Things To Do In London This Weekend: 9-10 February 2019

All weekend

The colours and animals of Colombia come to Kew Gardens

URBAN SKETCHES: A series of ink drawings by local artist Nicky Yianni go on display. Several local buildings can be seen in the work, including renderings of Forty Hall itself from multiple viewpoints.  Forty Hall (Enfield), free, just turn up, 9 February-31 March

LONDON STORIES: London Transport Museum’s new exhibition showcases 100 entries from the Poster Prize for Illustration 2019 competition. The theme this year is London Stories, and artists were tasked with representing a London story — current, historical, real or fictional — in a single image. London Transport Museum (Covent Garden), included in museum admission, 8 February-summer 2019

BOOKSHOP CRAWL: If you love books, you need to know about the London Bookshop Crawl, a long weekend of in-store events, activities and discounts designed to highlight London’s fantastic book stores. Download your ‘ID card’ from the website to get in on all the fun, then plan your route with the help of this map of participating venues. If you can get round them all in a weekend, we salute you. Various locations, free (charge and booking required for some events), 8-10 February

TOWN MOUSE: The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse is the latest children’s story brought to life on the Puppet Theatre Barge with music and sing-alongs. Two mouse cousins from very different walks of mouse life take it in turns to visit each other, with both learning something about themselves as they navigate unfamiliar surroundings. Puppet Theatre Barge (Little Venice), £13/£10/£9, book ahead, 9 February-24 March

ORCHIDS: One of the most beautiful events in London returns this weekend. Colombia is the focus of this year’s Orchids Festival at Kew. The Princess of Wales Conservatory is awash with colour as Colombia’s native wildlife, including toucans and sloths, are recreated in flower form. Kew Gardens, included in admission, book ahead, 9 February-10 March

NEW EXHIBITIONS: It’s opening weekend for several of our top February exhibition picks

DON MCCULLIN: Work by war photographer Don McCullin comes to Tate Britain, showcasing photos taken over a 60 year period, in Vietnam, Northern Ireland and Syria. Tate Britain, £18, book ahead, 5 February-6 May

TRACEY EMIN: Sculpture, neon art, paintings, film, photography and drawing, by Tracey Emin are on display in this solo exhibition, all focusing on the artist’s own memories and emotions arising from loss, pathos, anger and love. White Cube (Bermondsey), free, just turn up, 6 February-7 April

SWINGING LONDON: Sixties designers Mary Quant and Terence Conran are the main focus of the Swinging London exhibition, which features work by the duo, as well as architects, designers, photographers and artists who were part of the Chelsea Set at the time. Fashion & Textile Museum (Bermondsey), £9.90/£8.80/£7, book ahead, 8 February-2 June

BEDROOMS OF LONDON: This new photo exhibition documents the living conditions of London’s most disadvantaged children. Photographer Katie Wilson highlights the damaging consequences for children arising from the shortage of social housing in London. Foundling Museum (Bloomsbury), included in admission, 8 February-5 May

NELSON MANDELA: Photos, video clips and artefacts on loan from museums around the world combine to tell the story of one of South Africa’s most famous people, Nelson Mandela, from being born in a rural village to spending 27 years in prison, to being elected as president. Leake Street Gallery (Waterloo), £12-£27, book ahead, 8 February-3 June

Saturday 9 February

Dance the night away at Candlelight Club

SOHO STREETS: Walk every street, alley and mews in Soho in a day? Doesn’t sound too hard until you realise there are 119 of them. Join Discovering London guide Peter Berthoud for what must be the most complete walking tour of Soho. As well as visiting every thoroughfare, stop in several pubs, and hear little-known tales of the area. Meet at Oxford Circus, £35, book ahead, 10am-4.30pm

NORTH SHORE: London’s ‘Middle City’ — the area between Westminster and the City — is explored in this North Shore walking tour. Moving between Charing Cross and St Bride’s, see watergates, palaces, hotels, medieval cloisters, churches and Parisian boulevards, which all tell stories from the area’s days as centre of law, newspapers, gossip and entertainment. Embankment Station, £12/£10, book ahead, 10.30am-12.30pm

DEPOT TOURS: Edward Johnston — famous for designing the instantly recognisable font used on London Underground signs — is the subject of this month’s depot tours at London Transport Museum’s Acton depot. Learn about the history of his famous font, and see items from the museum’s collection related to it. Acton Depot, £12/£10, book ahead, 11am/2pm

CHINESE NEW YEAR: Traditional lion dances, theatre performances, a dragon dance workshop and themed crafts are just some of the family-friendly activities at this fun day, which celebrates Chinese New Year. National Maritime Museum (Greenwich), free, just turn up, 11am-4pm

TROPICAL NURSERY: Go behind the scenes in Kew Gardens’ tropical conservatory — probably one of the warmest places in London right now. Find out how the expert staff grow and care for some of the world’s rarest plants, including orchids and cacti, and learn more about the conservation processes. Kew Gardens, £10 (plus admission to gardens), book ahead, 12.45pm/1.30pm/2.15pm

OPEN MIC: Singers, poets, rappers, dancers and actors aged 11-17 and from the local area take to the stage to show off their talents and hone their skills. Go along for free and give them some support. Ritzy (Brixton), free, just turn up, 1pm

FRANCK’S FIGHT: Professor Green and Enter Shikari are both DJing at this House of Vans event, which is raising money for Franck’s Fight, in aid of a young boy diagnosed with leukaemia. Skate jams, live portraits, and a pop-up tattoo parlour are just some of the activities going on. House of Vans (Waterloo), £10 (additional donations welcome), book ahead, 2pm-10pm

CARD MAKING: Cards are just so much more special when you personalise them, rather than buying someone else’s work off the shelf. Have a fantastic time learning how to do so — cocktail in hand — at this workshop hosted by the Photocopy Club and Beefeater Gin. Tonight Josephine (Shoreditch), £10 (includes two free cocktails), book ahead, 3pm-4pm

VALENTINE’S BALL: Get your glad rags on for Candlelight Club’s Valentine’s Ball, a 1920s speakeasy themed night of dancing, vintage DJs sets, burlesque, acrobatics and other live performers. Secret east London location, from £30, book ahead, 7pm-midnight

NHS AT 70: In this solo show, comedian Mark Thomas focuses on the NHS, and particularly on what state it might be in 30 years time, when it reaches its centenary. The show’s based on interviews with NHS experts, and residencies in NHS hospitals. ArtsDepot (North Finchley), from £12, book ahead, 7.30pm

MOVIE MUSIC: Tunes from classic films including Star Wars, The Godfather, Ben Hur, Lord Of The Rings and Jaws are brought to life in this Music from the Movies performance by the London Concert Orchestra. Southbank Centre, £16.50-£47.50, book ahead, 7.30pm

Sunday 10 February

Get crafting for Valentine’s Day

CHINESE NEW YEAR: Chinatown’s biggest event of the year happens today — the Chinese New Year celebrations. The parade begins at 10am, weaving through Chinatown from Trafalgar Square to Shaftesbury Avenue. Then from 11am-6pm, a free festival takes place in Trafalgar Square, Charing Cross Road and Leicester Square. See the full programme Chinatown and surrounds, free, just turn up, from 10am

VALENTINE’S CRAFTS: Get your craft on and learn how to make a piece of felt collage jewellery with The Make Escape — just in time for Valentine’s Day. It’s all very relaxed, so choose whether you want to make something for your other half, a friend… or yourself. All materials are provided and a drink is included with your ticket. Drink, Shop & Do (King’s Cross), £15, book ahead, 10.30am-1pm

DOG WALK: Take your pooch along to this Valentine’s walk for canines and their humans, raising money for animal charity All Dogs Matter. Begin at the Garden Gate pub before going for an hour-long walk, then return to the pub for hot drinks. Garden Gate (Hampstead Heath), £5, book ahead, 11am

VINTAGE FAIR: Frock Me! Vintage Fair brings together knowledgable vintage fashion traders selling rails and rails of retro clothes including dresses, skirts and coats. Once you’ve put an outfit together, head upstairs to the jewellery fair for the finishing touches. Chelsea Old Town Hall, £4/£2, booking recommended, 11am-5.30pm

LONDON SPIRAL WALK: The latest section of the London Spiral Walk is a strenuous eight-mile ramble between Bromley South and Knockholt stations, via the source of the River Ravensbourne, an Iron Age encampment, and Charles Darwin’s former residence, Down House. Meet at Bromley South station, free, just turn up, 12.30pm

WALTHAMSTOW WALK: Take a guided walk through the parts of Walthamstow you probably don’t know, including a theatre hidden within a school. Find out why the interior designer of the Granada Cinema was nicknamed “Come and Seduce me”, and visit the original Walthamstow village on the route between the William Morris Gallery and Ravenswood Industrial Estate (home to God’s Own Junkyard and Wild Card Brewery). William Morris Gallery, £12/£9, book ahead, 2pm-4pm

MYTHS AND MONSTERS: Puppetry, storytelling, live music and comedy are used to introduce children to Ancient Greek stories in this family show. Hear the stories of Heracles, Odysseus, Perseus, Zeus and Aphrodite, and learn about a creature that is half-eagle and half-lion. Watermans (Brentford), £10/£9, book ahead, 3pm

SUNDAY STORIES: Be one of just 12 guests at this monthly storytelling session for adults, which takes place around the Sarcophagus in Lion’s Chamber of The Last Tuesday Society’s Wunderkabinnet. If that all sounds mysterious, wait until storyteller Giles Abbott begins regaling you with tales of love and romance from Persia. The Last Tuesday Society (Hackney), £10/£5, book ahead, 6pm-8pm

BEER AND CHOCOLATE: What a combo, eh? This east London craft beer house hosts a chocolate and beer session with sommelier Katie Van de Weghe, with each brew paired to a taster of cocoa goodness. Tap East (Stratford), £20, book at the bar, 6pm-9pm

GERSHWIN REIMAGINED: Mobo-winning Laura Mvula brings her soulful, ebullient voice to the classic Gershwin songbook in this elegantly staged night of fresh interpretations. The Mercury-nominated singer-songwriter’s deft R&B and jazz improv chops combine with composer Troy Miller’s sparkling new arrangements of standards from Someone to Watch Over Me to I Got Rhythm, performed by the Philharmonia Orchestra with Olivier Award-nominee Shaun Escoffery lending vocal support. Southbank Centre, £35-£55, book ahead, 7.30pm

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2019-02-08 15:55:05 – Source: