31 May - 2 June
KIDS: Get Set, Sow! RHS Garden Rosemoor, until Sun 2 Jun
Get the kids flexing their kids’ green fingers with four packed days of workshops, you never know they might get into doing weeding and mowing. Plus, when they’ve finished with the dibbers, there’s a garden trail filled with hidden discoveries and an interactive theatre adaption of the enchanting tale of Alice in Wonderland.
OUTDOORS: Medieval Madness, Powderham Castle, Kenton nr Exeter, Mon 27 – Fri 31 May
Need a distraction from half-term madness? Impress the Mudlets with some Medieval mayhem and a gripping display of jousting courtesy of the Knights of Royal England in the grounds of Powderham’s ancient castle.
COMEDY Rhod Gilbert: The Book of John, Princess Theatre, Torquay, Tues 28 May
The multi-award-winning Welsh comedian brings a brand new live show to Devon. As seen on, Would I Lie To You?, Qi, The Apprentice: You’re Fired, Live At The Apollo and Have I Got News For You. Much has happened to Rhod during his six-year break from stand-up, and just when he thought he’d hit rock bottom, he met a bloke called John. If you want to find out what funny things happened next, you’ll have to book tickets.
COMEDY Adam Kay – This is going to hurt, Corn Exchange, Exeter Fri 31 May
Full of spoof songs and horror stories from his time as a junior doctor, Adam Kay brings his best-selling Edinburgh Fringe show (from a book soon to be turned into a BBC series) to Exeter. His hilarious and sometimes stomach-churning observations may have you giving the doc a miss for a while.
FOOD & DRINK: Final Friday, Brickhouse Vineyard, Mamhead, Fri 31 May
Celebrate the first ever Final Friday event in Bacchanalian style among 3000 vines at Brickhouse Vineyard near Exeter, with a bar and a pop-up bistro from Flour and Zest.
FOOD: Kingsbridge Food & Music Festival, Kingsbridge, Fri 31 May – Sun 2 Jun
Take your rumbling tums and dancing feet to Kingsbridge town square for 3 days and nights of music and of foodie treats with a crafty kids zone where they can bounce their hearts out covered in face paint, while you stuff your face with delicious West Country foodage.
OUTDOORS: Torbay Air Show, Paignton Green, Paignton, Sat 1 – Sun 2 Jun
Breathtaking displays of aerial derring-do over the bay, with the Red Arrows on Sunday, parachute stunts, Battle of Britain fly pasts, RAF chinooks and more. Head to the bay on Sunday for The Red Arrows. With 165,000 people expected to watch the aerobatics, save yourself a headache and buy parking tickets in advance here.
MUSIC Craig David, Powderham Castle, Kenton nr Exeter, Sat 1 Jun
Shall I fill you on the Craig David news? The singer-songwriter-rapper is at Powderham not on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday but on Saturday and he’s joined by international DJs Sigala and Nathan Dawe and songwriter Becky Hill. Dance your socks off, chill on Sunday.
FESTIVAL: CredFest, Newcombe Meadows and various town-centre, Crediton 1-23 Jun
Kicking off with a Picnic in the Park, Crediton rolls out three weeks of cultural high-jinks, including artists’ open studios, outdoor cinema, comedy, a silent disco and music. Author Ann Cleeves (Shetland and Vera) headlines the Wednesday (12 Jun) book club session at Crediton’s Muddy award-nominated Community Bookshop.
GARDENS: The English Country Garden Festival, Coombe Trenchard, Lewtrenchard, Sat 1 – Sun 2 Jun
Herbs, lupins, roses, foxgloves: there’s far too much bunting-strewn temptation for gardening geeks on display here. Go with an empty car-boot and a week to spare for all the planting you’ll have to do afterwards. New for their 8th year is a vintage car display, along with 75-plus West Country garden and craft exhibitors, plus croquet and the obligatory Pimms. Don’t mind if I do.
KIDS: Extreme Imagination, RAMM, Exeter, until 2 Jun
Do artists have better visual imaginations than the rest of us? How good is your own? Test the vividness of your own mind’s eye and challenge your preconceptions about how we use the imagination in art making.
Looking for things to do with the littlies? Check out my half-term round-up here.