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What’s On: Muddy Herts Guide 5-11 May 2016

What’s on this week, I hear you cry.  And, because I don’t like it when you cry, here’s a fine selection of goodies from which you can take your pick.  Go on, pick one.  Pick more than one.  You’re so worth it.

Emma Bridgewater Pattern Book Signing, Spirella Ballroom, Letchworth Garden City, 11 May, 7.30pm

emma bridgewater

Love a bit of Emma Bridgewater?  Go on — I bet you’ve at least got a mug somewhere in the cupboard.  She’s got a new book out called Pattern, and she’ll be talking about and signing copies this coming week in Letchworth Garden City’s Spirella Ballroom (great name) courtesy of David’s Book Shop.  Tickets are just £25 and you get a copy of the hardback thrown in, or £30 for a pair of tickets and one copy of the book.  Bargain, I say.

Hertford Castle Open Day & Craft Market, Hertford Castle, 8 May, 12-4 pm

hertford_castle craft fair

Hertford Arts Festival is drawing to a close, and to mark that Hertford Castle is opening its doors to the public for the first time this year — and free of charge, too.  Explore the grounds and then enjoy an array of craft stalls piled high with all sorts, from jewellery to homeware, homemade produce to vintage clothing.  There’s crafty stuff for the kids to do, too, which is always good.

Living Crafts, Queen Elizabeth Oak Field, Hatfield House, 5-8 May, 10am-5pm

living crafts hatfield house

More crafts in a great location — the Living Crafts show is coming to Hatfield House.  High quality British design, along with masterclasses, workshops and demonstrations.  And Hatfield House is worth a visit any day of the week, after all — your ticket to get in will also get you strolling round the West Gardens.

Revealing & Concealing, Nude Tin Can Gallery, 4-14 May

nude tin can

No doubt about it, Nude Tin Can in St Albans has some cracking exhibitions.  If you’ve not checked it out yet, do pop it on your ‘places to go’ list.  This time, it’s Teresa Chlapowski’s glassware and sculpture, alongside abstract and embellished artwork from illustrator Caroline Evans.

Gyles Brandreth: Word Power!, Hertford Theatre, Hertford Theatre, 7 May, 8pm


Ok, so he’s a bit Marmite, that Giles Brandreth — you either love him on toast, or you can’t bear the sight and smell.  That said, I’m a bit ambivalent.  I sort of enjoy him, in spite of feeling that I really shouldn’t be.  More like cheesy Wotsits, maybe.  Anyway, food metaphors aside, he’s in Hertford this weekend with his new show all about the power of words.  Which is, to be fair, right up my street.  Metaphorically speaking.

Rachel Bridge – Ambition, Haresfoot Brewery, Billet Lane, Berkhamsted, 5 May, 7.30-10pm


Haresfoot Brewery is rapidly becoming a venue in Berkhamsted for a wide range of interesting stuff.  Comedy, beer (obvs), and now an evening with author Rachel Bridge talking about ambition — which is the only preview show before she takes it up to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August. This will be her only preview show.  It’s even free to get in, although you will need to a book a place.  And I expect there’ll be beer, too.

Damian Kingsley, The Coach House, Kings Arms, Tring, 11 May, 8pm


You can tell it’s all warming up for Edinburgh, because suddenly there’s all sorts of ‘warming up for the Fringe’ stuff popping up.  For his ‘Knock Knock Tour,’ comedian Damian Kingsley making his way entirely penniless from Lands End to Edinburgh — via a 120-gig tour.  And he’s raising money for the homeless charity Shelter while he does it.  He’s in Tring this week — so go along, have a laugh, and fork out a few quid.  You’ll be glad you did.

Dinosaur Park (The Jurassic Parody), Old Town Hall, Hemel Hempstead, 11 May, 8pm

dinosaur park

This is the show’s first UK tour since it packed out audiences at last year’s Edinburgh Fringe and fired it up in the West End, and I’m assured it’s a good ‘un.  Set in Lyme Regis Community Centre (ooo, the glamour) it’s the perfect parody for all those waiting anxiously for the sequel.  Definitely rated PG, and a irreverent, nostalgic romp for Spielberg fans.

Clubbing with the Kids, St Michael’s Mount Community Centre, Hitchin, 7 May, 2-4pm

clubbing with the kids 1

This sounds utterly awesome.  An afternoon of  ‘Alice in Wonderland’ themed Clubbing with the Kids.   Mr C is already up and practising his dad-dancing (and very, er, dramatic it is, too).  Expect all the regular club stuff — DJ Hybrd spinning those Classic Club Anthems and a Chill out Room, as well as the chance to make a Mad Hatter’s Hat or a Cheshire cat mask.  There are ‘Eat me, Drink me’ treats, too!  Fancy dress optional but really, wouldn’t you?

Email [email protected] or follow them on Twitter @GrooveiitHeart for all the deets

De Havilland Philharmonic Orchestra: Brahms Piano Concerto, Weston Auditorium, De Havilland Campus, 8 May, 7.30 – 10pm


The De Havilland Philharmonic is welcoming back Richard Uttley, one of the UK’s finest young professional pianists, and he’s bringing with him the mighty Brahms Piano Concerto No 1. Partner that with Tchaikovsky’s last symphony, the Pathetique, and Brahms’ Tragic Overture and you’re in for an evening of virtuoso emotion.  Oh the passion, the feeling.

The Comedy Loft @ The Comedy Loft, Watford, 7 May, 6.45pm

bobby mair

I do love a comedy night where you get to see lots of comedians — and some new ones you might not have seen before.  Check out this one: Christian Reilly (Bill-Bailey-esque), Eleanor Tiernan (laid back and engaging), Bobby Mair (Canadian, awkward, disturbing), and Sally-Anne Hayward (charming and autobiographical).  Sounds like an evening well spent.  And the tickets are a total bargain.

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