Free And Cheap Things To Do This Week In London: 8-14 October 2018

By Maire Rose Connor Last edited 9 months ago

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Free And Cheap Things To Do This Week In London: 8-14 October 2018

All week

Enter a utopian fantasy land through the work of Athi Patra Ruga. Photo © Athi Patra Ruga and What if the World Photography

THE HOUSE OF KINGS AND QUEENS: In Sierra Leone, where homosexuality can still land you with a prison sentence and anti-gay prejudice runs rife, The House of Kings and Queens offer a glimmer of hope for the Freetown LGBT community. Discover how the home of a young transgender woman functions as a haven for those in need at this new photography exhibition from Lee Price. Rich Mix (Shoreditch), free, just turn up, until 21 October

FEELING KINKS-Y: Fans of classic English rock won't want to miss this exhibition dedicated to The Kinks. Feast your eyes on rare collectors' items including artworks by members of the band, vintage memorabilia, and a gorgeous set of album art taken on Hampstead Heath. Proud Central (Charing Cross), free, just turn up, until 18 November

OF GODS, RAINBOWS AND OMISSIONS: Enter a mythical utopia at Athi-Patra Ruga's first major solo UK exhibition. Through his latest works — which span film, photography, sculpture and even hand-crafted petit point tapestry —- the South African artist challenges perceptions of cultural identity and parodies the construction of his own nation state. Somerset House, free, just turn up, until 6 January 2019

WILDE AT HEART: Artist duo McDermott and McGough have taken their worship of one of the world's wittiest ever wordsmiths to a whole new level — by building an actual temple to him. Featuring stained glass windows and opulent Victorian trimmings, the secular Oscar Wilde Temple pays tribute to contemporary LGBTQ+ martyrs and those lost to the AIDS crisis. You can even have your wedding there. The Oscar Wilde Temple: McDermott & McGough at Studio Voltaire (Clapham), free, just turn up, until 31 March 2019

Monday 8 October

Josh Taerk performs in Putney

LISTEN UP: Journey back in time to the very beginnings of human society with Professor of Music Tom Service and discover the origins of human hearing. You'll discuss what it means to listen and to make music within the context of human development. Museum of London, free, just turn up, 6pm-7pm

FAKE MEAT: Here's a question for committed carnivores and vegans alike — would you eat meat that was grown in a lab? Posed as a solution to our umami-based cravings without the animal suffering and environmental damage, artificial meat could be heading to your plate very soon. Learn all about it at LSE's latest forum. LSE (Houghton Street), free, just turn up, 6.30pm-8pm

NEW MUSIC NIGHT: Canadian singer-songwriter Josh Taerk has crossed the Atlantic for a new UK tour, which arrives in London tonight. He's headlining the Half Moon's popular new music night, which this week also features sets from punk, blues, and acoustic acts. Half Moon (Putney), £2.50, book ahead, 7.30pm

JEWISH LONDON: Author and tour guide Rachel Kolsky visits historic bookshop and map emporium Stanfords for a chat about the portrayal of London's Jewish journey in literature and film. From the East End and Hackney, to Soho and north London's 'Mittel Europe', you'll discover how Jewish life in the capital has been committed to page and celluloid over a glass of wine. Stanfords (Covent Garden), £4, book ahead, 6.30pm-7.45pm

Tuesday 9 October

It's all about that brass at Old Street Records

MYSTIC MATHS: Could mathematics be used to predict future events like the stock market or the weather in six months time? Find out with Professor Chris Budd OBE at a talk on the maths behind chaos theory and sudden change. Museum of London, free, just turn up, 1pm-2pm

SILVER TUESDAY: Good news for the over 50s...the Science Museum is hosting a whole afternoon of hands-on activities and workshops for older adults. Discover the wonders of 3D printing, get to grips with the latest gadgets, and scoff free cake in the name of science. Science Museum (Kensington), free, just turn up, 2.30pm-5.30pm

SCIENCE QUIZ NIGHT: Our very own Editor-at-Large Matt Brown challenges you to put your nerdiness to the test at his science-themed quiz night. In teams of up to six, you'll be grilled on everything from fractals to Faraday in celebration of Matt's new book, The Astounding Science Puzzle Book. The Royal Institution (Mayfair), £2, just turn up, 7pm-8.30pm

BIG BAND NIGHT: A class night of brass awaits at this east London bar, where a 16 piece band will treat you to a night of swing, bebop and Latin. Get down there early for Happy Hour. Old Street Records (Old Street), free, book ahead, 8pm-1am

Wednesday 10 October

Witness the birth of Fatberg 2.0

CHARTERHOUSE SOUNDSCAPES: Bring some tranquility to your lunch hour with Peace of Mind, a musical soundscape curated by Deborah Hudson and Robin Isherwood. They're filling The Charterhouse's Chapel with live and recorded sounds to sooth the mind and enrich the soul. The Charterhouse (Clerkenwell), 1pm-1.30pm

3 DAYS OF FAT: King's College is creating its very own fatberg, and you can witness its somewhat icky construction. Get ready for three days of live art-science experiments that reflect on our relationship with this oft-maligned substance (just maybe leave it until after you've had your lunch). The Arcade at Bush House (Aldwych), free (donations welcome), just turn up, 2pm-5pm, until 12 October

ELDER AND WISER: Eli Anderson and Charles Brown make a case for the critical role of the Elder in our community at this interactive lecture. You'll leave with a newfound appreciation for the importance of intergenerational knowledge. Morley College (Westminster), £5, book ahead, 6.30pm-9.30pm

THE SECRET VARIETY CLUB: Keep it on the down-low, but The Secret Variety Club is back with one heck of a line up. Expect side-splitting stand-up, uncanny impressions, and even a set from a BAFTA nominee. Aces & Eights (Tufnell Park), £5.50 to guarantee a seat/pay what you want OTD, 7.30pm-10pm

Thursday 11 October

Read between the lines with The Paper Traveller

CELLO CONCERT: Escape the lunch hour rush in favour of a tranquil cello recital at St James's Church. Frantisek Brikcius will treat you to pieces from Bach, Reger, and 'lost composer' James Simon. St James's Church (Paddington), free, just turn up, 1pm

THE PAPER TRAVELLER: Grab a pair of headphones and embark on a bibliophile's ultimate treasure hunt. This storytelling journey takes you through pop-up books, miniature papercut sets, sound installations and live theatre performances to explore what it means to be lost in a book. Wimbledon Library, £3, book ahead, 4pm-7pm, until 13 October

MICHAEL ROSEN'S MEMOIR: Beloved kids' book author Michael Rosen presents his new memoir, So They Call You Pisher! Hear tales of his north London life, including an intriguing family mystery, straight from the horse's mouth. The Wiener Library (Russell Square), free, book ahead, 6.30pm-8pm

Friday 12 October

Treat yourself to some Bavarian-themed fun at Brixtoberfest

ROBOT ROCK: Discover the cutting edge of music tech with three days of talks, workshops, and exhibitions. Hardware heavyweights Source Distribution and Red Dog Music set up shop to show off their latest collection of synthesizers, while the Audio Engineering Society looks into the future of music — all at We Are Robots' weekend festival. The Old Truman Brewery (Brick Lane), free entry, just turn up, until 14 October

BRIXTOBERFEST: Treat yourself to a Stein or two, because Bavaria is coming to Brixton. This Oktoberfest extravaganza is free entry, and there's plenty of sing-a-longs, and prizes for the best dressed. So you even if you're skint you may as well pop your head in — what's the Wurst that could happen? Pop Brixton, free, just turn up, 6pm-midnight

BANKSY SCREENING: When an eccentric Frenchman tries to befriend the world's most famous and elusive street artist, trust Banksy to turn the camera back on its owner. The resulting documentary film, Exit Through the Gift Shop gives you an electrifying behind-the-scenes glimpse of the graffiti art world.  British Museum, £3, book ahead, 6.30pm-8pm

Saturday 13 October

A bit of Gaelic grooving at Hoxton Harvest Ceilidh

LOCAL LONDON GUIDING DAY: With not one, not two, but four free walking tours taking place, you're spoilt for choice this Local London Guiding day. From exploring life and death in Bloomsbury, to hearing tales of medieval nights and child refugees in the City, there's plenty to discover. Various locations, free, just turn up, 10am-4pm

HOXTON HARVEST CEILIDH: Dust off your dancing shoes for a lively outdoor ceilidh with the excellently-named Fiddle Paradiddle. Create autumnal wreathes or headdresses from leaves plucked from the Geffrye Museum garden, and keep yourself fuelled with cheese toasties and craft cider. Geffrye Museum (Hoxton — note the museum itself is currently closed for refurbishment), free, just turn up, 11am-5pm

CLOTHES SWAP: Get read to swap til you drop! Betsy's closet swap shop pops up in Camden. Simply bring up to 10 decent items of clothing, exchange them for tokens and then use these to get your hands on some pre-loved treasures. The London Irish Centre, £3, book ahead, 12pm-3pm

STATUE-ESQUE: Bring the whole family to have a go posing as mannequins in a hall of mirrors with artist Harold Offeh. Your distorted reflections will be turned into your very own GIF. Serpentine Gallery (Kensington Gardens), free, just turn up, 1pm-5pm, until 14 October

Sunday 14 October

Have a paddle in Putney

LONDON SPIRAL WALK: This event is cheating slightly in that (gasp) it doesn't actually begin in London. Take a short train ride to Ewell East and then make your way back up to Coulsdon on foot on a walk that explores pockets in and around London that are being back to nature. Meet at Ewell East station, free, just turn up, 1pm-4pm

JUST ROW WITH IT: Fancy discovering the joys of rowing on the River Thames? If that's the kind of adventure to float your boat, head to TopRow's open house for a guided lesson with one of their experienced instructors (18+). TopRow (Putney Embankment), free, just turn up, 2pm-5pm

MUSIC FOR YOUTH: If you, or someone you know, is an young aspiring musician, boy does Music for Youth have good news for you. They're inviting all those aged 21 and under to get industry knowledge, try out new sounds, and perform live on stage at Frequencies London. There's talk of free pizza. Bussey Building (Peckham), free, book ahead, 2.45pm-9.30pm

Last Updated 05 October 2018