My Faves

Click the bookmark icon to save all the stuff you love.

The Muddy Stilettos Awards are live!

Nominate your favourite businesses

Nominate now

Muddy Stilettos Awards logo
Reader Treats Just For You!

This Bank Holiday Weekend


Long Itchington Bank Holiday fun May 4 – May 7

The sun’s set to shine, so if you like your beer, this is village to go to over the Bank Holiday. The annual Beer Festival is no more but each of the six pubs will be running various entertainment. See what’s on at The Green Man here. Expect live music over the band, street food and local beers including Warwickshire’s Purity craft beers.

Deliaphonic, St John The Baptist Church, Coventry, Sat May 5

Electronic soundscapes and defiantly abstract sounds, Deliaphonic return to Coventry. The Tin Music and Arts is teaming up with Synthcurious to celebrate the birthday of the under- appreciated Coventry born ’60’s electronic music pioneer Delia Derbyshire, best known for composing the Dr Who theme tune! Three electronic acts will be performing. Author, film maker, musician, and audio-visual artist Ian Helliwell will be presenting a selection of his short films, as well as a live performance. Eşya – the electronic solo project from Savages and Kite Base artist Ayse Hassan. White Noise – the experimental electronic music project started in 1969 by David Vorhaus. Initially including Brian Hodgson and Delia herself, David is now joined by Mike Painter.

The Tin 1-4, The Canal Basin, St Nicholas St, Coventry CV1 4LY, 7pm – 11pm, thetinmusicandarts

Spring Garden Weekend, Ragley Hall (nr Alcester), Sun May 6 & Mon May 7

Bluebells at Ragley Hall

The family home of the 9th Marquess and Marchioness of Hertford and their children.  Ragley’s ancient Ladies Wood floor is covered with a carpet of bluebells nestled in the bright green foliage as far as the eye can see. In the shade of the wood, the first thing that hits you is the scent of the bluebells. On May 6 & 7 it’s Spring Garden Weekend – so why not exploring the gardens and bluebell woods and visit to the Ragley State Rooms, which will be open throughout both days.


Elizabeth: The Pageant, Kenilworth Castle and Elizabethan Gardens, Sun May 6 & Mon May 7

Celebrate Kenilworth’s Elizabethan heyday as the ultimate party palace with music by Blast from the Past, pyrotechnics, falconry displays, and a feast of entertainments fit for the Virgin Queen. Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, will be showing off the skills which made him Master of the Royal Horses – and he will be joined by the queen herself. Don’t miss this right royal weekend of revellry, including a School for Fools. the Queen’s thoughts about her trip to Kenilworth and learn about the food Elizabeth would have eaten. Full itinerary here.


Last Resort, Helen Martin Studio, Warwick Arts Centre, Mon Apr 30 – Sat May 5

Last Resort is an alternative future for Guantanamo Bay. The waterboarding has stopped, the noise has been turned down and the military base has been reclaimed as a holiday destination. You, the audience, are our holidaymakers. You will sit in a deckchair, you will be offered a rum cocktail on arrival and you will feel the sand between your toes. 2Magpies Theatre will be your tour guides. A 1hr multi-sensory package holiday experience for ages 12+


Shakespeare Walking Tour of Stratford & Ghost Tour, Sat May 5

Tours begin at 2pm from his old tavern – now Tudor World in Sheep Street – passed his birthplace, daughter’s house, his old school, his theatre and finally his resting place, Holy Trinity Church. 1hr 30mins. The 1hr Ghost Tours, for ages 18+ start at 6pm – 10pm (last entry 9pm). Not for those afraid of dark or spooky places!


Sci-Fi Outdoor Cinema: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Twycross Zoo, Sat May 5

Forget ‘May the Fourth’, it’s all about Revenge of the 5ifth! Bring the whole family or go for a date night at the ZOOvies. You can explore the Zoo from 5pm and discover what the animals get up to before bedtime. Also discover Chimpanzee Eden, the brand new, state-of-the-art jungle-like habitat, where the Zoo’s iconic chimps live. Grab a bite to eat, set up your blankets and deckchairs and settle down to watch the film under the stars! Adults £15, Children £2.

Twycross Zoo Burton Road, Atherstone, Warwickshire CV9 3PX, 5 – 10pm, twycrosszoo 

Annual Bluebell Walk, Yew Tree Farm Courtyard Shopping Village, Wootton Wawen, Sun May 6 and Mon May 7

A 1 ½ mile charity walk long through a natural woodland path taking in one of Warwickshire’s most stunning areas of English Bluebells on the farm. Sensible footwear is needed as the paths are undulating in places and can become muddy if wet underfoot. Afterwards you can always pop into the shopping village for refreshments at The Cowshed Cafe or inside Sims Antique Centre. There’s a lovely selection of boutique shops to browse around including French antiques, handmade jewellery at The Wild Hare, H for Hats, Henley Chocolates, Gosh Boutique, Della and James lingerie, Grey’s speciality loose teas, a garden furniture showroom, Beyond the Blue lifestyle clothing and Yew Tree Farm Shop selling local produce. Children and dogs are most welcome. They’ll  be stocking up on doggy treats!  8.30am – 4pm on both days.


John Piper (A Tate Liverpool Exhibition), Mead Gallery, Warwick Arts Centre, Tues May 1 – Thur June 21

John Piper – Interior of Coventry Cathedral, the morning after the Blitz, 1940

One of the most important British artists of the late 20th century. John Piper is famed for Coventry Cathedral’s stunning stained-glass Baptistry Window. This exhibition, organised by the Mead Gallery in association with Tate Liverpool, features over 40 works by the artist including abstract and landscape paintings, collages, photographs and designs.


Romeo & Juliet, RST, Stratford, April 21 – Sept 21/ Live in Cinemas: Jul 18

Photo by Topher McGrillis © RSC

Check out Shakespeare’s epic story of tragic teen love starring Coventry’s Bally Gill as Romeo and Glaswegian actress Karen Fishwick as Juliet as Erica Whyman examines Generation Z, grime culture and the dangers of knife crime in her explosive present-day re-telling.


Avengers: Infinity War (12A)

This huge superhero battle is one Marvel fans have been building up to over the last 10 years and reportedly the second most expensive film of all time. It features so many superheroes they can’t fit on the poster! But is it any good? The reviews are in and the answer from British critics is an almost unanimous yes.  “Furiously entertaining”, (the Times), “pure entertainment on a scale never before seen in cinema” (the Express) and “Colossal, cataclysmic, delirious, preposterous – and always surreally entertaining (the Guardian).

Wild Fest @ Brandon Marsh, Coventry, Sat March 5

Feel like getting wild in the country? Then head over to Brandon Marsh for a family-friendly day out learning how to help preserve our countryside wildlife. Activities range from finding out about Help for Hedgehogs to toasting marshmallow on an open fire in the woods to face painting, mini beast hunting, crafts, guided walks and pond dipping (10am, 12noon & 2.30pm). £2.50 adults, £1.50 concessions and £1 children, 10am – 4pm.

Full details here

David Rodigan: 40th Anniversary DJ Tour, Leamington Assembly, Sun May 6

The DJ’s recent autobiography

The reggae music pioneer – lauded by the likes of Shaggy and Trevor Nelson – will be DJing playing some of his favourite tracks.


 Hints, Tips, Tricks For Parents & Carers to Connect With Teens, Costa Coffee, Kenilworth, Fri May 4

Want to bring calmness into your home? Warwickshire’s Teen Direct will be offering top advice in this informal Info Hub.  Only 10 places available, £10 inc drink, 12.30

Book Here

The Fantastic Follies of Mrs RichSwan Theatre, Stratford, until June 14

Aretha Ayeh and Sophie Stanton as Lucinda and Mrs Rich. Photo by Helen Maybanks

Way before Madonna, Mrs Rich – Sophie Stanton – was a material girl in search of her man. A critical hit, this comedy of distinctly female wit has been described as like ‘a Restoration Ab-Fab’. Unlike Aphra Behn, a fellow female playwright from the late 1600’s, Mary Pix has been almost lost to history. But like Behn’s The Rover, an RSC hit early last year, Pix’s comedy of manners combines mind-bending plot twists and mischief.  Sophie’s also been in Ink (Almeida and West End), Made in Dagenham (West End), ITV’s The Halcyon, E4’s My Mad Fat Diary and the BBC’s New Tricks.

Book here.

Great Expectations, Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, Wed May 2 – Sat May 5

Founded in 2017, Tilted Wig place a strong emphasis on creative collaboration and ensemble work, with many of the actors in this show taking on multiple roles. It’s an ambitious task to tackle a novel of this scale on stage, but this dynamic new company are rising to the challenge admirably, using quick-fire costume changes, a stylised set and live music to create a pacy and engaging retelling. Among the cast members is Olivier Award-winner Nichola McAuliffe. If you fancy joining in the Belgrade love for you to share any favourite quotes or your own memories of reading or studying the book using #WhatLarks on Twitter!

Tel box office on 024 7655 3055, belgrade

New work by ceramic artist Kirsty Macrae, The Stratford Gallery, Stratford-upon-Avon

New sculptural ceramic artworks from the Glasgow School of Art graduate are now in the gallery. Light and Shade, a new exhibition opens Sat May 5 – May 30 with new Paintings and Ceramics from Laura Wade, Oilivia Walker, Harriet Porter and Tim Lake exploring tone and form.

Leamington Music Festival Weekend, Royal Pump Rooms, Fri May 4 – Tues May 8

Top UK baritone Roderick Williams will be accompanied by Iain Burnside on piano on Tues May 8. The first half of Roderick Williams’s recital is of British composers, whose lives were cut short in the Great War, including William Denis Browne who was born in Leamington. In the second half he completes his Schubert Project.

Check out 11 concerts, both lunchtime and evening featuring the Prazak String Quartet, Guarneri Piano Trio and Martin Kasik from the Czech Republic and Roderick Williams, Michael Collins, Ensemble 360 and Piatti String Quartet to mark centenary of foundation of Czechoslovakia and the end of the Great War.


Foxfinder by Dawn King, Loft Theatre, Leamington Spa, Wed May 2 – May 12

Man aiming a shotgun with three people looking frighted behind him

Photo 1 – (Foreground) Craig Shelton (Samuel Covey) (Background left to right) Ed Statham (William Bloor), Charlotte Froud (Sarah Box) and Elisabeth Morris (Judith Covey). Photo by Richard Smith Photography

Showcasing the work of  new playwright, Dawn King the next Main House production is her multiple award winning play, Foxfinder. A futuristic Orwellian drama about the extinction of foxes and a farming family struggling to come to terms with the recent death of their young son.

The Loft Theatre, Victoria Colonnade, Leamington Spa,, or by calling 01926 800360 (answerphone service).

Macbeth, RST, Stratford, March 13 – September 18

Photo by Richard-Davenport-

This compelling contemporary version of Shakespeare’s darkest psychological thriller with the fantastic Christopher Eccleston, brilliant in BBC 1’s The A Word, and revered Irish actor Niamh Cusack as Macbeth and Lady Macbeth, and directed by Polly Findlay has the eerie feel of a modern horror film. Brilliant for students studying Macbeth on their GCSE or A level syllabus!

Book here.

An Exhibition by Eve Parnell, Hall’s Croft, Stratford-upon-Avon, May 4 – Nov 4

Escape the hustle and bustle of town and visit the lovely oasis of Hall’s Croft where you can enjoy a coffee and cake or a light lunch while admiring new exhibition, ‘Truth hath a quiet breast’ (Richard II Act I Sc III),  a series of drawings inspired by Hall’s Croft and Shakespeare.
Old Town, Stratford upon Avon, CV37 6BG, shakespeare
Unlocked! Behind the Scenes at Leamington Spa Art Gallery and Museum, April 27 – July 15

Shining a spotlight on rarely displayed items and others that are undergoing conservation work. Discover the gallery’s most dangerous object, and view the oldest alongside the newest, the smallest and the heaviest items. Find out more about what goes on behind the scenes, how they plan for disasters and tackle the pests that like to eat artefacts. Learn the fascinating stories behind the objects on display and see the hidden sketch on the reverse of L.S. Lowry’s The Mission Room.


The Duchess of Malfi, The Swan, Stratford-upon-Avon, now until Aug 3

Pic credit: Helen Maybanks

After her inventive and critically-acclaimed production of Doctor Faustus in 2016, Maria Aberg returns to the RSC to direct a critically-acclaimed modern dress, blood-soaked version of The Duchess of Malfi in her own distinct style. Topically it’s all about gender politics and toxic masculinity.  Joan Iyiola stars as The Duchess, her twin brother Ferdinand is played by Alexander Cobb – Indian Summers (Channel 4) and Ripper Street (BBC) – and The Cardinal is Chris New, who was Glen in 2011 film, Weekend. Read Muddy’s Q & A with Joan here.

Tel: 01789 403493, rsc

Know a star-in-the-making? Nativity! The Musicial auditions, Belgrade Theatre, Coventry from May 28

Do you have a child aged 9-11 who’d like to audition for a part in Nativity! The Musical? Lead roles as the children of St. Bernadette’s are up for grabs at Belgrade Theatre, Coventry. All kids auditioning must be confident singers, dancers and performers due to the demands of the role. They need to live in the Midlands, be naturally confident, upload a 1-minute YouTube clip and available for all rehearsal and performance dates across the whole UK tour, Mon Sept 17 – Dec 31. Auditions start 28 May (half-term week), with rehearsals taking place in Coventry.



Cheltenham Jazz Festival, various locations, Wed May 2 – Mon May 7

The legend: Kamasi Washington!

One artist I’d love to see is Kendrick Lamar collaborator, jazz saxophonist Kamasi Washington who’s headlining a sell-out gig at this year’s Cheltenham Jazz Fest! Quite a line-up this year, not least Van the Man, Randy Crawford and Courtney Pine. And the rest of the bill is looking might fine too. And as well as musical feasts, The Lucky Onion will also be hosting its famous supper clubs and house parties at No 131. This festival just gets better every year.

Legoland, Star Wars Day, Legoland Windsor, Sat 5 – Mon 7 May

Star wars Lego troopers marching across tower Bridge Big Ben and London Eye in the background

May the Fourth be with you! Or as it turns out the 5th, but what’s 24 hrs between fans. The force is strong at Legoland this May Bank Holiday with its hugely popular (I’ll say) Star Wars Days returning once again. Get ready to join in a galaxy of Star Wars-themed activities including a Wookie Scavanger Hunt, and there will be plenty of meet and greet and selfie opportunities with Darth Vader, Chewie and the rest of the gang.

Fashioned By Naturem V&A London, now – 27 Jan 2019

Model with bull skull wearing French embroidered waistcoat, black trousers, holding pheasant feathers – V&A Fashioned By Nature

Embroidered silk waistcoat, France, 1780-9. Image: Vee Speers © V&A

Love a tassel earring? How about the heads of two real Honeycreeper birds? Very fashionable in 1875, but a step too far for me. The V&A’s new exhibition Fashioned By Nature takes the idea of fashion victim to a new level in an exhibition that traces 400 years of fashion and its cost on the environment. Check out the dress embellished with beetle wings, Jean Paul Gaultier’s beaded leopard dress and innovative fabrics like Vegea’s Grape gown made from the waste in wine production. Permission to pour a large one. You’re drinking with a conscience.

Victorian May Day, Sudeley Castle, Winchcombe, Mon May 7

Spend the Bank Holiday traveling back to the Victorian era at the always bewitching Sudeley Castle. There’ll be Punch and Judy, a Wheel of Fortune, Balloon Burst games and a Victorian juggler who will dance along to music from an organ grinder. The castle’s huge new fun fort will also be open in the adventure playground.

Royal Society of Painter-Printmakers, Chapel Arts, Cheltenham, Wed 25 April to Sat 12 May

linocut print people in Tube

Gail Brodholt’s London Bridge Underground (linocut)

This looks rather special – along with Bankside in London, Cheltenham’s own Chapel Arts is showing 52 selected prints and drawings to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of the founder and first president of the Royal Society of Painter-Printmakers, Francis Seymour Haden. Members of the society will be visiting the gallery to walk people round the exhibition, explaining the different techniques and processes being used. Don’t miss!

Find more ideas here

This Weekend

Tell us what you think

Your email address will not be published.

* Required
* Required

Little Black Book

The Little Black Book

Our A-Z of the grooviest local businesses to help make your life easier

View the businesses
Home icon Back Home

The Urban Guide to the Countryside - Warwickshire