What’s on this weekend
Fri 14 – Sun 16 July
Readipop Festival, Christchurch Meadows Caversham, Fri 14 Sun 16 July
London beat boxer Beardyman and Faithless frontman Maxi Jazz are among the acts at this year’s Readipop Festival at Caversham’s Christchurch Meadows. Music fans can enjoy everything from indie-pop to voodoo trip-hop with more than 100 artists performing at the three-day event. I’m fairly certain the beer tent will be well stocked and there will be plenty of dirty burgers to keep you upright. Day tickets start at £10 and children under 14 get in for free.
The Big Camp, Cliveden National Trust, Fri 7 – Sat 22 July
The Big Camp at Cliveden is perfect. The family sleep under canvas in the five-star gorgeous grounds. They’ll discover wildlife, play games, explore the nearby Play Trail and be taken on a bat walk through the woods before hot chocolate round the campfire. You, on the hand, need to be checking in to the hotel, enjoying a nightcap on a squishy sofa and star-fishing in a giant bed. Everyone gets to have an adventure. It’s just one as a luxury bathroom and the other doesn’t. Adults £27, Children £17.
Bastille Day Festival, Forbury Gardens Reading, Sat 15 – Sun 16 July
Allo allo! It’s Reading’s Bastille Day celebration of all things French! A fantastique family festival full of free activities provided by Decathlon (sporty stuff) and Hobbycraft (arty crafty stuff). Expect lots of delicious French food from the likes of Patisserie Valerie and others including a crepe stand, French pastries, cheeses and charcuterie, plus live music and lots of other surprises. Get the kids down there using some of their best French vocab, while you stuff your face with eclairs.
Summer Garden Party, Windsor Great Park, Sun 16 July
Live it up like you’re Lord and Lady of the manor. Cumberland Lodge, a former Royal residence, is throwing open its doors for an afternoon of family fun. Expect music from The Candy Girls, magic tricks, hot food by the Lodge’s talented chefs and a sneaky peak around the house itself. Then kick back and enjoy the views across Windsor Great Park. Tickets are £5 per person and includes one item from the barbecue.
Brian Blessed directs Agatha Christie’s Spider’s Web, Mill at Sonning, until 9 Sept
Gordon’s Alive! It’s only national treasure Brian Blessed in the director’s chair at The Mill at Sonning. Spider’s Web is an Agatha Christie murder-mystery classic sees Clarissa discover a dead body in her house. Do any of her house guests have anything to do with it, we wonder? Do not miss the chance to see this production. And remember, your ticket price also includes a two-course meal.
Double Vicious, Circle Album Launch, The Firestation Windsor, Sat 15 July
Albums don’t always magically appear on iTunes, Double Vicious – electronic music producer & DJ; Ricky Jones (Rick Silver) and musician, composer; Patrick Johnson – are going old school with a live performance of Circle. The project explores the possibilities of recording improvising musicians within electronic music. The duo have collaborated with some of the most established musicians in the country, many of whom will guest on the night. In conjunction with set design from Scene Art.
British Grand Prix, Silverstone, Fri 14- Sun 16 July
It’s so much more than just a race – the British Grand Prix is basically a weekend-long party, from Thursday through to Sunday. The non-stop entertainment will keep any reluctant petrolheads happy and includes an ’80s party hosted by Sara Cox and gigs from Travis, Reef and The Hoosiers.
Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power, Tate Modern, London 12 July – 22 Oct
Tate Modern’s exhibitions are always worth a look (and a run around the cavernous Turbine Hall afterwards, if you’ve got the nippers in tow). Soul of a Nation explore black artists’ work, opening in 1963, at the height of the Civil Rights movement. Among the 150 artworks are vibrant paintings, powerful murals, collage, photography, revolutionary clothing designs and sculptures made with Black hair, melted records, and tights. Icon of the era Muhammad Ali is present in Warhol’s famous portrait.
On Track For Summer, Windsor Racecourse, Sat 22 July
It’s been a pretty crappy year, so a Summer of Love nostalgia fest could be the perfect antidote. Head to On Track For Summer for a celebration of peace and love. Fifty years after music fans partied at Balloon Meadow at Windsor Racecourse, the venue will once again rock the Queen’s foundations. Sophie Ellis Bextor’s dad, Robin, is the man in charge, so expect a starry turn out. Probably best to keep top on though, some things can never be unseen. Tickets £35.
The Tiger Who Came To Tea, Corn Exchange Newbury, Mon 24 – Wed 26 July
All kids want to step inside their favourite picture book – my three-year-old Sam, is desperate to Go On A Bear Hunt or join Mouse for a stroll in the Gruffalo’s deep dark wood, so live theatre often sees their eye practically popping out of their heads. Minds blown. Judith Kerr’s classic The Tiger Who Came To Tea is coming to Newbury following a smash-hit West End season! Grab a ticket, they’ll sell fast. Suitable for 3+, kid-friendly times, tickets £13.50.