Fri 30 March – Mon 2 April
The Alban Bun, Redbournbury Mill and the Abbot’s Kitchen, Sat 31 March – Mon 2 April
The Alban bun is the original hot cross bun, without piping, and the cross is made with a knife. It was originally baked at St Alban’s Abbey but now they are made at Redbournbury Mill. And they are great. Spicy, slightly higher than a hot cross bun and perfect toasted with butter. The Mill also bakes and sells hot cross buns. And bread. Buy direct from the baker on Saturday morning – be quick! And yes, Mary Berry came to St Albans to sample the locally baked buns. If you just want to taste rather than buy to take home, you can sample the buns at the Abbot’s Kitchen in the Cathedral all weekend. Just to let you know, it’s currently housed in a marquee!
Easter Egg hunting, Sat 31 March – Mon 2 April
Take your pick. There are more than enough egg hunts to keep everyone happy. Starting further afield, why not try the Lindt Gold Bunny Hunt in Cambridge Botanic Garden, from Sat 31 Mar – Sun 15 April. It’s free! You’ve also got Audley End Adventure Quest, where you crack clues and hunt for dragon eggs: Sat 31 Mar – Mon 2 April. At Wimpole Hall it’s the big Cadbury Easter Egg Hunt from Sat 31 Mar – Mon 2 April, and a Nature Trail from Tues 3- Sun 15 April. More Cadbury egg hunting at Ashridge, Sat 31 Mar – Mon 2 April. In Letchworth, at Standalone Farm, Boris the Bunny has hidden eggs that children need to find, Sat 31 Mar and Sun 1 April, and the Hopstical Course is open throughout the Easter holidays.
Hope to Nope, Design Museum – until 12 August
This is a brand new exhibition and I’m really looking forward to seeing it. Discover how graphic design and technology have played a pivotal role in dictating and reacting to the major political moments of our times.
Out of the Block: Henry Moore’s Carvings, Henry Moore Studios & Garden, opens Fri 30 March
Happy days. One of my favourite places in Herts opens again for Easter and the summer season. There’s a wonderful new exhibition celebrating Moore’s carvings but you’ve also got wonderful gardens, sculptures galore, spring lambs running around bronzes, a fab new cafe, and you can also visit Henry Moore’s house. An inspiring day out for all.
Lamb spotting, Sat 31 March – Mon 2 April
Neville Staple, Club 85, Hitchin, Fri 30 March
Calling all fans of The Specials! It’s the Neville Staple Band at Club 85 in Hitchin. Doors 7.45pm.
A big day out with Peter Rabbit™, Kew Gardens, from Fri 30 Mar – Sun 15 April
The start of a new trail based on Peter Rabbit and other famous Beatrix Potter characters. More permanent pleasures include the tree top walk, the 17 metre tall Hive sensory experience, a 14,000 tree arboretum and the Palm House.
The Making of Harry Potter, Watford, Fri 30 Mar – Sun 23 Sept
This WB Studio Tour company never runs out of new reasons to get families back to this paean to the boy wizard. A new special feature dedicated entirely to Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, the fourth instalment of the magical film series, revealing secrets behind the characters, costumes and props that made it so special.
The Amazing Bubble Man, Hertford Theatre, Sat 31 March
Louis Pearl, the world’s leading bubbleologist, is in Hertford to delight you with pre-Easter bubble tricks. Suitable for all ages: you’re never too old for bubbles. Expect audience participation. 11.30am and 2pm.
Rhythm & Reaction, The Age of Jazz in Britain – until Sun 22 April
This new exhibition brings together painting, cartoons, film, instruments and sound to examine the influence of jazz on British art and design. It’s in the neo-Gothic mansion that was built for William Waldorf Astor in 1895 as his London Estate Office.
Two Temple Place London WC2R 3BD
Elephants at Easter, The Illustration Cupboard, London
I love the Illustration Cupboard and have been to see many exhibitions here, all wonderful. This one celebrates the elephant in children’s literature, and will delight anyone who aspires to write and illustrate their own picture book. Expect to see work original artwork from David McKee’s Elmer and Jill Murphy’s Large Family, as well as illustrations from Shirley Hughes, Emily Sutton and Robert Ingpen.
Illustration Cupboard 22 Bury St, London SW1Y 6AL
Bawden’s Beasts, The Higgins, Bedford
Over the border to the Higgins in Bedford. This exhibition opened in January and it’s on for a while, but I just wanted to let you know, particularly if you are an Edward Bawden fan. Creepy crawlies join the ranks of jungle giants and other beasts to sell products, narrate stories or decorate walls. More than sixty art works featuring animals are on show. Entry is free.
Bawden’s Beasts The Higgins Bedford, Castle Lane, Bedford, MK40 3X
Ocean Liners: Speed and Style, V & A Museum, London, until July 2018
I’ve been to this V&A exhibition and it’s glorious! It’s also totally immersive. One minute you’re sipping a cocktail on deck as you power through the waves to New York in the 50s, , the next, you’re wondering whether you could ever squeeze into the Dior suit worn by Marlene Dietrich on a transatlantic crossing. Kate Winslett and Leonardo DiCaprio even make an appearance. For a truly elegant and glamorous experience, I recommend a trip to the V&A.
Kate Terry, A System of Parallels, Broadway Gallery, Letchworth, until Sun 22 April
This is a wonderful new exhibition by British artist Kate Terry and I urge everyone to go and see this. Kate Terry lives in London and she has created a thread installation for the gallery, that has to be experienced. There are also drawings and sculptures and lots of Farrow and Ball paint. Uplifting and colourful.
Broadway Gallery The Arcade, Letchworth, SG6 3EW
Barbara Hepworth: Finding Form, River & Rowing Museum, Henley, until 3 June
Now you can see Barbara Hepworth’s work without making a trip to Cornwall. Although I went to St Ives last October and sitting in Barbara Hepworth’s garden in the sun was complete bliss. This retrospective at the Rowing Museum covers the sculptor’s work from the 1930s to the 1960s, borrowing pieces from the Tate and National Portrait Gallery. A must-see.
Fly the Link trainer, De Havilland Museum, London Colney
You’ve always wanted to do this, haven’t you? Get into the LINK cockpit and fly? Produced to help to train pilots, it was used extensively during World War Two. You’ll have an instructor by your side who will guide you through the trainee pilot test.
The de Havilland Aircraft Museum Salisbury Hall, London Colney, AL2 1BU