Things To Do This Weekend In London: 29-30 January 2022

All weekend

The brilliant Beano exhibition is still on at Somerset House. © Beano/Horace Panter

BURNS NIGHT EVENTS: Burns Night was Tuesday 25 January, but celebrations continue into the weekend. Peruse our events guide for the lowdown on a ceilidh in Marylebone, a family-friendly celebration in Paddington, and other ways to toast Rabbie Burns.

BIG GARDEN BIRDWATCH: Help the RSPB keep an eye on the numbers of wild birds in London by taking part in the Big Garden Birdwatch. If you're lucky enough to have a garden or outside space, spend an hour counting and recording the numbers and types of birds that visit, then report back to the RPSB. The charity uses the data to spot any patterns, anomalies, or any species that may be in danger. 28-30 January

WILD AND WONDERFUL: This exhibition celebrating the connection people rediscovered with nature during the pandemic — and spotlighting artists who use natural materials — comes to King's Road, with  painting, etching, and hand-crafted glass sculpture for sale. 508 Gallery (Chelsea), free, just turn up, until 31 January

WELLCOME COLLECTION RETURNS: After a(nother) Covid-related forced closure, The Wellcome Collection has opened its doors for the first time this year, giving you an opportunity to explore its medicine and science-related displays and exhibitions. (Euston), free entry, book ahead, from 25 January

Join in with the Big Garden Birdwatch. Image: RSPB

FRANCIS BACON: Irish-born artist and Soho scenester Francis Bacon is the subject of a new Royal Academy of Arts exhibition which opens on Saturday. Get a closer look at his visceral paintings in Francis Bacon: Man and Beast, which focuses on his fascination with animals and how it shaped and distorted his approach to the human body. Royal Academy (Mayfair), £22-£24.50, book ahead, 29 January-17 April

BATTERSEA LIGHTS: We're already a couple of weeks into Battersea Light Festival, so why not visit this weekend if you haven't already? Six glowing installations are dotted around the area surrounding Battersea Power Station, including digital origami tigers and a glowing 'greenhouse'. Cheering, free, entertainment — just what the doctor ordered. Battersea Power Station, free, just turn up, until 27 February 2022

BEANO: There's still time to see the Somerset House exhibition dedicated to all things Beano (which our reviewer gave 5* when it opened). Relive some of your favourite Beano moments with artworks, archive items and memorabilia featuring Dennis, Gnasher and co — or, if you're of a certain age, introduce your kids to the world of the iconic comic. Somerset House, £16/£12.50, book ahead, until 6 March 2022

LIFE BETWEEN ISLANDS: Also ongoing is Life Between Islands, an exhibition of artworks by British-Caribbean artists from the 1950s to the present day. It features work by those who came to the UK as part of the Windrush Generation, as well as the many generations of British-Caribbean artists whose creativity makes British art so much richer. Tate Britain, £16, book ahead, until 3 April 2022

Saturday 29 January

Shop for snowdrops at Myddelton House Gardens

SNOWDROP SALE: It's snowdrop season, and if you're thinking about cultivating your own garden of the white flowers, head to this snowdrop sale. Stock up on some new varieties, and make time to explore the fascinating gardens while you're there. Myddelton House Gardens (Enfield), £4.50, just turn up, 10.30am-12pm

PHOTOGRAPHY MASTERCLASS: Want to improve your portrait photography skills? Montcalm East's resident photographer Harry Adams runs a series of masterclasses — today's focuses on basic photo editing and post-production skills. Montcalm East (Shoreditch), £15, book ahead, 11am-1pm

YOUNG POLAND: Tying in with the current Young Poland exhibition, the William Morris Gallery has put together a day of talks by experts in the Polish arts and crafts movement. Find out how the movement has influenced present day artists, and take a virtual tour of the exhibition. Online event, suggested donation £10, book ahead, 11am-4.15pm

It's all guts, hearts and brains at Poplar Union

BARELY METHODICAL TROUPE: Last chance to catch six-person acrobat group Barely Methodical Troupe at this year's London International Mime Festival. Their show, Kin, features deadpan humour, disarming emotion and jaw-dropping acrobatics, and it finishes tonight. Sadler's Wells, £18-£45, book ahead, 5pm

ANATOMY PARK: Choreographer Joel O'Donoghue presents a trio of new dance theatre works about the body, focusing specifically on the gut, the heart and the brain. Tea, cake, knitting and bad cabaret are also involved, apparently, which has certainly piqued our interest. Poplar Union, £10/£8, book ahead, 7.30pm-9.15pm (and there's a relaxed matinee performance tomorrow at 3pm)

RHAPSODY: It's the final night of UCL's Live Music Society's biggest show of the year. Rhapsody has a setlist of 20 songs, including (but not limited to) jazz rearrangements of pop tracks to rock with added brass, pop medleys, soft vocal numbers, pure funk and a rock original with strings. Bloomsbury Theatre, £8.50, book ahead, 7.30pm

Sunday 30 January

No Rules! Family Festival at Dulwich Picture Gallery

FAMILY FESTIVAL: Take the kids along to Dulwich Picture Gallery for the No Rules! Family Festival. Tying in with the current Helen Frankenthaler: Radical Beauty exhibition, the festival consists of creative workshops using marbling, paper pulping, fabric art, light projections and more. Dulwich Picture Gallery, £15 per adult, book ahead, 10am-5pm

BOWERY BABY BALLROOM: Celebrate legendary performance artist Leigh Bowery with family-friendly sessions of art, crafting and music. Take part in a costume creation workshop followed by a gallery trip to see Bowery’s incredible designs. Aimed at ages 3-7. Fitzrovia Chapel, £10 for one adult and one child, book ahead, various sessions 10.30am-6pm

CHARLES I: Every year, the anniversary of the execution of Charles I is commemorated. The event begins at 11am in the Mall, when the King's Army — the Royalist part of the English Civil War Society — gather in full costume, with mounted troops and weapons, and march up to Horse Guards Parade for a commemorative service. Well worth watching if you're in the area. Free, just turn up, 11am

REFLECTING GREENWICH: On the final day of the Reflecting Greenwich exhibition, join guide Ian Porter for a walk through the historic sights of maritime Greenwich, many of which feature in the exhibition. See how some views are remarkably unchanged from the time they were painted, while others are now radically different. Old Royal Naval College (Greenwich), £10, book ahead, 11.30am-12.30pm

COMEDY CLUB 4 KIDS: It's never too early to introduce school kids to the art of a good joke. Comedy Club 4 Kids does just that, bringing respected comedians to the stage to do what they do best, with the jokes toned down for a younger audience. Age 6+. artsdepot (North Finchley), from £9, book ahead, 12pm/2.30pm

CITY GARDENS: Following the destruction of the blitz, the sites of many damaged buildings became small City gardens. Footprints of London guide Marilyn Greene leads a tour of some of these sites, including where Sir Christopher Wren churches once stood. Meet outside Museum of London, £12/£9, book ahead, 2pm

Footprints of London runs a walking tour of City gardens

DULWICH HAMLET: The women's first team takes on Saltdean United at Champion Hill — and with the latter at the bottom of the table, Dulwich's finest will be looking for three points. Champion Hill Stadium (East Dulwich), £4.32, book ahead, 2pm KO

HISTORY TOUR: Join an expert for a guided tour around Fulham Palace, home of the Bishops of London. Explore inside and out, including the Victorian chapel and Tudor great hall, soaking up its history as you go. Fulham Palace, £8, book ahead, 2pm-3.15pm

FAMILY TAKEOVER: Camden Art Centre continues its series of family takeover days, inspired by the current Building As Body exhibition. Today, the focus is on our bodies' networks and systems, with activities looking at how materials are transported around a network. Camden Art Centre, free, book ahead, 2pm-4.30pm

SUNDAY CONCERT: Cello player Robert Max is the performer at this week's Sunday Concert, which can be watched in person or online. He performs six of Bach's cello Suites in full. Conway Hall (Holborn) £12/ online £10, book ahead, 6.30pm-8pm

WEAPONS OF MASS HILARITY: Darius Davies (host and co-creator of the hit sell-out Edinburgh show, Hate 'n' Live), the fabulously twisted Shirley & Shirley, and no-nonsense Moroccan Laila Alj star in this brilliant monthly comedy showcase. 2Northdown (King's Cross), £11, book ahead, 7pm-9.45pm

COMEDY NIGHT: Collywobblers Comedy hosts Simon Brodkin, Roman Harris, Karen Hobbs, Steve Bugeja and Vix Leyton for a night of laughs, with Sion James as MC. The Railway (Streatham), £10 in advance/£15 on the night, doors 7pm, show 8pm