Things to do
CHRISTMAS CRAFTS: Use recycled materials to make your own 1940s-style Christmas decorations. The family-friendly event offers first-hand experience of how decorations were made in wartime, when craft materials were in short supply and people were encouraged to recycle instead National Army Museum (Chelsea), free, just turn up, 27-28 December
SOHO PUB WALK: Tour guide Richard Watkins leads a pub-themed jaunt through Soho. Visit a famous London department store which had its own local, a pub with an infamous pump on the street outside and one with an arm-less bard. Oxford Circus, £12/£9, book ahead, 2.30pm-4.30pm
JOHN WILLIAMS: Hear the work of film composer John Williams performed by the London Concert Orchestra. Music from Star Wars, Harry Potter, E.T., Jaws, Jurassic Park and several other very well known films is on the programme. Barbican, £17.50-£46, book ahead, 7.30pm
CHRISTMAS IN LONDON: For more festive things to do in the capital, take a look at our guide to Christmas in London. It’s packed full of festive events and things to do to see you right through until New Year, including ice skating, theatre shows, pantomimes and Christmas lights. Still not inspired? Take a look at our full guide to everything that’s happening in London between Christmas and New Year.
EXHIBITIONS: Why not use this downtime to catch up on a bit of culture? Several of London’s large exhibitions are still running between Christmas and the New Year, although do check gallery and museum websites for changes in opening times this week. Here are our picks, in no particular order:
Tutankhamun at Saatchi Gallery | Top Secret at Science Museum | Cars at V&A | Culture Under Attack at Imperial War Museum | Wildlife Photographer of the Year at Natural History Museum | Moving To Mars at Design Museum | The Moon at National Maritime Museum | Hidden London at London Transport Museum | Driverless at Science Museum | 24/7 at Somerset House | Gingerbread City at Somerset House | William Blake at Tate Britain | Olafur Eliasson at Tate Modern | Troy at British Museum | Tim Walker at V&A | Designed in Cuba at House of Illustration | Kara Walker at V&A | Rembrandt at Dulwich Picture Gallery | Gauguin at The National Gallery | Steve McQueen at Tate Britain | Inspired by the East at British Museum | Nam June Paik at Tate Modern | Pre-Raphaelite Sisters at National Portrait Gallery | Buddhism at The British Library | Lucian Freud at The Royal Academy | Leonardo da Vinci at The National Gallery.
Tube ponderings with Barry Heck
Our resident tube fancier dishes out daily thoughts on the London Underground.
Many of us still turn to the trusty Oyster card for tube travel, despite the rise of contactless debit cards and mobile phone apps. Not everyone knows how to wield the blue plastic properly, though, as we discovered when we compiled this guide on How not to use the Oyster Card in 12 bizarre stock images.
Follow Barry on Twitter @HeckTube.
Have a read
Catch up with some of our favourite articles from the year: