pm

CHEAP FILMS: See the latest releases this bank holiday at Genesis Cinema. There's a full programme at the independent Mile End site. It's a bit of a local icon — there's been an entertainment premises on this spot since 1848. £4.50, prebook, films start from 11am

SKULLPTURE: Students from Slade School of Fine Art have created sculpture in response to the Grant Museum's collection. See new works that engage the viewer to interact with the exhibits like never before. Free, just turn up, 1pm-5pm

Tuesday 31 May

WANDERING TREE: It's tree week, so time to celebrate with City Hall's pavement art installation of a huge 3D tree. You can even have your photo taken climbing it. Free, just turn up, 9am-6pm

MAKE ESCAPE: A whole evening of free craft comes to Hackney Attic to celebrate four years of The Make Escape. Stick, sew, collage, knit or knot to make some amazing new crafty bits. Free, just turn up, 7.30pm-10.30pm

FREE COMEDY: It's giggles all round at the Platypus Playpen tonight. Funny faces getting involved include Lolly Adefope, Phil Jerrod, Ed Gamble and loads more. Free, prebook, 7.45pm

Wednesday 1 June

Find out all about the Great Fire of London today. Image: the lost gallery

OPEN HOUSE: Everyone's welcome at the Museum of Life Sciences's Open House today. Make a crocodile tooth, find a bone, tackle the Tree of Life jigsaw and get to grips handling real zoo specimens. Free, just turn up, 12pm-4pm

INVENTIONS: Join a mechanical workshop at North Chingford Library that lets you become the inventor. Make your own machines from a colourful, random box of objects. Watch them become fully interactive using spinning cams, turned by a motor or handle. Free, prebook, 1.30pm

GREAT FIRE: Discover how a dry summer, bakery accident and furious gale combined to cause the Great Fire of London in 1666. At the Museum of London, Dr Stephen Porter will take you through the fire and the aftermath, including some of the city's glorious buildings that stayed intact. Free, just turn up, 6pm

Thursday 2 June

BARNADO'S: Discover more about Barnado's charity work and how you can get involved, at this event at The Wellcome Collection. Enjoy a free lunch or cocktail reception as you hear how Barnado's help children raised in care and how you can too. Free, prebook, 10.30am/5.30pm

GUN SALUTES: Brace your ears for two gun salutes today in honour of Queen Liz's Coronation Day. Drop by Hyde Park at 12pm for 41 guns and the Tower of London at 1pm where they're bringing out the big guns (sorry) with 62. Free, just turn up, 12pm/1pm

SWIMMING IN THE THAMES: As part of Wandsworth Heritage Festival, Caitlin Davies talks about her acclaimed book, Swimming Downstream: A History and Celebration of Swimming the River Thames. She'll be at Putney Library. Free, just turn up, 6.30pm

FREE FILM: The Overlook Screening Room presents The Hit. One of Stephen Frears's earlier movies, this is a 1984 British crime gem starring Terence Stamp, with a score by Eric Clapton. Free, just turn up, 7.30pm

Friday 3 June

Catch an early morning view of Primrose Hill. Image: stephendgardner

PROJECT AWESOME: See great views of the city on your workout with Project Awesome at Primrose Hill. See the sun rise during your workout with this friendly fitness class. Free, just turn up, 6.30am

LAMBETH PALACE: The oldest continuously cultivated garden in London, and rarely opened, Lambeth Palace welcomes the public today. Get started on spring with a bounty of scented blooms. £5, just turn up, 12pm-3pm

LONDON BRIDGE CITY SUMMER FESTIVAL: It kicks off its programme on Wednesday, but this Friday enjoy live music performances at More London. We even hear rumours of a mass karaoke event, complete with live rock band and lyrics on a huge screen. Free, just turn up, music from 12.30pm, karaoke from 6.30pm

FREE COMEDY: The laughs come loud and often at north London comedy club, Angel Comedy. Arriving early is strongly recommend as this popular night gets busy, fast. Free, just turn up, 8pm

Saturday 4 June

RICHMOND PARK: Take a tour of Richmond Park in the knowledgeable company of The Friends of Richmond Park. Free, just turn up, 10am-12pm

TROOPING THE COLOUR: See a rehearsal of Trooping the Colour in The Mall this morning. It's the second practice preparing for the Queen's Official Birthday, so it's almost the same as the final version. Free, just turn up, 10am-1pm

URBAN FORREST: Meet outside Elephant and Castle's The Coronet and join a journey through the urban forest of south London. Guy Mannes-Abbott leads a walk in the rich parkland, including the old Heygate Estate — an area currently undergoing redevelopment. Free, prebook, 11am

SUMMER FAIR: For an afternoon of traditional summer entertainment, head to Tower Hamlets Centenary Park Annual Summer Fair at the Soanes Centre. There'll be food, craft, pond dipping, storytelling, rickshaw riding and more. Free entry, just turn up, 12pm-5pm

ZEN GARDEN: There's yet more outdoor activity taking place this weekend with this charity Zen Garden Open Day. See a traditional Japanese walled garden with thatched shelter and take part in a tea ceremony at Three Wheels Shin Buddhist Temple in Acton. £3/kids go free, just turn up, 2pm-5pm, until 5 June

KANYE: Yeezy Does It is the name of this early birthday celebration for Kanye West, thrown by The Book Club. Sadly/luckily Mr West probably won't be there, but his hits will be showing off on the dancefloor instead. Join the Doctor's Orders, DJ Cable and Mr Thing as they go West. £5, just turn up, 9pm

Sunday 5 June

HOT FUDGE: Hot Fudge Sundays throws its first rooftop party at Queen of Hoxton. Taste their new brunch menu, sip summer cocktails or go psychedelic with a range of ice cream sundaes . Play your favourite giant board games or dance off the treats with a floor of House and Disco. £4, prebook, 12pm-12am

CHOUMERT SQUARE: Go behind the scenes at Choumert Square Open Day. Wander through 46 mini gardens while feeling summery with their stalls packed with fresh produce, arts and crafts. £4, just turn up, 1pm-5pm

TELLING TALES: As part of Stoke Newington Literary Festival, head to The Pavilion at Clissold Park for an afternoon of storytelling. Kids can get creative with a mask making workshop too. Free, prebook, 1.30pm