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What’s On: The Muddy Guide 16 – 22 April, 2015

Plenty on this week if you’re in the mood to get out and about. Have fun peeps! x

Family Activity Weekend, Longridge, Sat 18 – Sun 19 April


Whoopee! The good weather has persuaded Longridge Activity camp (now part of Alf Villages) to open its doors for its first family weekend of the year a little earlier than intended. It’s £29 for the whole weekend, with one night’s camping (bring your own tents) and two days of activities. I went on a family activity day last year and it was  brilliant, so if you’re in the mood for a bit of adventure in spitting distance of Marlow, well, you’ve just found it.

Vertigo, The Ultimate Picture Palace, Sunday 19 April


Dismissed when first released, Vertigo is now acclaimed as one of director Alfred Hitchcock’s finest films, and is now officially polled top of the BFI’s Best Films list. It’s showing on Sunday afternoon at my favourite Oxford cinema (also Monday if you can be a slacker at 6.30pm!) so if the weather turns a bit grim over the weekend you know where to go.

Jane’s Enchanted Tea Garden, Kirtlington, nr Bicester. Sat 18 & Sun 19 April

Janes Teas collage 1

I’ve raved about the bucolic amazingness of this secret riverside cafe before (read my review if you’re in any doubt) and if you haven’t visited yet, take your chance while the weather is kind. It’s only open on the first and third Saturday and Sunday (from 12 noon – 5.30 pm) each month, and it’s a quirky, eccentric, utterly brilliant gem.

Cotswold Arts & Antique Dealers Fair, Blenheim Palace, Thurs 16-Sun 19 April


Back for the fourth year, this event has gathered a bit of a following amongst collectors, art consultants, interior designers and the punters in the know. If it’s not quite your cup of char, you can bet your bottom dollar your mum will love it!

1940s Boutique at Bletchley Park, Sat 18 April 9.30-4pm

Bletchley vintage

A day of retro style heaven at Bletchley Park, with demos from professional make up artists and practical sessions so  recreate Forties hair and makeup. No word on whether Benedict Cumberbatch is making an appearance in his silk suspenders but we live in hope.

9.30 – 4pm. See website for more info and tickets



Bellowhead, New Theatre Oxford, Sat 18 April


 Britain’s most successful traditional folk act, Bellowhead is the 11-piece band whose fusion of folk, funk, rock, world, jazz, music hall and classical music has filled halls for the last ten years. There are a couple of tickets left (none in the stalls, you’d be lucky!) if you’re quick on the draw. Also on Saturday, The Shires – country music’s new homegrown heartthrobs – are playing O2 Oxford.

Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia at Oxford Playhouse, now until Sat 18 April


If you saw my recent review of Arcadia (I reviewed it here when it played at Aylesbury Waterside recently), you may recall that my advice, in a nutshell, is to have a bit of a swot up before you go. Thus armed, it should be a cracking good night out!

Arcadia, Oxford Playhouse, Beaumont Street, Oxford OX1 2LW. Tel – 01865 305305


ChipLitFest, Thurs 23 – Sun 26 April

David Baddiel

The Chipping Norton Literary Festival doesn’t kick off for another week, but there’s a brilliant line-up of author-talks (think Richard Madeley, David Baddiel, Shelia Hancock, Helen Lederer…) and some great events so take a look here and get in early and book your tickets.

TimePlays, Hampton Court, until 31 August


No need to offer extra reasons to see Hampton Court really, but in case you need a little persuading, there’s a lovely extra there until 31 August – a series of Time Plays, that aims to bring to life the stories behind Hampton Court in microplays by award-winning playwright Elizabeth Kuti, with 15 actors. So in the Great Hall, Shakespeare’s company the ‘King’s Men’ are rehearsing a new play for James I. Behind a tapestry, Elizabeth I enjoys a duel of words with Mary Queen of Scots’ quick-witted envoy, Sir James Melville. In the Georgian State Apartments, George I makes fun of the English with his two German companions. And in the corridors and the courtyards, Henry VIII’s new love, Anne Boleyn flirts dangerously with poet Thomas Wyatt. I mean, wow, what a great idea. I’m going!

Pitt Rivers After Hours Guided tours, Fri 17 April


I like the sound of these Guided tours, but you’ll have to be in Oxford between 5.30-7pm to catch it. A maximum of 15 people per tour with an expert guide and no crowds to fight through to see the most interesting exhibits. Price is £10 with all kids under 16 accompanied by adults.


Folk Weekend Oxford, Various Venues, Oxford, Fri 17 – Sun 19 April

Folk Weekend Oxford

My heart sinks when I read ‘folk’ generally – very naughty of me really but I always think of guitars and nasal hair. But shame on me because this fourth Folk Weekend in Oxford looks lots of fun, with a great line up of concerts, ceilidhs, and events. Particularly love the Oxford Village Fete on Gloucester Green with games, music and morris dancers, and the storytelling at The Story Museum. Pass me that home-knit jumper, I’m sold!.




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