Thursday, 27 June 2013

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden – Norfolk Broads - Summer Music in the Glade 2013

 Fairhaven's 900 year-old King Oak with gunnera in the foreground

Taverham Brass Band returns to Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden at South Walsham in the Norfolk Broads on Sunday July 7, to launch the garden’s weekly Summer Music in the Glade season, with a selection of classic hits and songs from the shows. This open-air concert is from 2pm to 4pm. Normal admission charges apply, adult £6, concessions £5.50 and child £3.50, under five free. There is no additional charge for summer music events.

Fairhaven Garden Music in the Glade programme – all events are from 2pm to 4pm.

Taverham Brass Band, Sunday, July 7, playing a mix of traditional and modern, classical and pop, show music and old favourites.

Norfolk Dixieland Jazz Quartet, Sunday, July 14, playing swinging jazz standards from the great American song book.

The Castaways, Sunday July 21, playing a mix of sea shanties, folk, Irish, Country and Western and old time singalongs.

The Clarinet Connection, Sunday, July 28, wide ranging repertoire from classical, through instrumental compositions, to dance music from Europe and Latin America.

The He Hews, Sunday, August 4, a New Orleans Ska band from Norwich.

Any Swing Goes, Sunday, August 11, swing music from the 1940s and 50s featuring songs by Frank Sinatra and Bobby Darin and classic sounds from the Glen Miller era.

Great Yarmouth Brass, Sunday August 18, 2pm to 4pm, playing show selections, film music, war-time singalongs and marches.

Sutton Jazz Quartet, Sunday, August 25, playing laid back jazz from the 20s through to the 50s, including Hoagy Carmichael, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Glen Miller and the swing bands.

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden is at South Walsham, nine miles east of Norwich, signposted off A47 at B1140 junction,, t. 01603 270449.

The garden is open daily all year from 10am to 5pm (closed Christmas Day and closes 4pm in the winter); also open on Wednesday to 9pm until the end of August.  Garden entry is adult £6, concessions £5.50 and child £3.50 (under 5 free); free entry to tearoom, gift shop and plant sales. There is wheelchair access throughout the garden, including a Sensory Garden. Visitors requiring special facilities are advised to telephone in advance, mobility scooters available. Dogs are welcome on leads; small charge to cover poop scoop.

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Sherlock Holmes at Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, Norfolk Broads

The Pantaloons theatre company is bringing its action-packed and delightfully inventive production of Sherlock Holmes to Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, South Walsham in the Norfolk Broads,  on Friday, July 5 at 7pm.

Tickets are adult £9 and child £5 in advance from Fairhaven Garden, t. 01603 270449, and £12 /£8 on the door (under 5 free). There will be an interval for refreshments but do bring a picnic and something comfortable to sit on. Gates open at 6.30pm.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s stories of master detective Holmes and his amiable sidekick Dr Watson are enduringly popular and this new adaptation promises a mash-up of the canon’s best bits with a few surprises in store along the way.

The Pantaloons take well-loved classics and giving them a contemporary twist, making them accessible for new audiences and showing seasoned fans something that they had not seen in them before. Past productions include The Canterbury Tales, The Grimm Fairy Tales, A Christmas Carol and many of Shakespeare’s plays.

“We are tackling Sherlock Holmes,” says producer Mark Hayward, “because we like to take on things that are ridiculously ambitious to stage and find ingenious ways to convey these to an audience. With Holmes we have a high-speed boat ride down a foggy Thames, a moonlit chase across rooftops, and daring escapes and fights all with a cast of just four actors.”

The Pantaloons pride themselves on creating interactive shows that can vary wildly from performance to performance – and Sherlock Holmes will do so to a greater extent than ever before.

“The outcome of the play might be very different at each performance,” says Hayward. “In fact, depending on suggestions from the audience or even what the weather does, the show will change a lot. It’s a very exciting concept but we don’t want to spoil anything by revealing too much here!”

In true Pantaloons tradition the show will also include plenty of original live music and even some puppetry – involving a certain famous hound – but at all times the production will remain faithful to the spirit of the source material.

“The real strength of the Holmes stories, aside from the adventure elements and clever mysteries, is the relationship between Holmes and Watson and brilliant dialogue that still sparkles straight off the page,” says Hayward. “It makes adapting the stories for stage a real joy.”

Monday, 24 June 2013

Wymondham Roots – The Acoustic Sessions Friday 5 July, Wymondham Central Hall Norfolk

Johnny Steinberg presents Whirligig, The Jake Morrell Band and Andy Kirkham guitar with Henry Walker drums for Wymondham Roots  - The Acoustic Sessions at Wymondham Central Hall, Norfolk on Friday, July 5 at 8pm.

                                                     Johnny Steinberg

Tickets are £10, under-18s £3 from or The Book Fountain, Wharton’s Court, Wymondham.

Whirligig -  Wendy fiddle, guitar, vocals, Chris mandolin, guitar, Nick bass, Vince drums, play a mixture of English, Irish, Scottish and American traditional dance tunes and original folk songs and covers in their own unique way. 


Andy Kirkham is known locally for his skills on the guitar playing beautiful and unusual songs from West Africa and Eastern Europe with originals. He’ll bring a selection of tunes by Ali Farka Toure, Woody Guthrie and John Martyn with Balkan and Klezmer arrangements. Andy creates gentle, flowing, harp-like tones and novel textures on the guitar. Recent performances on BBC radio have been described radio as ‘virtuoso’ and ‘awesome’. He’ll be accompanied by Henry Walker on drums.

                                                   Andy Kirkham

Jake Morrell singer/songwriter from Norfolk is backed by a talented three-piece band of Rob Wiseman - keyboard, Tom Maddison - double bass and Lewis Jenkins – drums. Their genre is folk/pop which appeals to wide range of audience. Highlights of 2012 included supporting The Brand New Heavies, Twin Atlantic and Benjamin Francis Leftwich.  

                                          Jake Morrell Band
The event is part of Wymondham Music Festival, Festival Office t. 01953 601939,

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, Norfolk Broads, Fun Green Festival

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden at South Walsham in the Norfolk Broads staged its annual Green Festival on Sunday, June 23, with a busy day of entertainment and fun environmental activities.

Visitors hopped on board Houseboat Heather, explored South Walsham broad on the Primrose, went on alpaca ambles and enjoyed the sights and sounds of the Pedant’s Revolt morris dancers and the Dixieland Jazz Trio.

                                          Pedant's Revolt Morris Dancers

Coracle maker Jason Kidman demonstrated his skills, there were close encounters with owls from the Hawking Experience and traditional punch and judy shows.

                                                   Jason Kidman coracle maker

Families had fun with green man clay play, made bath bombs in Hand Made Norfolk Soap’s, ‘The Soapbox’, a converted horsebox making its event debut, and had a go at making pottery.

Stevie Spud ran his annual circus skills workshop and there was a children’s Butterfly Trail round the garden. Children even mixed their own smoothies on the bicycle powered smoothy maker from Salhouse Broad.

Louise Rout, Fairhaven Garden manager: “Our Green Festival was a great success. The weather was kind and it was lovely to see so many families enjoying the day. I’d particularly like to thank all the conversation organisations and businesses who took part and had the garden buzzing with fun activities and practical green living advice.”    

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

The Lightning Thieves at Wymondham Music Festival, Norfolk

 The Lightning Thieves are heading to Norfolk for a concert at Wymondham Abbey, 7.30pm on Saturday 22 June, part of Wymondham Music Festival Fortnight

Here they play Blues Kopenitza by Adam Summerhayes. Buy tickets online at

This is their story.

Adam Summerhayes first suggested the concept of The Lightning Thieves to David Gordon on a tiny plane leaving Kodiak Island, Alaska, between fog banks - on a morning when only their plane got to the island. Jets couldn’t land but because this plane was old, slow, and had propellers, it was successful. After a short silence, David gave the requisite “Let’s do it” - and the long process began.

David and Adam have covered much of the world together – mostly with the Gypsy Tango band ZUM. Adam’s stories include unexpectedly meeting a grizzly at 50 feet in Yellowstone Park …  struggling over Alaska’s highest pass in the beginnings of the snowstorm that closed it for the winter … being driven at 120 miles an hour through a sandstorm in the Saudi Arabian desert … getting huge purple ears from frostbite … being rescued from a midnight swim in a large midwinter lake by following the light of a mobile phone on the shore … being stopped by US border police on suspicion of transporting Mexican immigrants - it all sounds like something that Michael Palin might have gone through in one of his less well planned expeditions.

Adam is on record as saying that he can not imagine respecting any musician more highly than David, but he also reports that David was single-handedly responsible for parking the tour van in a large sandpit from which it had to be towed, after an hour of fruitless digging. Apparently, though, David’s towering moment of genius was loitering with his heavily loaded trolley under the “NO MEAT - NO FISH” sign halfway through Gatwick customs. His large polystyrene box frozen Alaskan halibut was conspicuously positioned on top and clearly labeled with the word FISH all over it in large red letters.

The colourfulness of their touring stories is amply reflected in their remarkable, specially composed music -  brilliantly played on electric violin and harpsichord, plugged into a myriad of electronic devices.  This is refreshing and exhilarating, with grooves and melodies containing influences from around the world spiced with bursts of spontaneous improvisation, resulting in an unfamiliar but wholly accessible feast of sound

Both musicians have impeccable musical pedigrees, with worldwide touring and radio airplay both of their performances and compositions and are no strangers to venues such as Carnegie Hall, the Wigmore Hall and the South Bank Centre. They have each featured on around 20 CD recordings – to great critical acclaim.

The Lightning Thieves concert includes a track of Adam’s from Guy Ritchie’s Sherlock Holmes blockbuster. The track was included in the movie, against the odds, because of its sheer accessibility and vibrancy – attributes that are a defining feature of the instantly accessible and highly memorable music of this duo.

Monday, 10 June 2013

Wymondham Music Festival Fortnight, Norfolk - Saturday 22 June to Sunday 7 July

Wymondham's Music Festival Fortnight returns from Saturday 22 June to Sunday 7 July, with 40 events, some organised by other groups, many of them free, in venues across the historic South Norfolk market town.

Tickets for Festival Fortnight concerts are on sale at the Book Fountain, Wharton’s Court, Wymondham, and can be bought online at For Festival event enquiries, contact the Festival office, t. 01953 601939, Save £1 on Festival Fortnight tickets booked by June 15, either online, or by using the discount voucher in the Festival brochure.

Enjoy performances by national, regional and local musicians with everything from Rachmaninov, Bach and Britten to folk, Americana, swing, jazz, flamenco, blues, bluegrass and contemporary rock.

                          Wymondham High Combined Jazz Bands

Festival Fortnight kicks off on the morning of 22 June with a Market Place concert from Wymondham High Jazz Orchestra and the Jazz Band of the Gymnasium Waldstrasse, Hattingen (10am). Then in the evening The Lightning Thieves, Adam Summerhayes, concerto violinist turned ultra-modern electric fiddler, with David Gordon, the ‘Hendrix’ of the harpsichord are at Wymondham Abbey (7.30pm).

                                          Dixie Mix - Jazz Picnic

There’s the annual Midsummer Jazz Picnic with Dixie Mix and Theatre of Adventure on 24 June (6pm to 9pm). Then Jazz in The Abbey on 27 June (7.30pm) presents Peter King, rated by Dave Gelly in 'The Giants Of Jazz' as…‘the finest alto saxophonist that Britain has ever produced, and one of the finest in the world today’ with Steve Melling (piano), Owen Morgan (bass) and Roger Odell (drums).

The Market Place is transformed into 1940s style on 28 June with Skyliner playing Glenn Miller inspired music (7pm). The Kickstart Sessions showcasing young local bands is at Ketts Park Centre on 29 June (11am to 6pm).

Teeside folk duo Megson, described as ‘the most original duo on the British folk scene’ by Robert Denslow of The Guardian, play The Regal (Ex-Services Club) on 29 June (8pm).

Families will enjoy the Teddy Bears’ Picnic on 30 June with magical stories from Charlotte Arculus and Christine Hill and music from Hayley Moyses (11am to 1pm King’s Head Meadow). That evening, The Voigt Piano Trio plays Rachmaninov and Schumann at Wymondham Abbey (8pm).

                                                 Rupert Egerton-Smith

Lunchtime recitals at Wymondham Abbey (1.10pm to 2pm) from 1 July include Norfolk Winds Quintet, the ‘Charm of Ivor Novello’, and a Britten song recital. Norfolk born concert pianist, Rupert Egerton-Smith is at the Abbey on the evening of 3 July, with a programme featuring Beethoven, Scriabin and Rachmaninov (7.30pm).

The Festival lecture on 2 July is The Tuneful Electron, A History of Electronic Music at Fairland Church Centre (7.30pm) – Stephen Bennett, lecturer in music at UEA.

Norfolk’s festival favourites, The Vagaband are at Central Hall on 4 July (8pm) and Wymondham Roots, an acoustic extravaganza, bursting with local talent created by Wymondham’s own Johnny Steinberg is at Central Hall on 5 July (8pm).

                                                     Johnny Steinberg

Flamenco takes centre stage at The Regal on 6 July (8pm) with Norwich-based Zimali Flamenco, who are also running a dance workshop earlier in the day at the Baptist Church (4pm).

The Drones present The Toy Symphony, the family Festival Finale at the Baptist Church on 7 July, a fun concert with music performed on the cello, harmonium, bouzouki, mandolin, clarinet, percussion, car parts, toys, birdcalls, musical saw and items from the garden shed (3pm).

                                          The Drones

Raveningham Gardens, Norfolk Broads – Special June Rose Weeks

Raveningham Gardens near Hales in the Norfolk Broads will be open for two special rose weeks from Monday, June 17 to Friday, June 21 and Monday, June 24 to Friday, June 28, daily 11am to 4pm. The Edwardian Rose Garden was replanted in 2000 with repeat flowering roses and hybrid tea roses. Old varieties are displayed on the walls of the house.

Visitors can also explore the 18th century walled kitchen garden, Victorian glasshouses, arboretum and herb garden, enjoy contemporary sculpture throughout the gardens and the huge herbaceous borders and visit Raveningham’s 14th century church. Tea and cakes are on sale on sunny days.

Raveningham Gardens, Raveningham, NR14 6NS is open all Thursdays, 11am to 4pm, until the end of August. Admission: adult £4, concessions £3.50 and children under 16 free, tel. 01508 548152,

Fairhaven Garden, Norfolk Broads, Annual Green Festival Sunday, June 23

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, South Walsham is staging its annual Green Festival on Sunday, June 23, 10am to 5pm. An action-packed day of entertainment and fun environmental activities is on offer in this beautiful Broads garden. Normal entry charges apply on the day: adult £6, concessions £5.50 and child £3.50.

Children will enjoy the mini yurt play area in the woods, circus skills, green man clay play, Punch & Judy, recycled crafts and face painting.

The Dixieland Jazz Trio provides the musical backdrop along with performances from The Pedant’s Revolt Morris Dancers.

Go on an alpaca amble, see coracle building and rural craft demonstrations, find out about forest gardening and green living, meet conservation charities, pick up green energy advice plus explore a range of eco-friendly craft stalls including a horsebox where visitors can make hand creams from natural products.

There is wheelchair access throughout the garden, including the Sensory Garden. Visitors requiring special facilities are advised to telephone in advance. Mobility scooters available. Dogs are welcome on leads; small charge to cover poop scoop.

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden is at South Walsham, nine miles east of Norwich, signposted off A47 at B1140 junction, tel. 01603 270449,

The garden is open daily all year, 10am to 5pm (closed Christmas Day), also open until 9pm on Wednesday until the end of August. There is a tearoom, gift shop and plant sales.

Monday, 3 June 2013

Welborne’s 10th Arts Festival – Norfolk 15 & 16 June – Film, Drama, Dance, Art, Music, Literature, Comedy and Meadow Performers

Welborne Arts Festival near Mattishall, the biggest village-based contemporary arts festival in Norfolk, returns on Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 June (Saturday 11.30am to 6.30pm and Sunday 11.30am to 4.30pm), celebrating its 10th outing. The festival, organised by the local community, is based on the meadow close to the 11th century All Saints Church (postcode NR20 3LQ).

The weekend features a busy programme of film, drama, dance, visual arts, live music, literature, meadow performers, comedy and hands-on workshops. Entry is adults £6 and under 16 free.

          Rapid Gambit outside Welborne Church

Mike Webb, Festival Organiser said: “We are really pleased to be back celebrating our 10th Welborne Arts Festival, packed with exciting events and activities. We have a wonderfully diverse programme featuring Britten Sinfonia players, international author Louis de Bernières, Edinburgh festival Fringe-bound Rapid Gambit, Indian and Molly dancing, the best of Norfolk visual art and much more.”

Enjoy seven short films made in partnership with UEA – all inspired by Welborne and surroundings, have a go at Bhangra and Bollywood dance with Jaya Dance and Harpal Panesar and Molly Dancing with The Ouse Washes Molly Dancers. Watch, four short plays written by Wymondham-based writers Four by Four, plus comedy theatre, Faileontology, from Norwich-based comedy theatre company Rapid Gambit. Lucilla Reeve from 1942 will also present her personal battle to prevent wartime evictions from the Stanford battle area.

                  Miss Lucilla Reeve at Welborne Church

There’s drama from local schools, directed by UEA students, and music performed by local young people with two members of the Britten Sinfonia (Saturday at 2.30pm), as well as exhibitions and demonstrations from Norfolk Contemporary Craft Society, North Norfolk Organisation for Visual Artists, Katarzyna Coleman and Julia Sorrell and the regular villagers’ show. Neal French is the festival sculptor in residence and will be running sculpture workshops and Ian Sanders will be teaching people how to carve tree tables.

Join the village for the Festival Service at 10am on the Sunday in All Saint’s Church and hear Louis de Bernières read from his international best-selling novels, between 2.30pm and 3.30pm later in the day.

Tony Nelson, Sheringham Town Crier will again be keeping order throughout the festival. Cosmo and Joe from Foolhardy Circus will be teaching circus skills and there’ll be meadow performance from Vadimas (magician), Be Prepared with Val Keen and Babs Eager (Saturday) and the chance to enter the giant Whale (Sunday). There’ll be music from The Yaxham Ukes, Matt Williams, The Thinking Men, Dove and BoWeevil, The Albanian Washing Machine Company and more.

Welborne Arts Festival is supported by South Norfolk Council, Norfolk County Council, Norwich Town Close Estate Charity, The John Jarrold Trust, The Geoffrey Watling Charity, Creative Arts East and the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation.

For more information contact the Festival Office, t 01362 850327,