From BFI’s mammoth film festival schedule to a giant shark taking over the West End, there’s certainly a lot to unravel here in the capital this weekend. To help you on your way, we’ve rounded up the 11 best events, activities and happenings landing in London. 

Expect to be rummaging through car boot treasures, celebrating Oktoberfest with a stein of bier and catching the best new cinema releases before they are actually released. Read on to find out more…

Catch your new favourite film at the BFI London Film Festival

Film aficionados, listen in… The iconic BFI London Film Festival returns this October, bringing with it a bumper load of premier screenings, special presentations and more. The two week event, running until 17th October, will see you experience film, TV series and XR in a whole new light. 

If you’re looking to head down or just want to see what all the critics are talking about, we’ve rounded up the ten best films you can catch that haven’t sold out yet. From a sneaky preview of the Princess Diana biopic, Spencer, to an early screening of Wes Anderson’s The French Dispatch, here’s what to see.

When: 6th – 17th October
Where: Various London locations

Check out Olivia Sterling’s Really Rough Scrubbing Brush exhibition 

When I close my eyes and think of a British seaside shoreline on a sunny day, I envision sunburnt shoulders, children playing with buckets and spades, cautious swimmers dipping their toes into the freezing sea waters and endless sandy squashed sandwiches. All of this has been pretty much summed up brilliantly through Olivia Sterling’s new body of work, Really Rough Scrubbing Brush. 

Showcased as Goldsmiths CCA as part of the Episodes programme, Sterling’s work explores the colour-changing bodies through tanning on a classic British package holiday, showcased through satirical cartoon paintings. These saturated paintings draw on the racist micro and macro-aggressions faced on a daily basis in the UK. 

When: Until 31st October
Where: Goldsmiths CCA, St James’, New Cross, SE14 6AD

Catch the Barbican Centre’s latest exhibition, Noguchi

Once you’ve finished snapping up photos of the glorious outdoor space, head inside the Barbican Centre to catch their latest inspiring exhibition dedicated to Isamu Noguchi, the Japanese-American sculptor. 

It’s the first touring retrospective in Europe of Noguchi’s work for 20 years, focusing on his global success and craftsmanship. Spanning over 150 works, explore Noguchi’s sculptural successes, made in stone, ceramics, wood and aluminium.

When: 30th September 2021 – 9th January 2022
Where: Art Gallery at Barbican Centre, Silk Street, EC2Y 8DS

See Jaws take over the West End 

So many movies have tried (and failed) to follow in the footsteps of the dangerous shark sequence, but none could ever quite top Spielberg’s 1975 classic, Jaws. It’s unbeatable. And boasts quite possibly the greatest (and simplest) theme song of all time. 

And for the first time ever, Jaws will be heading to the West End! In a sense anyway. Jaws, the film that shone the great white shark into the dangerous limelight, as well as starring the legend that is Robert Shaw, has since had a facelift and we have Shaw’s son, Ian Shaw and Joseph Nixon to thank for that. Enter The Shark is Broken, a theatrical narrative that explores what happened when the cameras stopped rolling on this haunting set…

Expect to see a behind-the-scenes look at the shark famed film. We’ll meet Jaws stars Robert Shaw, Roy Scheider and Richard Dreyfuss in a way you wouldn’t quite have thought. The three men are as lost emotionally as they are stuck at sea on a boat off of Cape Cod. And, it doesn’t bode well for these sorry souls.

When: 9th October 2021 – 15th January 2022
Where: Ambassadors Theatre, West Street, WC2H 9ND

Grab your tickets here

Warm up with MY&SANNÉ’s new autumn menu

You know we love an Instagrammable restaurant, but come the cooler months, they often fail to deliver on the cosy vibes. Hoping to rewrite this however is MY&SANNÉ, Brompton Road’s stunning restaurant with cosy ‘Grammable interiors in the bucketload.

As the season has changed, so has their menu. They’ve launched a heart-warming menu to keep you warm, cosy and nourished during the autumn-winter months. Think dishes such as chestnut and porcini mushroom risotto; spiced octopus spaghetti with nduja, taggiascha olives and a garlic crumb; the ultimate steak sandwich with glazed red onion, a fried egg and French fries; and vegan sauteed gnocchi with tomato sauce and vegan pesto – delicious is an understatement.

Where: 215 Brompton Road, SW3 2EJ

Find a bargain at the Classic Car Boot Sale

This Saturday and Sunday sees the exciting Classic Car Boot return to King’s Cross for an epic two-day event filled with unwanted treasures and bargains waiting to be snapped up. The car boot will be taking over Granary Square and Coal Drops Yard, bringing an eclectic edit of the best vintage traders, street food and, of course, classic cars. 

There’ll be over 100 market stalls of fashion, homeware, arts and accessories, as well as the eye-catching display of old and new motor vehicles. Whether you’re coming to gaze out at the classic vehicles or you’re on the hunt for a new vintage find for your home, don’t miss this weekend’s classic car boot return.

When: 9th – 10th October
Where: Granary Square & Coal Drops Yard, King’s Cross

Treat yourself to a one-of-a-kind dry cut at Michael Van Clarke 

Want to say goodbye to bad hair days? On the hunt for the perfect snip? Look no further than Michael Van Clarke’s salon in Marylebone. The luxurious boutique offers the very best in coiffured dos, including Michael’s ‘Diamond Dry Cut’.

This is a unique approach to cutting hair, where the follicles are cut dry instead of wet. You can watch as the style evolves in the mirror and the stylist can precisely snip around the shape of your face for the perfect look to suit you. For the best results, ask for none other than Michael himself.

Where: 1 Beaumont Street, Marylebone, W1G 6DF

Celebrate London Craft Week at Seven Dials

It’s London Craft Week! The quirky cobblestoned area, Seven Dials, has partnered up with the festival to curate a week filled with exciting exhibitions, events and workshops taking place across the area.  

Running until Sunday, visitors are invited to take part in a collection of independent events, from creating their own perfume blend at the Experimental Perfume Club to Tatty Devine’s pop-up jewellery exhibition.

When: 4th – 10th October
Where: Across Seven Dials

Celebrate Oktoberfest at Truman’s Social Club

The UK’s biggest beer hall, Truman’s Social Club, will be hosting their own Munich themed Oktoberfest celebrations this weekend. Running Friday and Saturday, the celebration will be pumped with beers, big tunes and German food specials. 

Of course, in true Oktoberfest style, expect 1L steins of fresh lager and a new Märzenbier that’s been brewed especially for the festivities. There’ll be a menu of traditional German favourites, including Bratwurst and roast pork knuckle. DJs and live brass bands will be tackling the tunes, perfect for singing and dancing along to.

When: 8th – 9th October
Where: Truman’s Social Club, 1 Priestley Way, E17 6AL

Celebrate Black History Month with Peckham Levels

This October sees Peckham Levels celebrate Black History Month with an action packaged schedule of events, comedy nights, DJ events and film screenings. 

This weekend they’ll be playing host to two exciting events, including the Rastafari in Motion exhibition. It explores the journey and experiences of a generation of Caribbean and African descendants in post WWII Britain, and how it helped to shape the social landscape surrounding equal rights, equal opportunity and social justice. There’ll also be a market showcasing cultural and creative businesses spread over various stalls. 

When: Sunday 9th October
Where: Peckham Levels, Levels 1-6 Peckham Town Centre Carpark, 95A Rye Lane, SE15 4ST

Try out east London’s new rooftop bar

There’s nothing like stumbling upon a new bar that nobody knows about. A new bar with a rooftop and unspoilt vistas of London? Now that’s something else. Enter PocketSquare, our new secret drinking spot that sits nine floors up with one of the best views of London’s skyline, heady cocktails and a creative bar snack menu.

Sitting between Shoreditch, Brick Lane and Spitalfields it’s housed at the top of Whitechapel Road’s Hyatt Place hotel, making it the perfect pre or post-dinner spot if you’re out East.

Along with the obvious USP of a roof terrace, PocketSquare is also a must-visit if you take your creative cocktails seriously. Kristian Smith and his team have their own cocktail laboratory, onsite, where they experiment with intriguing and whacky flavours, little-waste ingredients and cocktail names inspired by East London’s diverse history and culture. Case in point,  the  Aqua Vita cocktail that found its roots in  Oscar Wilde’s novel The Picture of Dorian Gray or the Pepys Gold – a tequila, crème de pêches, orange bitters and almond milk combo said to be inspired by Samuel Pepys, err, lactose intolerance. The menu is a little tongue in cheek and definitely doesn’t take itself too seriously, plus each cocktail has a masterfully paired small place recommendation to soak up the alcohol content. The tempura oyster with ponzu dressing and the salt beef sliders are a must-order. We’d go back just for those.

Where: PocketSquare Skyline Bar and Terrace, 9th Floor, Hyatt Place London City East 45 Whitechapel Road, E1 1DU

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