London events in October

Your month-by-month guide to the best new events in London

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© Giles Barnard, courtesy Royal Parks

The return of crisp days and cold evenings mean we're on the verge of winter, but that's no excuse to hibernate. October is all about long leafy walks, pubs with fires and fancy dress (for Halloween, of course).

Our October highlights

  1. Southbank Centre Belvedere Rd, SE1 8XX
  2. Sat Oct 4
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  1. The O2 Peninsula Square, SE10 0DX
  2. Thu Oct 9 - Fri Oct 10
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  1. Museum of London 150 London Wall, EC2Y 5HN
  2. Fri Oct 17 - Sun Apr 12
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Silent Disco at The View from The Shard

The silent disco phenomenon reaches new heights at these exclusive Time Out events. Pick your channel and choose your side as three DJs battle it out over separate wireless channels, playing the best in pop, rock and party classics, while you dance the night away at 1,000ft. The View from The Shard is the visitor attraction at the top of Western Europe's tallest building, The Shard. With unparalleled, panoramic views, it offers visitors a unique perspective on the capital.

  1. The View from the Shard Joiner St, SE1 9QU
  2. Sat Aug 2 - Sun Nov 16
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Real Food Market

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Now weekly, the Real Food Market features around 40 food and drink producers selling seasonal produce directly to the public. Typical stalls include Spinach and Agusi with spicy Ghanaian stews; the Meantime Brewing Company with Greenwich-made beers; and Ash Green Organics with seasonal fruit and veg. There's a focus on sustainably and ethically produced food, and the market proudly supports small producers and independent traders. Whether you're coming to shop or snack, you can

  1. Southbank Centre Square Belvedere Rd, SE1 8XX
  2. Fri Mar 21 - Sun Mar 22
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The Alternative London Tour

  • Free

East London's 'alternative' side is revealed on this leftfield tour. Expect to be introduced to the history and culture of the Brick Lane 'Banglatown' and Shoreditch areas as well as current issues and street art. Booking essential via www.alternativeldn.co.uk

  1. Old Spitalfields Market Brushfield Street, Spitalfields, E1 6AA
  2. Fri Aug 1 - Sat Dec 20
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Disobedient Objects

  • Free

A selection of objects from the 1980s to now that detail the history of protest and the role these objects played in making change happen. Including woven barriers, political videogames, an inflatable general assembly (a creation by Greta Hansen that brings together and covers a public gathering, a bit like a marquee), experimental activist bicycles and much more.

  1. V&A Cromwell Rd, SW7 2RL
  2. Fri Aug 1 - Sun Feb 1
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An Idiosyncratic A to Z of the Human Condition

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Free

You’re using your knowledge of the alphabet right now, but there’s no need for us to dwell on it much once we’ve graduated from spelling tests to spellcheck, other than trying to remember whether it’s T for Tango or T for two. The Wellcome Collection clearly doesn’t agree, though, and has taken letters into its own hands; while its main exhibition space gets a multimillion- pound makeover, it’s brightened a long, plain hall with ‘An Idiosyncratic A to Z of the Human

  1. Wellcome Collection Euston Rd, NW1 2BE
  2. Fri Aug 1 - Sun Oct 12
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Truth and Memory: British Art of the First World War

  • Rated as: 5/5
  • Free

The war was just too big, confided William Kennington after he had completed his masterpiece ‘The Kensingtons at Laventie’ in 1915, one of the first things you’ll see in the ‘Memory’ section of this captivating two-part show. The authorities had hoped that Kennington would make more paintings to rival his pin-sharp, quietly devastating depiction of his unit – knackered, wounded, each soldier caught in a moment of reflection after their march back to billets from the

  1. Imperial War Museum Lambeth Rd, SE1 6HZ
  2. Fri Aug 1 - Sun Mar 8
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Natural History Museum Late

A monthly late opening of the museum and temporary exhibitions, with free entry to the Central Hall and Images of Nature gallery, changing discussions on timely themes, open-mic performances by up-and-coming musicians throughout the evening, and British farmers’-market-style food and drink in the pop-up restaurant. Themes for each monthly discussion change; see the museum website for details of forthcoming discussions, which are bookable in advance.

  1. Natural History Museum Cromwell Road, SW7 5BD
  2. Fri Aug 29 - Fri Oct 31
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Toy Stories

  • Free

Of all the material possessions we get attached to over the years, it's our childhood toys that end up in the loft for decades because parting with them is just too hard. Italian photographer Gabriele Galimberti visited more than 50 countries to create portraits of children with their most prized belongings, and this exhibition tells the story of 21 kids from a wide range of backgrounds. Different tastes and economic statuses mean that the toys  vary hugely, but the subjects'

  1. V&A Museum of Childhood Cambridge Heath Road, E2 9PA
  2. Fri Aug 1 - Sun Dec 14
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Fashion Rules Exhibition

  • Critics choice

See some exquisite regal fashion in all its splendour at a new showcase of gowns worn by HM The Queen, Princess Margaret and Diana, Princess of Wales. Twenty-one never-seen-before dresses will be on display, including as well as film and imagery providing the context of their outfits. Highlights include Her Majesty the Queen's couture gowns by Hardy Amies and favoured tailor Norman Hartnell; Princess Margaret's fur coats and hippyish '60s apparel, and naturally, plenty of '80s

  1. Kensington Palace The Broadwalk, Kensington Gardens, W8 4PX
  2. Fri Aug 1 - Sat Jul 4
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Joan Fontcuberta: Stranger Than Fiction

  • Rated as: 4/5

Spanish photographer Joan Fontcuberta was brought up under the censorious Franco regime, so it’s no wonder that the 59-year-old is sceptical about institutional authority. Questioning religion, biology, even the role of the museum itself, this modest retrospective at the Science Museum’s Media Space presents six brilliant bodies of the artist’s work, which span over three decades. Fontcuberta, whose surname means ‘hidden fountain’, relishes his role as a puckish

  1. Science Museum Exhibition Rd, SW7 2DD
  2. Fri Aug 1 - Sun Nov 9
More info
See more events in the capital this October

August

Fill your diary with a shed-load of scorching events this month including Wilderness, Holi One and Notting Hill Carnival

SEE WHAT'S ON IN AUGUST

September

Say goodbye to summer in style – get out and get stuck into the last of the capital's festivals, pop-up and outdoor shindigs this month

SEE WHAT'S ON IN SEPTEMBER

October

The return of crisp days and cold evenings mean we're on the verge of winter, but that's no excuse to hibernate

SEE WHAT'S ON IN OCTOBER

November

It might be warmer to stay at home, but there's plenty taking place this November to warrant ditching the duvet for a day

SEE WHAT'S ON IN NOVEMBER


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