1 February-15 March
Rugby fans are hoping that this year’s Six Nations Rugby tournament, bringing together the top European teams (England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, France and Italy), can recreate some 2019 World Cup magic. England, who were beaten by South Africa in the final, are likely to start as favourites here; their home games at Twickenham Stadium are against Ireland (23 Feb) and Wales (7 Mar). This tournament may answer one big question: how will the home nations pick themselves up after the World Cup?
7 February-25 April
British comedy talent has joined forces for Upstart Crow at the Gielgud Theatre, a new play based on the BBC TV show written by Ben Elton, who is known best for his political satires. David Mitchell (“Peep Show”) makes his West End debut as William Shakespeare, alongside Gemma Whelan ("Game of Thrones"), who plays his housekeeper Kate. It follows the Bard who has written only two plays, both of which were panned - and now his life depends on producing a success.
What links a 10km run, world-famous landmarks and a Magic Queen? It’s the London Winter Run, an annual fundraising event for Cancer Research that’s scattered with snow. Starting at the Snow Blast-off Zone (aka Trafalgar Square), 25,000 participants head past St Paul’s Cathedral, Somerset House and Westminster, ending with a victory hug and a medal from the Polar Bears. Spectators can enjoy an après party with a Queen tribute band on stage in Trafalgar Square.
If you are travelling with kids, stop them saying the dreaded words ‘I’m bored’ by heading to the entertaining Imagine Children’s Festival at the Southbank Centre, the largest of its kind in the UK. Whether it’s interacting with dinosaurs, meeting poet and novelist Michael Rosen, enjoying performances or celebrating "Harry Potter" books, this event will keep children of all ages happy.
12 February-3 May
The TV show "Glee" proved that teen angst and a killer soundtrack are a winning formula, which is why the musical "Be More Chill" was a Broadway hit. The show transfers to The Other Palace, with the same score that got people singing along when it took New York by storm in 2019. Jeremy is an awkward boy who signs up to a school play after his crush, Christine, does. Taking advice from the high-school bully Rich, Jeremy takes a popularity pill – but can he win her over?
Readers, start your engines! Whether you’re a car collector or a connoisseur, head to the London Classic Car Show at Olympia London, now in its sixth year. One of the new areas is Car Stories, which celebrates six of the world’s most iconic cars including the Maserati 250F and Porsche 962C.
Pancake Day, or Shrove Tuesday, precedes the 40-day fasting period of Lent in the Christian calendar, in the build up to Easter. It’s traditionally it’s the last opportunity to use up eggs and butter before beginning to limit rich items in the diet. Pancakes are the perfect way to use up these ingredients – but London also sees fun fund-raising pancake races, where runners flip their pans while racing down the street. Find them at Better Bankside, Greenwich Market and Covent Garden.
27 Feb-1 Mar
Looking for a unique souvenir, look no further than the Collect Art Fair, and annual international art fair at Somerset House. It’s dedicated to modern craft and design and welcomes work from more than 40 galleries from the UK and around the world. Pieces by more than 400 artists showcase glass, ceramics, metal, wood and textiles.
29 February-21 June
Since Madonna wore a red kimono for her "Nothing Really Matters" video in 1999, the garment has kept a low profile in western pop culture - until now. The Victoria and Albert Museum is dedicating an exhibition to the noble garment. Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk is a well-timed look at 360 garments, including Alexander McQueen’s piece worn by Björk for her Homogenic album art, as well as ones by Yves Saint Laurent, Christian Dior and Rei Kawakubo.