Free And Cheap Things To Do In London This Week: 13-19 November 2017

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Free And Cheap Things To Do In London This Week: 13-19 November 2017
Become a test subject at the Science Museum this week.

All week

LIVE SCIENCE: Take part in live science experiments (the fun, not the dangerous variety) to find out more about how your body works and help out the brain boxes from London and Middlesex unis. Science Museum, free, just turn up, every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday until 18 November

MAKERS MOVEMENT: Get hands-on with geometric puzzles, spinning Zoetropes and kinetic sculptures at this exhibition, where the creative process is on display. Forest Works, free, just turn up, until 18 November

NEWHAM WORD FESTIVAL: Make a pop-up flag book at Plaistow Library or join an anthology launch at Stratford Library on Wednesday, hear poets muse on the meaning of home on Thursday and a calligraphy session on Saturday as part of Newham Word Festival. Various venues, Newham, free, book ahead, until 19 November

EPPING FOREST: See art inspired by 'The People's Forest', which took Chong Kwan two years of research into the history, politics and people of the area. The Barbican, free, just turn up, until 18 March

Monday 13 November

The lovely view from the Horniman Museum. Photo: Juliet Freeman

RECORDS CAFE LAUNCH: A week-long launch party at this at this new trendy Shoreditch coffee spot kicks off with world-renowned DJ Gilles Peterson on the decks. Old St. Records Cafe, free, just turn up, 4pm-6pm

POINTS OF VIEW: With skyscrapers going up left, right and centre, it doesn't always feel like we have protected view legislation. But we do, and to mark 80 years of its existence, Bompas & Parr has created this installation to highlight its importance. The Horniman Museum and Gardens, free, 8am-sunrise, until Sunday 26 November

DIGITAL SKILLS WORKSHOPS: Want to get tech-savvy but don't want to splash out on a fancy course? Join these free taster sessions to top up your digital skills from Red Academy London. Aldwych House, free, book ahead, 6.30pm-8pm, until 22 November

Tuesday 14 November

Hit up the Covent Garden Christmas Light switch on if you want to feel festive in November.

WANDSWORTH CHRISTMAS FAIR: Enjoy nibbles and wine while you browse jewellery, toys, gadgets, Christmas cards and decorations, fashion items, beauty products, books gifts and much much more at this festive fair. St Luke’s Church, Battersea, £5 on the door, until 15 November

COVENT GARDEN LIGHTS: Another week, another Christmas light switch on. This time it's the turn of the pretty lights at Covent Garden, led by the cast of the West End musical 42nd Street and special guest Pudsey. Covent Garden Market, free, just turn up, 5.30pm-6pm

THINKING STAGE: Join author and executive editor of the Economist Daniel Franklin for an evening predicting what fresh horrors and exciting innovations 2050 might bring. We Work Old St, free, RSVP, 6.30pm-7.30pm

Wednesday 15 November

MARYLEBONE XMAS LIGHTS: Dame Barbara Windsor is doing the honours at Marylebone High Street, plus you can pop into Santa's grotto, jump on a fairground ride, listen to live music or do the rounds of the craft and food stalls. North end of Marylebone High Street, Paddington Street and Devonshire Street, Marylebone Village, free, just turn up, 3pm-7pm

PHYSICIAN TALK: He was a 17th-century polymath, proud owner of a live ostrich and — judging by his portrait — could grow an excellent goatee. Find out more about Sir Thomas Browne and take a peek at his cabinet of rarities at this talk with a drinks reception. Royal College of Physicians, free, book ahead, 6.30pm-8.30pm

Thursday 16 November

Adventures in Digital Art 2017 showcases the ways in which today’s artists are using digital tools.

DIGITAL ART: Artists have caught on to the fact that it's 2017, which means you can hang out in a virtual reality fantasy land, sing to a projection of a clock and play a digital arcade game. Catch this tech-centred show before it teleports to Beijing. Winns Gallery, free, just turn up, 16-21 November

SEVEN DIALS SWITCH ON: This Christmas light switch on is accompanied by festive songs from 600 strong piece alternative choir, Some Voices and discounts in surrounding shops. Seven Dials, free, just turn up, 5pm-9pm

PEOPLE'S FILM FESTIVAL: See films tackling the realities of climate change, animal cruelty and Islamic Extremism as part of We The People's Film Festival. Tonight Sonic Sea explores the impact man-made ocean noise is having on the world's oceans. Grim but necessary viewing. Ace Hotel, £5, book ahead, 6pm-9.30pm

MOB TOWN: Get to know the motley crew of villains, anti-heroes and criminals who made the East End their home at this talk from author John Bennett. The Bell, £5, book ahead, 8pm-9.30pm

COMEDY: Two Edinburgh Comedy Award winners join old friends John Kearns and Pat Cahill to make you laugh over a few of The Bill Murray’s finest draft beers. The Bill Murray, £5, book ahead, 9pm-11pm

Friday 17 November

Join a two-day atmospheric exploration of light through the use of fire, light guided story telling with interactive installations and light projection at Brilliant Vauxhall.

BRILLIANT VAUXHALL: Things heat up in the fire laboratory, while the rest of the installations in this two-day celebration of light take an interactive turn. Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens, free, just turn up, 5.30pm-10pm, repeated tomorrow

WRITEIDEA FESTIVAL: On the lookout for some new reading material? Head to Whitechapel to hear exciting authors Stella Duffy, Alan Dein, The Gentle Author and Irenosen Okojie among others chat books, creativity and London life. The Idea Store (Whitechapel), free, book ahead, 17-19 November

TRANSUBSTANTATION: See British sculptor Gavin Turk's latest piece for Skip Gallery, which pokes fun at consumerism and what we choose to throw away. Skip Gallery, free, just turn up, until 26 November

Saturday 18 November

Croydon’s Christmas celebrations will take on a new look this year with a stunning series of giant visual displays lighting up the town centre.

FESTIVE FANTASIA: Don't forget to look up if you find yourself wandering around Croydon's town centre between now and Christmas as three sites will be lit up with six dazzling dance films showcasing the work of local performers. North End (Croydon), free, just turn up, until 23 December

BOOK SALE: From second-hand paperbacks to review copies of recently published novels, you're bound to find something for your bookshelves at the popular Amnesty International book sale. Church of the Ascension (Blackheath), free, just turn up, 10am-4pm

VEGAN THANKSGIVING FAIR: Munch on Tofurky and cranberry burritos and other vegan goodies at this animal-free foodie fair. Whole Foods Market (Camden), free, just turn up, 10.30am-8pm

Sunday 19 November

Wise up to waste at this up-cycling fair in Walthamstow.

DEER WALK: Get some fresh air and make some new four-legged friends at Theydon Bois deer sanctuary. Lodge Road car park, £5, book ahead, 9.30am-1.30pm

UPCYCLING SHOW: Roll up your sleeves and get stuck into upcycling workshops to save furniture, homeware, textiles and electricals from being thrown away. Walthamstow Assembly Hall, free, just turn up, 11am-3pm

ECOUTER: This new female music collective aims to collaborate with female networks, local venues and record labels, to blast away gender barriers, and provide you with a perfect Sunday soundtrack. T-Bird Bar, free, just turn up, 3pm-7pm

Fun things to do with our friends and sponsor Funzing...

Festive Interactive Harry Potter Tour

Get sorted into one of the four magical houses of Hogwarts, and go in exploration of the city’s famous filming locations on this 2-hour walking tour. You’ll meet your guide outside the Palace Theatre, where Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is showing, and set off on your journey across town - following in the footsteps of Deatheaters, visiting the inspiration for Knocturn Alley, and marvelling at the Ministry of Magic. And you better brush up on your Potter knowledge, because you can earn points for your house along the way, by taking part in trivia quizzes. The winners? You’ll find out when the tour ends at Platform 9 3/4… Get tickets

A Secret London Tour

How well do you really know London? Visit the streets that inspired Harry Potter locations and see London's most superstitious hotel. On Matt's tour you will explore hidden places and discover stories unknown to even the most knowledgeable of Londoners. Get tickets

Step on Board the Haunted Tube Express

The London Undergound is over 150 years old, and it's seen a thing or two in its time. Are you brave enough to face the ghosts of the Underground? Travel through the home of the Bank's Black Nun, learn about the elderly angel who saved a tube worker from death, and come to face to face with Farringdon's screaming spectre. Bring your oyster card and discover the hidden secrets of the Underground. You'll need to have an Oyster card or travelcard for this event. Get tickets

Forgotten Old London

Have you visited London's Roman ampitheatre? What about London's Medieval market places? Hear weird and wonderful tales of our beautiful city as you take a walking tour, seeing everything from centuries-old churches to the hanging place of William Wallace. Whether you've lived here all your life or are visiting for a few days, you're sure to learn something new about London. Get tickets

Last Updated 13 November 2017