Events and things to do in Buckinghamshire - April 2016
PUBLISHED: 10:07 24 March 2016 | UPDATED: 10:07 24 March 2016
Kai R Joachim (BFF)
Find the perfect treat in beautiful Buckinghamshire
A feast of foodie writers
The UK’s first Literary Food Festival, Henley on Food, takes place at Shiplake College on 1 April and Sunday, 1 May, featuring exciting cooks and culinary writers – including some of the UK’s best-loved names.
Festival-goers will feast on a variety of talks, Q&As, interactive cookery demonstrations, samplings and wine tastings, pop-up Supper Clubs with chefs, and foodie activities for children.
The line-up includes nutritionist to the stars Madeleine Shaw, who heads to Henley on Food with her second book – Ready Steady Glow – which is set to be published days before the event. Madeleine’s new collection comprises nourishing wheat-free and sugar-free recipes using ingredients that can be found in local supermarkets.
Frances Quinn, winner of the BBC’s Great British Bake Off 2013 will be there with her debut cookbook, Quinntessential Baking, while BBC MasterChef host John Torode is the author of My Kind of Food: Recipes I love to cook at home.
Henley on Food’s founder, Kate Lynas explains: “The concept behind Henley on Food was devised to feed the growing demand for intelligent and engaging culinary experiences. Having seen the popularity of food authors surge over recent years – both at the Henley Literary Festival and on the national bestseller lists – we knew this was the right time to bring together brilliant, inspiring and genuinely interesting people for a weekend celebration of food and drink.”
Kate’s co-founder, Harriet Reed-Ryan sees Henley on Food as a ‘new little sister’ to the Henley Literary Festival and said she was delighted to welcome Magimix as sponsor of the inaugural event.
Some events are free while others have a fee, see www.henleyonfood.com.
It’s bluebells time
Discover the delights of the flowers that transform Britain’s woodlands from April and into May. National Trust places where you can enjoy bluebells in all their glory include way-marked woodland trails from at Ashridge near Tring, with a stunning display beneath the bright-green beech canopy. Red kites can also be seen here.
The beautiful woodlands surrounding Hughenden Manor near High Wycombe are criss-crossed with footpaths and carpeted with a dreamy haze of bluebells in late spring.
The internationally famous Grade I listed gardens at Cliveden near Maidenhead, once home to the illustrious Astor family, are liberally sprinkled with displays of delicate bluebells throughout the garden and surrounding woodlands, creating seas of blue in April. Look out for cowslips, snowy wood anemones and dog violets, too.
The beautiful beech woodlands that fringe Greys Court near Henley are also brimming with thousands of densely packed bluebells. Many springtime visitors stay within the boundaries of the gardens, but there are delightful trails and a spectacular carpet of bluebells in the estate. Follow the waymarked route of Sir Felix’s Gentle Walks (1.2km).
The ancient beech woodland at Bradenham Estate near West Wycombe is a magnet for bluebell lovers. Park in the pretty brick and flint village clustered around a village green and head off into woods criss-crossed with footpaths.
Great British Glam
Now this just has to be a ‘British thing’ – Seventies pop bands still doing remarkably well with international tours on the calendar alongside gigs the length and breadth of Britain, complete with tee shirts and new CDs.
And so it is with The Rubettes featuring Alan Williams (the original lead singer). You have to be of a certain age to appreciate this one, but amongst all the Seventies glam were The Rubettes with their Gatsby-style white hats and suits. They weren’t all glitter and Bolan-style hair, but a happy bunch with cheeky smiles and twinkling eyes your mum would like and songs that stuck in your head.
Their biggest hit was in 1974 with Sugar Baby Love, topping the Brit charts for a month and selling three million copies globally, followed by eight albums totalling 30 million records. Other hits included ‘Juke Box Jive’ ‘I Can Do It’ and ‘Baby I Know’.
Some 40 years later there are actually two versions of The Rubettes still touring! Williams leads the one with original members John Richardson and Mick Clarke, who have been joined by Steve Etherington. The band starts an extensive UK tour in April and has a performance calendar booked well into next year.
You can enjoy them at The Stables, Wavendon, on 21 April, see www.stables.org. Seriously, they haven’t changed at all, so here we go: ‘Sugar baby love, sugar baby love…’
Fish back in Aylesbury
The former frontman of Marillion – the rock band formed in Aylesbury that went on to enjoy huge international success – returns on 11 April for what is bound to be a very special concert. The performance at Aylesbury Waterside Theatre comes after a sold out 2015 tour and Fish decided to follow this with a final ever last run of headline shows where he will play Marillion’s 1985 chart topping album Misplaced Childhood in full for the last time.
Grab a ticket at www.atgtickets.com, from £29.15 plus booking fee.
• Until 10 April, Rusty Rabbit’s Activity Trail, Hughenden, tel: 01494 755573
• Until 10 April, Mimi’s Super Spring, Waddesdon Manor, tel: 01296 653226
• 1-30 April, Family Explorers: Beautiful Birds, Stowe, New Inn Farm, tel: 01280 817156
• 1 April, Bulb Bonanza, Hughenden, High Wycombe, tel: 01494 755573
• 1 April, Tree Climbing with the Big Tree Climbing Company, Cliveden, tel: 01628 605069
• 2 April, Vale Harvest Local Food Market, Haddenham Villge Hall
• 17 April, Wine Lovers’ Weekend – Around the World in Twenty Wines, Waddesdon Manor, tel: 01296 653226
• 20 April, Man’s Best Friend Monthly Dog Walk, Stowe, New Inn Farm, tel: 01280 817156
• 23 April, National Gardens Scheme Day, Cliveden, tel: 01628 605069
• 23-24 April, Fun on the Farm: Meet the Lambs, Chiltern Open Air Museum, Chalfont St Giles, tel: 01494 871117
• 24 April, NGS Open Garden, Long Crendon Gardens,
• 24 April, St George’s Celebration & Scout Parade, Market Square, Aylesbury, tel: 01296 425678
• 30 April, Village Fete, Village Hall, Longwick
Aylesbury Waterside Theatre, Exchange Street, tel: 08448 717627
1 April, Ellen Kent’s Die Fledermaus; 2 April, 13 the Musical; 2 April, Ellen Kent’s Carmen; 5-9 April, Tom; 10 April, G4 Back For Good; 11 April, Fish – Farewell to Childhood; 12-16 April, Goodnight Mister Tom; 18-23 April, The Rocky Horror Show; 26 April, Matthew Bourne’s The Car Man
Wycombe Swan Theatre & Town Hall, St Mary Street, tel: 01494 512000
5-6 April, Dinosaur Zoo; 11-16 April, Blood Brothers; 26-30 April, An Inspector Calls
Milton Keynes Theatre, Marlborough Gate, tel: 08448 717652
1 April, WNO – The Barber of Seville; 2 April, WNO – The Marriage of Figaro; 4-9 April, Hairspray the Musical; 12-23 April, The Bodyguard; 26-28 April, Northern Ballet, Swan Lake; 29 April, Northern Ballet, Tortoise & the Hare; 30 April, Northern Ballet, Swan Lake
The Stables, Stockwell Lane, Wavendon, tel: 01908 280800
7 April, Fascinating Aida’s Liza Pulman Sings Hollywood; 9 April, Counterfeit Stones; 14 April, Mark Steel; 16 April, Woburn Sands Band; 17 April, Colin Blunstone Band; 19 April, The Fureys; 21 April, The Rubettes featuring Alan Williams; 30 April, Blofeld & Baxter: Rogues on the Road
Stantonbury Theatre, Stantonbury, Milton Keynes, tel: 01908 324466
8 April, Stantonbury Stand Up; 13-16 April, Witness for the Prosecution; 23 April, The Railway Children
Elgiva Theatre, St Mary’s Way, Chesham, tel: 01494 582900
20-23 April, Jesus Christ Superstar