The Urban Guide to the Countryside
Gloucestershire Edition

Wouldn't you though?

We're full of the joys of Spring here at Muddy. Why, you ask? We've spritzed the office and everyone in it with this zingy, sunshiny, delicious new fragrance from natural beauty brand Neom.

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The 16 best riverside and lakeside cottages

23 Feb 2017

Beach holidays in Britain always come with that anxious niggle at the back of your head – will it tank down for the whole week? Well, how about an inland lake or river holiday as an alternative? Us Muddy editors who happen go to be landlocked (*sob*) have scoured our counties for some stonking rental properties with their own little piece of liquid heaven to tempt you throughout spring and summer.

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Real people’s fashion in Cirencester

22 Feb 2017

As London Fashion Week totters out of the capital for another six months and the fashion crowd depart en masse for Milan, what have we learned? That next season is all about foam shoes, chainmail tops, deconstructed florals (er, what?) and socks and stilettos. Hmmm, not In my Real Life. To be honest, my only takeaway is big earrings and smudged lipstick when I’ve had one too many cocktails and wiped my hand across my face (glad that’s ok now). But day-to-day style, or let’s face it, just getting dressed some days, needs to be simple and straightforward, and while the odd nod to the catwalk is fun, it’s the clothes that you can just throw on and feel good in that are the real keepers. Which is why Cirencester’s Danish Wardrobe Company is such a godsend. Purveyors of effortless, Scandinavian style (is there anything the Scandis are embarrassing failures at?), this is the place to go for classic styles that have a bit of je ne sais quoi.

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Exciting new arts venue in Cheltenham

15 Feb 2017

So the metropolis may have its White Cubes and Hauser & Wirths, but now Gloucestershire can put its hat in the ring with the capital for cool gallery spaces with the opening in Cheltenham on Friday 17 Feb of Chapel Arts, which for its debut show is exhibiting artworks by the dozen esteemed Royal Academicians, including Antony Gormley, Michael Craig-Martin, Christopher Le Brun and Chris Orr. I know! London eat your heart out!

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A veggie recipe kids will love

13 Feb 2017

Dave Fung of Bristol-based catering company Little Wild Catering is on something of a mission. Formerly an employee at The Soil Association and a chef at The Potted Pig in Cardiff, Fung’s passion is creating healthy, ethical and delicious food using responsibly sourced ingredients. He launched Little Wild Catering at the end of last year after spending seven months in Kenya running a sourdough bakery whose profits went to fund local access to eye care. His jerk tofu and salt beef sandwiches at Bristol’s pop-up market BS5 in December were a sell-out hit and now, as well as setting up stall at farmers’ markets, he delivers superior lunches – his signature sandwiches, as well as a seasonally changing menu of vegan and meaty dishes – to office workers by bike. And you’d be hard-pressed to leave Pret A Manger spending less. He also does special events and corporate dos and here, he’s very kindly donated a recipe in aid of the ‘how can I get some veg down my kids’ necks’ cause.

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Free Fashion and Arts Film Site

12 Feb 2017

OK people, if you’ve overdosed on drama (Taboo, Apple Tree Yard, Homeland – gotta love the winter telly schedules) and fancy something a bit different, then check out Made To Measure (M2M), an unbelievable treasure trove of classic fashion films, documentaries, catwalk shows (it’s already got the best of New York Fashion Week up there) and original programming, which is free (!), but I bet it won’t be for long.

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Eight great book ideas for kids

10 Feb 2017

The wonderful Octavia from Cirencester’s pretty, purple-fronted Octavia’s Bookshop, the friendliest children’s bookshop you’re ever likely to come across, has, and I’m not kidding, read practically every book in her cute, little shop. And she’s very kindly given her recommendations for good reads for all ages, from toddlers to teens, which will keep your kids’ noses in a book all week long (or at least a day). Which is great, because she’s got a few corkers for adults tucked away in the shop too.

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Gorgeous Hair salon in Cheltenham

9 Feb 2017

This salon, which opened six years ago in Cheltenham’s Suffolks (jam full of great antique shops, boutiques, cafés, bars, restaurants and a cute independent bookshop), does what it says on the tin. I went in with a barnet that was, if I’m honest, Wurzel Gummidge on a bad day (well, any day), with a grey root stripe across the top of my head that no amount of ColorWow Root Cover Up (a lifesaver in normal circumstances and Gorgeous Hair sells it, yippee!) could disguise.

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Get ready for February half term!

8 Feb 2017

It’s time to get the planner out and plot how to keep the kids (and yourself – I’ve thrown in some adult entertainment, too. No, not X-rated) occupied during a cold week in February. The Harry Potter box set looks tempting, I know, I’ve just counted how many hours it buys you and it’s a massive 19! But the other 41? Read on, here’s a batchful of ideas to inspire.

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Cool Scandi coffee shop in Cheltenham

7 Feb 2017

Ever since Tyler Brûlé first showcased oh-so-cool Scandinavian style inside the pages of Wallpaper* back in the dotcom 1990s, the love-in with the region’s sleek, modernist interiors has just kept growing and growing. But I never knew the Scandis had coffee totally nailed too! And where did I discover this? Stockholm, Copenhagen, Oslo? No, Cheltenham! Tucked away in Royal Well Place, a mere skip away from the town’s best shopping strip The Promenade, is The Scandinavian Coffee Pod which looks great on the outside, even better on the inside and serves the most incredible coffee.

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside -
Gloucestershire Edition