Guide to what’s on in London in March 2020

Things to do in London, including film festivals, celebrations for International Women’s Day, vegan and mindfulness festivals and St Patrick’s Day.

© Memoirs Of A Metro Girl 2017

The Affordable Art Fair returns to Battersea

It’s spring… apparently! March is always a tricky month weather wise, with recent years experiencing extremes from heatwaves to snow. With that in mind, most of the special events on in London this month are fortunately under cover. In 2020, Easter may not be until April, but expect to see a busy, jam-packed schedule of festivals and events throughout March.

Searching for things to do in London in March 2020, then look no further.

Please note, due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, many events are subject to cancellations and postponements. Many museums and galleries have temporarily closed. Some cancellations or postponements have been detailed below, but please check the relevant website or event’s social media before you attend.

Look out for the 🐻 for family-friendly activities.

  • Now until 1 March : Live Well London

Wellbeing, health and fitness festival, featuring different styles of meditation and fitness classes from beginner to expert, talks and shopping. 10am-5pm. Tickets: £11.43–£108.99. Old Billingsgate, 16 Lower Thames Street, City of London, EC3R 6DX. Nearest station: Tower Hill or Old Street. For tickets, visit the Live Well London website.

  • Now until 1 March : The Stitch Festival

Haberdashery festival featuring hundreds of workshops, demonstrations, interactive features and 200 exhibitors selling specialist craft supplies. Open Thu-Sat 10am-5.30pm, Sun: 10am-5pm. Tickets: Adults £15.50, Children £6. Business Design Centre, 52 Upper Street, Islington, N1 0QH. Nearest station: Angel. For more information, visit the Stitch Festival website.

  • Now until 1 March : Lightopia Festival

Festival of lights featuring installations, 3D projections, interactive pieces, live music, acrobatics, food and drink, craft stalls and more. 5pm-10pm. Tickets: Adults £20/£22, Children £13/£15. Chiswick House Gardens, Chiswick, W4 2QN. Nearest stations: Turnham Green and Gunnersbury. For more information, visit the Lightopia Festival website. 🐻

  • Now until 1 March : Luzia by Cirque du Soleil

Cirque du Soleil bring their show Luzia to Europe for the first time. The show is inspired by Mexico, with a mix of the traditional and modern acrobatics. Times vary. Tickets range from £28.50-£108. Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Gore, SW7 2AP. Nearest stations: South Kensington, Knightsbridge or High Street Kensington. For booking, visit the Cirque Du Soleil website. 🐻

  • Now until 1 March : London Film and Comic Con Spring

Film and Comic Con returns, giving you the opportunity for autograph sessions, photoshoots, and panels. Names include Jerome Flynn, Jamie Campbell Bower, Robert Englund, Dan Starkey, Afshan Azad, Femi Taylor, Brenock O’Connor, Ian McCulloch, Ian McDiarmid, Wendy Padbury, Charles Dance, Ashley Walters, Noel Clarke, Indira Varma, Samantha Bond, Colin Baker, Gethin Anthony, Sylvester McCoy, and more. Sat-Sun: 9am-6pm. Tickets: Adults £16-£18, Children £10-£12. Olympia National, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, W14 8UX. Nearest station: Kensington Olympia. For more information and tickets, visit the London Comic Con website. 🐻

  • Now until 1 March : Secret Cinema presents Stranger Things

Step into the Upside Down as Secret Cinema bring this ’80s sci-fi horror to live for an immersive, cinematic experience. Visit Hawkins, Indiana for an interactive 80s experience. Times vary. Tickets: £52-£120. At a secret east London location to be revealed to ticket holders. For more information and tickets, visit the Secret Cinema website.

  • 3 – 4 March : The Clumsies pop-up @ Sofitel St James

Acclaimed Athens cocktail bar The Clumsies – one of the World’s 50 Best Bars – is coming to the capital for just two days. Menu available 5pm–12am. At the St James Bar, Sofitel St James, 6 Waterloo Place, St James, SW1Y 4AN. Nearest station: Green Park or Charing Cross. For more information, visit the Sofitel St James website. Read Metro Girl’s blog post to discover more.

Crystal Palace terraces and tower © Memoirs Of A Metro Girl 2020

The Crystal Palace International Film Festival returns

  • 5 – 28 March : Crystal Palace International Film Festival

The CPIFF returns for the 11th year, featuring shorts and feature-length screenings, animation night, premieres, horror/sci-fi night, and documentary night. Tickets: £9-£22. At various venues including Everyman Crystal Palace, PictureHouse West Norwood, Stanley Halls & Anerley Town Hall. Nearest stations: Crystal Palace, Norwood Junction and West Norwood. For more information, visit the CPIFF website.

  • 5 March – 10 April : London Handel Festival

Six weeks of concerts, talks and walks celebrating Fredrick Handel, with this year’s theme being “Handel and the Hanoverians”. Venues includes Handel’s parish church St Georges in Mayfair, as well as the Bussey Building, Foundling Museum, Grosvenor Chapel, Linbury Theatre, St John’s Smith Square and Wigmore Hall. Ticket prices range from £5-£59. For more information and booking, visit the London Handel Festival website.

  • 6 – 7 March : Mindful Living

A show exploring mindfulness and meditation, featuring talks, workshops and more. Including Health & Science Theatre, Mindful Living Theatre, Sleep Theatre, Mind & Body Space, Creative Calm Space, Taster Zone, Guided Meditation Space, Mindfulness for the young, and more. Open 10am-5.30pm. Tickets: £7.20-£60 (includes entrance to The Sleep Show). Design Business Centre, 52 Upper Street, Islington, N1 0QH. Nearest station: Angel. For more information, visit the Mindful Living Show website.

  • 6 – 8 March : WOW – Women Of The World Festival

A festival of talks, debates, music, film and comedy celebrating women. Naomi Wolf, Deborah Frances-White (The Guilty Feminist), Scarlett Curtis, Sandi Toksvig, Bolanle Tajudeen, Emma Dabiri and Shazia Mirza among the featured names. Events range from free to £25, while or many included with day pass £40. Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, South Bank, SE1 8XX. Nearest station: Waterloo. For more information and booking, visit the Southbank Centre website.

  • 7 March : Mitcham VR Festival

As part of the year-long FilmMerton project comes a one-day free VR festival. Watch virtual reality films and enjoy immersive experiences and an augmented reality installation. Register for your free ticket in advance to avoid disappointment. General Giles Social Club, 12-16 Upper Green West, Mitcham, CR4 3AA. Nearest station: Tooting Broadway or Mitcham Eastfields. For more information, visit the Digital Drama website. 🐻

  • Now until 7 March : Winter Night Garden @ Backyard Cinema

Backyard Cinema’s new permanent home has been transformed into a magical festive garden for its new winter cinematic experience. Walk through a magical wardrobe and travel through a mysterious kingdom to reach the big screen, which will be showing festive favourites and new releases. Tickets from £18.99. Backyard Cinema’s Capital Studios, 13 Wandsworth Plain, Wandsworth, SW18 1ET. Nearest station: Wandsworth Town. For more information and booking, visit Backyard Cinema’s website. 🐻

  • Now until 8 March : Orchid Festival

An orchid display is coming to the Princess of Wales Conservatory for four weeks, with this year’s festival being inspired by Indonesia. General entrance tickets to Kew Gardens includes orchid exhibition: Adults £18.15, Children (4-15yr) £4.50. Kew Gardens, Brentford Gate, Kew, TW9 3AB. Nearest station: Kew Gardens. For more information, visit the Kew Gardens website. 🐻

  • 8 – 13 March : London Design Week

Interior design festival featuring over 100 events, including talks, demonstrations, showrooms, installations, food and drink. Open 9.30am-5.30pm. Free entry, but register in advance. Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour, SW10 0XE. Nearest station: Imperial Wharf. For more information, visit the London Design Week website.

  • 9 – 15 March : London Book and Screen Week

Week-long event of storytelling, readings, installations, musicals, plays, and talks. Venues include the British Library, Groucho Club, St Martin’s Theatre, House of MinaLima, Good Housekeeping Institude, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, and more. For more information, visit the London Book and Screen Week website.

  • 12 – 15 March : Affordable Art Fair @ Battersea Park

A chance for people to buy a unique piece of art or photography for their homes at an affordable price. There are over 100 galleries, with pieces for sale ranging from £50 to £6,000. Tickets: £9-£27 in advance, more on the door. Battersea Evolution, Battersea Park, SW11 4NJ. Nearest station: Battersea Park or short bus ride from Sloane Square tube. For more information, visit the Affordable Art Fair website.

  • 12 March – 7 June : Cecil Beaton – Bright Young Things @NPG (temporarily closed)

Exhibition of acclaimed photographer Cecil Beaton’s images from the 1920s and 1930s. Open daily 10am-6pm, late nights on Fri until 9pm. Tickets: Adults £18-£20. National Portrait Gallery, St Martin’s Place, Westminster, WC2H 0HE. Nearest station: Leicester Square, Charing Cross or Piccadilly Circus. For tickets, visit the NPG website.

  • 13 – 15 March : Move It (postponed)

The world’s biggest dance event featuring performances, classes, workshops, shopping, and talks by experts from all genres, including Flawless, Brendan Hansford, Clare Halse, Company Wayne McGregor, Dane Bates, Danielle Peazer, Layton Williams, Patience J and more. Tickets: Adults from £19, Children from £15 (multiple day passes available). ExCel, Royal Victoria Dock, 1 Western Gateway, Docklands, E16 1XL. Nearest station: Custom House or Prince Regent. For more information, visit the Move It website. 🐻

  • 14 March : The Little Yellow Door’s Paddy’s Portobello Crawl

Get into the St Patrick’s Day spirit early with a crawl around Notting Hill’s best bars. Enjoy cocktails at The Ginstitute and Trailer Happiness, before finishing with a Golden Martini with the flatmates at TLYD. Open 6pm-2am. The Little Yellow Door, 6-8 All Saints Road, Notting Hill, W11 1HH. Nearest station: Westbourne Park or Ladbroke Grove. For more information, visit The Little Yellow Door website.

Head to Ally Pally for the Vegan Life Live

  • 14 – 15 March : Vegan Life Live (postponed)

Two day festival celebrating and exploring the vegan lifestyle, featuring clothing, cosmetics and food stands, talks, live music, cookery demonstrations, workshops and Q&A sessions. Open Sat 10am-6pm, Open Sun 10am-5pm. Tickets start from £12. The West Hall, Alexandra Palace, Alexandra Palace Way, N22 7AY. Nearest station: Alexandra Palace. For more information, visit the Vegan Life Live website.

  • Now until 15 March : Mars & Beyond

An immersive experience spanning five floors will focus on the future of our planet and the developments in space exploration. Tickets: Adults: £12-£20, Children £5. Bargehouse, OXO Tower Wharf, Bargehouse Street, South Bank, SE1 9PH. Nearest station: Southwark, Blackfriars or Waterloo. For tickets, visit DesignMyNight. 🐻

  • 15 March : London St Patrick’s Day Festival (cancelled)

A festival and parade to celebrate St Patrick’s Day. The parade on 15 March starts at 12pm in Piccadilly, before proceeding to Trafalgar Square. The Square will play host to the free St Patrick’s Day Festival from 12-6pm, which includes music, comedy, and a farmers’ market. Nearest stations: Charing Cross, Piccadilly Circus, Leicester Square or Embankment. For more information, visit the London.gov.uk website. 🐻

  • 17 March : St Patrick’s Day @ Borough Market

Celebrate St Patrick’s Day at the market, with performances from Irish dancers and live musicians, as well as an Irish cooking demo (1pm-2.30pm) from Northern Ireland celebrity chef and board director for Slow Food Northern Ireland, Paula McIntyre. 11am-2.30pm. Free entry. Borough Market, 8 Southwark Street, SE1 1TL. Nearest station: London Bridge. For more information, visit the Borough Market website.

  • 17 March : St Patrick’s Day @ The Sun Tavern

For St Patrick’s Day, The Sun Tavern are collaborating with Noel and Max Venning of award-winning bar Three Sheets. On the exclusive St Paddy’s day menu will be White Russians (Coffee, Milk Washed Slane Irish Whiskey and Miso), The Shamrock Gimlet (Slane Irish Whiskey, Wood Sorrel and White Wine) and a twist on The Sun Tavern’s Irish Coffee (Slane Irish Whiskey, Salted Coffee and Baileys Cream). There will also be free oysters from Oyster Boy from 7pm-9pm. Open 12pm-1am. The Sun Tavern, 441 Bethnal Green Road, Bethnal Green, E2 0AN. Nearest station: Bethnal Green. For more information, visit The Sun Tavern website.

  • 18 – 29 March : BFI Flare – London LGBTQ+ Film Festival (cancelled)

The British Film Institute hosts the 11 day festival of LGBTQ+ film featuring 50 features, over 80 shorts, special events, guest appearances, club nights. Ticket prices vary. BFI Southbank, Belvedere Road, South Bank, SE1 8XT. Nearest station: Waterloo. For more information and booking, visit the BFI website.

  • 19 – 22 March : The Other Art Fair (postponed)

Chance to see and buy art from 140 unrepresented artists, regardless of how experienced you are in purchasing artwork. Also features the Saatchi Art Talks and Lounge, Kids’ Create activities and much more. Open Fri 1pm-10pm, Sat 11am-7pm and Sun 11am-6pm. Tickets: £9–£25. The Old Truman Brewery, 91 Brick Lane, Spitalfields, E1 6QR. Nearest station: Shoreditch High Street or Old Street. For more information, visit the Other Art Fair website.

  • 20 March : FutureFest 2020 (postponed)

Explore the future with interactive experiences, performances, talks and debates. Speakers include Louis Theroux, Richard Ayoade, Magid Magid, Gail Bradbrook, David Lammy, Anil Seth, Carly Kind and more. 10am-10pm. Tickets: £80. Tobacco Quay, Wapping, E1. Nearest stations: Shadwell or Wapping. For more information, visit the FutureFest website.

  • 20 – 22 March : Glamour Beauty Festival (postponed until 24-26 July 2020)

Glamour magazine hosts a celebration of beauty, including big beauty brands, treatments, talks, goodie bags and more. Open Fri 5pm-9pm, Sat & Sun 9.30am-6.30pm. Tickets: £51.65–£84.32. Business Design Centre, 52 Upper Street, Islington, N1 0QH. Nearest station: Angel. For tickets, visit Eventbrite.

  • 21 March : Head of the River Race (cancelled)

Four hundred crews from around the world take their boats to race 4.25 miles from Mortlake to Putney. The race starts at 2.15pm. Free. Nearest stations to spectator points: Mortlake, Barnes Bridge, Hammersmith or Putney Bridge. For more information, visit the Head Of The River Race website. 🐻

  • 21 March – 5 April : Telegraph Hill Festival (cancelled)

Arts and entertainment festival in South East London, including music, open studios, art shows, interactive exhibits, classes, workshops, talks, literary events, plays, performance art and music events. Lots of events are free, but some will cost. At various venues across New Cross, Nunhead, Hatcham, Brockley and Honor Oak. For more information, visit the Telegraph Hill festival website. 🐻

  • Now until 22 March : Vault Festival 2020 (closed early)

Eight-week arts festival in the tunnels beneath Waterloo. Entertainment includes live music, theatre, film, dance, comedy, immersive experiences and late-night parties. Ticket prices vary. The Vaults, 10 Leake Street, Waterloo, SE1 7NN. Nearest station: Waterloo and Lambeth North. For booking, visit the Vault Festival website.

  • 23 March : Mr Fogg’s Explorer Series presents Lucy Shepherd

Mountaineer, arctic and jungle explorer Lucy Shepherd has travelled to some of the world’s most remote spots. 6pm arrival for a 7pm start. Free entry. Mr Fogg’s Residence, 15 Bruton Lane, Mayfair, W1J 6JD. Nearest station: Green Park or Bond Street. For more information, visit Mr Fogg’s website. Check out Metro Girl’s blog post, to find out what else is on in the Explorer Series.

  • 25 March : Taste Champagne 2020 (postponed until June 2020)

The biggest global champagne showcase, featuring 292 cuvées presented by 56 champagne négociants, growers and coopératives. 6pm-9pm. Tickets: £50. The Royal Horticultural Halls, The Lindley Hall, Elverton Street, Westminster, SW1P 2QW. Nearest station: Victoria or Pimlico. For more information, visit the Taste Champagne website.

  • 26 March – 6 April 2020 : London Games Festival 2020

An event to promote gaming and interactive entertainment featuring over 40 events, including the Global Games Summit, EGX Rezzed (26-28 Mar), the Now Play This exhibition @ Somerset House (3-5 April), industry talks, cosplay parade (4 April) and more. For more information, visit the Games London website. 🐻

  • 27 – 28 March : Whisky Live (postponed)

Whisky festival comes to 18th century surroundings, featuring masterclasses, food pairings, the VIP Lounge and exclusive private VIP pourings. Open Fri 5pm-10pm, Sat 12pm-5pm. Tickets £49-£119. Honourable Artillery Company, City Road, EC1Y 2BQ. Nearest station: Old Street or Moorgate. For booking, visit the Whisky Live website.

New festival Gin Live comes to the capital

  • 27 – 28 March : Gin Live (postponed)

Running simultaneously to Whisky Live, is a festival celebrating the mighty juniper, featuring masterclasses, tastings, and more. Open Fri 5pm-10pm, Sat 12pm-5pm. Tickets: £49-£59 (includes entry, unlimited pourings, two-course meal and late entry to Whisky Live). Honourable Artillery Company, City Road, EC1Y 2BQ. Nearest station: Old Street or Moorgate. For booking, visit the Gin Live website.

  • 27 – 29 March : London Bike Show (postponed until 3-5 July 2020)

The UK’s largest cycling exhibition returns to the ExCel, featuring over 300 brands, special guests and experts, performance theatre, bike test track, workshops, kids’ test track, wetsuit testing, coaching zone and more. Open Fri-Sat 10am-5pm, Sun 10am-4pm. Tickets: Adults £16, Children under 15 free (also includes entrance to the Triathlon Show). ExCel, Royal Victoria Dock, 1 Western Gateway, Docklands, E16 1XL. Nearest station: Custom House or Prince Regent. For more information, visit the London Bike Show website.

  • 27 March – 13 April : Ideal Home Show (postponed)

A place of inspiration for homeowners including interiors, fittings and gardens. Includes plenty of opportunities to buy things both big and small for the house and food. Celebrity guests and experts include George Clarke, Lisa Snowdon, Alan Titchmarsh, Gadget Boy, Phil Spencer, Rosemary Shrager, and many more. Open daily 10am-6pm (Thurs lates until 9pm). Tickets: Weekday £14 or Weekend £16 (also includes free access to the Eat & Drink Festival). Olympia, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, W14 8UX. Nearest station: Kensington Olympia. For more tickets, visit the Ideal Home Show website.

  • 27 March – 13 April : Eat & Drink Festival (postponed)

Next door to the Ideal Home Show is a new live experience, featuring modern cuisine, mixology and street food. Learn from the best at the Foodie Lab, Chef’s Table and Cook’s Academy. Celebrity guests and experts include John Torode, Paul A Young, Dean Edwards, Rosemary Shrager, Olly Smith, Mark Heirs, Lotte Peplow, Meliz Berg and more. Open Mon-Wed 10am-5pm, Thu-Fri 10am-6pm, Sat 10am-8pm and Sun 10am-6pm. Tickets: Weekday £14, Weekend £16 (also includes free access to Ideal Home Show). Olympia, Hammersmith Road, Kensington, W14 8UX. Nearest station: Kensington Olympia. For more information, visit the Eat & Drink Festival website.

  • 28 March – 30 April : Travel Photographer Of The Year Awards

Outdoors exhibition featuring the winning images of the Travel Photographer Of The Year Awards. Open 24 hours. Free to view. Located on the Queens Walk by the Thames near City Hall and The Scoop, Southwark, SE1 2AA. Nearest station: London Bridge. For more information, visit the TPOTY website.

  • 29 March : Oxbridge Boat Race (cancelled until 2021)

Watch the historic annual boat race between the Cambridge and Oxford University crews. Thousands will line the banks between Putney Bridge and Mortlake to watch the action. Women’s boat race @ 4.35pm and Men’s boat race @ 5.35pm. Free. Nearest stations: Putney Bridge, Hammersmith, Ravenscourt Park, Stamford Brook, East Putney, Barnes Bridge or Chiswick. For more information, visit the Boat Race website.

  • Now until 29 March : Winterland

Alpine wonderland pop-up returns to the riverside, with plenty of heated winter lodges, cabin and igloos, fire pits, hot tubs, games, hot and cold cocktails, comfort food and more. Open: Wed-Thu 6pm-12am, Fri 5pm-12am, Sat 12pm-12am, Sun 12pm-6.30pm. Entry: Wed-Fri, Sun £5pp, Sat £10pp. Winterland, Wandsworth Bridge Road, Fulham, SW6 2TY. Nearest station: Wandsworth Town. For more information, visit the Winterland website. For Metro Girl’s review, click here.

  • Now until 5 April : Secret Theatre Project presents The Invitation

The Secret Theatre Project returns to London with a new immersive theatre production. Attend a secret masquerade performance in an opulent East End venue in an evening filled with mystery and intrigue. Tickets: £39.00-£109.99. Masquerade Palace (Bethnal Green Town Hall), 8 Patriot Square, Bethnal Green, E2 9NF. Nearest station: Bethnal Green or Cambridge Heath. For more information, visit the Secret Theatre Project website. Read Metro Girl’s blog post for more information.

  • Now until 3 May : Tutankhamun – Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh (temporarily closed)

Commemorating the 100th anniversary of the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb in Egypt, an exhibition features over 150 priceless treasures from the boy King. Opening hours vary. Tickets: Adult: £28.50/ £24.50. Children: £19.50/£16.50. Saatchi Gallery, King’s Road, Chelsea, SW3 4RY. Nearest station: Sloane Square. For tickets, visit the Saatchi Gallery website. 🐻

Installation view of Meet Vincent van Gogh. Image courtesy of Meet Vincent van Gogh

Installation view of Meet Vincent van Gogh.
Image courtesy of Meet Vincent van Gogh

  • Now until 21 May : Meet Vincent Van Gogh

An immersive, multi-sensory exhibition bringing the world of legendary artist Vincent Van Gogh to life. Open Sun-Wed 10am-6pm, Thu-Sat 10am-10pm. Tickets: Standard box office Mon-Fri £19, Sat-Sun £21. Advance online – Mon-Fri £18, Sat-Sun £20. Meet Vincent Van Gogh Experience, 99 Upper Ground, South Bank, SE1 9PP. Nearest station: Waterloo or Waterloo East. For tickets, visit the Meet Vincent website. Check out Metro Girl’s blog post, for more information. 🐻

  • Now until June : Sculpture In The City 2019/2020

Public art exhibition, bringing contemporary pieces to the streets and spaces of the City of London. Free. At various sites around the Square Mile. Nearest stations: Fenchurch Street, Monument or Liverpool Street. For more information and a map of the artworks, visit the Sculpture in the City website. Check out Metro Girl’s gallery of the 2019/2020 exhibition. 🐻

  • Now until 30 June : Scenes in the Square

Check out bronze sculptures of iconic film characters around Leicester Square. Eight interactive characters, such as Lauren & Hardy to Wonder Woman will be placed in the square for four months. Free. Leicester Square, Westminster, WC2H 7DE. Nearest stations: Leicester Square or Piccadilly Circus. For more information, visit the Leicester Square website. Check out Metro Girl’s gallery of the exhibition. 🐻

  • Now until 30 August : Jeff Wayne’s The War of the Worlds – The Immersive Experience (closed until 31 May)

A new immersive experience from DotDotLondon. Inspired by the classic story, travel back in time to Victorian London and the Martian invasion of 1898. Experience immersive theatre, virtual reality, augmented reality, holograms and other cutting-edge technology. Overs 12 only. Times vary. Tickets: £39.50-£84.50. The Old Metal Exchange, 56 Leadenhall Street, City of London, EC3A 2BJ. Nearest station: Aldgate or Fenchurch Street. For more information and booking, visit DotDotLondon. Check out Metro Girl’s review of the show.

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About Metro Girl

Media professional who was born, brought up and works in London. My blog is a guide to London - what's on, festivals, history, reviews and attractions, as well as the odd travel piece. All images on my blog are © Memoirs Of A Metro Girl, unless otherwise specified. Do not use without seeking permission first.

Posted on 28 Feb 2020, in Families, Festivals, London and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 12 Comments.

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