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35 marvellous things to do in London this weekend

Alexandra Sims

This week saw International Women’s Day celebrating the achievements of women around the world. See through the boss lady magic into the weekend by watching a whole of host of fabulous ladies do their thing at the Southbank Centre’s Women of the World festival, checking out female roller derby teams battling in a London v Dublin match, or treating your mum to a special London outing for Mother’s Day. 


WOW: Women of the World Festival. Southbank Centre. Sat-Sun. Prices vary. After a status quo-shattering end to 2017, the Women of the World festival is more important than ever. As usual, you’ll find a killer line-up of discussions, debates, performances and activism, all celebrating female achievements and highlighting obstacles in the world of women. Passes are all sold out, but you can still get tickets for some individual events.

‘Fanny & Alexander’Old Vic. Sat. From £15 Time Out Exclusive offer. Max Webster’s heady stage adaption of Ingmar Bergman’s 1982 film is not flawless, but it’s a pretty tremendous achievement. It’s a phantasmagoric melodrama that bursts its way into your heart.

Coya Angel Court31-33 Throgmorton St, EC2N 2AT. Pay a trip to our restaurant of the week, the City branch of this swanky Latin American restaurant. Go for first-rate food and the prettiest ceviche in town.

Raw Wine Fair. The Stour Studios. Sun. From £45. This artisan wine fair pours back into the capital for another year, proving that organic wine is not a short-lived trend. Meet more than 150 growers and try their natural, organic and biodynamic concoctions.

Suffragette City. London Pavillion. Sat-Sun. £18.50. Walk in the footsteps of window-smashing suffragette Lillian Ball at this covert interactive experience that’s part theatre, part museum. Enter a recreated version of the Women’s Social and Political Union HQ and join the suffragette movement.    

Somewhere in Between. Wellcome Collection. Sat-Sun. Free. The Wellcome Collection’s major spring exhibition showcases collaborations between artists and scientists. They’ll explore how artists give shape to the human experience and provoke ideas about our senses, sexual health and our bodies’ limitations.

Human Rights Watch Film Festival. Various London venues. Sat-Sun. Prices vary. Feast your eyes on work from 20 photographers from the 1950s onwards, digging around the margins of society – and the margins of creativity – in the process. This is one hell of a transformative experience.

Hester’s Hideout. Basement, 2 Exmouth Market, EC1R 3EA. If you needed proof that London’s cabaret scene is alive and kicking, take a trip to our bar of the week under Paesan restaurant on Exmouth Market. You’ll find ’30s jazz, burlesque and master mixology. 

‘Sturtevant: Vice Versa’. Thaddaeus Ropac. Sat. Free. See work from the late artist who spent her career reproducing famous works of art. Here you’ll see Warhol, Beuys and Duchamp – but their hands came nowhere near these canvases. Elaine Sturtevant’s work poses every question you’ve ever had about modern art.  

Sheroes. Ugly Duck. Sat-Sun. Free. Discover work from female artists and allies using their creative bones to give a voice to silenced and overlooked heroines of history at ‘Sheroes’, a show from creative platform Lon-art.

Fat Tony's. Bar Termini Centrale. Sat. Prices vary. Dive into a plate of hand-made pasta at Fat Tony’s, an old-school Italian pop-up at Bar Termini Centrale until the end of April. Longhorn shin ragu pappardelle and a Termini negroni? Bellissima.

‘Lubaina Himid’. Hollybush Gardens. Sat. Free. This first show of new work by the most recent Turner Prize winner is a beautiful assemblage of found objects and colourful painting, riffing on the past, colonialism and identity.

Anthony McCallSprüth Magers. Sat. Free. Anthony McCall’s light sculpture, ‘Meeting You Halfway II’, looks solid, but reach out and your hand drops right through. Duh, it’s light. But that’s all part of his trick: as you stand in the middle of lines, you feel trapped in solid matter. Trippy.

A Night of Small Things. The Vaults. Sat. £14.50. A night of pint-sized poetry, plays and music sets, which will leave you marvelling at the victories feminism has achieved, and wondering at the big changes to come.  

Gem’s Jams. Royal Festival Hall. Sun. Free. Presenter Gemma Cairney has been making waves with her much loved Margate club night, and now she’s bringing those lido vibes southside for WOW Festival. Stand by for garage, pop classics, spoken word and special guests.


London Roller Girls vs Dublin Roller Derby Double Header. Tottenham Green Leisure Centre. Sat. £16.50. Watch the most contentious roller derby battle of the year as the London Rollers take on not one, but two Dublin teams. 

‘Everything Everything’. Alexandra Palace. Sat. £26. The indie-rock band from Manchester head to Ally Pally to perform in support of their new album, ‘A Fever Dream’.

‘Who Run the World: TCL Special’. Camden Assembly. Sat. £5. Get down to the sounds of some R&B queens at this regular club night only playing tunes by 90s lady legends, including Aaliyah, Destiny’s Child, Whitney Houston, Queen Latifah, Lauryn Hill, Gwen Stefani. This week’s a TLC special, so no scrubs please.



Lake of Stars. Various venues in Waltham Forest. Sat. From £17.92. Waltham Forest has been named the first ever London Borough of Culture! Celebrate on Saturday with Malawi festival Lake of Stars as it stages an all-day, multi-venue E17 takeover. 

‘Another Kind of Life: Photography on the Margins’. Barbican. Sat-Sun. £13.50. Feast your eyes on work from 20 photographers from the 1950s onwards, digging around the margins of society – and the margins of creativity – in the process. This is one hell of a transformative experience.

Women in Focus Festival. Poplar Union. Sat-Sun. Free. Join this two-day festival celebrating International Women’s Day and get stuck into exhibitions, poetry readings, workshops, talks and music championing and empowering women.

Blackhorse Workshop’s 4th Birthday. Blackhorse Workshop. Sat. Free. Help celebrate the creative hub’s fourth birthday with a grand ol’ bash bringing together live music and DJs, beers from Wild Card Brewery and grub from Walthamstow Dogs.  

Ben & Jerry’s Birthday Ball Pit. Old Spitalfields Market. Sat. Free. It’s been 40 years since pals Ben and Jerry started selling their delicious creations. To celebrate, they’re inviting you to regress and play in a ball pit and eat free ice cream at Old Spitalfields Market. Just don’t overdo it on sugar and barf in the ball pit. 

Needs x HeForShe. Oval Space. Sun. £10-£15. This party sees the mic occupied by a roster of talent with progressive views on women’s rights, and a night of brilliant tuneage to follow. Come for the afternoon talks featuring Munroe Bergdorf and stay for techno from Korean DJ Peggy Gou.

EVE: Female Pro Wrestling. Royal Festival Hall. Sun. Free. It’s time for spandex – punk feminist pro wrestling group EVE is taking over the RFH’s Riverside Terrace for three action-packed shows, as part of the Southbank’s WOW festival. It’ll be like watching Netflix’s ‘Glow’ IRL.

Capish? Mother’s Day Carvery. Mason & Company. Sun. Prices vary. Pay your mum back for all the Sunday lunches she’s cooked by treating her to a special Mothers’ Day carvery. Tuck into slow-roast heritage breed porchetta, dry-aged rare roast beef topside and eggplant parmigiana with all the trimmings.




‘Not I’. Battersea Arts Centre. Sat. £12.50. Mouth, the protagonist of Samuel Beckett’s audacious monologue, is a woman unable to stop speaking. Actress Jess Thom has Tourette syndrome, which means her speech can be peppered with involuntary utterances. Her performance of this classic is illuminating.

Harmonics in Space. Now Gallery. Sat-Sun. Free. Fred Butler is the latest artist to take over the Now Gallery, this time with an exploration into the energy of chromotherapy. Go and get a daily dose of colour.

Typical Girls III. The Four Quarters Peckham. Sat. £3 donation. Dig out your shiniest patriarchy-stomping shoes and hit the dance floor for a night of performances and DJ sets by women and non-binary artists curated by Typical Girls collective.

Peckham Salvage Yard. Copeland Gallery. Sat-Sun. Free. Get your busy hands on vintage threads, twee ceramics, atomic-era electricals and antique luggage at this south London fair.

Brixton Vintage Kilo Sale. Pop Brixton. Sat-Sun. Free. You can buy your weight in vintage clobber at this retro shopping fair where you pay £15 for 1kg of clothes. Nab yourself some sportswear, denim pieces, jackets, dresses, blouses and more.   



Orchid Festival. Kew Gardens. Sat-Sun. Included in admission. It’s the last weekend to see Kew Gardens’s celebration of the orchid, which this time focuses on the plant life of Thailand. See hanging-orchid bouquets, handcrafted floating Thai umbrellas and an impressive sounding Bang Pa-In-inspired orchid palace. 

‘L’Atalante’. Barge Fiodra, Merchants Square. Sun. £10. See a French film about a whirlwind courtship on a canal barge in the beautiful surroundings of, erm, a canal barge. You might just meet ‘the one’ on the towpath.

Mother’s Day at the Museum of Brands. Museum of Brands, Packaging & Advertising. Sun. £15.70. This Mother’s Day talk explores the image of ‘the mother’ in media, an emblem that has been used to promote everything from spanx to soap. Go on a nostalgia trip through the Museum’s unique collection and revisit the ‘mums' who offered a face to brands like Spangles and Kellogg’s.

Mother’s Day Biscuiteers Afternoon Tea. Biscuiteers Notting Hill and Northcote Road. Sun. £28.50. Treat your ma to a biscuit-filled afternoon tea this Mother’s Day. Tuck in to perfectly iced cookies and a nice cup of rosy lee at both Biscuiteers Icing Cafes in Notting Hill and on the Northcote Road.

And finally 

Check out these exclusive Time Out offers

Grab tickets to the best London theatre shows

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Main image: Gary Etchell/Flickr


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