Five of the best things to do in Banburyshire this week

Chipping Nortons pantomime is part-way through its 101-show run NNL-170812-092725001
Chipping Nortons pantomime is part-way through its 101-show run NNL-170812-092725001

With us fast approaching the big C, pantomimes and theatre dominate the events calendar at this time of year.

But there’s plenty of other things going on in and around Banbury, here’s five of the best.

Theres lots to discover at Stowes monumental Advent calendar NNL-170812-092205001

Theres lots to discover at Stowes monumental Advent calendar NNL-170812-092205001

1 THEATRE

The Wind in the Willows, The Mill, Banbury, until December 30

Toad hasn’t been seen since the most recent of his escapades backfired, Badger doesn’t react well to visitors in the winter and Ratty and Mole have fallen into an adventure they didn’t expect – nor particularly want.

What’s more, some troublesome weasels are plotting to take over Toad Hall. How will peace be restored in The Wild Woods?

Christmas hit favourites Slade play in Oxford next week

Christmas hit favourites Slade play in Oxford next week

Pull up a seat at a cabaret table, or try out The Mill’s newly refurbished stalls seating, and settle in for lashings of nostalgia with Mole and her long-suffering friends.

The show is presented by Creation Theatre Company and Cherwell Theatre Company.

“Audiences loved our madcap Wind in the Willows at the North Wall in Oxford in 2014, so we’re really excited to bring it to Banbury this year,” said Creation Theatre producer Ginny Graham.

“There’ll be picnics, daring escapes and messing about in boats – we can’t wait!”

Details: themillartscentre.co.uk

2 THEATRE

Camp, Middleton Cheney Village Hall, until December 16

The Lynden Players are transporting audiences from the winter climes of Middleton Cheney to the always-sunny Sandy Shores holiday camp in 1970’s Britain this Christmas with their hilarious pantomime, Camp.

Details: www.ticketsource.co.uk

3 FAMILY

Landscape Advent Calendar, Stowe, until January 4

Visitors to Stowe can discover 24 ‘doors’ hidden in the landscape of Stowe in its monumental Landscape Advent Calendar.

The whole family is invited to head out on a wintry quest, enjoy a world of frost-kissed gardens and open a door on the lost worlds of Stowe.

Discover a winter woodland, a Christmas nativity scene, a floating Christmas tree, and much more. The Landscape Advent Calendar is available daily from 10am to 4pm.

Details: nationaltrust.org.uk/stowe

4 PANTOMIME

Sleeping Beauty, The Theatre, Chipping Norton, until January 14

The pantomime season got underway early in Chipping Norton but there’s still plenty of time to catch a performance of its pantomime –which is part way through its 101-show run.

It tells how, once upon a time, there lived a Princess, her long-suffering Nanny, her doting Fairy Godmother, and grumpy old King Lenny.

On her 18th birthday, the Princess pricks her finger on a spinning wheel and falls deeply asleep.

When she wakes up, exactly 400 years have passed and things have got a whole lot groovier.

Expect Bond villains, blow up beds and berserk pie-making machines.

Details: chippingnortontheatre.com

5 MUSIC

Slade, O2 Academy, Oxford, December 21

Christmas just wouldn’t be the same without them, so there’s no better time to catch the much-loved rock’n’rollers in action.

They made a name for themselves with their outrageous flamboyance and pure fun, crafting 23 top 20 singles of which six were number one.

Slade’s chart career has spanned three decades, with enduring songs including Cum On Feel The Noize and Coz I Luv You.

They also made waves on the rock scene in the 1980s.

Then there’s a certain festive one...

Details: academymusicgroup.com