Try something new this winter!
By Sophia Moss (follow Sophia on Twitter: @EndlessMoss)
Let’s be honest: winter can be quite depressing. The weather is so cold that you avoid going outside as much as possible, the days are still short and it’s way too easy to stay in bed all day and watch TV. Luckily our wonderfully diverse capital always has something going on and there are lots of interesting, cheap, and indoor activities which you can take part in this February! So instead of moping around watching Netflix for the 700th time why not throw on a big coat, don your woolly hat and try something new this winter. We’ve got everything from free art galleries and speed dating cat events to all night raves and BMX biking sessions, so there really is something for everyone!
#1 | The Wellcome Collection
The welcome collection is a free venue in Euston which hosts exhibitions, discussions and performances with a focus on medicine, life and art. They have two permanent exhibitions called ‘Medicine Now’ and ‘Medicine Man’ which focus on science and medicine and centre around Henry Wellcome, the founder of the Wellcome Collection. They are also hosting an exhibition until the 21st of May entitled ‘Making Nature: How we see animals’ which explores human ideas about other animals and how these ideas have impacted our planet. There is also a new exhibition coming on the 23rd of February which focuses on electricity.
When? The Wellcome Collection hosts many events throughout the year. For details of current and upcoming events click here.
Where? The Wellcome collection is located t 183 Euston Road NW1 2BE. It is very close to Euston Square Station and Euston Station and can also be accessed by various bus routes. For full details click here.
#2 | The Pancake & Booze Art Show
This is not your regular art show. The Pancake & Booze Art Show is an American pop-up underground art show which is coming to London on the 17th of February. This show features contributions from around 70 local artists, photographers and music makers and aims to help them showcase their work during a pancake and booze fuelled event. There will be free pancakes, live body painting and lots of booze until 1:am and the event only costs £5, so why not try something different and head down to East London on Friday?
When? Friday 17th February 19:00-1:00am.
#3 | William Morris Gallery
The William Morris Gallery is a public art gallery which is devoted to the life and legacy of William Morris. It is located in a beautiful grade II building in Walthamstow, N.E London in what was Morris’s family from in the 1800s. The gallery is free to visit and it hosts exhibitions throughout the year. The gallery is currently showing ‘Sheer Pleasure’, an exhibition which explores the artist Frank Brangwyn RA’s collection of Japanese prints and paintings as well as his collaboration with Japanese artists. There is also a photography exhibition which focuses on Red Saunders collection of re-imagined photographs which centre around Britain’s struggle for democracy.
When? The gallery is open Wednesday-Sunday from 10am-5pm.
Where? William Morris Gallery is located at Lloyd Park, Forest Road, London E17 4PP. It is a short walk away from Walthasmstow Central tube station on the end of the Victoria line. For more information please see here.
#4 | The Horniman Museum & Gardens
If you’re interested in natural history why not give the National History Museum in South Kensington a miss and instead try the Horniman Museum in Forest Hill, S.E London? This museum hosts a range of free and ticketed events, displays and exhibitions including their natural history display, Hornimans farmers market, the aquarium, the animal walk which will bring you up close and personal with goats, alpacas, rabbits and more, the music gallery and temporary exhibitions including the ‘Animal Zoo’ and ‘A Tribute to Taxidermy.’
When? The museum is open daily from 10.30 am till 5.30 pm. Admission to the museum and surrounding gardens is free, but there is a charge for the aquarium and some temporary exhibitions.
Where? The museum is located at 100 London Road, Forest Hill, London, SE23 3PQ. It is a short walk away from Forest Hill station on the London Overground and is served by several local buses. For more information please see here.
#5 | Free Tv & Radio Shows
Do you fancy doing something different? Why not apply to become an audience member for your favourite TV and Radio shows? You are able to apply for an audience member ticket for loads of popular TV and Radio shows including (but not limited to) The Now Show, A Question Of Sport, Afternoon on 3, The News Quiz and more. Tickets become available all the time so if you don’t fancy any of the options right now check back throughout the year to see if something becomes available. To apply for tickets you can either use the BBC website (or ITV if you fancy being an audience member for the Jeremy Kyle show) or for a wider selection try one of these third party websites. It is important to remember that these shows are often high in demand so applying will not guarantee you a ticket, and if you do get a ticket you will still have to turn up early to secure your place.
Where? Various venues across the UK.
#6 | House Of Vans
The House of Vans is a creative venue which hosts workshops, art installations, concerts and a free cinema! They run the Little Rippers Film Club every Saturday and Sunday morning which provides free child-friendly screenings which parents can accompany/send their kids to, and they also have evening screenings of alternative films and documentaries which adults can enjoy. These screenings are all free, but the evening events need to be booked in advance to avoid disappointment. The House of Vans also runs free open art workshops, BMX and skateboarding events (with a free burger!), and lectures which focus on publishing, street culture, photography etc. Click here for more information about free film screenings in the capital.
When? The House Of Vans hosts several free film screenings as well as other activities from Thursday to Sunday (it is closed Monday to Wednesday). For more information please click here.
Where? The House Of Vans can be found at Station Approach Rd, Lambeth, London SE1. It is within walking distance from Waterloo station.
#7 | The Hive
The Hive is an independent social space in Hackney which is facilitated by the not-for-profit ReSpace Projects company which helps put empty buildings to good use. This venue hosts tons of events such as yoga classes, political meetings, film screenings, live music, poetry slams and party nights. Why not join them for a film screening on the 23rd of February for a documentary about climate change and some vegan food, or come along to a free poetry jam event with a BYOB policy? If you’re looking for a party why not head down to their ‘Grand Theft Audio’ event which aims to ‘take back the music’ with a series of bands, performances and interactive theatre? Many events at the Hive are free to enter (donations are encouraged) and they often have a BYOB policy so it really is the ideal place for anyone whose Broke in London!
Where? The Hive is located near the canal at 260-264 Kingsland Road E8 4DG in Hackney. The closest station is Haggerston on the overground.
When? There are various events taking place throughout the month. For more information please click here.