What’s On: Make dates for these November events
Diary looking a little bare? Make dates for these lovely local events. . .
Take a walk
Covering 40 landscaped acres and home to more than 8,000 plant species, including both the rare and endangered, Cambridge University Botanic Garden is glorious in all seasons. But when leaves turn, its 2,000-strong tree collection comes into its own.
Ranging from towering Great and Dawn Redwoods to rarities such as Ley’s Whitebeam, a Welsh native now listed critically endangered, the free-to-follow Tree Trail takes visitors on a tour of the Garden’s stand-out specimens. There’s an Autumn Art Adventure running alongside (till November 30), inviting visitors to put their observations down on paper and share them on socials.
Find out more - and get details of the child-friendly Autumn Animals Trails, also running till end of November - at botanic.cam.ac.uk
See a show
Staged “in the style of 70s and 80s subculture, taking cues from Vivienne Westwood, the Sex Pistols and Derek Jarman”, a Punk retelling of the 1605 Gunpowder Plot comes to the Cambridge stage this month.
Running at the ADC - Britain’s oldest University playhouse, a working theatre since 1855 - 5/11 by Edward Kemp is proof, says director Evie Chandler, of the story’s continued relevance.
Marked by bonfires and fireworks every November 5, Guy Fawkes and his 12 co-conspirators famously planted explosives under the Houses of Parliament in a bid to kill the King.
“The principal concerns of the plotters four centuries ago remain close to people's hearts even today,” says Evie. “These people are fighting for both personal freedom and religious liberty, the ability to express themselves in public how they wish.”
For showtimes and tickets, go to adctheatre.com/511
Be inspired by art
A chance to both see and shop a wide range of contemporary pieces, spanning paintings, prints, sculptures, ceramics, jewellery and more, Byard Art’s Winter Exhibition is always a treat.
Opening this month and running through to Christmas, this year’s curation promises to be bigger and better than ever, running across two floors and featuring both gallery favourites (Beckie Reed, loved for her immersive acrylic treescapes) and new names (Mark Welland, whose recent studies of a single oak tree “occupy space between what’s possible in a digital world and what’s achievable in the physical”).
The gallery is also hosting a free festive open evening, 5-7.30pm on December 7, complete with mulled wine, nibbles and the opportunity to see artist Maureen Mace, known for her detailed dreamscapes of both Cambridge and the Moon, working live.
Find out more at Byard Art, King’s Parade, Cambridge and byardart.co.uk
Book a craft class
A surefire way to lift festive spirits, Christmas wreath-making classes are now booking across the area.
At The Spa at Bedford Lodge Hotel in Newmarket, you can sign up for a combined spa day and wreath-making workshop, the latter run by acclaimed Suffolk florist Tolly’s Flowers: for £160pp, you’ll enjoy a welcome glass of bubbly, three hours of R&R in the ‘five bubble’ rated spa, a festive afternoon tea and the wreath class, which comes complete with all necessary equipment and foliage (November 22 and 23 and December 6).
Over at The Swan at Lavenham, Tulipa Botanica of Sudbury is running a pair of workshops with all materials and festive refreshments, including homemade Holly Jolly punch and turkey and cranberry sausage rolls, provided in the £50 ticket price. There’s an option to add a full afternoon tea to your booking, too, served in the lounge by a log fire (December 7 and 9).
For more and to book go to bedfordlodgehotelspa.co.uk and theswanatlavenham.co.uk
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More by this authorAlice Ryan