FRI 7 – SUN 9 JUN
MUDDY’S PICK OF THE WEEKEND
COMEDY: Scummy Mummies, Corn Exchange Newbury, Sat 8 Jun
Comedians Helen Thorn and Ellie Gibson are bringing bonkers comedy show to the Corn Exchange in Newbury. Based on the UK’s number one kids and family podcast, the Scummy Mummies celebrate everything from drinking wine at teatime to hiding from the PTA (standard Muddy behaviour). Not to be missed.
EXHIBITION: Matisse – Drawing With Scissors, The Base Greenham Common, Sat 8 – Sun 30 Jun
A Hayward Gallery touring exhibition from London’s Southbank Centre, 35 lithographic reproductions of Henri Matisse’s famous cut-outs will go on display at this year’s Muddy Award-winning Art Gallery, The Base in Greenham Common. A brilliant opportunity to see the French painter, sculptor and designer’s vibrant works.
THEATRE: The Importance of Being Earnest, Watermill Theatre Newbury, now – Sat 29 Jun
The Watermill is staging the first major revival of Jez Butterworth’s multi-award-winning play, Jerusalem. A contemporary classic which originally starred Mark Rylance as the anarchic Johnny ‘Rooster’ Byron in 2011. Big shoes to fill for Jasper Britton. Expect fruity language in this wild and defiant rekindling of our national identity. One of the show’s of the summer.
DAYS OUT: Natioanl Treasure – The Search For Sancy Diamond, Cliveden National Trust Taplow, Mon 3 Jun – Sun 1 Sep
Play detective at Cliveden, you say? I’ll be there clutching my pearls in a Miss Marple stylee. Following last year’s crime caper, there’s a brand new outdoor mystery to solve. The Sancy diamond from Nancy Astor’s bejewelled tiara was stolen and hidden in Cliveden’s woodland, with instructions for an accomplice to collect it at a later date – it never was. It’s your chance to bling it on and crack the clues.
FILM: Bohemian Rhapsody, Saddleback Farm Shop Brightwalton, Sat 8 Jun
Queen is officially richer than the Queen, according to the Sunday Times Rich List, and it’s all thanks to the epic biopic Bohemian Rhapsody. Rami Malek’s portrayal of the strutting showman Freddie Mercury also snagged him an Oscar for Best Actor and it’s pretty much the biggest pop up cinema movie of the summer. You can see it at Saddleback Farm Shop for a Saturday night at the movies in Berkshire’s blissful countryside. Doors open 7pm for drinks and a BBQ. Film starts 9pm. PLus each ticket doubles as a raffle ticket to win VIP entry to the next open air cinema night on 1 Sep.
FILM: Outdoor Cinema, Stonor Henley On Thames, Fri 7 – Sun 9 Jun
Stonor’s outdoor cinema returns for another year. If you’re after a blockbuster location that’s a dramatic as the Hollywood films on the big screen, this should do it. Choose the film(s) you want to see, grab your bezzie mates and enjoy this historic estate, while juggling a G&T hot dog and popcorn. All the food groups represented. Bohemian Rhapsody, Mary Poppins Returns and The Greatest Showman are on the bill. So book up. Doors open at 7.45pm, film starts at 9.15pm.
KIDS: The Little Welly, Culden Faw Estate Henley, Sat 8 – Sun 9 Jun
Little Welly obstacle courses are all about having fun and getting muddy, so naturally, I’m on board. The 3km obstacle course (the longest for kids in the UK) is popping up in Henley this month along with the accompanying festival which includes – deep breath – kart racing, rope climbing, circus skills workshops, live music, helter skelter, laser tag, climbing wall, pony rides and loads of family activities. Guaranteed to peel them away from the iPads and out into the fresh air (Sat 8 – Sun 9).
If you loved Cliveden’s Lynn Chadwick sculptures last year, then the new installation Anthony Caro exhibition might get you sitting up like a meerkat. This English modernist artist, who assisted Henry Moore in the 1950s, is most famous for his abstract industrial pieces but briefly created figurative artworks too. You’ll find his pieces doted around the grounds. Take a stroll, admire and then pop into Cliveden House for afternoon tea or lunch at the Astor Grill.
If you’re heading for the Big Smoke, there’s tons to do all summer between London and Tower Bridge with the largest outdoor festival in the capital, Summer by the River (until 28 Aug). Outdoor cinema including a HAWT Jason Momoa in Aquaman (4 Jun), a live screening of Royal Ballet’s Romeo + Juliet (11 Jun) as well as concerts, workshops, comedy and quizzes. You can scoff and drink to your heart’s content from the obligatory artisan stalls and then join in one of the fitness events to assuage the self-loathing. Or if you’re heading to Covent Garden, there’s Covent Garden in Bloom (until Sat 15 Jun), with floral artists Fleurs de Villes returning Covent Garden to its roots as the original (or OG, as the kids say) flower market in London. All the retailers and restaurants muck in with botanical window displays, it’s super pretty.
Also this month is the first ever Chilterns Live festival, just over the border in Herts (Sat 29 Jun). Held in Pendley Meadow, Tring, it has a stellar pop line-up of Busted, above, (this got a few squeals in Muddy HQ), Sophie Ellis Bextor and The Feeling. And history buffs, we’ve got you covered too with Chalke Valley History Festival, nr Salisbury– an extensive programme of talks, debates and interactive events and a mega-impressive list of speakers from Dan Snow to Mariella Frostrup, with a jaunt through Al Murray, Harry Enfield, Niall Ferguson and Antonia Fraser in between. Oh, and there’s camping too (24 – 30 Jun).
KIDS: New Children’s Garden, Kew Gardens, London
As if it wasn’t already a prime spot for day tripping, the clever sausages at Kew Gardens have added a brand new Children’s Garden. Two years in the making, the interactive garden (aimed at ages 2 – 12) has over 100 varieties of mature trees, bamboo tunnels, hammocks and in-ground trampolines all under the cover of a huge 200 year old oak tree. kew.org
Must-see exhibitions in the big smoke this month include Beasts of London, above, at the Museum of London, a fully immersive, digital installation exploring the role animals have played in the shaping of London, from the Roman era all they way up to present day. The interactive show uses video projection mapping to bring the beasts, from rats to lions, to life as they narrate a virtual tour of London with the likes of Kate Moss, Brian Blessed and Pam Ferris voicing the animals. Or you can check out the V&A‘s retrospective of iconic 1960s designer and the mother of miniskirts, Mary Quant– over 200 garments, accessories and exclusive unseen pieces from the designer’s personal archive (until Sun 16 Feb 2020); also at the V&A is this year’s biggie, the largest House of Dior collection ever staged in the UK, which traces the history of Christian Dior and the six artistic directors who succeeded him (until Sun 1 Sept). It is sold out but there are a few first-come, first served tickets available from 10am from the Grand Entrance – it’s well worth trying your luck. Or you can see the exhibition by purchasing a membership for the V&A. Also worth checking out is the major Van Gogh show at Tate Britain, with over 45 works, including Starry Night on the Rhône 1888 from the Musée d’Orsay, Paris, and the rarely loaned Sunflowers 1888 from the National Gallery. There’ll also be work by British artist who were influenced by Van Gogh’s work including Francis Bacon and David Bomberg (until Sun 11 Aug).
EVENT: Ladies Night feat. Art Dodger, Windsor Racecourse, Mon 17 Jun
Love a fashion, fizz and the chance to see party on a school night? Hell yes! Windsor Racecourse’s legendary Ladies Night is back. Travel in style and arrive by boat whilst popping a prosecco or two. There’s racing, a Royal Ascot fashion preview, the Best Dressed competition and Artful Dodger will be tearing up the paddock with a floor-filling DJ set. Book now.
FESTIVAL: Stonor Park Food Festival, Stonor, Henley, Sat 15 – Sun 16 June
The beautiful grounds at Stonor will be groaning with food and drink stalls over the Father’s Day weekend (dads go free before midday on the Saturday) for the first everStonor Food Festival. Keep dad happy with the crafts beers and BBQ plus there’s talks, tastings and demos along with the large selection of local and specialist produce. Guests include French fancy Jean Christoph Novelli and Michelin twinkling Ashton Kutcher. Tickets are £10 for adults and £6.50 for kids (under 2s go free) and include entrance to the house, gardens and Wonder Woods Adventure playground.
The Hidden Garden, Henley Royal Regatta, Wed 3 – Sun 7 Jul
If you’re heading down to Henley Regatta this July and want to escape the riff raff (not that Henley does real riff raff, of course) book now for The Hidden Garden. New to the Regatta this year, the luxe but laid-back riverside venue on the Berkshire bank offers brilliant views, VIP hospitality, musical entertainment, gourmet food and – most importantly – lashings of booze (chilled Henriot champagne and local favourite, Mr Hobbs gin to be precise). Pre-booking is a must so grab your other half, bezzies or workies and get organised pronto! findthehiddengarden.com