It’s a wonderful time of the year with so much going on - check out our 5 things, starting soon!
Charles Spencer: To Catch a King, Banbury Museum, July 12
In January 1649, King Charles I was beheaded in London outside his palace of Whitehall and Britain became a republic. When his eldest son Charles returned in 1651 to fight for his throne, he was crushed by the might of Cromwell’s armies at the battle of Worcester. With 3,000 of his supporters lying dead and 10,000 taken prisoner, it seemed as if his dreams of power had been dashed. At 6ft 2ins tall, the prince towered over his contemporaries and with dark skin inherited from his French-Italian mother, he stood out in a crowd. How would he fare on the run with Cromwell’s soldiers on his tail and a vast price on his head? Charles Spencer, bestselling author of Killers of the King, uses Pepys’s account and many others to retell this gripping, action-packed, true adventure story, based on extensive archive material.
Hanfest, Hanwell, July 14
HanFest Food & Farming Festival celebrates all the food and beverages produced in the countryside of Oxfordshire and the Cotswolds. The popular annual summer festival in the historic ironstone village is supporting local farmers and food producers. There will be live folk music throughout the day, a village tearoom, hog roasts, the famous Hanwell pony and trap rides, craft stalls, locally made ice cream and fun farm-themed activities for children and adults. Later, from 6pm, the village will host a barbecue with live music into the evening.
BodFest, Kingsfield, Bodicote, July 14
What began as a one-off event to mark the millennium in 2000 celebrates its 18th anniversary this weekend. Kingsfield will be to host a family-friendly festival with 11 hours of almost non-stop music, a family events arena, novelty dog show, a traders area, fully licenced bars, food stalls, go-karts and a small funfair. A spokesman for the organisers said: “BodFest’s aim today is the same as it has always been and that is to bring arts, crafts, food and music to the village whilst raising money for local good causes.”
Candide, Stowe House, July 15
Bring a picnic and enjoy an evening in the sumptuous setting of Stowe House, watching Leonard Bernstein’s operetta Candide. Fast-paced, funny and philosophical, this Tony award winning Broadway smash is now considered an operatic masterpiece.
Based on the novella by Voltaire, the naive Candide sets off to explore the world, beset by an endless series of comedic disaster. The production is presented by Opera de la Luna.
Shakespeare’s Globe on Tour, Bodleian Library, Oxford, July 16, 18 to 22, 24 to 29
An unmissable cultural highlight of Oxford’s summer, Oxford Playhouse and the Bodleian Library welcome back the Globe on Tour with three shows. Experience theatre as it was performed in Shakespeare’s day, with this unique event set in the Old Schools Quadrangle. Follow in the tradition of a Shakespearean audience and cast your vote for your favourite play; The Merchant of Venice, The Taming of the Shrew or Twelfth Night.