Free And Cheap Things To Do This Week In London: 4-10 December 2023

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Free And Cheap Things To Do This Week In London: 4-10 December 2023

Budget-friendly things to do in London this week for £5 or less.

A small choir performing to a crowd in front of a large decorated Christmas tree
Catch free choir performances at Winter by the River

Looking for more free things to do in London? Here are 102 of em! We've also compiled this epic map of free stuff in London.

Catch free live choir performances at Winter by the River

Winter by the River is in full swing, with a free-entry Christmas market, plus various pop-up bars and the like. For an added bonus, time your visit to coincide with one of the free choir performances taking place inside Hay's Galleria (opposite London Bridge station). Popchoir, Soul Choirs, and Read Easy Southwark all perform this week, in addition to The Bridges Foundation Schools Lantern Parade.

Free, until 16 December.

Stay late at Christie's

Old Masters, New Era is the theme of this week's Christie's Lates, taking place at the auction house HQ in St James's. Learn about the art of the Old Masters, and their enduring influence on the contemporary art world, through workshops, demonstrations and live performances.

Free, 4 December.

Discover a City of Angels in the Square Mile

Regent Street is full of angels in the form of its Christmas lights at the moment, but the Square Mile is positively angelic, too. Guildhall Library hosts a free talk by guide Alexandra Epps about angels as public art, monuments and memorial, within the historic churches, gardens and secret corners of the Square Mile.

Watch the talk in person at Guildhall Library, or online.

Free, 5 December.

Enjoy carols in a central London courtyard

A gingerbread village consisting of about a dozen individual buildings, each individually decorated.
Ham Yard Hotel holds an evening of festive celebrations.

The Ham Yard Hotel near Piccadilly Circus opens its courtyard for an evening of festive entertainment, including live carol performances from the cast of Les Misérables, and jazz by Leon Garner. The hotel is also displaying a gingerbread village, free to view throughout December.

Free entry, 6 December.

Learn about space at Imperial Lates

Imperial College stays open late for an evening themed on space. Head to the South Kensington institution for an expert panel hosted by Britain's first astronaut Helen Sharman, on how humans might live and work on the moon, along with creative workshops, junkyard astronaut suits, mince pies, live meteorite impacts, a live DJ and other festive and scientific entertainment. Age 18+.

Free, 7 December.

Witness a Miracle on Leake Street

Miracle on Leake Street is becoming an annual tradition.

Head down to the Leake Street tunnel underneath Waterloo station on Thursday for Miracle on Leake Street, a free-entry Christmas party that's open to everyone. Entertainment includes a cabaret performance by Pi the Mime, and a screening of Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. Food and drink is available to buy from local traders throughout the event.

Free, 7 December

See the Trafalgar Square tree being lit

A Trafalgar Square lion in front of a Christmas tree and the National Gallery
Get ready for the most tree-mendous switch-on of the season. Image: Raphaël Chekroun via creative commons

London's most famous Christmas tree is illuminated for the season in a special lighting ceremony in Trafalgar Square. As always, it takes place on the first Thursday in December, which this year falls on 7 December (though you'll likely see the tree in situ a little while before that), with a ceremony beneath the Norwegian spruce as part of the event.

Free, 7 December.

Enjoy the Royal Drawing School's new exhibition

Over 400 drawings, prints and other works on paper go on display in the Royal Drawing School's End of Year Exhibition at its Shoreditch HQ, and it's also available to view online. It showcases works by this year's students from The Drawing Year, a full scholarship postgraduate-level course.

Free, 7-19 December.

Listen to Christmas songs played by a brass band

Close up of brass instruments being played
Enjoy a touch of brass at a free Christmas concert. Image: Dukas Ju via creative commons

London City Brass play their annual Christmas concert at St Mary-at-Hill church in the City on Friday evening — belting out festive classics, and spicing things up with a few solos, plus a touch of audience participation. Refreshments (alcoholic and otherwise) are available, and you can just show up to this free show. Donations, which go towards the band and their chosen charity, are welcome for those who can spare the change.

Free, 8 December.

Chug along to a mini railway exhibition

The Model Railway Club holds a December mini exhibition at its HQ near King's Cross station. Wander round to see a number of different layouts by both club members and guest exhibitors, and purchase pre-owned models from the shop. It's the world's oldest model railway club, don't you know.

£5 entry, 10 December.

Attend a completely unusual Christmas fayre

A man in a hat poses with a stuffed head - possibly a goat?
Stock up on 'Satanic' Xmas pressies at AntiXmas Fayre.

The Satanic Flea Market holds its AntiXmas Fayre at Electowerks in Angel, celebrating dark arts and crafts with 100+ unusual shops selling oddities and curiosities. We're promised a 'demonic collection' of collectibles, underground fashion, fortune tellers, original art, cultural relics, vintage clothing, unusual toys, occult trinkets, obscure records, human skulls and taxidermy. We went to a Satanic Flea Market event in October 2022 — here's what it was like.

£4 entry, 10 December.

Last Updated 04 December 2023