Room on the Broom, Oxford Playhouse, Thurs 1 – Fri 2 June
Iggety ziggety zaggety zoom! Julia Donaldson’s children’s classic is brought to life with Tall Stories’ Olivier-nominated magical musical adaptation. It promises songs, laughs and scary fun for children aged 3 and up and their grown-ups in this one hour show.
Colourscape, Waddesdon Manor, 27 May – 4 June
10.30am-4.30pm, music plays from 11am-3.30pm. waddesdon.org.uk
Giffords Circus, Any Port in a Storm, touring now until 24 Sept
This year the inimitable Giffords Circus is recreating a 17th-century Spanish court and putting on a candle-lit international gymnastic show with dancing horses, a live band and everyone’s favourite clown Tweedy. It kicks off on Friday 12 May at the circus’s home ground of Fennells Farm near Stroud for four nights, then moves to Sudeley Castle from Thursday 18 to Monday 22 May, before heading off to Oxfordshire and London, and then returning to Gloucestershire in August.
Big Tree Climbing, Stonor Park, Weds 31 May
Boot them up into the canopy! The Big Tree Climbing is returning to Stonor Park, and those with a tree-climbing ticket will be given free entrance into the Gardens and Wonder Woods. Bonza!
Billy Elliot, Milton Keynes Theatre, Tues 30 May – Sat 17 June
This is the first UK and Ireland tour of Billy Eliot the Musical after 11 years in the West End. Set in a northern mining town against the background of the 1984-5 miners’ strike, the young working-class Billy forgoes the boxing ring for ballet with the help of an Elton John score and some fruity language. It recommends a minimum age of 8+ but bear in mind it’s supersweary – I remember being a bit shocked taking my 10 year old son to it, with nervous glances between me and Mr Muddy until we realised that Finn already knew the entire expletive lexicon from school anyway.
Wycombe Arts Festival, High Wycombe, until Sun 4 June
A whopper of a festival stretching over a month and reaching its conclusion this week, the Wycombe Arts Festival is a real mix of professional and amateur around High Wycombe, Marlow and the Chiltern hills. Think classical and jazz concerts, open air theatre, with music, roaming performers and kids activities, and a grand finale at Wycombe Swan with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
Family Takeover Days, Banbury Museum, Weds 31 May – Fri 2 June
Calling all families – we have literally opened up our huge craft store to offer a brilliant selection of activities. From junk modelling to messy paint and clay craft come and make your mark in the museum this half term. There is even a curiosity corner packed with mystery museum objects to handle. Not forgetting our pop up Pathé cinema for the grown ups. Huge amounts of fun.
Spring into Summer, Green Dragon Eco Farm
There are around 70 baby animals at the Green Dragon Eco Farm near Quainton at the mo, from lambs and kids to piglets and rabbit kits. Get your kids up there and watch them pet, stroke, feed and talk to the animals while you do the important stuff like order another flat white.
Lemur Week, Cotswold Wildlife Park, Sat 27 May – Sun 4 June
Lemurs are now one of the most threatened groups of mammals on the planet, so the Cotswolds Wildlife Park is hosting a week of activities and keeper talks to help raise awareness/ funds for Lemur Conservation in Madagascar. Go see the cute little fellas.
Love Marlow Festival 2017, 2 – 17 June
Marlow is definitely the Buckinghamshire town du jour, with seemingly endless cool openings, posh boutiques, and festivals on the go. Its LOVE Marlow Festival is really popular locally, with over 60 community activities and promotions including music, sport, workshops and kids’ events. Worth checking out.
The Best of Barmy Britain, Hampton Court Palace, Sat 27 May – Sat 3 June
A one-hour production of Horrible Histories live on stage at Hampton Court Palace – not a bad theatre space! Boudicea, Dick Turpin, Henry VIII, Victoria and pretty much everything in between is tackled by the HH team. Should be fun.