12 Ways to Celebrate International Women’s Day in London

What a year to be a woman! Not only is it 100 years since Suffragettes won women the right to vote, women continue to shake things up, calling #TimesUp on sexual harassment, demanding equality and making sure all voices are heard. Bring on International Women’s Day then, which falls on Thursday 8 March 2018. Here’s where to celebrate in London  

Lead image: Jude Kelly at WOW festival (photo: Jo Spencer)

1 No More at WOW London, Southbank Centre
No More on 9 March brings together women on the frontline of global movements who are transforming the future by demanding no more violence, no more harassment and no more silence. Part of the Women of the World Festival, the event will feature talks and debates by inspiring women like Patrisse Khan-Cullors, the co-founder of Black Lives Matter; Laura Bates, founder of the Everyday Sexism Project; Dr Shola Mos-Shogbamimu the co-organiser of the London Women’s March and founder of the Women in Leadership publication; and Indian disability and gender rights activist, Nidhi Goyal. Hear what’s next for these global, transformative campaigns. 8pm-9.30pm. Tickets start at £15.
Royal Festival Hall, Belvedere Road, Lambeth SE1 8XX; southbankcentre.co.uk

2 Comedy Night, Westminster
Get primed for International Women’s Day with Comedy Night at The Other Gin Place on 8 March. Female comedian and composer Vikki Stone will be hosting night of stand-up, musical comedy and improv from female performers. Highlights of the line up include Karen Hobbs and Emily Rose Simons. The show starts at 8.30pm and lasts an hour. Tickets are free but are limited so be sure to book.
The Other Palace, 12 Palace Street SW1E 5JA; theotherpalace.co.uk

3 Gaucho’s Whisky & Chocolate Masterclass, Smithfield
Gaucho restaurants are launching an entire month of thought-provoking talks and workshops led by London businesswomen at the top of their game, from Women in Finance to Women in Congac, running 8-30 March. We’re particularly loving the Whisky & Chocolate Masterclass with Alwynne Gwilt – one of the first female whisky bloggers in the UK and Balvenie UK Brand Ambassador – and Jo Brennan – founder of bakery, cafe and chocolatier Pump Street Bakery – at the Smithfield restaurant on Tuesday 20 March. 6.30pm-8.30pm. Tickets £15.
93A Charterhouse Street, Smithfield EC1M 6HL; gauchorestaurants.com

4 Aster Chef Series Dinner with Angela Hartnett & Sally Clarke, Westminster
On Monday 12 March, Aster’s Executive Chef, Helena Puolakka, will welcome two of the UK’s most accomplished chefs – Sally Clarke and Angela Hartnett – to her critically acclaimed Nordic-French restaurant. Falling just after International Women’s Day and with half of ticket sales going to Women’s Aid, this very special night will be the third in the series of evenings in which remarkable chefs are ‘in conversation’ with Richard Vines, Bloomberg’s chief critic, while a four-course menu is created by Helena Puolakka in collaboration with the guest chefs. £70 per person, £110 with wine paring.
150 Victoria Street, Westminster SW1E 5LB; aster-restaurant.com

5 Back in the Game 80s Gaming Night at Egg London
Dust off your shoulder pads, liberally apply the hairspray and head back to the 80s for a night of nostalgic gaming fun and music at EGG London. On Tuesday 6 March 2018, Fast Forward 15 is championing women in business with an exclusive charity event. Expect exciting food, fantastic games, a live DJ and surprises announced on the night, as well as a raffle with prizes including weekend retreats, yoga classes and luxury dinners all up for grabs. The fun and informal evening of networking and entertainment aims to raise funds for the Fast Forward 15 mentoring initiative and Smart Works. Ticket £15. 6pm-11pm.
200 York Way, King’s Cross N7 9AX; eventbrite.co.uk

6 International Women’s Day at Battersea Power Station
Battersea Power Station is hosting a month-long series of events and activities throughout March with some of the UK’s most influential women providing an insight into their lives and careers. Taking place at The Village Hall, Circus West Village, the events commence on 8 March when Arlene Phillips will be revealing stories from her career and life in showbiz in a live interview on stage with Jacquie Storey (7.30pm, tickets £20). Other highlights include June Sarpong, TV presenter and co-founder of the Women: Inspiration and Enterprise Network, talking about her new book Diversify on 13 March (7.30pm, tickets £10), and Avalon Presents: All Women Comedy Line-Up, hosted by Steff Todd with Annie McGrath and Lou Sanders, on 23 March (8pm, tickets £10).
See batterseapowerstation.co.uk for tickets

7 Female Parts: The Shorts at Hoxton Hall Theatre, Hoxton
Hoxton Hall presents Female Parts: The Shorts; three short monologues that explore what it is to be a wife, mother and immigrant. Running from Tuesday 13 March to Saturday 31 March. These three confessional plays will have you laughing-out-loud, in tears and soul searching at the same time. Have an intimate unique experience as you delve into the challenges and preconceptions that women face. 7.30pm. Tickets £18.
130 Hoxton Street N1 6SH; hoxtonhall.co.uk

8 Martha Reeves & the Vandellas at Village Underground, Shoreditch
In this, the 100th anniversary of the suffragette movement, what better way to keep girl power alive than booking tickets to see some very sassy ladies in action? Martha Reeves and the Vandellas will be hitting the stage at the Village Underground in Shoreditch on Sunday 11 March. From Heat wave to Nowhere To Run and Dancing In The Street, this Motown trio will soon get you dancing and is a fabulously uplifting way to celebrate International Women’s Day!
54 Holywell Lane, Shoreditch EC2A 3PQ; villageunderground.co.uk

9 Wonder Women Brunch at Devonshire Club
The Devonshire Club is holding a Wonder Women Brunch, exclusively for its members, to mark International Women’s Day on Thursday 8 March. Hosted by Tamara Gillan, CEO of Cherry London, and Lisa Smosarski, Editor-in-Chief of Stylist Magazine, you’ll hear from a panel of impressive women, all experts in their respective fields, including world-renowned actress Samantha Bond, popstar and presenter Rochelle Humes and mothers2mothers Global Development & Strategic Engagement Director, Emma France. This moving and inspiring event will seek to demonstrate how conversation can be transformed into purposeful action, and is being held in support of the charity mothers2mothers. 11am-1pm. Memberships are £2,400 per year.
5 Devonshire Square EC2M 4YD; devonshireclub.com

10 Gem’s Jams at WOW London, Southbank Centre
On Sunday 11 March, award-winning broadcaster and author Gemma Cairney – Southbank Centre’s Artist In Residence – presents a special edition of her Margate club night Gem’s Jams for the Women of the World Festival – a night of beats, boogieing rhymes and rhythms. From DJ sets to spoken word, Cairney brings together an eclectic mix of music, with special guests to be announced. 6.30pm-9pm. Free.
The Clore Ballroom, Level 2, Royal Festival Hall, Belvedere Road SE1 8XX; southbankcentre.co.uk

11 Insula Orchestra: Beethoven and Farrenc at the Barbican
Hailing from Paris, the Insula Orchestra is on a mission to revive music from female composers that have fallen by the wayside. On 8 March, the orchestra heads for the Barbican to champion the music of Romantic composer Louise Farrenc, performing Farrenc’s Symphony no. 3 in G minor, which will be complemented by Beethoven’s Triple Concerto for violin. At 6pm, players from the Insula Orchestra will explore some of Farrenc’s chamber work in a pre-concert platform introduced by Sara Mohr-Pietsch. Tickets start at £15, show starts at 7.30pm.
Barbican Hall, Barbican Centre, Silk Street EC2Y 8DS; barbican.org.uk 

12 Free Drink for Women at Three Cheers Pubs
In honour of International Women’s Day, boutique London pub company Three Cheers Pub Co is giving away one free drink to every woman between 12pm and 7pm on Thursday 8 March. There is no gimmick. No catch. Just a little appreciation for a lot of hard work and determination. Simply pop into any of their eight pubs located across south and west London, including the brand new Princess Victoria in Shepherd’s Bush, The Avalon in Clapham and The Bolingbroke in Battersea. Choose from one house spirit plus mixer, one 175ml glass of house red or white wine or prosecco, one pint of beer or a soft drink.


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