Things To Do This Weekend In London: 21-22 September 2019

All weekend

Last chance to see Dulwich Picture Gallery’s Colour Palace

COLOUR PALACE: If you’ve not yet ogled Yinka Iliro’s psychedelic Colour Palace, this is your final chance. Dulwich Picture Gallery’s 2019 pavilion is a 10m high cube with an atrium inside, inspired by a mash-up of African and European influences. Dulwich Picture Gallery, free, just turn up, until 22 September

UNDERWIRE FESTIVAL: Final couple of days of Underwire Festival, which celebrates women in the film industry. Highlights this weekend include dreamy short films, a live podcast and a chat with one of the UK’s most exciting young producers. Various locations and prices, book ahead, until 22 September

TOOTOPIA: Toot toot! Tootopia is a local festival celebrating all that Tooting has to offer. Follow your stomach on a foodie trail around the area. Ticketed events include walking tours, wine tastings and family raves. Various locations and prices, book ahead, 20-22 September

The Baitul Futuh Mosque in Morden is on the Open House programme

OPEN HOUSE WEEKEND: We’re like a kid on Christmas Eve just thinking about Open House Weekend, when hundreds of usually-private London buildings open their doors to the public. Alas, prebookable events have long sold out, but you can still turn up on the day and visit many places. The more popular the building, the longer the queues to get in are, so it sometimes pays to be strategic and pick something a bit niche or off-the-beaten-track. Full listings here.  All over London, free, just turn up, 21-22 September

FARM FEST: Celebrate the harvest with a special weekend at Lee Valley Park Farms. Meet the animals, enjoy live music, and keep the kids busy with a children’s entertainer and face painting. Lee Valley Park Farms, £10, book ahead, 21-22 September

OPEN STUDIOS: See artists working in several disciplines in action as you follow a trail through their workspaces at Wapping Open Studios. Painters, photographers, jewellery makers, film producers, designers and dancers are all on hand to talk to visitors about their work, and to sell their products. Wapping Studios, free, just turn up, 21-22 September

Be enchanted at the Lovely Bug Ball

THE LOVELY BUG BALL: Dancing and puppets combine to create the Lovely Bug Ball, an enchanting theatre show for all ages. Set to a specially-composed soundtrack, it features caterpillars, beetles and fireflies making their way through the forest. It’s a non-verbal show, designed with those on the autism spectrum in mind. Underbelly Festival (South Bank), from £10.25, book ahead, 21-22 September

STAR WARS: Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back is presented live in concert for the first time in the UK. Many die-hard’s favourite film in the saga is accompanied by the Philharmonia Orchestra playing John Williams’ famous score. Royal Albert Hall, £18-£86.99, book ahead, 21-23 September

A new Antony Gormley exhibition opens. © the Artist. Photo: Stephen White, London.

ANTONY GORMLEY: Be one of the first to see this new exhibition of work by Britain’s best-known sculptor, Antony Gormley. It celebrates 45 years of his work, featuring old and new pieces. A word of warning: it’s likely to be very busy this first weekend, so it might be worth consider going on a later date. Royal Academy, £18-£22, book ahead, 21 September-3 December

TOTALLY THAMES: It’s still September, which means Totally Thames is still lapping at the shore. This weekend, attend a festival at Erith Pier, get to know boating in Greenwich, or get involved in a river clean-up, alongside the ongoing exhibitions and events. Until 30 September

WINTER NIGHT GARDEN: Classic films and new releases are on the programme at Backyard Cinema’s Winter Night Garden season. This weekend, sing along to Grease, get a huge dose of the 1990s with Pretty Woman, or take the kids to see Cool Runnings. Capital Studios (Wandsworth), from £18.99, book ahead, until 6 October

Saturday 21 September

Stock up on plants at Dulwich Picture Gallery

PLANT MARKET: Pimp up your pad with a shiny new houseplant from the Green Rooms Market. Plant sellers and experts pitch up in Dulwich to sell an array of different types and species of greenery, and all the accessories you need to look after them including pots and terrariums. They also offer tip and advice on choosing a plant… and keeping it alive. Dulwich Picture Gallery, free entry, just turn up, 10am-5pm

LONDON CIRCLE WALK: Walking boots at the ready for the London Circle Walk, an epic 20-mile circular walk around the capital. Dress appropriately and bring plenty of supplies to keep you going until the lunch stop in Kensington. Tower Bridge, free, just turn up, 10am-7pm

SWIM SERPENTINE: Unfortunately (or happily, depending on your feelings), the deadline for signing up for Swim Serpentine has passed. But, you’re still welcome to head down to Hyde Park’s lake and watch the plucky swimmers taking part in the charity open water swim. Grandstands are available for watching the action, with a programme of film screenings and talks about open water swimming nearby. Hyde Park, free, just turn up, from 10am

Watch people take part in Swim Serpentine

RANGER RAMBLE: Site rangers from the Lee Valley offer a guided tour of Leyton and Walthamstow Marshes, for those interested in natural history or peaceful countryside walks. It’s mainly aimed at adults, and takes about two hours, covering the aviation history of the area as well as some of the resident wildlife species. Walthamstow and Leyton Marshes, free, just turn up, 10.30am-12.30pm

ROMAN LONDON: Learn what London was like when the Roman were in charge on this family-friendly Museum of London walk. Visit the remains of the Roman city wall, and the site of Londinium’s hidden amphitheatre, where brave gladiators fought in front of crowds. Museum of London, £7.50/£5, book ahead, 11am

WE ARE ALL LONDONERS: City Hall opens its doors to all Londoners for a celebration of the diversity of our city through stories, language, sport and music. Storytelling, short films about Londoners from other EU nations, a language cafe and a panel discussion about Brexit all feature. City Hall, free, book ahead, 11am-3.30pm

Celebrate Springsteen’s 70th birthday

MEDICAL FITZROVIA: Join a guided walk covering the medical history of the Fitzrovia area, linked to its hospitals and workhouses. See the first private hospital in London, hear the story of the birth of family planning, and finish with a short tour inside Fitzrovia Chapel, once part of Middlesex Hospital. Fitzrovia, £15, book ahead, 2pm-3.30pm

GREAT ESCAPE: Watch 1963 film The Great Escape — starring Steve McQueen and Richard Attenborough — on the big screen. The BBC Concert Orchestra performs Elmer Bernstein’s accompanying score live — it’s one of the best-known theme tunes in film history, and it’s bound to be in your head for the next week. Southbank Centre, £20-£45, book ahead, 7pm

SPRINGSTEEN: The Boss turns 70 on Monday. Mark the occasion with a Bruce Springsteen-themed club night. Expect to hear all the Bruce Springsteen you can handle, and see screenings of his music videos throughout the night and into the early hours. Oval Space (Cambridge Heath), £17.50, book ahead, 8pm-3am

Sunday 22 September

London goes car-free for the day. Photo: Shutterstock

CAR-FREE DAY: Central London is set to look and sound very different as traffic is banned for the day. Roads around Tower Bridge, London Bridge and the City of London are all taking part in Car-Free Day — some ban cars but are still open to buses, while others are completely traffic-free, so check your bus route in advance. All day

CHARITY WALK: Royal Trinity Hospice holds a fundraising family walk and fun day. Choose between a 2-mile, 5-mile or 8-mile route, then enjoy live music, a barbecue, entertainment and stalls at the finish line.  Clapham Common, £15/£5 + £25 sponsorship pledge, book ahead, 10am-4pm

FAMILY POLITICS: Politics is confusing even for fully grown adults to understand (especially right now), so how are kids supposed to follow it? That’s where family-friendly show How Does This Politics Thing Work Then? comes in. Aimed at age 6+, it uses comedy to provide an engaging and informative introduction to politics — Mum and Dad might even learn something too. ArtsDepot (North Finchley), from £9, book ahead, 11am/2pm

Eat on the dark side at the Black Food Festival

BLACK FOOD: Black coffee, black garlic, black sesame ice cream… there’s definitely a theme to the Black Food Festival. Several food businesses serve up their dishes, include cake, macarons, and charcoal and sesame infused items, in an attempt to win first prize. Oval Space (Bethnal Green), £12, book ahead, 11am-9pm

JAZZ JAM: East London musical trio Big Bad Wolf headline today’s Jazz Jam. It’s a relaxed session, with serious jazz fans, casual observers and families all welcome. After Big Bad Wolf perform, the floor is open for any musicians who want to perform (piano and drums provided). Foyles Charing Cross Road, free, book ahead, 12pm-3pm

CONNAUGHT VILLAGE IMAGINES: While the roads are car-free (see above), Connaught Village makes the most of the empty streets with Connaught Village Imagines. The free event is similar to a street party, with workshops, activities, games and live music to wander between. Connaught Village (Marble Arch), free, just turn up, 12pm-5pm

Learn how to make your own macarons

MACARON CLASS: Indulge your French patisserie dreams and learn how to make colourful macarons at this masterclass. It begins with a full demonstration, then it’s over to you to put what you’ve learned into practice. All ingredients are included, as are recipes to take home. See you on the next series of GBBO? Wandsworth (address given on booking), £75, book ahead, 5pm-8pm (sponsor)

RICHARD DAWKINS: Ethologist and famous atheist Richard Dawkins introduces his new book, Outgrowing God, in which he dissects several stories from the Bible to encourage the reader to think for themselves. Should we believe in God? Do we need God in order to be good? Just some of the questions Dawkins wants the audience to rethink. Southbank Centre, £20-£40, book ahead, 7.30pm

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2019-09-20 15:55:05 – Source: