What we're reading
- There's science behind those annoying tube habits.
- A first look at Spire London, the skyscraper set to be the tallest residential tower in Western Europe.
- Meet the guy who is redesigning Greenwich Peninsula.
- Clowns attended church on Sunday for the 71st Grimaldi Service.
Things to do
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DICKENS: Celebrate author Charles Dickens's 205th birthday with a guided walk around Barnet and surrounding areas. Learn about the author's birthday celebrations and visit places closely connected to his life and work. High Barnet tube station, £9/£4, book ahead, 11am
LUNCHTIME LECTURE: There has been a significant drop in crime rates over the past few decades. Join Professor Kate Bowers to find out how these rates can be kept down at this UCL lunchtime lecture. UCL, free, just turn up, 1.15pm-1.55pm
CHRISTIE'S LATES: Christie's auction house in South Kensington hosts its monthly late night opening. The theme this time is 'colour and form' — head along for an evening of talks from the likes of interior designer Rachel Bates, displays and exhibition tours. Christie's, free, just turn up, 6pm-8.30pm
CYBERSPACE: Cyberspace is a difficult area to police, and after Edward Snowden revealed the extent of surveillance, Internet experts have made it harder for security services to stop criminals. Join Professor Martyn Thomas for a talk about the dilemmas of privacy and surveillance. Museum of London, free, just turn up, 6pm-7pm
OUTING THE PAST: Mark LGBT month with Outing the Past, a talk which aims to reframe some of the National Maritime Museum's collection from a queer perspective. National Maritime Museum, free, just turn up, 6pm-9pm
AUTHOR TALKS: Discover the secret to creating thrilling characters from acclaimed authors L.A. Larkin and Tom Wood. Join them as they take you through the dark and dangerous world of their books. Waterstones Piccadilly, free, book ahead, 7pm-8.30pm
CONCERT: Celebrate the Year of the Rooster at Barbican's Chinese New Year concert. The Shaanxi Broadcasting Chinese Orchestra, the Zhejiang Traditional Orchestra and other acts will perform traditional Chinese music. Barbican Centre, from £25, book ahead, 7.30pm
SPOKEN WORD: Multi-award winning poet Rob Gee takes to the stage for an evening of poetic storytelling with a comedy twist. Fancy having a go yourself? The evening ends with an open mic session. The Book Club, £5, just turn up, 7.30pm-11pm
WINTER PHOTOS: If you've not had enough of winter yet, get yourself to the Jessops #WINter photography exhibition. A selection of images capturing the beauty of winter will be on display — but you've only got this week to see them. Art Bermondsey Project Space, free, book ahead, 11am-6pm, until 12 February
LAUDERDALE EXPOSED: As Highgate's Lauderdale House reopens after a refurbishment, this photo exhibition shows the works that were undertaken, documenting the refurbishment as it took place. Lauderdale House, free, just turn up, until 26 February
Stage review: A masterclass in non-verbal acting
Philip Ridley says his plays are “like tuning forks, they vibrate with whatever’s going on in the atmosphere at the time” but The Pitchfork Disney’s meagre plot rings hollow. BAFTA-nominated Hayley Squires’s monologue kicks the stodgy opening into action to deliver a strong performance of this indulgently written piece. Lloyd’s creative use of space transports the audience into every gory detail while Shote’s Pitchfork is a masterclass in non-verbal acting. The Pitchfork Disney, Shoreditch Town Hall, 380 Old Street, London, EC1V 9LT. From £18, until 18 March ★★★☆☆ David Lloyd-Davies
Art review: Colourful Textiles
Designer, artist and architect. Josef Frank was a talented man and his full breadth of outputs is explored in this colourful exhibition. Textiles hang from the ceilings, paintings adorn the walls and there are showroom interiors. All bursting with colour and patterns. This small museum always does a great job with their limited exhibition space, and this is yet another successful show. Josef Frank: Patterns-Furniture-Paintings at Fashion & Textile Museum, 83 Bermondsey street, SE1 3XF. £9.90, until 7 May ★★★★☆ [Tuesday-Sunday]
Good cause of the day
Give to a good cause and enjoy Valentine's Day with Believe In Magic Valentine's party in Primrose Hill. Stargaze, tuck into locally brewed craft beer or even enter a raffle, in case you're feeling lucky. Single? Then get together with your mates and enjoy a night of feel-good entertainment. From £25, book ahead, 8pm-11.30pm [14 February]
Fun things to do with our friends and sponsor Funzing...
Learn about London's debauched, drunken and disorderly history on this tour of the sordid side of the West End. Have you heard the story of the 15ft high tsunami of beer which rushed through the streets of London? Or about London's unluckiest theatre and most morbidly-located church? This tour will take you from the Covent Garden to Somerset House, entertaining you with tales of hangmen and criminals, prostitutes and paupers and the eccentric characters of Georgian London along the way. Get tickets
Camden's known for its street art, but how much do you really know about it? Explore the street art of Camden, and learn about the people who make it from an insider. You''ll visit pieces of street art that are off the beaten track, and get an insight into their possible meaning and inspiration. This two-hour tour will enable you to see Camden in a new light. Get tickets
Visit old pubs, even older churches, hidden rivers, mysterious tunnels and more on this tour of hidden Londo. You'll hear tales of the myths and legends which made the City of London what it is today, and find out the area's links to nursery rhymes and literary figures. Get tickets
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