The Muddy Guide to Going Out: 24 – 30 April

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Had a tough first week back at work after the Easter hols? Well then, you deserve a bit of fun! Out you go, be careful crossing the road and make sure you call if you’re going to be late. Check out the bluebells!

Bluebells in Bottom Wood, near Stokenchurch

Bluebells in Bottom Wood, near Stokenchurch

Yes OK, not a very rock n roll way to open The Muddy Guide but let me tell you, those bluebells are looking mighty fine this month. I was at the Harcourt Arboretum in Nuneham Courteney today and the bluebell wood looked incredible. If you’re waiting until May to see the displays, please don’t – this year the bluebells are slightly early because of the recent warm weather in recent weeks and they’ll be at their peak for the next two weeks. As alternatives try Wendover Woods, Adams Wood (near Lane End), Bradenham Woods (High Wycombe), Bottom Wood (Stoenchurch), Cowleaze Woods (Watlington), Ipsden Heath (Henley), or bugger it, just click here for a complete list!

Maison Artisan Deli Fayre, Henley Town Hall, 26 April Maison Artisan - macaroons image[10] Around 30 food and drink producers will showcase and sell fresh breads, cheese, truffle oils, olives, patés, chocolate, cake, wine, beer, liqueurs, jams, chutneys etc at this inaugural and much anticipated Henley food fair. Bang goes the diet again but, pah, who cares anyway? Henley Town Hall, 11am – 4pm. ‘Animals’ Giacomo Brunelli exhibition,  High House Gallery, Clanfield. From 26 April- 16 May GiacomoBrunelli-[3] A gorgeous gallery space, this one, and I love this new exhibition by Giacomo Brunelli – what he describes as ‘animal focused street photography’, with many photos taken during early morning walks from unusual angles. Worth a gander if you’re in the area.   Chipping Norton Literary Festival, 24 -27 April ChipLitFest-books1[9] More than 50 authors, publishers, booksellers and agents swing into sedate Chipping Norton to speak, read, write and discuss all things literary at this popular festival. This year’s speakers include crime writers Nicci French and Mark Billingham; columnists Tim Dowling, Lucy Mangan and India Knight; and novelists Kate Mosse, Joanna Trollope, and Rachel Joyce; as well as Jonathan Aitken, Alan Johnson and Kate Adie. There’s also a mini Bite festival taking over the square during the festival. Sounds fab. Temperley London Bridal Event at Bicester Village, 28 April- 1 May temperley[8] Getting married or know someone who is? You’ll love this then – the first ever Wedding Week at Bicester Village, celebrating all things bridal. The event is held at the Temperley London boutique, champagne and cake is promised to customers, gifts will be given away in a prize draw, and wedding experts and a Temperley seamstress will be on hand to sew you in to a designer sale. But then, Temperley dresses are so beautiful, who can blame you for saying ‘I do?’ Additional reporting: Alanna Maxwell

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside - Bucks & Oxon