What we’re reading
- From Bow to Barking: the songs that champion unglamorous London.
- London sexual health clinics 'oversubscribed'.
- An artists' studio space in Hackney Wick is to be bulldozed to make way for a bridge to the Olympic Park, despite a lengthy campaign to save it.
Things to do
VIRGINIA WOOLF'S LETTERS: "A true letter", Woolf insisted, "should be like a film of wax pressed close to the graving of the mind." See if her own letters pass the test (spoiler: they do) at this illustrated talk from art historian, critic and biographer Frances Spalding, who is launching The Illustrated Letters of Virginia Woolf the day before Woolf's birthday. Waterstones (Gower Street), £5/£3, book ahead, 1pm-2pm
HISTORY MYSTERY: Rather than bombard you with tonnes of history all at once, the archives mystery night introduces you to one unexpected story from the pamphlets, photographs, maps, letters and ephemera held in Bishopsgate Institute’s library and special collections. Bishopsgate Institute, £11/£7, book ahead, 6.30pm-8pm
BAR BINGO COCKTAIL CRAWL: Looking for London bars to indulge your cocktail habit? Pick up a bar bingo card before mixing up your own tipple at a Breaking Bad-themed bar, then you'll move onto a bar tucked away in a Mac repair shop and finish up at the weird but wonderful drinking den upstairs at the Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities. ABQ, E2 9DY, £25, book ahead, 6.30pm-9.30pm
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE CLEAN?: Clean Eating has spawned recipe books, restaurant menus and a dedicated following as well as its fair share of critics. Two leading journalists and a sports nutritionist discuss the restrictive dietary trend sweeping across the UK's kitchens. Foyles (Charing Cross), £6.98, book ahead, 7pm-8pm
SAHIKO EMBROIDERY: Sashiko means 'little stabs' in Japanese, but this relaxed stitching workshop is far from violent. It's also BYOB. The London Loom (Hackney Downs Studio), £25, book ahead, 7pm-9pm
ILLUMINATING INDIA: Wander around the Illuminating India Exhibition without the crowds and pick up some travel tips (and a Lonely Planet goody bag) at this after-hours event featuring an intro from the curators and Joe Bindloss, Lonely Planet’s Destination Editor for the Indian Subcontinent. Science Museum, £5, book ahead, 7pm-9pm
NEW WRITING NIGHT: Fancy being a theatre critic for the night and hearing some exciting new work from emerging writers? Head to the Scratch Bar to see three new plays and offer your feedback. Battersea Arts Centre, free, just turn up, 7.30pm
TUMULUS: Prepare to be thrown into the midst of London's chemsex scene via a murder set on Hampstead Heath in this queer noir play from Christopher Adams, described as a darker, gayer Murder She Wrote episode. The Vaults, £14.50, book ahead, 24-28 January
Good cause of the day: Sign up to Cancer Research UK's Race for Life in January and get 30% off
Preparing for Cancer Research UK's Race for Life is a great way to introduce regular exercise into your life while raising vital funds for research into the prevention, diagnosis and treatment for the more than 200 types of cancer. Sign up to a 5k, 10k or Pretty Muddy run before 31 January using the code RACE30 to kickstart a healthier you and get 30% off your entrance fee. Various venues, book ahead, (30% off until 31 January)
Fun things to do with our friends and sponsor Funzing...
London is a city of incredible transformation. With structural remains that date back to ancient history still in existence, this unique walking tour takes in Lost London in all its former glory. From the Titanic booking office to the graveyards of man's best friend, you'll discover the weird and wonderful places that used to exist in the capital but are now only committed to memory. Using old photographs, newspaper cuttings and stories from the past, you'll be amazed at what has largely been written out of our history books... Get tickets
Cross gas lit alleyways and stroll by ancient pubs as you discover forgotten parts of London. See the world's smallest police station and visit London's most superstitious hotel on a walking tour covering everything weird, wonderful and London. £12 Get tickets
Take to the waters and glide about in this beginner paddleboarding session. By the end of it, you'll be standing up and paddling solo, and there's plenty of help on hand to improve your technique. Change of clothes required. Get tickets
If you've never paired ceramics and prosecco before, why on earth not? It's a match made in heaven as Sam and Diana, co-creators of 'Make Your Own', prove at their wonderfully welcoming ceramic painting workshop. Pull up a stool, don an apron and get to work on your very own mug, plate, tile, bowl or ornament. They provide the ceramics as well as a selection of patterns, and will show you exactly how to transfer designs and paint to your heart's content. It's BYO so feel free to pop the prosecco and enjoy the company of like-minded Londoners as you get stuck into your creations. Get tickets