Free Things To Do This Weekend Now You’ve Run Out Of Money

From Dublin to Glasgow, London to Birmingham, here's your guide of pre-payday activities.


by Isabelle Aron |

So payday is a whole week away and believe us, we are feeling your pain. You’ve been forced to eat the ‘last resort’ stuff in your freezer, you’re being taunted by ASOS sale items that you can’t afford, and you’re facing a weekend stuck at home lamenting your lack of funds. Although a weekend spent watching Netflix has it charms, there’s only so many times you can re-watch Breaking Bad, right? To save you from yourself, we’ve picked out the best events going on this weekend – and they’re all FREE!

Free Talks at London Fashion Weekend @ Somerset House, London

19-21 September

Your plan to blag your way into the London Fashion Week shows might have failed, but these talks are open to anyone and, like J-Lo’s love, the tickets don’t cost a thing. Speakers include Eve Thomas, fashion director at, Toni & Guy on developing catwalk looks, as well as a Maybelline masterclass. Tickets are first come, first served, so get in there quickly.

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**Spotifriday @ The Deaf Institute, Manchester **

5pm – 3am, 19 September

Exactly what it sounds like – you request songs, they play them. Simples. Like a jukebox except with the whole of Spotify to choose from. Presumably they’ve shelled out on Premium or that might be a bit of a mood killer. And if you need any more convincing, the best song choices will be rewarded with shots of sambuca.

Blue Coat Quarter Launch, Liverpool

12 – 4pm, 20 September

Blue Coat, Liverpool’s centre for the contemporary arts, is launching The Blue Coat Quarter – a collection of independent shops selling jewellery, clothing, furniture, books and vinyls. But I’m not trying to taunt you with things you can’t afford to buy – they’re hosting a free event to celebrate the launch, with live music, a barbecue and a craft beer stall if you’ve still got a few pounds to your name.

Open Mic Night @ Fiddler’s Elbow, Brighton

8.30pm - 1am, 21 September

Open mic nights are always a bit of a Russian roulette – you might see some amazing live music or you might be subject to an acoustic rendition of Knocking On Heaven’s Door from someone who’s tone deaf. Either way, it’s entertaining – like The X Factor but IRL. And you get to be Simon Cowell.

Drive In Cinema @ Smithfield Square, Dublin

8pm, 19 September

Be honest, you’ve wanted to go to a drive-in cinema ever since you first watched Grease. Well, now you can and it won’t cost you a penny. The film showing is The Mission, starring Robert De Niro and Liam Neeson. Cars can arrive from 7pm and spots are allocated on a first come, first served basis.


Cake and Bake Expo @ St David’s Hall, Cardiff

10.30am, 20 September

The Great British Bake Off might not be on until Wednesday, but you can get your weekend cake fix right here. It’s free entry and there are free goody bags for the first 200 people – I can only assume they have cake in them. With free demonstrations and talks, you can also learn a thing or two to rival Mary Berry. Or at least finally master the art of not burning everything you bake.

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Stu and Gary’s Free Improv Show @ The Stand, Edinburgh

1.30pm, 21 September

If you haven’t got any money, then you probably won’t be spending your Sunday being hungover. That means you’ve got a whole day to fill that’s normally spent with a legit excuse to not leave the sofa. Get out of the house and go and see some comedy. These guys make up their show as they go along, as the crowd just shout things at them to talk about – from Brazilian soap opera to extreme ironing.

Needle In The Haystack @ The Galleries, Bristol

11am – 5pm, 19-20 September

If your money woes are stressing you out, this interactive exhibition is for you. Artist Megan Clark-Bagnall will be spending this weekend building a ‘haystack of anxiety’. Basically you write down what you’re worried about and she’ll destroy them all in a paper shredder. She’ll then build a haystack made of the debris, constructed on a needle. At 1pm on 21 September, you can watch Megan try to find the needle in the haystack.

Multi-Sports @ Small Heath Park, Birmingham

1 – 4pm, 21 September

Forget dragging yourself to the gym on Sunday and go to this free exercise class in the park instead. With dodgeball, ultimate Frisbee, rounders and tri-cricket, it’s basically a sports day for grown-ups. Although sadly, we don’t think there’s an egg and spoon race.

The Beatroot & Lace Bazaar @ Art School Union, Glasgow

11am – 6pm, 20 September

This is the first of a new monthly vintage fair, and yes I’m aware that shopping generally doesn’t count as a free activity, but you can window-shop to your heart’s content. Plus, there will be art exhibitions and live music spread across three floors so you won’t feel too hard done by even if if you can’t spend a dime.

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Follow Izzy on Twitter @IzzyAron

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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