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February guide


Just Fabrics: Winter Sale, Wood Grove Farm, Fulbrook, Burford, throughout Feb

Just Fabrics winter sales run all the way to the end of February. The quality of Just Fabrics products are unparalleled, so take the opportunity to spruce up any room with a new blanket, throw for your sofa, curtains or cushions.


One Grove, Cheltenham, throughout Feb

NEW for 2019 is a bumper schedule with now 60 weekly classes Monday to Saturday that you can attend as and when you wish on a fully-flexible basis  – there’s no termly payment or commitment necessary at this gaff. Classes include Mat Pilates, Reformer Pilates, Rehab Pilates, Yoga and Barre classes. Trim up after all that Christmas excess and sort out any hip/back/knee/shoulder niggles you have. Bring it on, we say! Email to have a chat.


This Woman’s Work: Female Artists in the Swindon Collection, Swindon Museum & Art Gallery, Swindon, throughout Feb

Explore the works of the talented women behind this collection, including Gwen John, Mary Fedden, Gillian Ayres, Nicola Tyson and Sylvia Goss.


Leonardo da Vinci: A Life in Drawing, Bristol Museum & Art Gallerythroughout Feb

On the 500th anniversary of the death of artist, scientist, inventor and thinker Leonardo da Vinci, drawings from the Royal Collection are going on display at 12 galleries around the UK simultaneously – including the Bristol Museum & Art Gallery. Awesome.

Smart Phone Business Photography Workshop, Victoria Tapper Photography, Marlborough, Ends Fri 15 Feb

Creating a successful business is no longer just about proving a good service. Having an attractive and professional looking online presence is key to bringing in customers. High quality photography can really highlight your personality and your business or service. Snap up this brilliant deal until the end of February, get 10 professional photos to use on your website, get a 1-hour tutorial where you’ll learn how to take control of your smartphone camera, and get the best images at a click of a button.


Wise Children, Bristol Old Vic, until Sat 16 Feb

Twin chorus girls Nora and Dora Chance celebrate their 75th birthday; their father Melchior Hazard is 100 on the same day. Expect show girls and Shakespeare, sex and scandal, music, mischief and mistaken identity – and butterflies by the thousand – in this adaptation of Angela Carter’s last great novel.


Light up Cheltenham, Cheltenham High Street, Cheltenham, to Sat 24 Feb

Light Up Cheltenham sees the town’s most iconic architecture transformed with coloured illuminations. Take a spin on the observation wheel to see the brightly lit spectacle fill the Cheltenham winter sky with gorgeous illuminations from over forty buildings.


Pop Up Restaurant, Miserden, Stroud, Fri 1 Feb

Join the feast at the oh-so-popular Pop Ups at Miserden this winter. Bring Your Own booze for a delish evening and be treated by one of their fab local chefs. This time it’s Rubols Fusion Kitchen, the first Miserden Pop Up for cousins Ruby and Holly, who have combined their love of Mexican & Middle Eastern food to create unique fusion dishes such as the ‘Shawarrito’ (a cross between a Shawarma Wrap & a Mexican Burrito).


The Art of Afternoon Tea, The Cookery School at Daylesford, Fri 1 Feb

With spring well on its way, we’ll soon be desperate to find any excuse to spend a sunny afternoon drinking prosecco, eating and relaxing in the sun. The Daylesford cookery team will guide you through creating your own afternoon tea display including tarts, cakes, biscuits and savoury treats.


Dinner Party Desserts Cookery Class, Vaughan’s Cookery School, Devizes, Sat 2 Feb

Desserts can often be left to the wayside at dinner parties – they become an afterthought and before you know it, you’re serving your guests dry chocolate cake from the local Co-op (yes, I’ve done that). Learn to finish your dinner party on a high, with help from pastry chef Brittany Manning, who works at Michelin star pub, The Red Lion. You’ll get guidance and advice on how to bake soufflés, chocolate tart and poached pears.


The Year of the Pig, Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, Sat 2 & Sun 3 Feb

The Year of the Pig begins on Mon 4 Feb but celebrations start off here with trad and contemporary dance, music, crafts for all the family.


Midwinter Breaks, Old Bell Hotel, Malmesbury, to Sun 3 Feb

England’s oldest hotel offers some not-to-be-missed breaks this winter. This two-night break includes breakfast, a delicious three-course meal and a glass of bubbly on arrival.


From Darkness to Light Illuminations, Salisbury Cathedral, to Sun 3 Feb

The grounds around Salisbury Cathedral can be haunting in the darkness, but for the next two months the surrounding area will be lit up with pure beauty. Take a walk around the spellbinding displays, with over 500 neon light and audio spheres. salisburycathedral


Make Your Own Sushi, Vaughan’s Cookery School, Devizes, Wed 6 Feb

Always wanted to learn the art of making sushi? The intricate cooking techniques can seem intimidating, but with these insightful tips and guidance you’ll be off to a flying start. And don’t worry, they won’t have you working with any wriggling tentacles or raw fish…this time!


Southern French Wines,  Averys, Bristol, Weds 6 Feb

Eight wines each paired with cheeses from the Arch House Deli at one of the UK’s oldest wine merchants.


Waiting for Godot, Everyman Theatre, Cheltenham, Thurs 7 Feb to Sat 16 Feb

Samuel Beckett is undeniably one of the most famous play wrights in British history, and for the first time ever, one his brilliant plays is showing at Cheltenham Everyman Theatre. This modern classic is an absolute must-see for any theatre lover.


Jeff Koons at The Ashmolean, Oxford, Thurs 7 Feb – Sun 9 Jun & Gin Tasting with Private View, Wed 13 Feb

Behemoth of the contemporary art world, Jeff Koons is curating his own exhibition in collaboration with Norman Rosenthal. Spanning Koons’ entire career and showcasing seventeen works, most of which have never been shown in the UK before, the show will include his popular series Equilibrium, Statuary, Banality, Antiquity and his recent Gazing Ball sculptures and paintings. This is going to be a popular exhibition but you can see it without the crowds at the Love Your Gin event on Wed 13 Feb. Enjoy guided tastings of Ashmolean gin, tapas and live music after a wander around the exhibition. Tickets are on sale now.


The Burlesque Show, The Roses Theatre, Tewkesbury, Fri 8 Feb

This utterly fabulous performance is filled with music, comedy, magic and plenty of tease. If you’re hoping for a fun filled and sexy atmosphere, this nationally famous burlesque show will have your legs kicking and whistle blowing in no time.


Musical Youth, Colston Hall Foyer, Bristol, Sat 9 Feb

Now Musical Middle Age, the British Jamaican reggae band are passing the dutchie and other reggae classics up in Bristol.


Parent & Child Cook & Dine Event, The Farm Cookery School, Bromham, Sat 9 Feb

If you and the littlies are looking for a fun activity to do together, this is a great option.


Muddle Class, Swindon, Sat 9 Feb

The hilarious Jason Manford is back after his last hit sell-out show. Hear his ridiculous, relatable and downright silly tales of how he has learned to enjoy the finer things in life and has ended up becoming a middle-class man.


Daylesford Chef Experience – Skills Masterclass, Daylesford, Sun 10 Feb

The ultimate cooking class for those looking to learn the essential skills needed to begin creating delicious meals. Learn the classic flavour combinations, different cooking techniques and even knife skills.


British Dal Festival, around Bristol, Sun 10 – Sun 17 Feb

Keep your finger on the pulse with a celebration of dal and other dishes of beans, peas, lentils and similar small or round oval things. Feasts, food, markets, talks and a dal trail around Bristol eateries each with special dal dishes on the menu.


A Comedy about a Bank Robbery, Bristol Hippodrome Tues 12 – Sat 16 Feb

Photo Robert Day

It’s on in the West End but you can see the touring company’s production of the fast and furious comedy caper set in 1958 Minneapolis here. From the same team behind hugely successful The Play That Goes Wrong. Tickets


Ladies That Lunch – New Year, New You, The Greenway Hotel & Spa, Shurdington, Tues 12 Feb

The Ladies That Lunch club has a great community feel, perfect for us lot who like the finer things in life, great conversation, cocktails and great grub.


Cooking with Your Valentine, The Cookery School at Daylesford, Thurs 14 Feb

Share a love for cooking? This romantic cookery class is a great way to spend Valentine’s day. Accompanied by a tipple of your choice, join in on some cookery demonstrations and taste all of the delicious dishes created throughout the day.


Pop up at The Garden Café, Miserden Greenhouses, Thurs 14 Feb

It’s pop up crazy over at Miserden with The Garden Café hosting a series of foodie ventures for 2019. First off the blocks is chef Brett Mills, who heads up the kitchen at Soushi Cirencester, and will be taking over on 14 Feb. Or if you prefer something a little more traditional, Michelin trained pro chef Rory Baxter (he’s worked under Gordon Ramsey and Raymond Blanc) will berustling up some Brit classics with a modern twist on Thurs 14 and Fri 15 Mar. From £35,


Valentine’s Tasting Menu, Three Tuns Freehouse, Great Bedwyn, Thurs 14 Feb      

The Three Tuns have organised something truly special to celebrate the most romantic day of the year. This masterfully crafted tasting menu will have your taste buds tingling, with a cosy fire and bottle of bubbly. In my book, a date like this would be an absolute treat.


Valentine Break, The Greenway Hotel & Spa, Shurdington, Thurs 14 Feb to Sun 17 Feb

This limited Valentine’s offer is not one to miss, all for £265 per room you get to spend a romantic night in a Superior double room, with full access to the Elan Spa facilities. You’ll feel truly spoilt with champagne and canapes on arrival and a five-course tasting menu. If that wasn’t enough, you’ll be woken up with a full English before you check out.


Valentine’s Day Tasting Menu, The Kings Hotel, Chipping Campden, Thurs 14 Feb to Sat 16 Feb

This six-course tasting menu is set in a truly beautiful location, perfect for celebrating Valentine’s day with your loved one.


The Little Pickle Pop Up, Manor Farm Buildings, Upper Slaughter, Fri 15 Feb

The Little Pickle host their first ever pop up with this one-off chance to try incredible food from the chefs who create the Cotswold’s most delicious chutneys. This five-course tasting menu combines gourmet flavour combinations and presentations with some long-loved family favourites.


Valentines Night, Hillbrush, Mere, Fri 15 Feb

This specially crafted menu will be a romantic delight for any loved-up couple. The surprise dishes have been carefully selected to celebrate you and that special someone.


The Mirror Crack’d, Salisbury Playhouse, from 15 Feb

Times are changing. Girls are wearing trousers and Hollywood has come to a sleepy English village in the shape of a beautiful film star. Miss Marple begins to question her place in the world until a mysterious death calls into question the past of all those present.  Everyone’s version of events is different.  Can Miss Marple unravel the tangle of lies? This thrilling new play, based on Agatha Christie’s novel, explores how we all colour our own memories, our own truths, to disguise the darkness that lies within.


Turner, Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, Sat 16 Feb – Mon 22 Apr

The Young Turner: Ambitions in Architecture and the Art of Perspective takes place in Blenheim’s Gallery with works from The Ashmolean, The Tate and private collections. The exhibition celebrates some of his earliest commissions and shows his progress in depicting architecture and perspective in drawings, paintings and engravings from the 1780s – 1810s. You can also see one of Turner’s sketchbooks and some diagrams from a lecture he gave to the Royal Academy on perspective, which have rarely been exhibited before. Between Thurs 21 – Sun 24 Feb, the Cotswolds Art and Antique Dealers Association Fair also rocks up with over 30 dealers selling the very best furniture, pictures, silver, sculpture, carpets, jewellery. Prices start around £100 and you can imagine where they’ll end up!


Chunky Arm Knit Workshop, Tudor Farmhouse, Clearwell, Sat 16 Feb and Sat 23 Feb

The ultra-stylish Tudor Farmhouse are hosting The Chunky Needle’s fabulous workshops. Whether you’d like a new throw for your sofa or a cosy blanket to snuggle up in on a winters night, your options are limitless. Each piece created is still effortlessly chique, and once you’ve got the hang of this nifty skill, you’ll be able to gift these ever-popular chunky knit goodies to all your loved ones.


Wedding Showcase, Bowood Hotel, Calne, Sun 17 Feb

Considering Bowood Hotel as the location for your special day? The picturesque garden is the perfect setting for those all-important wedding photos. Bowood showcases their favourite local suppliers, and the gorgeous Kerry Suite will be dressed to help get the wedding inspiration flowing.


Chinese New Year Circus, Oxford Playhouse, Mon 18 Feb

If you’ve never seen Chinese acrobats, then this is a must-see. They are A-MA-ZING! This colourful show with daring stunts and an 18 metre long dragon dance will see you celebrating Chinese New Year in style.


Beauty, Mindfulness & Wellness, Whatley Manor, Malmesbury, Weds 20 Feb

Spend a whole day dedicated to bettering your body and your mind. Start your morning with Pilates session and finish with a healthy lunch. In the afternoon, you’ll be joined by the leaders in cosmetics, Natura Bissé who are ready to share their valuable expertise to help you get the most out of your daily routine. And last but not least, mindfulness guru Katie Sheen, founder of Soul Nutrition will help you understand the importance of mindfulness, positive psychology and nutritional support techniques which enhance wellness throughout the day.


Tom Gates, Bristol Hippodrome, Weds 20 – Sat 23 Feb

Liz Pichon’s famous Tom Gates tries to keep out of trouble but guess what, things keep on going wrong. All the fave characters from the books (14 now and over 5 million copies sold worldwide) in a show put together by the Gangsta Granny and Horrible Histories team,  so should be excellent. Suitable 5 – 12. Tickets


Cheltenham Winter Cocktail Masterclass, Hotel Du Vin, Cheltenham, Thurs 21 Feb

When it comes to winter drinking, spirits that make you feel warm and ready to brave the Baltic weather always prevail. Learn from the experts at Hotel Du Vin, on how to craft the most delicious and heart-warming winter tipples.


Gourmet Evening ‘Wines of New Zealand’, The Greenway Hotel and Spa, Shurdington, Fri 22 Feb

Taste the surprising and exotic flavours from a selection of New Zealand wines. A specially selected seven-course tasting menu has been created to support and complement each individual wine.


Dracula: The Bloody Truth, Wyvern Theatre, Swindon, Sun 24 Feb

This gut-wrenchingly funny live show tells the blood-curdling tale of Dracula, and how he came to be the most famous blood sucker in the land. It seems this story is a little more than just a fairy tale.


Gin Masterclass, Cotswold House Hotel and Spa, Chipping Campden, Thurs 28 Feb

It seems that we can’t get enough of gin, and Cotswold House Hotel are all more than happy to ablige. They have invited you for an evening all about this versatile spirit. Firstly, with a brief history of the gin and tonic. Then a tasting, with a selection of aromatic mixers and garnishes.


Wedding Open Day, Cotswold House, Chipping Campden, Sun 24 Feb

The stunning Cotswold House is a dream location for any bride-to-be looking for her fairytale manor wedding. Tour the venue, shop different wedding retailers, meet with the events team and see what they can offer to make your fantasy wedding come to life.


Kinky Boots, Bristol Hippodrome, Mon 25 Feb – Sat 9 March

Photo Matt Crocker

Struggling family shoe business is saved by a drag queen’s need for a size 14, with songs by Cyndi Lauper. Tickets


Poco Culina – ‘A Taste of the Ancient Silk Road’, Pop-Up at Miserden, Sat 2 March

An exciting new Miserden Pop Up for 2019 is Poco Culina – specialists in Mediterranean and Eastern flavours, Poco Culina will take diners on a five course plant-based food journey along the Silk Road – a network of trade routes connecting the ancient regions of the World.


Further afield:

Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams, Victoria & Albert Museum, London, Sat 2 Feb

Christian Dior by Maria Grazia Chiuri (b. 1964), Éventail de vos hasards, Dress, Haute Couture, Spring/Summer 2018. Dior Héritage collection, Paris

This is going to be maaassive! The V&A is showing the largest House of Dior exhibition ever staged in the UK, tracing the history of Christian Dior and the six artistic directors who succeeded him. The exhibition is based on the major exhibition Christian Dior: Couturier du Rêve, organised by the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris, and there’s a new section exploring Dior’s fascination with British culture. A highlight is the Christian Dior dress worn by Princess Margaret for her 21st birthday celebrations, on loan from the Museum of London.


Don McCullin Photography, Tate Britain, Sun 3 Feb – Mon 6 May & Dorothea Tanning Exhibition, Wed 27 Feb to Sun Jun 9

Over 250 photographs spanning Don McCullin’s 6o year career are on display at Tate Britain and include his iconic war images, including Vietnam, Northern Island and Syria, as well as some of his work focussing on poverty in England. At the end of the month, Tate Modern is showing over 100 works by Dorothea Tanning, from her 7 decade career as a surrealist artist. And don’t forget the Tate Late session at the Tate Modern on Fri 22 Feb when you can wander the galleries after hours and listen to talks, music and workshops.


The Winter’s Tale for Young Audiences, National Theatre, London, Wed 6 – Thurs 21 Feb

This is a great way to introduce primary-age children to Shakespeare (and it’s only an hour long). The Winter’s Tale, the story of Perdita, the girl who was once lost but is found, returns to the National Theatre in February 2019, following a sell-out run at the Dorfman Theatre last year.  Adapted by Justin Audibert and directed by Ruth Mary Johnson, the show is also touring round primary schools in Greater London.


Book ahead: 

Born to Parent

There is a reason Born to Parent won Muddy Stilettos Best Children’s Business 2018, and that’s because mantra reads true. They bring traditional values to modern parenting, and are now offering local schools (including Sherborne Girls and Godolphin) the opportunity to take part in their varied courses, including Babysitting and Mothers help. This is a great addition to social care education and has proved so successful in helping children & mothers alike be more confident when it comes to young children, taking on responsibility and growing up. If you would like your school to get involved, give them a buzz.
And, if you don’t already know it, Born to Parent has created an amazing approach to the classic ante-natal course – putting you in charge. You tell them what you want and they’ll do it, with courses covering all the traditional elements while focusing on the areas you’re interested in. No time wasted on things that aren’t relevant here! Emily Rittner and Georgie Bateman’s fab Ante-Natal Express course covers everything you would expect to learn in a classic ante-natal course but is delivered over two days in the comfort of Emily’s home.  The course includes lunch and refreshments and partners are welcome to attend, dates include 21-22 March and 19-20 September 2019. Their Post-Natal Express covers breastfeeding, the practicalities of a new baby, implementing healthy sleep routines, returning to work and finding childcare. It also takes place in Emily’s home and is taught by both Emily and Georgie. Dates include 9-10 May and 7-8 November 2019. Each two day course costs £275 per couple; but NEW FOR 2019 and EXCLUSIVE TO MUDDY READERS, The Essential Express Package: if you book both courses at the same time you will benefit from a 20% discount. Book here now!


Made by Hand, Cheltenham Town Hall, Cheltenham, Fri 8 Mar to Sun 10 Mar

Calling all contemporary craft-lovers…whether it is scrapbooking, sewing, jewellery making, textiles or wood work, there is something here to catch your eye. This celebration of 100 award-winning craft makers exhibits their skill, creativity and expertise. Explore the stalls, take a workshop and become truly inspired.


Cheltenham Festival, Cheltenham Racecourse, 12 to 15 March

Cheltenham Racecourse presents Four Days of Extraordinary. Join them for the pinnacle Jump racing event of the year, an event with an atmosphere that will make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. To be there any day for the Cheltenham Festival 2019 is extraordinary, from Day One: Champion Day with pent up anticipation let go in one mighty roar, to Day Two: Ladies Day, where tweed becomes fashionably becoming, or Day Three: St Patrick’s Thursday, part of England, forever Ireland. And then there’s Day Four: Gold Cup Day, with Jump racing at its heart, witness the creation of a legend. Book your place in history now


Cotswolds Decorative, Antiques & Art Fair, Westonbirt School, Tetbury, Fri 12 to Sun 14 April

Fabulous, eye-catching and unusual art and antiques return to Westonbirt School this 12-14 April at our fave fair of the year, the Cotswolds Decorative, Antiques & Art Fair. With a huge variety of pieces for collectors, home furnishers, interior designers and anyone looking for unusual decorative accessories, it’s your chance to find some real gems, from vintage fashion and costume jewellery, to traditional antique pieces or the latest in decorative chic style. A cut above other vintage fairs, dealers from all over the UK and Europe will be selling Mid-Century Modern, eye-catching Art Deco, contemporary sculpture, industrial chic, painted furniture, portraits and glamorous jewellery…need I go on?


Lechlade Music Festival, Riverside Park, Lechlade, Fri 24 May to Sun 26 May

For 8 successful years, Lechlade has been growing bigger and better, after a record six thousand guests in 2018. This year the festival promises to be jam-packed with over 100 performers, including Ivor Novello award-winning Brit Award-nominated band The Feeling headlining. Sticking to its roots, the festival is a family friendly event, with comedy, camping (and glamping for those not suited to the outdoor lifestyle), free family workshops, burlesque and more. Saturday night sees the return of ‘That 80s Rock Show’, performing 80s stadium rock anthems and power ballads with larger than life characters. Children 16 and under go free, whether camping or visiting for the day. This is brilliant way to make the most out of your bank holiday weekend, plus special Christmas Saver tickets are available until 31st January.


Party at the Castle, Sudeley Castle, Winchcombe, Thurs 6 June to Sat 8 June

Get ready for a serious celebration at Sudeley Castle this summer, with amongst others, tenor Alfie Boe, Will Young, All Saints and Sara Cox’s full on party show – Just Can’t Get Enough 80s.


Fresh Air Sculpture 2019, The Old Rectory, Quenington, Sun 16 June to Sun 7 July

This impressive contemporary art show celebrates the stark yet beautiful differences between the rural, rugged landscape of The Old Rectory, and the cutting-edge sculptures and artwork. Each piece created from a variety of ornate stone, stunning glass and impressive metal work. Take a tour around the grounds where they’ve been specially built as if the work belonged there.


Verve Festival, Ebbesborne Wake, Wilts, 7-8 Sep

Get your tix now for this fab new wellness festival celebrating health, fitness and the great outdoors. All ages are welcome for a weekend of yoga and meditation, Pilates, exercise classes and guided farm runs in the most picturesque location imaginable in South Wiltshire, plus there will be a full education programme, covering health & wellness, nutrition, sleep, mindfulness, life coaching, children’s health and much more. Enjoy mindful activities such as foraging, bushcraft in the woods, silent walks or landscape drawing with a local artist. Reconnect with yourself and your surroundings in workshops that celebrate the beauty of The Chalke Valley and promote mindfulness and wellbeing. Oh, and there is a Zest Spa! What’s not to like?


Autumn Yoga Retreat, Saxon Barn at Priory Farm, Hosted by Emma Tilley Yoga, Sat 7 Sep to Mon 9 Sep 2019

We’re giving you plenty of notice with this one because spaces fill up quick! Get in touch with your inner zen during a full weekend of relaxation, yoga, massages, reflexology and meditation. Enjoy comfortable and stylish accommodation, food provided by the delicious Natural Cookery School and there’s a hot tub if you fancy a soak after a busy day of doing nothing… bliss!

Find more ideas here

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