Were into the school holidays and so far, so good. The weather has been fantastic and the kids have been happy. Most days, this has meant playing a game they have invented; paddling pool ping pong! I’m sure you can imagine how messy these tournaments get...
When I have managed to get them out of the house, last month’s Ramblings have kept us all busy and, with the plethora of free events coming up this month, I’m hoping to get to the end of the month still in pocket! A quick reminder that we also have magazines in Farnham, Godalming, Haslemere and Alton so if you go to the website you will find many more events happening just a little further afield.
Are you single and looking to mingle? The Unattached Group is enjoying a summer packed with events including a river trip, sailing day, barbecues, a visit to BBC London and their annual summer party, as well as the usual theatre trips, meals and social evenings, if you would like to take part? T-U-G is a Surrey/Hampshire based group of about 80 single people who enjoy times together including a weekly pub meet and chat night. New members are very welcome. You can get all the information you need at www.theunattachedgroup.co.uk or by calling Maggie on 07855 008 897.
Music lovers can enjoy a folk music session every Monday at the Star in Church Street, Godalming, at 9pm and at the Harrow at Compton every Wednesday at 8.30pm, also every first and third Sunday at the Queen Victoria in Shalford starting at 8.30pm. They are all free events (although the beer will cost you!) just turn up. For more information phone Kevin Gorton on 01483 415962.
Kelly’s Cross Country Challenge takes place later this year, on Sunday 18th October. Participants can either run or walk through the beautiful grounds of Loseley Park and at the same time raise money for a wonderful local charity. There will be a half marathon, a 10k & 5k challenging trail routes all professionally organised, marshalled and chip timed plus a special children’s event. You’ll find something for all the family. It’s all in aid of a great cause:– 100% of all money raised goes directly to Challengers, a local charity helping disabled children and young people across Surrey and Hants. For more information visit www.kellystore.org/guildford-2015
Do you enjoy open-air theatre? On Sunday 23rd August, from 7pm, you can join the all-male cast of The Lord Chamberlain’s Men for a performance of Shakespeare’s classic romantic comedy Twelfth Night. Tickets are priced at £16 for adults and £8 for a child. Family tickets are a great deal at £40. To book please call Guildford TIC on 01483 444334 or www.visitguildford.com
My family and I have taken to sitting at the bottom of our garden after supper, just as the sun disappears, to watch the bats come out. There seem to be many more this year than ever before. If you are just as fascinated as us then why not take part in the Bat Walks at Hatchlands Park this month? They take place at 7.30pm on Thursday 13th, 20th and 27th August. You can enjoy a twilight walk through the parkland and see how many bat species you can spot. Bat detectors are provided. It gets quite busy so you will need to book ahead by calling 01483 222482.
If your kids are a little too young to be up walking around after dark then maybe Hatchlands Funday Fridays are more your style? Every Friday throughout August you can take part in their arts and crafts sessions, trails, garden games and lots of fun messy activities! For more information visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/hatchlands-park
Back by popular demand and now showing over two nights, the Cambridge Touring Theatre will be performing their fun musical version of the classic children’s tale, Robin Hood. Take a rug, picnic and family and friends and sit back and enjoy summer theatre in the glorious setting of Hatchlands Park. It takes place on Tuesday 4th and Wednesday 5th August from 6-9pm. Tickets are £16 for each adult and £8 for a child. To book please call Guildford TIC 01483 444334 or www.visitguildford.com
Throughout August, a series of one-off ‘Summer School’ workshops are on offer at the Guildford Institute for anyone looking to try something new or to brush up on their skills. A range of drawing and painting sessions are as well as Social Media courses and Blogging for Beginners. Bookings are also now open on the institute’s autumn term courses, talks, visits and events. For more information or to order your free copy of the summer and/or autumn brochure, you can get in touch by calling 01483 562142 or visit www.guildford-institute.org.uk
Are you a fan of all things vintage? On Saturday 15th August The Lightbox gallery and museum in Woking will host its first Vintage Fair which will celebrate the classic style of bygone eras. A range of independent retailers will have stalls specialising in vintage wares such as clothing, accessories, jewellery, handbags, homewares and music memorabilia. To add to the nostalgic atmosphere The Lightbox Café will be transformed into a 1940s style tea shop and for fans of the retro look, a pop-up vintage hair and make-up salon will be on site. Did I mention that it’s free to entry? www.lightbox.org.uk
Woking’s Undercover Festival, prides itself on taking an independent and grassroots approach to things, and is always determined to be different from mainstream events. As the name suggests, it’s an indoors event but with three days of alternative action from bands you’d be highly unlikely to see on many other festival line-ups. If, punk, ska, dub and reggae are your kind of music, then get yourself down to Bisley Pavilion over the weekend of Friday 18th to Sunday 20th September. Day tickets are a very reasonable £25 each or £75 for the whole weekend. Visit www.undercoverfest.com
Guildford & Godalming Croquet Club are holding a ‘Staycation’ event on Tuesday, 4th August at 2 to 4pm. The whole family is invited to go along and have a game of croquet. No experience is necessary and experienced members will be on hand to introduce you to the sport and share their skills and enthusiasm. They have four lawns and can play two games on each at the same time so there will be every opportunity to pick up a mallet and play a game or two. If you prefer to sit and watch that’s fine too! Guildford & Godalming Croquet Club, at Broadwater Sports Club in Guildford Road, Godalming (GU7 3BU). Visit www.guildfordandgodalmingcroquetclub.co.uk
Ewhurst Horticultural Society has been in touch. They are holding their Autumn Show on Saturday, 12th September, in Ewhurst Village Hall. Doors open to the public at 2.30pm and they would love to see as many of you as possible. Please put it in your diaries now so it’s not forgotten. For details see the website www.ewhursthortsoc.org.uk or contact the show secretary on 01483 276713.
Are you looking for something new and interesting to do? Searching for a fun way to exercise? Why not take up Circle Dancing? Lynn Frances is an experienced teacher of 32 years who runs classes at Pirrie Hall Brook on Thursdays in three ten-week terms, 7.30-9.30pm, St Catherine’s Hall Guildford on the third Tuesday of the month, 7.30-9.30pm and WI Hall in Hartley Wintney on the second Wednesday of the month, again, 7.30-9.30pm. For more information contact Lynn on 01420 474881.
The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain will be playing at Princes Hall, in Aldershot, on the 31st July. It is part of the group’s 30th anniversary tour and it should be a night to remember. The orchestra has in the past sold out theatres and appeared on TV in many countries, so are very well regarded in (their line of work). They don’t just play ukuleles, they sing, they say funny things, they whistle, and most importantly, they entertain. Well worth watching I’d say. For tickets visit www.princeshall.com
Do your kids have a passion for dance, drama and singing? Are they keen to work backstage on sound and lighting design? If so, they can join Dorothy and all her friends from The Wizard of Oz, in this year’s Guildford Summer Youth Project. Now in its eighth year, Guildford Theatre School is staging a musical adaptation of The Wizard of Oz at G Live in just two weeks! There are two courses available (performance or technical), followed by two performances. From 17th -29th August they will learn to sing, dance and act and then those wanting to work backstage can learn to do so between 24th and 29th August. The performances will be held on 28th and 29th at G Live. For information and prices visit www.glive.co.uk
Astolat Model Railway Circle is holding an Open Day in the Barge Building at Dapdune Wharf in Guildford on Saturday, 22nd August, from 11am until 5pm. They shall have four club layouts operating, including test tracks in OO and N gauges (take your own engines to run), and also four members’ layouts, one of which will be original Hornby Dublo. Admission is via the National Trust, Dapdune Wharf and NT entry charges will apply (NT members are free). For more info go to www.astolatmrc.co.uk
Do you have any experience of accounting, preferably with some experience of the Charity Commission, and a few hours to spare each month? The League of Friends of Milford Hospital is desperate for someone to assist their treasurer who has been in the role for a very long time and needs some help. It is not onerous, just a few hours a month plus committee meetings five times a year with a small, friendly committee. If you would like more information, please contact the treasurer, Malcolm Wilson, on 01483421419.
Do you enjoy singing choral music in an unthreatening environment? Shalford Choral Society is now recruiting new members for the new season starting in September. No auditions are required; all they ask is a desire to sing choral. In April, they will join with eleven other local choirs from around the Surrey Hills to stage the three-day Leith Hill Musical Festival in Dorking. In addition there are other singing opportunities which arise throughout the year. They start their weekly Tuesday evening rehearsals at St Mary’s Church in Shalford on Tuesday 8th September at 7.30pm. For further information about the society, visit the website www.shalfordchoralsociety.org.uk or, for an informal chat, call Olivia Peak on 01483 428986.
How about doing your bit for the great British wildlife? Britain’s biggest beetle needs your help. One of Britain’s most recognisable and unique species, the stag beetle is unfortunately becoming increasingly rare to find. For fifteen years, People’s Trust for Endangered Species has been actively working to halt its decline. They are asking volunteers to join their annual Great Stag Hunt Survey and record any sightings of stag beetles. The survey, which can be found on their website, www.ptes.org, is easy to use and with your input, PTES can better understand how stag beetles numbers are faring in the UK. If you spot a stag beetle, head to the website and ensure it is recorded: www.ptes.org/stagbeetles
Peaslake Fair takes place on Monday 31st August from 1pm. This year is a particularly special year as they celebrate Peaslake’s Royal British Legion Women’s Section 75th anniversary and Peaslake Community Council’s 70th anniversary. The Alley Cats Jazz Band will be playing; there will be a barbecue and delicious teas and cakes in the hall. The school field will be buzzing with fun events including a dog show and bucking bronco and the fair will offer entertainment such as a Punch & Judy show, a magician, bouncy castle and plenty of refreshments alfresco style, including a Pimm’s, Beer & Cider Tent.
Guildford Youth Symphony Orchestra present their fourth concert – A Russian Fantasy – at Holy Trinity Church, High Street, Guildford on Friday 28th August at 7.30pm. GYSO is a full symphony orchestra of more than 80 of Surrey’s leading young musicians, members being present and past students of local schools, conducted by Eric Foster. This concert will feature: Borodin’s Symphony No. 2, Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, and Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 featuring guest soloist Michael Lan. Admission is free with a retiring collection raising money for the church roof repair funds. For more details, please see www.gyso.org.uk/concerts
I’d like to quickly just mention all those who took part in the Sanofi Surrey Classic Bike Ride on the 30th June. A massive congratulations to the hundreds of people who took up the challenge to cycle 100 miles to raise thousands of pounds for charity. Dozens of the riders were Sanofi employees and they alone, raised more than £2000 for Teenage Cancer Trust. A great day was apparently had by all and I hope to be part of it next time round.
If you haven’t already popped in, you still have time to catch Highlight on Art at Guildford House. Over the summer they have been showcasing highlights and new acquisitions from the borough art collection in the Garden Room at Guildford House and will continue until Saturday, 1st August. It’s free to enter and well worth a look. Open daily from 10am. 155 High Street, Guildford (GU1 3AJ).
From now until the end of August you are invited to tour the iconic Guildford Guildhall. With its ornate front and projecting clock that dominates the High Street, it has become a symbol of Guildford, and, is possibly the most painted, drawn and photographed building in Surrey. It costs £2 per person and they are open from 11am daily.
Are you looking for something to entertain the kids this summer holiday? Space 2105 is five days of fun for children up to the age of 11 from Wednesday 29th to Sunday 2nd August. It only costs £10 and everyone is welcome. It enables children to enjoy games, quizzes, a fabulous drama every day, crafts, music and singing as part of a well-run club organised by volunteers - hence the low price! Places are limited and go quickly so please visit the website for more details and register as soon as you can! www.christchurchguildford.com
Carolyn Sloan’s adaptation of her own novel, The Sea Child tells the mysterious story of Jessie, a young girl who has lived alone with her father for 10 years and faces a life-changing choice to meet new people. The play was joint winner of FFShorts, the festival of new writing which sets out to find a new play for the Yvonne Arnaud Youth Theatre. You can catch this production prior to its two weeks at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe between Thursday 13th and Saturday 15th August at Mill Studio. www.yvonne-arnaud.co.uk
The British Fuchsia Society Show is to be held at Normandy Village Hall on Sunday 9th August. There will be plants in all shapes and sizes from baskets to bonsai! As well as plants there will be growers on hand to give advice and tips on growing great fuchsias. Doors open at 12.30pm and admission is £1.
Windrush Innovation Centre, Howbery Park, Crowmarsh Gifford, Wallingford, Oxon, OX10 8BA