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This weekend


Giffords Circus, Stratton Meadows, Cirencester, Fri 8 to Mon 18 Sept

A candle-lit international gymnastic show with dancing horses, a live band, everyone’s favourite clown Tweedy and a side helping of psychedelic madness, there’s still time to catch the inimitable Giffords Circus which this year visits the Spanish court of the 17th century.


 Guild Crafts Chipping Campden, Town Hall, Chipping Campden, until Fri 8 Sept

Get your fill of crafts including bookbinding by Ursula Jeakins, ceramics by Janine Roper, textiles by Liz Lippiatt and calligraphy by Andy Moore, among many other exhibits with the makers popping in for live demonstrations.

Cycling Festival, Cheltenham, Sat 9 Sept

Marking the arrival of the penultimate stage of the Tour of Britain in Cheltenham, this celebration of cycling will bring a festival vibe to the town centre with a street market, race village, bike trail and the main event – 120 elite cyclists bombing down the Prom to the finish line at Imperial Gardens.

Brewery Tour & Tasting, Corinium Ales, Cirencester, Sat 9 Sept

Stephen Shepherd Photography

As well as its usual Saturday Brewery Tour, this Saturday at Corninium Ales as part of Cheltenham and Gloucester Beer Week, you’ll also be able to join a tasting session, with generous portions of beers to quaff. And you get a branded pint glass to take home with you.

The Brutalist Playground, The Edge, Bath, until Sat 9 Sept

Part sculpture, part architecture, all play! Artist Simon Terrell and 2015 Turner Prize winners Assemble have worked with RIBA curators to recreate abstract concrete playgrounds that were found in post-war housing estates throughout the UK. Free admission but book here to guarantee you’ll have a go.

Pretty Woman & Moulin Rouge, Cowley Manor, near Cheltenham, Sat 9 Sept

Bring a blanket and a deck chair (or for an extra £4 you can pre-book one or a beanbag, and you get popcorn thrown in) and cosy up poolside to enjoy one (or both, you film buff, you) of these classics that serve up a good story, good frocks and good tunes in the romantic grounds of Cowley Manor.

The Roy Orbison Story, Roses Theatre, Tewkesbury, Sat 9 Sept

The unmissable Barry Steele morphs into the existential Elvis that was Roy Orbison in this show celebrating the musical legacy of The Big O and The Traveling Wilburys. Steele is so good, it’s as if Orbison has come back to life.

Vice Versa, The Swan, Stratford, Sat Sept 9

An entertaining new farce ‘lovingly ripped off ‘from the Roman comedies of Plutus by playwright Phil Porter (2014’s WWW1 drama The Christmas Truce & 2013’s very funny A Mad World My Masters).  A clever servant and a pair of wronged young lovers team up to bamboozle Trump-like pompous general. Felix Hayes is fantastic as the bombastic General Braggadocio, playing his servant, Dexter, is the wonderfully charismatic Sophia Nomvetewhose credits include The Colour Purple (Menier Chocolate Factory) and As You Like It (Shakespeare’s Globe). ‘Allo ‘Allo star Kim Hartman makes her RSC debut as ‘a lady of the night’ called Climax. Read Muddy Warwickshire editor Catherine’s review here.

RSC’s Rome Series: Julius Caesar, RST, Stratford, Sat 9 Sept 

The well-received Julius Caesar runs in rep side-by-side with Antony and Cleopatra–the first double-bill in the RSC’s four-play Rome series. Titus Andronicus and Coriolanus will complete the quartet of Shakespeare’s most political and bloody thrillers in June and September. Season director Angus Jackson brought the brilliant atom bomb drama Oppenheimer, and Don Quixote, to the RSC stage.  He’s directing Julius Caesar, which has strong performances by Andrew Woodall as Caesar, Alex Waldmann as Brutus, James Corrigan’s Mark Antony and Martin Hutson’ as Cassius.

Frampton Country Fair, Manor Farm The Green, Frampton on Severn, Sun 10 Sept

The seeds were sown for this country fair in the pretty village of Frampton in the 1970s and is still properly old-school with a blessing kicking off proceedings, which include lurcher/longdog coursing, inter-hunt relays, parade of the hounds, an aerobatic display, falconry and a parachute jump by Jump4Heroes. And that’s just in the main ring. Elsewhere, there is a farmers’ market, dog shows, shooting events and food and drink stalls.

Giacometti, Tate Modern, until Sun 10 Sept

Last chance to see the UK’s first major retrospective of Alberto Giacometti for 20 years. Celebrated as a sculptor, painter and draughtsman, Giacometti’s distinctive elongated figures are some of the most instantly recognisable works of modern art in Tate Modern’s ambitious and wide-ranging exhibition of over 250 works. It includes rarely seen plasters and drawings and showcases the full evolution of Giacometti’s career across five decades, from early works such as Head of a Woman [Flora Mayo] 1926 to iconic bronze sculptures such as Walking Man I 1960.

Marc Quinn: Drawn from Life, Sir John Soane’s Museum, until Sat 23 Sept

Marc Quinn: Drawn from Life is a set of 12 new sculptures by British artist Marc Quinn, set in the super-stunning Sir John Soane’s Museum. This promises to be a brilliant exhibition. Quinn is always surprising – remember his twisted, yogic Kate Moss in solid gold, his Trafalgar Square plinth of naked, pregnant disabled artist Alison Lapper and the gruesome cast of his own head filled with ten pints of his own blood? You can hear a brief, 15-minute intro to the exhibition, every Thursday at 3pm in the Soane Gallery. Tis free, just turn up.

Journey by Melanie Cormack-Hicks, Chapel Arts, Cheltenham, until Sun 24 Sept

The first solo show by this local artist with a talent for intense landscapes will include smaller works produced outdoors as well as her larger, studio-based pieces. Open fields, woods and the River Severn provide local inspiration, while the countryside of Devon and Scotland also draw her eye.

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside - Gloucestershire