Things To Do This Week In London: 22-28 November 2021

Looks like this article is a bit old. Be aware that information may have changed since it was published.

All week

Lightopia is now lit up in Crystal Palace

CANINE CABARET: Drag superstar Ginger Johnson unleashes her alternative Christmas show; it's called Dog Show, and is described as a 'canine cabaret' that draws on the visual language of kink to explore the fetishisation of queer culture. Expect drag, comedy, breakdancing, burlesque, rap, spoken word, lip-sync and song. The Pleasance (Islington), from £12, book ahead, 24 November-19 December

BARTER ARCHIVE: Artist Pat Wingshan Wong spent two years at Billingsgate Fish Market, swapping sketches of the people who worked there, in return for their stories. Here's a chance to view eight of the sketches alongside legendary stories of the fishmongers and 3D-printed ceramics of their memorable objects. Crossrail Place Roof Garden and Crossrail Place level 0 (Canary Wharf), free, just turn up, until 28 November

LIGHTOPIA CRYSTAL PALACE: Another week, another light festival. Head to Crystal Palace for Lightopia London (Sound familiar? It's been at Chiswick House in previous years). Expect large-scale and interactive exhibits, with a focus on the history of Crystal Palace Park, including a recreation of the glass palace which gave the area its name. Crystal Palace Park, from £19.50 adult, book ahead, until 2 January 2022

See sketches of Billingsgate fishmongers at Barter Archive

FABERGÉ IN LONDON: There's more to Fabergé than eggs, as demonstrated in the V&A's latest exhibition, Fabergé: Romance to Revolution, which opened on Saturday. Find out more about the work of goldsmith Carl Fabergé, and how he ended up opening a London shop in New Bond Street in 1903. V&A Museum (South Kensington), £18, book ahead, until 8 May 2022

CHANGING CLIMATE: The British Library partners with The Institute for the Modelling of Socio-Environmental Transitions, Bournemouth University for a series of free online talks. Coastal, countryside and urban environments are each tackled, with experts discussing how the landscapes are altering and how communities are coping with these changes. Online events, free, book ahead, 22-26 November

IDEAL HOME AT CHRISTMAS: Plenty of London's Christmas markets and fairs take place this week, including the Ideal Home Show at Christmas. Get your home ready for the festive period, with a plethora of decorations to browse and free interior design talks, as well as gift ideas, foodie items, festive theatre and live music performances. Entry to the Eat & Drink Christmas Festival is included in your ticket, with demos from celebrity chefs, an artisan food market and more. Olympia London, £14 adult, book ahead, 24-28 November

Monday 22 November

Grayson Perry makes an appearance at the Royal Albert Hall

LET'S TALK ABOUT RACE: Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum, a bestselling author and noted expert on the psychology of racism, takes part in a live streamed discussion on the topic of race. UCL academics and others join her to debate the issue of race and racism, why it persists, how we address it through education and how we can talk about it. British Library or online, free, book ahead, 7pm-8.30pm

GRAYSON PERRY: Artist and author Grayson Perry takes to the stage to tackle the big and small questions in life, with the underlying current of awareness that nothing really matters as we're all going to die anyway. How very Monday. Royal Albert Hall, from £23, book ahead, 7.30pm

Tuesday 23 November

Hear from experts on tackling the climate crisis

LONDON MONUMENTS: Did you know that the statues of Waterloo Place were mainly privately funded by local residents? Hear from Durba Ghosh, Professor of History at Cornell University, about the addition of statues to the pedestrianised street between the 18040s and Queen Victoria's death in 1901, and what the monuments tell us about attitudes towards the British Empire at the time. Online event, free, book ahead, 5.30pm-7pm

TRAIL TALES: In the mid-1970s, aged 15, Martyn Howe set off to walk the Pembrokeshire Coast Path. Since the, he's walked every National Trail in England and Wales, plus the four Long-Distance Routes (now among the Great Trails) in Scotland, which inspired his book, Tales From The Big Trails. Hear him talk about his adventures, and the book, at Stanfords tonight. Stanfords (Covent Garden), £5, book ahead, 6.30pm-8pm

TUDOR SPIES: If you thought spying was a modern concept, think again. Hear about the Elizabethan secret service and how it shaped modern-day surveillance networks including MI5. Author SJ Parris,  historian Professor Stephen Alford and BBC Security Correspondent Gordon Corera join forces at the British Library. British Library or online, £14, book ahead, 7pm-8.15pm

CLIMATE CHANGE: A panel of experts joins forces to discuss the climate crisis — specifically, how they are innovating to prepare for the future. Part of a series of lectures in partnership with Imperial College London's Grantham Institute. Online event, suggested donation £10, book ahead, 7pm-8.30pm

Wednesday 24 November

Science Museum Lates are back

SCIENCE MUSEUM LATE: We've missed late night openings at London's cultural institutions, but now Science Museum Lates are back. Space is this month's theme, with rocket launch workshops and space object hunts, as well as the usual late night gallery openings, silent disco and live music. Age 18+.  Science Museum (South Kensington), free (VIP £10), book ahead, 6.15pm-10pm

TAP TAKEOVER: Tate Moderns's Tap Takeovers are back, and this month celebrates a Yayoi Kusama-inspired brewing project, in collaboration with Drop Project. Be among the first to try Haze, a New England IPA, and five other beers from the brewery. Tate Modern, £8-£17.50, book ahead, 6.30pm-10pm

DRINK WITH SHAKESPEARE: Enjoy a three-course Thanksgiving-themed dinner, accompanied by a comedic romp through some of Will Shakespeare's best works, courtesy of the Earl's Courtiers. The Bolton (Earl's Court), £40 (inc. food and half bottle of wine), book ahead, 7pm-9.30pm, also on 25 November

BARKING & DAGENHAM: Want to know more about this historic Outer London borough? We can think of no better way than in the company of tour guide Rob Smith, who’ll take you on a virtual tour of the area’s best buildings. Online event, £6-£12, book ahead, 8pm-9pm

Thursday 25 November

The Milestone Hotel is one of the London venues offering a Thanksgiving menu

THANKSGIVING: Today is Thanksgiving, one of America's biggest annual festivals. If you're an American stuck in London for the holiday, or a Londoner who's curious about what the big deal is, check out these special Thanksgiving meals and menus being served in London today.

WINTERFEST WEMBLEY PARK: Reunited in Light is the theme of this year's Winterfest, a free illuminations display in Wembley Park. London's largest LED tree returns, and there are a couple of new installations this year too. Wembley Park, free, just turn up. 25 November 2021-4 January 2022

LUBAINA HIMID: Tate Modern unveils its new exhibition today, a large-scale theatrical exhibition by Turner Prize winner Lubaina Himid. The environmental activist has created a sequence of scenes designed to place visitors centre-stage and backstage. Tate Modern, £16 adult, book ahead, 25 November 2021-3 July 2022

SEX HISTORY: History of sexuality researcher and bestselling author Kate Lister discusses her book, A Curious History Of Sex. 20th century testicle thefts, smutty bread innuendos dating back to AD 79, and the new and controversial sex doll brothels are just some of the topics likely to come up. Online event, £5, book ahead, 6pm-7pm

CHEESE AND BEER: Wimbledon Brewery invites you to combine the wondrous flavours of cheese and beer, in this special tasting session hosted by food and drink experts. You'll get six cheese, and six beer samples, plus a short brewery tour. Wimbledon Brewery (Colliers Wood), £38, book ahead, 6.30pm-9.30pm

STUDIO PARADISO: From the team who brought us the cocktail bar in a pie and mash shop, comes Studio Paradiso, a pop-up dining experience harnessing the spirit of 1970s Manhattan with fondue, fur rugs, disco balls champagne — and some great entertainment to boot. It launches today, running till 19 December, then reopens from 30 January. Patchworks (Leyton), from £36 (inc. food and drink), book ahead.

Friday 26 November

Design Museum opens a new exhibition about Amy Winehouse. Photo by Charles Moriarty

COMEDY BOOK FESTIVAL: Comedy website Chortle hosts a two-day festival of comedians talking about their books. Memoirs and autobiographies are covered, as well TV tie-ins, with the likes of Phil Wang, Geoff Norcott and Andi Osho on the line-up. British Library, from £10 per event (day pass £40), book ahead, 26-27 November

AMY WINEHOUSE: Design Museum opens a new exhibition dedicated to Amy Winehouse. Amy: Beyond The Stage celebrates the legacy and creativity of the late singer, with outfits, handwritten lyrics and other personal items on show. Design Museum (Kensington), £16 adult, book ahead, from 26 November

CHRISTMAS AT KENWOOD HOUSE: A new addition to London's light festival scene, Christmas at Kenwood House is a lights trail through the Hampstead Heath grounds, which uses fire, light and sound. There's also a Christmas market and refreshment stalls. 26 November 2021-9 January 2022

Saturday 27 November

Wild Winter Weekend at Museum of London Docklands

WILD WINTER WEEKEND: Museum of London Docklands hosts a free family fun weekend on the theme of winter, hosted by a team of local creatives, including Londonist contributor Momtaz Begum-Hossain. Create a fantasy unicorn cave, make an animal headdress or puppet, or come up with your own tea concoction. Museum of London Docklands, free, book museum admission in advance, 27-28 November

CRAFTY FOX MARKET: Jewellery, illustrations, printed textiles, gift wrap and ceramics are among the products on sale at this month's Crafty Fox Market, a regular event which gives local artists and makers a platform. Get a hop on your Christmas shopping, or just treat yourself. The Department Store (Brixton), free entry, just turn up, 27-28 November

STRAWBERRY HILL: It's Christmas Fair weekend at Strawberry Hill House. Shop for food and drink, gifts, accessories, homewares and more inside this unique mansion. For an extra charge, book a place on a festive demonstration and learn how to make decorations for your home. Strawberry Hill House (Twickenham), £7.50 entry, booking required, 27-28 November

FULHAM PALACE: Over 40 stalls are spread out inside and outside Fulham Palace over the Christmas fair weekend. As well as purchasing jewellery, homewares, fragrances, spirits and the like, it's a chance to see the palace interior decorated for Christmas and enjoy Christmas carols and live music. Father Christmas will be around that weekend too, though you'll need to book a separate ticket to visit him. Fulham Palace, £5 adult, booking required, 27-28 November

Christmas comes to Castle Square

INSTAGRAMMABLE GROTTOS: Castle Square, the new cultural space at Elephant and Castle promises us two different Christmas themed 'instagrammable' grottos which will be free to visit. It’s part of a Christmas extravaganza that will also see the switching on of lights, arts, dance and family activities. Elephant & Castle, free, just turn up, 2pm-6pm

QUIPLASH: Queer disabled-led creative project Quiplash host an evening of cabaret in Brixton. Ebony Rose Dark and Tito Bone — two of the UK's most prominent visually impaired performers — will lead you through an evening of campy and accessible drag; the show is relaxed with BSL interpretation and integrated audio description. Brixton Village, free, just turn up, 8pm

CLUB DE FROMAGE: Cheesy club night Club de Fromage celebrates its 15th birthday with one heck of a party — think free cake and champagne, balloons, confetti, with a soundtrack of pop, rock and disco tunes. O2 Academy Islington, from £7, book ahead, 10.30pm-3.30am

Sunday 28 November

Have a browse at Bethnal Green Vintage Kilo Sale

VINTAGE KILO SALE: Refresh your wardrobe ahead of the festive period at the Bethnal Green Vintage Kilo Sale. Browse through racks and racks of good condition clothes, shoes and accessories, and pay for your purchases by weight, at £15 per kilo. That means you could bag a single item for as little as 75p. York Hall (Bethnal Green), £3/£2, book ahead, 10am-4pm

MODEL RAILWAY EXHIBITION: The Model Railway Club hosts a mini exhibition, offering the public a chance to see some of the layouts the club has put together, as well as private ones belonging to individual members. If this gets your engine chugging, there's a small shop where you can purchase new and pre-owned models. Model Railway Club (King's Cross), £3, just turn up, 11am-4pm

BIG LONDON FLEA: Rummage through furniture, homewares, vintage clothes, lighting and other oddities at the Big London Flea Market, where renowned vintage traders and local dealers come together to sell their latest wares. EartH Hackney, £1 entry, just turn up, 11am-6pm

Urban oddity of the week

A wooden turkey attached to a fence is captioned with a sign about feeding donkets

While we're thinking about the Thanksgiving turkey, spare a thought for the birds of Mudchute Farm on the Isle of Dogs. We're not sure from the sign if the farm has donkeys that resemble turkeys, or if instead the 'pied turkeys' are fed to the donkeys.

Good cause of the week

The Big Toy Appeal logog - a blue gift silhouette with a jack-in-the-box to the left and the red Salvation Army crest to the right.

We're all used to picking up an extra tin of beans or bag of pasta to pop into the supermarket food bank collection. Now the same concept is helping to bring toys to underprivileged children at Christmas. Chain toy shop The Entertainer is once again running The Big Toy Appeal within its stores. Until the end of November, if you visit The Entertainer (or use the online site), you'll be encouraged to buy an extra £5 toy as a donation. The shop will then add another toy for every one donated, doubling the charitable gifts. The project is running jointly with the Salvation Army, who are also active in helping distribute food to those in need this Christmas.