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This week


Summer School, Marlborough College, Marlborough, 8 July – 4 Aug

There is honestly something for everyone at Marlborough College this summer, and it’s for the whole family too – you can send your kids as day students or even boarders (uh, yes please. In fact, the whole family can stay. Really!) Children are split into Junior Troopers, Young Adventurers and Teenagers, with a bonkers amount of action-packed courses to choose from including Mountain Biking, Yoga, Cricket, Water Polo, Calligraphy, Jewellery Making, Fashion Sketching, Beginners Harp, Light Saber Combat (yup!), Duelling Training and Young Chef’s Academy courtesy of Vaughan’s Kitchen (see below). For adults, courses include arts & crafts, landscape and architecture, literature and creative writing, history, music, dance, theatre and film, technology and computing, life skills, sport, country pursuits…phew!


Olivia O’leary presents The Heart of Summer, Glebe Gallery, Salisbury, Wed 11 July

Hear a collection of music and poetry encompassing each poet’s personal experiences with summer and their interpretation of the warmer months.


Tai Chi, Westonbirt Arboretum, Westonbirt, Thu 12 July

Tai Chi can help flexibility, joint paint and balance, so that’s a prescription for me then! Take part in a basic class surrounded by beautiful Westonbirt Arboretum.


Ben Waghorn Trio, Jazz Night, Old Bell Hotel, Malmmesbury, Thu 12 July

If you’re lucky enough to be dining at the Old Bell Hotel on Thursday, then you’ll be accompanied by the talented jazz band Ben Waghorn Trio. If you fancy getting involved, you can get a single ticket for just a tenner!


Gin Masterclass, Neston Farm Shop, Hartley Farm, Melksham, Thu 12 July 

Want to learn how to pair the perfect gin with the right mixer? Or keen to find out what fruits bring out the best flavour in certain gins? Come along to this class and you’ll be impressing all your friends with your new-found gin knowledge.


Two Thousand Trees Festival, Upcote Farm, Cheltenham, Thu 12 to Sat 14 July

 The award-winning independent music festival is back again with another brilliant set of acts. The line-up includes Twin Atlantic, Enter:Shikari and At The Drive In.


Gin Tasting Evening, Grittleton House, Chippenham, Fri 13 July 

A gin and tonic in the summer can be absolute heaven. Come along to the beautiful Grittleton House to try a range of 30 gins, listen to live music and enjoy plenty of nibbles.


A Taste of Thai, Harts Barn Cookery School, Longhope, Fri 13 July

A three-hour extravaganza creating fragrant Thai dishes, the class will include both demonstration and hands-on cooking, including recipes such as Tom Ka- famous Thai soup, Tom Sum – sweet, sour and spicy salad, Thai Green Curry, Thai Red Curry, Pad Thai.


Penguinpig, Pound Arts, Corsham, Sat 14 July 

This is the perfect show for the whole family. Especially if you have kids, they’ll be giggling their socks off and be talking about the show all the way home.


Psychic Night with Nikki Kitt, Swindon Arts Centre, Wyvern Theatre, Swindon, Sat 14 July 

Nikki has been touring around the UK connecting her audience with people who have passed. Come and watch her work, and possibly speak to a loved one.


Comedy Nights, Gloucester Brewery, Gloucester, Sat 14 July

Every second Saturday of the month Gloucester Brewery hold stand-up comedy nights with a hilarious selection of comedians.


Hedgerow Gin Safari, Stroud Brewery, Stroud, Sat 14 July  

herbs lavender bowl

Did someone say free booze? Normally you wouldn’t find the words gin and safari in the same sentence, but the hunt to seek out the perfect G&T is a tireless one. Create your own gin from the plants you’ve picked to take home and learn the recipe, so you can make it again and again… and again!


Jonathon Richardson & Open-Air Theatre, Miserden Pop-up Restaurant, Miserden, Sat 14 July

chef cooking kitchen

Enjoy a pre-theatre dinner with food by the acclaimed Jonathon Richardson and watch Old Herbaceous live.


A Franks or 2, Alex & Adrian Franks Exhibition, Fisherton Mill, Salisbury, until Sat 14 July

Father and son Alex and Adrian come together to exhibit their artistic abilities. Newcomer Alex uses traditional print techniques in combination with darkly comic themes discussing the relationship between reality and dreams, while Adrian, veteran exhibitionist at Fisherton Mill, shows a collection of work inspired by line and shape.


Gourmet BBQ, Harts Barn Cookery School, Longhope, Sun 15 July

fish on barbecue

Take your summer entertaining to the next level with this gourmet BBQ course where you’ll learn how to use a biscuit tin smoker to create hot-tea smoked trout with a cucumber and poppy salsa; marinate and cook bavette steak with chimichurri sauce and a flower and foraged leaf salad; make and cook flat breads over the coals; and prepare chilli and mint marinated charred pineapple with lime and rum spiked mascarpone. Drooling? Me too!


Kim Cypher Quartet, The Roses Theatre, Tewkesbury, Sun 15 July

woman blonde hair saxophone

Kim’s style for funky, quirky jazz is what her audience adore her for, and why she has been dubbed as one of the UK’s most exciting saxophonists.


Chunky Needle Market Stall, Cotswold Summer Market, Cheltenham Town Hall, Cheltenham, Sun 15 July

armchair opal chunky knit throw

There will be lots of goodies at the not-to-be-missed Cotswold Summer Market, not least The Chunky Needle’s delicious stall of snuggly chunky-knit blankets and cushions, which I’m ordering a job lot of. See founder Courtney’s styling tips


Cheltenham Music Festival, Cheltenham, until Sun 15 July

Kolobov Novaya Opera Theatre of MoscowThe annual outing of summer’s Cheltenham Music Festival is a cornucopia of some of the best classical musicians of the moment, as well as talks, kiddie’s events and this year a bit of opera by the Kolobov Novaya Opera Moscow, which I’m liking the sound of, my interest in all things Russian having been piqued by the World Cup.


The Farm Cookery School, Netherstreet Farm, Bromham, dates throughout July

If you’re looking to try some new recipes, The Farm Cookery are holding classes on much-loved classics from over-seas including a taste of Italy, India and Thai. They have a variety of classes over the whole month, so you shouldn’t have problem fitting it into your schedule!


The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, Barn Theatre, Cirencester, until Sat 4 August

Award-winning comedy is coming to the Barn Theatre. A heart-warming and brilliant story of the girl next door with a wondrous ability to impersonate the great singers of our generation.


Giant Lego Brick Animal Trail, WWT Slimbridge, Slimbridge, until Sun 23 September

boy girl Lego bird

Inspired by the varied wildlife at WWT Slimbridge, lifelike Lego animals have been dotted around the nature trail. Spot and get a picture with your favourite woodland friends including Lottie the otter and Flavia the flamingo.


Not to miss!

Glitter Parties by Eleanor Rosmond, throughout July

Glitter parties are a great idea for a birthday party or hen do. Try glittery hairstyles, make up looks and mani-pedis. You’ll have all your friends looking fabulous and blinged to the max.



The Cotswold Decorative, Antiques and Art Fair, Westonbirt School, Tetbury, Fri 10 to Sun 12 Aug

Fabulous, eye-catching, unusual and even bizarre antiques go on sale at The Cotswolds Decorative, Antiques & Art Fair at Westonbirt School this August. Splash your hard-earned on vintage fashion and costume jewellery, traditional antique pieces and the latest in decorative chic style. This is your chance to snoop out some real gems, whether you’re a collector (I wish), interior designer or just on the hunt for unusual accessories for your cool rural boudoir (that’s more like it.) 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? They’ve got some pretty cool retro arm candy too. Now you’re talking… Tickets to the Fair are £5 but you can get a FREE TICKET HERE. Open Friday – Sunday 11am-5pm.


Theatre Studio Summer School, Cheltenham Playhouse, Cheltenham, Mon 20 to Fri 24 Aug 

red curtains

Performing arts is a great way for kids to build confidence and develop creatively and the Theatre Studio’s courses are fab. And it’ll fill a week of the summer holidays! For young performers between the ages of four and 19, it’s a great way for kids to mix with all ages too. And you’ll get to watch a performance at the end of the week.


Theatreland Workshops, Southrop, Mon 27 to Fri 31 Aug

Got Mudlets between 7 – 17 who were born to go on the stage? Do they love performing and having fun? Then look no further, as Theatreland Workshops return to the Cotswolds this August. The workshops give young people a chance to work with inspiring professionals from across the business, and whatever your ability you will be pushed to a new performance level, covering musical production numbers, acting pieces, audition technique, choreography, singing and whole bag more. This time it’s a workshop themed around The Greatest Showman – don’t miss out!

Words by Amy Ballantyne

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