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This Month


MUDDY PICK OF THE MONTH: Fast Track Fitness Retreat, Lyndhurst, Fri 25 – Mon 28

Fast Track FitnessSummer is over and the pull of snuggling on the sofa is strong. If you need a bit of a kick up the derrière to keep your fitness going over the colder months then there’s a brand new retreat just for you. Led by Jane Canham, this four-day getaway is filled with cardio, strength and mindfulness – whatever your current fitness level – to make sure you don’t end up hibernating with a box of Dairy Milk for the entire Autumn/Winter season.

CULTURE: Neo-Romantic Art: the McDowall Collection, St Barbe Museum, Lymington, until Sun 10 Nov

We’re getting all swoony over this fantastic exhibition in the New Forest focusing on the Neo-Romantic movement of the 20s to the 50s. Comprising of over 60 works from artists such as Graham Rigby and Henry Moore, this is a rare chance to see works that are normally in a private collection in all their glory.

CULTURE: Lichfield, Duffy and Donovan: Snapping the Sixties, Mottisfont House, until Sun 10 Nov

Herry Lawford Mottisfont Abbey Halloween Half TermSwing, 60s-stylee, over to Mottisfont House for a fab new exhibition kicking off on Sat 21st. Lichfield, Duffy and Donovan: Snapping the Sixties exhibition will give you a sneaky-peek into one of the most iconic decades of the 20th-century with its famous faces, fashion and fun, all captured on film. Groovy baby!

CULTURE: Artist takeover: Mary Wollstonecraft, Chawton House, until Fri 29 Nov

Mary-Wollstonecraft-red-bird-FINAL-360x502It’s been 230 year since the French Revolution and this fantastic exhibition chronicles the musings and accounts written by Mary Wollenstonecraft, a writer and philosopher who resided in Paris during The Reign of Terror. Her accounts have been taken and transformed into striking imagery by artists Louisa Albani to give visitors a real experience for all senses.

CULTURE: Lucienne Day: Living Design, Willis Museum & Sainsbury Gallery, Basingstoke, Tues 24 Sep 2019 – Sat 11 Jan 2020

An absolute legend in design, Lucienne Day was a trailblazer and her work in image and textiles is synonymous with Mid-Century Design in Britain. This new exhibition charts her career, iconic prints and  ‘uncompromisingly modern‘ look on life.

CULTURE: Josie Eastwood’s September Show, Longstock, Stockbridge, Fri 27 Sep – Tues 15 Oct

Get yourself over to Stockbridge as Josie Eastwood’s latest show has opened at the gallery in Longstock,. Head here to see a wealth of amazing artists and start visualising where you’re going to put that cracking piece in your home.

OUTDOORS: Festival of Light, Robin Hill Country Park, Fri 27 Sep – Sat 2 Nov

spirit of the orient robin hill half termThe woods on the Island will be aglow for the entirety of October as the absolutely awesome Electric Woods has returned with Festival of Light Inspired by Diwali at Robin Hill Country Park. As you can see from last year’s display in the photo above it’s totally Instagram-worthy, a fab place to explore and definitely a different way to see in the brand new season.

THEATRE: Amelie: The Musical, NST City, Mon 30 Sep – Sat 5 Oct

AmelieThe Gallic classic transforms for the stage in this magical retelling of Jeunet’s Amelie in Southampton this weekThe Parisian woman’s little acts of kindness lead her on a romantic rollercoaster, and what’s even better is you don’t need your high school French to watch this one.

CULTURE: Behind The Scenes Tour, The Vyne, Basingstoke, Tues 1 – Tues 29

the vyne

Photo: Kabadas via Wikimedia Commons

We love having a nose around the glorious old houses across Hampshire and the Island, and so this evening “behind the scenes’ tour of The Vyne is definitely one we’re excited about. See the bits that the public don’t normally see including the Tudor attics, 14th-century tunnels and all finished off with a glass of fizz.

THEATRE: Motown: The Musical, Tues 1 – Sat 12, 

10. MOTOWN THE MUSICAL. The Company. Photo Tristram Kenton

©Tristram Kenton

It’s getting a bit funky in Southampton this month with the magic of Motown heading to the Mayflower stage. This celebration of some of the most iconic music from the 20th century features music from Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson, Diana Ross and more. So definitely crack out the spangly dresses and beehive for this singalong showstopper.

DANCE: The Storm, Theatre Royal Winchester, Wed 2

stormThis is dance to get your heart thumping. Set to an amazing electro-rock soundtrack, the seven dancers from the James Wilton Dance company will merge super-fast dance moves with martial arts, breakdancing and other things that will make you go “Crikey… how do they do that!?!”

FOOD & DRINK: Curry In A Hurry, Kitchen at Chewton Glen, Wed 2

Britain’s favourite food is a mainstay in most households weekly repertoire, but how about skipping the jarred sauce and making your very own curry… in a hurry. Under the super expert tutelage of The Kitchen at Chewton Glen, you’ll learn how to whip up the perfect Ruby every time, in no-time at all. And… added bonus… you’ll learn to make authentic chapatis too. Woohoo!

COMEDY: Ed Byrne: If I’m Honest…., Winchester Guildhall, Thurs 3 & Fri 4

Ed’s a frequent guest on our TV screens with appearances on BBC’s Live At The ApolloMock The Week and QI and his latest tour is a stark (and obviously funny) look at whether or not he’s got any traits worth passing onto his kids. Self-deprecating to a tee, this is worth £25 for the hour of laughs.

EVENT: Inflate ‘Til Late, Proteus Creation Space, Basingstoke, Fri 4

So, there’s plenty of weird and wonderful things to do around the county but this may be one of the most unusual I’ve ever come across. The Proteus Creation Space is going to be full of air this week as Balloonatic Becky shows her audience balloons aren’t just for kids. Cheeky humour, fascinating displays and more than a few cheeky cocktails… should be interesting!

EVENT: Playwrighting Workshop, Forest Forge Theatre, Ringwood, Sat 5

Pull that award-winning script out of your subconscious with this full-day of expert guidance, hints, tips and tricks for creating your very own play. For £35pp you can learn all the tricks of the trade and start planning how you’re going to recreate that epic Phoebe Waller-Bridge post Emmys snap.

COMEDY: Autumn Comedy Gala, Theatre Royal Winchester, Sat 5

As the Autumn draws in the weather certainly is making me feel in need a bit of a laugh. Featuring Dead Ringers Jan Raven, Edinburgh Fringe smash Lauren Pattison and more, you get a whole lot of chortle for your quid on this one. Tickets cost £20.

MUSIC: Dials Festival, Albert Road, Southsea, Sat 5

Featuring a whole host of local talent at some of the trendiest pubs and spots in Southsea, Dials Festival is a rough and ready mini-fest that also is doing some brilliant things for local mental health support. With five venues and around 40 acts, tickets cost £20.

FOOD & DRINK: Mezze, Music and Mojitos, The Garlic Farm, Sat 5

One of my favourite places for food is holding a belter of an evening featuring local music, plenty of food and cocktails (plus a rather fab buy-one-get-one-free happy hour to boot). If you’ve ever wanted to try some of the awesome food at the famous Garlic Farm this is the perfect event for you.

FAMILY: Twilight Safari, Isle of Wight Zoo, Sandown, Sat 5

One of the annoying things about visiting the zoo is that a lot of the animals are nocturnal, so you don’t always get to see them. If you agree, then you’re in luck as the Isle of Wight Zoo is hosting a very special Twilight Safari this weekend. Opening its gates after-hours for an evening peruse at some of the fabulous creatures that call it home.

WORKSHOP: Perfume Workshop with New Forest Aromatics, Tiny Homes, Cowes, Sat 5

Looking for a new signature scent? Well how about your very own, one-of-a-kind perfume that is also totally natural? This one-day course on the Island, headed up by Debbie Mulkern of New Forest Aromatics, will teach attendees how to create the perfect pong, how perfume is made and much more. You can even make a weekend of it and book in accommodation at the super cool Tiny Homes as well.

EVENT: Makers’ Weekend, Heckfield Place, Sat 5 – Sun 6

heckfield makers weekendIt’s getting super crafty this weekend over at Heckfield with bench-building with the talented Sebastian Cox, rush-weaving with Felicity Irons, a natural art masterclass with Carolyn Quartermaine and much more. This super cool calendar of events is also, as you can imagine, surrounded by the amazing Heckfield Place itself.

COMEDY: Frisky and Mannish: PopLab, The Spring, Havant, Sat 5

frisky-mannish-poplabScience meets good old pop music, the duo of Frisky and Mannish head to Havant this October with their very own brand of “infotainment”. Answering all the important questions such as why are Coldplay so famous when everybody you ask says they hate them and giving us lots of information on the Pop Periodic Table. Tickets are £15.

FAMILY: Pumpkin Festival, Sunnyfields Farm, Totton, Sat 5 – Thurs 31

Pumpkin Picking autumn half-termWatch out Instagram, the pumpkins are coming! The annual Pumpkin Festival is a brilliant celebration of orangey fun for all the family and the ideal spot to pick out some pumpkins for carving that ever-important Jack O’Latern later this month.

Facebook Event

COMEDY: The Infinite Show: Mark Watson, Theatre Royal Winchester, Sun 6

MW_InfiniteShow_QuarterPage_v1.inddThe ever awkward, but impossibly funny Mark Watson is back in the safety of the indoors (if you’ve not had the chance to check out the grilling he got on Dave’s Taskmaster its certainly worth a watch), with his latest tour. This show, given the current political climate, is all about empathy and understanding one another. Should be very interesting…

FAMILY: Bushcraft Introduction, New Forest Activities, Sun 6

So, if there’s ever a Zombie Apocolypse or things go really wrong, do you think you could survive on your wits alone? If the thought of losing your flat white is giving you the shivers then how about booking on for this introduction to bushcraft. Knife skills, how to build a shelter and make a fire, all the basics you’ll need if society goes a bit awry… or at least make camping a little less painful!

EVENT: Clothes Swap, The Beehive, Portsmouth, Sun 6

In the name of sustainability, I am LOVING the sound of this fabulous clothes swap. Basically, this weekend take along all your unwanted togs in good condition and swap them for tokens at the brand spanking new Beehive. You can then swap your tokens for new-to-you garb and get a new wardrobe and a warm fuzzy feeling from being eco-conscious all at once.

Facebook Event

THEATRE: Behind the Curtain Tours, New Theatre Royal, Portsmouth, Tues 8th Oct & Thurs 31st Oct

new theatre royal portsmouth interiorIf you’ve seen our Instagram stories lately you’ll see I had a sneaky peek behind the curtain of the beautiful New Theatre Royal and my…what a building! This Victorian-era theatre is packed with now-extinct fixtures and fittings, survived bombings and has hosted everybody from Laurel & Hardy to Twiggy. After falling into disrepair and ruin the theatre was saved and brought hurtling into the 21st Century. If you’re curious about theatre, history or architecture, this should definitely be on your “to-do” list.

FESTIVAL: Isle of Wight Literary Festival, Northwood House, Cowes, Thurs 10 – Sun 13

Hunker down with a blanket and a book season is upon us and where better to find out about brilliant literature – both old and new – than on the Island? The calendar is packed with a huge range of people who’ve picked up a pen including Dan Snow, Jo Brand, Kate Adie, Michael Morpugo and many more. Tickets vary in cost but range from £5 up to £20.

EVENT: Hollie McNish, The Spring, Havant, Fri 11

Hollie McNishHave you heard the poetry of Hollie McNish? Her prose on modern life has gone viral numerous times and is insanely relatable, even if you’re not a poetry fan. Performing in Havant this month, this is bound to appeal to anybody who’s ever been called “someone’s Mum” instead of by their own name. Tickets are £10.

THEATRE: The Life and Rhymes of Benjamin Zephaniah, The Haymarket, Fri 11

Benjamin ZephiniahPoet turned TV star Benjamin Zephaniah (we saw you in Peaky Blinders!) is performing in Basingstoke this week in an evening that will be filled with beautiful prose, thought-provoking topics and more. I’ve seen him perform and he really does know how to captivate an audience.

MUSIC: Jonny and the Baptists: Love Eastleigh, Hate Bad People, The Point, Eastleigh, Fri 11

Music mixed with both comedy and activism – sounds like a night well spent. If that floats your boat then grab yourself a ticket to this show at Muddy fave The Point. In a divided world, Johnny and the Baptists are keen to amuse entertain and just help everybody get along.

EVENT: Knightmare Live, The Haymarket, Basingstoke, Sat 12

Remember the 80s? One of my strongest memories was hiding behind the sofa whenever the scary kids game show Knightmare came on. Now, you can relive that childhood trauma… err “entertainment”, with an immersive live version of Knightmare heading to Basingstoke this week. This may be a bit of a geek magnet but definitely a fun event for any nostalgia fiends.

THEATRE: Skylight by David Hare, New Theatre Royal, Portsmouth, Tues 15 – Sat 19

Originally produced at the National Theatre in 1995, this intimate and thoughtful production eventually moved onto both the West End and Broadway and is now hitting the boards in Portsmouth. Performed by the Theatre Chipping Norton, this is a story about former lovers and where it all went wrong.

FOOD & DRINK: Hampshire Coffee Festival, Guildhall Winchester, Sat 12

Coffee CupWe cover a lot of drink festivals here at Muddy, but I have to say this is the one I get most excited about. Hands up if you can’t live without coffee. *waves hands manically in the air* Grab your reusable cup and head to Winchester on the 12th for a celebration of java, beans and all the cold brew you could dream of. Featuring indie coffee purveyors, workshops and a latte art competition, you may be awake for a week after your visit but you’ll get SO much done.

FESTIVAL: New Forest Walking Festival, Sat 12 Oct – Sun 3 Nov

It’s not really a surprise that walking around the New Forest is quite popular. As well as stunning scenery and a totally unique landscape, there are all those adorable animals knocking around. With that in mind, the annual New Forest Walking Festival has been extended to three weeks of glorious sauntering. With organised walks that encompass history, ecology and just darn pretty spots, this is a fab excuse to strap on those hiking boots.

COMEDY: Rob Beckett: Wallop, Mayflower Southampton, Sun 13

Rob BeckettThe biggest gnashers in comedy are heading to Southampton this week as Rob Beckett takes to the stage with his latest offering, Wallop. This solo show with the “Mouth of the South” will be full of tales of his TV exploits along with his super warm and endearing (if a bit clumsy and awkward) personality.

DANCE: Some Like It Hip Hop, Mayflower Southampton, Tues 15 – Wed 16

Twelfth Night meets Some Like It Hot in a high-octane smash hit… oooh, yes, please! ZooNation’s Some Like It Hip Hop has been nominated for Oliviers and is a funny, explosive tale about gender and a little bit of subterfuge.

EVENT: Gin and Macrame Pot Hanger Workshop, The Beehive, Portsmouth, Thurs 17 Oct

Hume Looms

Photo: Hume Looms

Crafting and gin go hand-in-hand, am I right? As part of a huge showcase of pop-ups and events at this new little venue, you can sip on a long G&T and get to grips with half hitches, flat knots, half knots and other various techniques using cotton string and the help of local outfit Hume Looms. At the end of it, you’ll be left with (…probably a hangover *cough*) a fab with macrame pot hanging complete with handmade recycled copper stand. This is in the heart of Southsea’s super trendy district so think more Scandi-cool than your nan’s creations.

Facebook Event

THEATRE: Jane Eyre, The Haymarket, Basingstoke, Thurs 17 – Sat 19

As we get older do we ever get less frustrated with Mr Rochester? Test it for yourself with this fabulous gothic retelling of Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre. And for those who really want to dig down, there’s also a special after-show discussion on Thurs 17th where you can get your feelings out about locking people in attics.

EVENT: Trafalgar Night, HMS Victory, Portsmouth, Sat 19 & 25

Ballista HMS Victory

Photo: Ballista via Wikmedia Commons

The pinnacle of the Dockyard calendar, Trafalgar Night is a big deal in Portsmouth. With a glorious formal dinner aboard Nelson’s very own HMS Victory, there really isn’t any event in the world like it. With a menu bursting with Hampshire produce and the chance to see the beef “paraded” accompanied by traditional drummers, grab your best togs for this one. Tickets are £200 per person.

FOOD & DRINK: Chewton Glen Wine Club – Michele Chiarlo, Piedmont Italy Wine Dinner, Wed 23

If I was ever going to join a club, I think it would have to be a wine one and at the super-swish Chewton Glen nonetheless (they’ve just been awarded the title of Best Hotel in England by the AA). For £100 per person, you and 15 other guests will learn all about the Piedmont winery and enjoy a meal picked to match the flavours of the vino precisely.

DANCE: Nua Dance: Quimera, The Point, Eastleigh, Thurs 24

Nua QuimeraFancy a trip to the circus but also want to get your culture on? Then grab your tickets for Nua Dance’s Quimera. This show, performed by a five-person ensemble, explores our interpretations and expectations of age and intends to blast away any negative connotations of what you can and can’t do when you get “old”. There’s also a post-show talk with the cast to discuss the themes and interpretations in the show as well.

WORKSHOP: Calligraphy Workshop, The Linden Room, The Anvil, Basingstoke, Thurs 24

calligraphy_web_0Handwriting is fast becoming a lost art and my own scrawl is akin to a doctor’s nowadays. If you fancy making every letter and Christmas car looking super duper fancy, then grab your quill and book on for this interactive calligraphy workshop at The Anvil. You can learn to loop, cross and swish like a master and with your £45 ticket, you also get your own calligraphy set to take home with you as well.


HALLOWEEN: Halloween Fun at the Watership Down Inn, Freefolk, Thurs 31

Watership Down Inn MuralThings are getting all spooky in Freefolk for Halloween as Muddy Award winner pub The Watership Down Inn is holding not one BUT TWO events for the spooky season. There’s a special kids’ pizza lunch where the kids can create and eat pizzas of their own design along with a pumpkin carving competition. Then in the evening adults can join in the fun with a special All Hallows Eve dinner, complete with special dishes and a brand spanking new menu. Also, bring along your very own Jack O’Lanterns for a contest where the winner gets food and drink vouchers. Woohoo!

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