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Superflashy news incoming!

It's your big Muddy blabbermouth reporting for duty! Check out the cool new openings, closures *sob* and places to put on your hit-list pronto.

Well hello, The Box

Plymouth’s new £46 million love-letter to the city, The Box, opens today and though its opening was delayed due to guess-what, it sure was worth the wait. Never mind the chic restaurant (pictured above) with its suspended figureheads and giant ship fender – which is worth a visit on its own merit – this museum, art gallery and archive is a must-visit. Kids will love the interactive chance to be a TV-presenter and giant reconstruction woolly mammoth and you will love the architecture, the media lab and the Mayflower 400 exhibition with its replica of the Pilgrim fathers’ ship. Who knew Plymouth was so fascinating! It’s fab, so go, go, go and/or read my preview here.

When in ROAM, get shopping!

Notonthehighstreet favourites, Drifting Bear, known for their personalised homeware and prints have opened their first shop, ROAM, in the indie art quarter of Teignmouth. I’m not not known to get soppy over a slogan, but they do meaningful and emotive in a totally uncringey way, plus you can personalise their earthy mugs, prints and cosy throws with things you want to say, your own photos, or the co-ordinates of somewhere special to you (pictured below).

Take their bestselling Hug Cushion, which you can personalise and send to distant friends you’d like to hug, very popular in these socially distant times. A Hollywood actress and an ex-prime minister are fans, and what’s more, for every product sold online, and everything sold for over £10 in store, ethical owners David and Emily plant a tree. Twenty thousand so far! That’s quite a forest. Go help ’em plant em some more.

Sign of the times

Pic by Wayne Perry

As part of the re-booted Mayflower 400 celebrations, Plymouth’s Mount Batten Pier is lighting up with a massive LED display on the breakwater, measuring 63m long and 6m high. The artwork, called Speedwell after the companion ship to the Mayflower, is made up of over 3000 bulbs spelling out three words: No, New, Worlds, which light up in a randomly generated sequence. It was created by local artist collective, Still/Moving (check out their cool vid of how it was made).

The aim is a good one, questioning the impact of the Mayflower’s legacy of colonialism and impact on climate. Indeed, were there ever any new worlds in the first place? You can add your thoughts to the artwork either virtually or on a metal tag. There for a gander until Sunday 29 November.

Get lost!

In the nicest possible way at The Lost Kitchen near Knighthayes in the village of Chettiscombe. The Tivvy crowd are going mad for this new laidback but upmarket restaurant, led by husband and wife team George and Aurora Aykroyd, who are serving up wood-fired food and a great wine list. Word is it’s so booked up, even the owners are struggling to get a booking. Locals are comparing it The Pig at Combe, for its tasteful rustic luxe style. Less ‘lost’ and more ‘fab find’ we think. Open weekends only 10am – 6pm, Friday to Sunday.

Byebye *sob* to Millbrook Inn

Sadly, the wonderful Millbrook Inn at Southpool has closed it doors. Muddy gave it a huge thumbs-up for its unusual but family-friendly menu when we visited a couple of years ago. With accolades including Best Dining Pub in Devon and Michelin plaques on the wall, Charlie, Tess, Juno & Lola have had to call time at the bar for the last time. You will be missed.

Hello RAMM – Exeter’s museum to reopen

Exeter’s Royal Albert Museum & Art Gallery has announced it’s flinging wide its doors to the public (Covid restrictions allowing) on Saturday 24 October just in time to keep the little darlings occupied over half term. Changes include a new timed (but still free) ticketed entry. Apart from the usual requests to follow the new one-way system, wear gloves, use hand sanitiser etc etc, the entrance is now at the back via the gardens instead of what is now the new exit on Queen Street.

Panic-buying already? It’s Postal Pantry to the rescue

Put down that maxi-pack of loo rolls, lady! There’s a new online shopping service in town, The Postal Pantry, delivering over 700 store cupboard essentials, including organic, gluten free, vegan and more to your door, seven days a week both locally and nationally. Muddy is very taken by their curated collection of quality eco-friendly brands, including Biona, Ecover, Clipper and Faith in Nature, as well as local drinks from Luscombe and Devonia.

They’re doing a fab job of filling the gap left by Riverford since the organic farmers returned to their core deliveries of meat and veg boxes. They’re family-run, based in Ashburton, use recyclable or biodegradable packaging wherever possible and are exactly the sort of ethical, thoughtful people to whom you’d want to give your hard-earned housekeeping if you care about minimising your impact on the planet. Worth a scroll, pronto.

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